I think of Sharon Shinn's previous works as Young Adult material. This book has explicit sexual content, which was a surprising change. Also, the ma..Show More »in character is deeply rooted in reality, although some characters have fantasy charcteristics. So I wasn't swept away in fantasy, as I was initially hoping, since the Mystic and Ryder series is so much fun.
However, this book is an interesting character story of what goes on behind the scenes when a person is living a life acceptable in "polite company". Fascinating and inciteful, and applicable to the real world in many ways.
This audiobook was an engrossing but subtle and somewhat slower-paced listen. The conflict is strictly emotional but it avoids the trap of manufacture..Show More »d emotions that create conflict for the sake of plot progression because the interpersonal drama that drives the story feels very true to life. By the end, I was deeply absorbed in the dynamic between the sisters.
Told in first person present tense, this is a story about love in its many forms. The chapters alternate between Melanie and Brody's story as Melanie worries about and tries to shield her sister Anne from discovery and the seemingly unrelated story of Janet and Cooper - two teenagers whose difficult living situations are made bearable by their friendship and developing love. The two perspectives end up tying together but each was interesting enough on its own. This isn't a supernatural shape-shifter sexy-times book but rather a compelling re-imagining of our world with shifters who live a hidden and, as another reviewer put it, rather hardscrabble existence. More than a story about an alternate reality, however, it's about these specific characters and the lengths they go to for those they love. This was one of those books that lingered in my thoughts after I finished it and each time I thought about it, I liked it a little bit more.
Erin Moon’s narration was very good overall but the strong point for me was how realistic the dialogue between Melanie and Anne sounded. My ability and desire to connect to these characters was significantly enhanced by being able to hear the laugh in their voices as they teased each other and the complex emotions that siblings often share were very evident in the delivery. Each character was easy to identify when they spoke and they seemed very realistic in the back-and-forth of dialogue.