Once Upon A Romance

Once Upon A Romance's Review Of...
Shadow Bound by Erin Kellison


Cover art: Shadow Bound Reviewer: Marlene Breakfield
Title: Shadow Bound - 1st in the Shadow series
Author: Erin Kellison
Publisher: Dorchester
ISBN-13: 978-0-505-52829-2
Release Date: July 2010
Genre/Sub-genre: Fantasy Romance
Year/Setting: Present day, California
Overall Rating: 3.5
Sexual Content Rating: Sensual
Language (Profanity/Slang) Content Rating: None
Violent Content Rating: Moderate
Erin's Website/Blog: www.erinkellison.com

Talia O'brien isn't like most young women, it seems that her mother, Kathleen, who was dying, fell in love with Death, the Shadowman, and took him as a lover. Talia is the result of this affair, and because of her heritage, she can cloak herself in shadows, feel someone's emotions when touched, and manipulate matter in the shadows. Because she feels different, Talia, mostly, keeps to herself and focuses on her studies into experiences after death. Because of this Talia has achieved a doctorate and hopes to get a position at a university. All her hopes are dashed, when her apartment is invaded by monstrous beings in the guise of humans, who are looking for her and suck out her roommates soul. When Talia screams, she calls forth the Shadowman, who takes care of the wraiths. Terrified, Talia flees and is forced to run, while the wraiths, mercilessly, chase her.

Meanwhile, Adam Thorne, founder of the Segue Institute, which has been studying the Wraiths in an effort to find a means of killing them, has seen the mention of the Shadowman in Talia's dissertation and knows he must add her to his team. Because Adam's brother has become a Wraith and has mentioned the Shadowman, Adam hopes to, finally, find a means of destroying the horrible creature, that his brother has become. Adam and his friend go in search of Talia and help save her from the Wraiths. Adam takes her to his institute, but someone has betrayed him and the Wraiths aren't giving up easily.

Shadow Bound is an imaginative, dark fantasy romance, which has an interesting take on the Fae and death. The world-building for this book is quite unique and the atmosphere is at times dark and gloomy, but lovely at the same time. The plot moves along at a rapid pace and is exciting and suspenseful. Adam is a goal-oriented, overachiever, who is protective of others and out to save the world. If Adam has one failing, it is his obsession with getting rid of his Wraith brother, Jacob. Adam has many heroic qualities and his obsession only makes him more human. There is only one moment in the book where Adam seems to act out of character, and that is when his friend is in danger and he goes to try and save him, instead of trying to warn him with a phone call. The two had been keeping tabs on each other via phone through much of the book, but Adam just ran off to save his friend without even attempting a phone call. However, this is just a minor glitch, which took me out of the story only briefly, and didn't affect my enjoyment of the book to a great extent. Talia, at times, seems a little to meek and scared for my taste, but I guess it is understandable with all the turmoil, that she is going through. Luckily, by the end of the book, she comes to terms with her heritage and seems to grow a backbone.

All in all, Shadow Bound is an intense fantasy read, and the ending made me really want to read the next book.


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