Enshadowed (Nevermore, #2)

Enshadowed - Kelly Creagh What I liked:You know the curse of the sequels? It is very difficult to write the second part of a series as good as the first one. Ms Creagh took a risk and wrote it differently. I admit it was brave of her.The Poe-themed world building was still one of the highlights here, along with the further information about Lilith, provided by Isobel's best friend, Gwen. I also enjoyed a truly original take on the Nocs, demonic ghouls which can disperse into a mist but are quite fragile otherwise. The narrative reveals many wonderful details about Varen and his dream world. And I was perfectly happy with the fact that Isobel’s family was still there, trying to understand and help her as much as they could and/or were allowed by Isobel herself.What I didn’t like:Unfortunately I must say a book almost without Varen was 100% worse than the first novel with him playing an active part. Also the fact that the story is still narrated by Isobel herself started to grate on my nerves as that girl too often had nothing interesting to say. Small wonder – you see, she doesn’t like reading.And here I hit my main grievance: Isobel. Or rather her attitude towards life, Varen, her family, books and finding info therein. Overall her attitude, full stop.Ok, she is depressed, she can’t confide in anybody apart from Gwen and even Gwen is not to be trusted with everything. However let me ask a simple question: why? Would it be such a big mistake to tell your family what you feel and why? Would it hurt to mention some alternate reality and the fact that your boyfriend might be imprisoned and tortured there? By the way Isobel’s obstinacy to see that her beloved might be at least partially guilty of anything was surprising. Let’s face it, Varen failed to connect appropriately with humanity at large and hence he actively sought the understanding companionship of a soul-sucking demoness, go figure! The problem here is not that he's being made to face the consequences of his actions, but rather that Isobel seems utterly blind to his being at fault at all. She wants to stop Lilith from ever hurting anyone ever again, but what if they, like Varen, want her to be summoned? What then!?Now a bit about reading. Imagine that your boyfriend is imprisoned in a kind of alternate universe which is somehow connected to the works of a particular author. You love your boyfriend dearly and you would do anything to set him free; wouldn’t reading a bio of that author along with the majority (if not all) of his collected works be your absolute priority? Meanwhile Isobel never takes a book into her hand. Most of important information she gets because a) she was told b) somebody has read it to her (often Gwen) c) she overheard it, accidentally or not d) she dreamt about it. Really, is reading so difficult to swallow?My last carping and a warning: this novel ends with a big cliffie: Isobel wakes up in an ICU and she observes her own failed resuscitation. Still the reader, like her, is not sure whether she really dies. Varen seems to be responsible for her fatal injuries – he was acting under Lilith’s compulsion. I hate clffies.Final verdict:I am a bit torn: on the one hand I would like to know how this story ends and whether there has been a method in this madness. On the other hand I’m afraid the third book might be a waste of time because nothing, literally NOT ONE SINGLE THING prepared Iso to deal with Lilith and her realm, the biggest obstacle being Isobel herself. I am not sure the author can come up with a trick good enough to sound believable or real."A word to the wise… cover your mirrors. That’s how they find you."