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4.0 out of 5 starsDisturbing
Reviewed in the United States on November 23, 2018
I did not love this book though I did like it in the end. It is a difficult read because the reader is left with a question mark as to what or who the "shadow" is throughout the story. You can surmise, you can guess but you never know for sure. One thing is certain, that being the "shadow" is the central character, the central notion of this book. Up to the last thirty pages or so I had almost decided not to rate the book at all. My bent is always to recognize the work of an author. Usually I talk in reviews about characters, and the blending of the characters with the story. Not in this one. Again, I did not love this book though I did like it, hence the four stars.
This is the second book I have read by this author and I love his stories. Readers meet Peyton Hamilton when she survives a brutal attack that left the others in her family dead. Peyton goes to live with her aunt, but secrets of the past seem to dwell in the present with horror and suspense. Jackson Baer is a great story teller and an author readers definitely need to check out.
4.0 out of 5 starsNot very suspenseful, but a good dark, evil read
Reviewed in the United States on July 14, 2018
First off let me say that I really really really wanted to love this book. I enjoy the stories of twisted and evil. I enjoy that genre and if you know thats what you are reading then I like it. I feel, however, that this book tried to be too many things and ended up doing none of them well. First off it was pretty short, which is fine, but there were too many peripheral things that ended up having nothing to do with the story. i.e. there were 2 chapters devoted to Charity's past - her coming out and her love life. I understand that some of this was part of the plot and its explanation, IMO there was way too much emphasis put on this. Almost making a point about the lesbian sexuality just for the heck of it. It would have been fine if that was integral to the plot but it simply was not. I got to the end and just felt disappointed. I left feeling confused about the shadow's involvment with Peyton. If it really was the shaddow within her doing the killings, it would have been good to show more of that double life. Maybe you show her killing throughout the book and dealing with that double life. Instead what we get is a very confusing picture of her and her involvement with this shadow. Is she the killer?, is she a helpless victim? we don't really know. As others have noted, I felt absolutely no emotional connection to Peyton at all. Actually I found myself rooting against her. Ultimately I just left feeling dissatisfied with the overall story. I will continue to read this author and hope that he continues to explore this genre, because I really love this type of story. I can recommend this for those looking for a dark tale with absolutely no redemption at all.
**Update** After spending all night last night and this morning thinking about this book, I feel as if i need to update my thoughts about it. After reading it and now being able to see all the parts and how they relate to the whole, I am liking it more and more. I now understand that that this is simply a dark tale and I have taken that for what it is. Again I think having the completed picture makes a huge difference in how you interpret the smaller parts through the story.
5.0 out of 5 starsWhat is the Shadow? Intriguing and Fast-Paced Supernatural Thriller. Highly Recommended!
Reviewed in the United States on January 22, 2018
The Lights Will Never Fade is an intriguing supernatural thriller, well-written, fast-paced, and very dark. Although, I usually prefer stories that have less fantasy, I was pleasantly surprised by how engrossed I became with story and how invested I was with the two main characters.
There are unexpected twists, creating suspense, as you wonder who is responsible for killing Peyton's family. But perhaps, the Shadow itself is really the pull of intrigue. There are deeper layers in the narrative, fascinating from a psychological perspective, about human nature. I don't want to say too much, as it would spoil the story. Let's just say, that I found more to the Shadow than simply an evil supernatural force; in the Shadow is a metaphor for us all to think about.
This is not usually a genre I read, however, I received this as ARC and was pleasantly surprised how much I enjoyed it. My first thought was it reminded me of a Stephen King novel. There were a few spots where I found myself confused by a scene, but this is because supernatural suspense is not my thing--my confusion is not a reflection of the author's skills! I thought the writing was excellent, the manner in which scenes were set up done in a masterful way. Mr. Baer's talent shines when it comes dialogue-it was very realistically written. Over all, a great read out of my usual romance zone!
The set up of the book is a story which I can only describe as a teenage girl coming into herself, learning who she is in a new town. I was surprised by the turn into a supernatural element through the shadow and the past the two main characters endured. I was hooked from the beginning, reading the story feels like you are a part of the characters’ lives. You get to know each character enough to have a reaction to their situation at any given time unlike some novels whose characters come and go with no reader connection. The ending surprised me and the supernatural element of the shadow became more of a metaphor to me as I read, that’s what I liked about the book - you can interpret that element how you like. I enjoyed the book and its story, the author does a good job at keeping you wanting more yet giving you enough to satisfy that curiosity the story creates.