Shadow Book Review

Shadow Book Review

Greetings! Welcome to my review for Shadow by Kara Swanson!
4.9Overall Score


Greetings! Welcome to my review for Shadow by Kara Swanson!

  • Plot
  • Characters
  • Pacing
  • Themes
  • Setting

Two reviews in one day?! Who am I?! I just couldn’t wait to share the review for the sequel to Dust, so here we are! These will be the last reviews for a little bit, but hopefully I’ll be able to schedule a lot more for future months.

Before we get started, a brief spoiler warning. I’ll do my best to mark any huge spoilers for book 1, but beware the rogue spoiler that might make its way in!

Without further ado…

Summary: (possible spoilers for book 1)

Peter Pan has crash-landed back on Neverland. But this is not the island he remembers.

Desperate to rescue Claire and the fractured Lost Boys, Peter must unravel what truly tore his dreamland apart. But with each step, he is haunted by more of his own broken memories. Not even Pan himself is what he seems.

Claire Kenton is chained to a pirate ship, watching the wreckage of Neverland rocked by tempests. When she finally finds her brother, Connor is every bit as shattered as the island. Claire may have pixie dust flowing in her veins—but the light of Neverland is flickering dangerously close to going out forever.

To rescue Neverland from the inescapable shadow, the boy who never grew up and the girl who grew up too fast will have to sacrifice the only thing they have left: each other.

Personal Review:

Shadow is significantly darker than Dust, but still impactful, and I feel like the darkness is handled well. Although I missed the whimsy, I also appreciated the theme of fighting your shadows/past.

I do have some mixed feelings about the ending, but I do think it paid homage to the journey of the series and the characters’ development.

The high stakes don’t feel forced, and the emotions flow just as tumultuously as in its predecessor. The betrayals and twists are both surprising and entertaining.

I love how both books have a specific theme that’s the central idea of the book even while themes are woven through the stories.

While I may not have as much to say about Shadow as I did about Dust, I enjoyed them both (almost) equally and would happily reread the series whenever time allows.

As this second book is somewhat darker, I would recommend it for ages 15+.

Quote: Even the acknowledgements feel quote-worthy, but here’s my favorite from the story.

“As much as it may hurt, we have to grow…If we don’t grow, we don’t live. We just stagnate and rot from the inside out.”

Content Review:

Language – Some British language, but I don’t think there was anything too offensive.

Spiritual – Similar to in Dust, there are mentions of Tiger Lily’s tribe’s beliefs in the Ever One, who represents God. There are also a few references to dark magic, but it’s never viewed in a positive light.

Violence – Some descriptions of burns, drowning, blood, wounds, and a character scratches her skin until it bleeds.

Other – As in the last book, some references to attempted suicide, self-harm, and physical abuse.


I received an eARC of Shadow in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

That’s all for this review! I have so many read books to review, some reviews to type up, and many to schedule, so more reviews are (fingers crossed) on their way, even if it’s not for a little while.

Have a lovely day!