Friday, 18 March 2016

Review: Shades of Darkness by A.R. Kahler

Shades of Darkness
by A.R. Kahler
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Format: Hardcover
Pages: 304
Release Date: March 8th, 2016
Purchase: [Amazon] [Chapters/Indigo]
American Gods meets The Secret History in this suspenseful start to a brand-new fantasy trilogy about a girl named Kaira Winters, the murders that keep happening at her artsy boarding school, and the lengths she must go to in order to protect the people she loves.

When Kaira Winters decided to go to Islington—a boarding school deep in the woods of Michigan—she thought she could finally get away from everything she has tried so hard to forget, including some things from her past that she refuses to believe ever actually happened.

Everything seemed great until the bodies of murdered students started appearing all over campus. The victims seem to have been killed in some sort of ritual sacrifice. And even worse, Kaira’s dreams are giving her clues to the killer’s identity.

Though she tries to resist, Kaira quickly realizes that she is the only one who can stop the violence, but to do so she must come to terms with her past. She’s going to have to listen to the voice that is buried deep within her…the one that claims to have unimaginable power…the one that claims to be an actual goddess.

But even if Kaira can harness the power within her, will it be enough to stop the darkness that has fallen over her school? And if it is strong enough, then what’s to stop the goddess from wreaking her own havoc once she’s released?

Filled with murder, mystery, and a little bit of magic, this fresh genre-bending novel is a thrilling page-turner you won’t be able to put down until the very last page.

Cupcakes, I've always been super picky on my "Waiting on Wednesday" posts, which is one of the reasons why I don't do many of those to begin with. To make it as my W.O.W pick, a title has to beckon me to read it; it needs a cover that pulls me in and a synopsis that promises me all the crazy drama this ridiculous little book nerd could ever need. In the case of Shades of Darkness A.R. Kahler, it had everything I was looking and it easily became my "Waiting on Wednesday" pick and a highly anticipated title!

"Prepare your kidneys, Ethan. We're about to consume more coffee than any mortal has before."

Shades of Darkness was mysterious, dark, and full of twists I had no way of anticipating. Kaira, the protagonist in A.R. Kahler's latest, had an interesting and wonderful aura about her, although, at times, she proved difficult to understand. Trying to unravel her character and getting to know her proved to be a challenge, but overall it most definitely worked out in the long run. Overall, I found Shades of Darkness to be quite an entertaining read and absolutely cannot wait to see what A.R. Kahler has in store next!

"The gods walk, something inside me whispered."

On a related note: upon writing my review, I noticed that there were a few low ratings for Shades of Darkness on Goodreads. As always, I'm very curious on the thoughts of others who experienced the same novel I enjoyed differently, so I took it upon myself to have a fun bookish chat with someone who didn't exactly fall in love with the title. What I took from it was that we both agreed it had a slow build up, however in my experience I saw Shades of Darkness as a sort of prelude to the events, I can only speculate, will be extremely exciting in the next installment in the Ravenborn series. With that said, it just goes to show you that not every reader absorbs a book the same way as another reader would, however I do recommend this: try Shades of Darkness by A.R. Kahler, but keep an open mind based on all the exciting possibilities in Ravenborn #2. As I mentioned, it's unique mythology will suck you in and Kaira will become a character you'll enjoy.

4 / 5 Cupcakes

This title was provided to the blogger by the publisher/author in exchange for an honest review. No payment was received/accept in exchange for this review/post. The blogger requests that this review not be reposted or edited with the blogger's permission. The thoughts and words expressed in this review/post are explicitly the blogger's.


  1. Katherine Pinacho18 March 2016 at 10:19

    I absolutely agree
    Not every book works for every reader
    Shades of Darkness sounds like a good book though. I will def be giving it a go!

  2. Thank you for recommending Shades of Darkness. First I've come across such title. The cover is beautiful and reminds me of the Ink series by Amanda Sun.

  3. The synopsis is intriguing. Thanks for the review, Wendy (:

  4. The synopsis is really intriguing, and the fact that you picked it as a WoW earlier is impressive. It definitely must have been a good read, and I'm like you, I really enjoy the slow build because it shows the author has a lot more coming in the future. Thanks for the review, I'm really interested in checking this one out now!

  5. Great review! I think it's always difficult to read the first in a series because you are anticipating some build up but you also want SOMETHING to happen. I think I may wait to see what people say about book two before investing my time in the series. Glad you enjoyed this one!

    Jamie @ Books and Ladders