Winter’s ShadowAuthor: M.J. HearlePublish Date: June 2011Publisher: Pan Macmillan AustraliaBlake Duchamp...
He's all that Winter Adams can think of. Ever since their fateful meeting at Pilgrim's Lament. Ever since he looked at her with those emerald eyes. Ever since he saved her life.
But Blake isn't all that he seems. There is a strangeness about him, something dark and otherworldly. Something dangerous. In his attic is a secret he would kill to defend, but Winter seems to have a special ability to make him forget his duty. And he is her only protection against the gathering darkness.
The only problem is, to protect Winter, Blake must risk exposing her to an even greater danger. Himself.(GoodReads)
I was sucked in originally by the gorgeously, intriguing cover. I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone’s hair that red naturally, but I liked the effect it gives to the dark jackets and creepy trees. I find it refreshingly original in comparison to some of the covers out there right now, but how does the story compare?
Winter, or Winnie/Win as she’s called throughout the book, is certainly a puzzling character. I don’t quite get her. She’s rather aloof and withdrawn towards everyone except her BFF and Blake. Even to her sister she’s rather callous. I think this is an interesting perspective to take, especially considering her history. Some characters don’t reflect their history in their actions so it makes it hard to emphasize with them. I understand where Winter’s coming from and I totally get why she is the way she is, and that’s awesome that an author took the time out to build up the character in that way.
Blake is enigmatic. We know very little of him from start to finish. At finish we still don’t quite know his whole story but we have most of it. We get enough of his story to know that he’s taken on a burden that he didn’t have to, but had enough of kindness and honor to do the right thing. I enjoyed his interactions with Winter.
The story isn’t fast paced but it’s not slow either. It has a nice rhythm to it that I don’t feel like it’s rushed nor do I feel like it’s way overdone. There are a few parts I don’t still fully understand why they’re there, but it doesn’t take away from the story being told. It’s like a quirk in the story’s character in a way. (And I’m sure those quirks will probably be explained in the coming book.)
Overall it’s a reliable, pleasant read. I would certainly recommend it for paranormal readers and to the lesser extent romance readers. (though the romance is very light.)