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  • Writer's pictureLa Crimson Femme

Review: Shadow Dance by Christine Feehan

The darkness of the Shadow Riders series keeps me coming back for me. Whilst this book can be read as a standalone, it is more enjoyable to read the books in this series from start to finish. In the latest installment, we receive Geno's story. He is the "big boss" in New York city. He is also thrown into a puzzle that makes no sense. Trigger warning, this book delves into child abuse.

When the left does not know what the right hand does, misunderstandings can happen. This is the case between Geno and Amaranthe. For those that find similarities between the characters in the Shadow Riders and the Ghost Walkers, I can see the formula Ms. Feehan uses and I like it. In fact, most of her books have characters created in this manner. It appeals to me and it works for her. Sometimes the characters pull me in more than others. This story, Amaranthe pulled me in. I loved her back story. Her childhood was not easy and I admire her for how she achieved to such great heights. Yes, others will, specifically characters in this story are horrified with how hard she was pushed. I guess from an immigrant child's perspective, it is familiar and normalized for me. I can appreciate other people's horror at how hard Amaranthe was pushed. I guess I just identify with it and see nothing wrong with it. Look where Amaranthe is today. Could her childhood been adjusted to have a bit more love? Probably. But she never really went without and her temperament suited the upbringing and training she received. Not saying this works for all people, but it worked for her.

I must admit, about a quarter of the way through this story, I started to suspect what was going on. I have to say, I wasn't surprised with the big reveal. I was angry that the vengeance doled out wasn't louder and with more ramification. The mishandling in my mind was keeping the vigilant justice quiet. I can understand why it happened. I do not agree with it because what is kept secret can grow into an ugly monster. And this ugly monster was even worse than the original crimes.

I like how Ms. Feehan doesn't shy away from the gritty, abusive, and taboo topics. She gives it no quarter as she exposes right from wrong. There are times where clear lines must be delineated for us to survive as a society. This series feels like this over and over again. Unfortunately, there must be people who have to do the "dirty" work to protect the rest of society. This is why I enjoy this series and others. There is a time and place for violence. Ms. Feehan showcases it in a way that I enjoy reading.

I found the plot of this story more riveting than the romance between Geno and Amaranthe. The two are well matched, but their chemistry didn't wow me. I did like their interactions and specifically how they partner together to solve the mystery. I liked how their character was developed. Ms. Feehan creates characters I usually thoroughly admire and sometimes wish I could be. They inspire me to be better. I'm left with a positive feeling at the end of this book.

This dark romance is recommended to reader who appreciate vengeance.

*provided by NetGalley


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