Book Review: Shadow by Holly S. Roberts

Posted June 5, 2019 by Kathy Davie in Book Reviews / 2 Comments

Book Review: Shadow by Holly S. Roberts

I received this book for free from BookSirens in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Shadow by Holly S. Roberts
Genres: Science Fiction
Published by Amazon Digital on February 12, 2019
Pages: 237
Format: eARC
Source: BookSirens

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First in the Genetically Modified apocalyptic science fiction duology and revolving around Marinah. The couple focus is on Marinah Church and King.

This eARC was sent to me by BookSirens for an honest review.

My Take

It’s a theme of betrayal by the politicians. A betrayal that encompasses so many areas. And I certainly can’t blame King and his people for hiding all these secrets! Snicker, I did enjoy how Roberts portrayed the Shadow Warriors in their straightforward “thinking”.

There is so much distrust, and I can’t blame the Shadow Warriors one bit. But, even with the betrayal, the Shadow Warriors know they need the humans. At least they’ll be more wary in the future. Now if only Marinah knew what her own leaders were hiding from the people, what with those horrendous living conditions and the hideous food…that those same leaders are not suffering.

Oh, yeah, this is only one of the ways in which Roberts is a tease with this back-and-forth dance of secrets, the most horrible secret being what genetic engineering has done to humans. And I’m talkin’ directly to/on humans as well as the modifications made to foods.

Both protagonists drive the story with enough action to keep things moving, although the pace itself seems so-o-o sl-o-o-w-w-w. It doesn’t help that Roberts uses present tense to tell the story, adding to the oddity of the pace.

It’s also yet another story that showcases the beastly nature of humans with the so-called “animals” much more humane and caring. Between the care the Shadow Warriors take of the humans in their care and the sweetness of King’s memories of his parents’ marriage, I melted.

I wish there had been more finesse in Marinah’s and King’s romance. I’d’ve thought it would be easy with Roberts switching back and forth from Marinah to King using a first person dual protagonist point-of-view. Alas, it was not to be.

The Story

The world has fought an alien war for seven years. Ten percent of the world is still alive. And only because of the Shadow Warriors jumping in to save the humans.

Then the humans betrayed them when the war was won.

The Characters

The klutzy Marinah Church, a theater and performing arts student who was minoring in analytics, is the third defense secretary…since her father, Farrish Church, died in his active position as defense secretary. Her mother, Dinah, gave her life to save Marinah’s.

The Shadow Warriors came…
…to earth hundreds of years ago because their violent nature caused them to destroy their own planet.

King/Beast is the current leader. Beck, third-in-command, is filling Cabel‘s position as second-in-command while Cabel is in his mating frenzy with Mary. Cabel is also in charge of the food supply. More of King’s guards include Labyrinth; Nokita; Knet, who is a wild card; Axel, who is their doctor and a pacifist; and, Boot who is forced to train Marinah. Boot’s wife, Maylin, and son, Che, are not supposed to be at headquarters. Greystone was their leader (and King’s uncle) while Church was alive.

The US Federation is…
…what has replaced the federal government. The current president, Barnes, is a synthetic biologist and agricultural scientist — knowing how to raise food has value.

Impossible-to-kill hellhounds finished what the nuclear bombs and EMP began.

Before the war, Marinah’s friends had included Hailey, Brittney, Corey, and Kaitlin. Brian had been a co-worker.

The Cover and Title

The cover finds Marinah straddling something, a bike?, with her back to us, her long hair straggling down her left shoulder. She’s mostly in silhouette staring down a very narrow street of old stucco buildings in the grays of disrepair, a third world feeling to the scene with the hope of a blue sky rising up the center. At the top is the series information in a reflecting silver with a shadowed sans-serif font. Below it is the same for the title but larger. A quick subtitle tells us the protagonist’s name in script below that and to the right. At the very bottom is an angled gradation of light purple to darker purple in the author’s name.

The title reflects the secrets being kept by both sides, a Shadow of truth.

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