September 05, 2012

Review: The Shadow Society by Marie Rutkoski!

The Shadow Society
By Marie Rutkoski
Hardcover, 416 pages
Expected publication: October 16th 2012
By Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Darcy Jones doesn’t remember anything before the day she was abandoned as a child outside a Chicago firehouse. She has never really belonged anywhere—but she couldn’t have guessed that she comes from an alternate world where the Great Chicago Fire didn’t happen and deadly creatures called Shades terrorize the human population.

Memories begin to haunt Darcy when a new boy arrives at her high school, and he makes her feel both desire and desired in a way she hadn’t thought possible. But Conn’s interest in her is confusing. It doesn’t line up with the way he first looked at her.

As if she were his enemy.

When Conn betrays Darcy, she realizes that she can’t rely on anything—not herself, not the laws of nature, and certainly not him. Darcy decides to infiltrate the Shadow Society and uncover the Shades’ latest terrorist plot. What she finds out will change her world forever . . .

In this smart, compulsively readable novel, master storyteller Marie Rutkoski has crafted an utterly original world, characters you won’t soon forget, and a tale full of intrigue and suspense.

The Shadow Society was awesome! Marie Rutkoski took something so simple as the shadow of a person, and created a story that is unlike anything I’ve read. I was taken by surprise by so many parts of the book and found myself so fascinated by it all I just couldn’t stop reading.

At first, I was a little worried when I started reading it because it had an opening that was very similar to many Young Adult titles out today. Girl meets boy, boy shows interest in girl, boy is mysterious, and girl gets curious… you get my drift. I decided to keep on reading and once I got a couple of chapters in, the story took off in a total different direction from the way it started. I didn't know who the good guy was, or who the bad guy was. Everyone in the story had some kind of agenda, or some sort of secret. The main love interest, Conn, went from being really sweet to Darcy, to being her enemy as fast as a light switch. Rutkoski does a good job pulling you in, making you think one thing, and then twisting it to the point that you’re screaming and talking to yourself out loud. I know because that is exactly what I was doing. My husband actually looked at me like I was crazy. I was talking to the book like I was in there experiencing it all. I enjoyed it that much!

It’s been weeks since I read it and I still remember everything so vividly. It was one heck of a ride! I cannot wait to see what else Rutkoski has in store for us next. If it’s anything like The Shadow Society, she will be on auto-buy list for life.

The one thing I wish were different were Darcy’s friends. They are funny and likable, but I felt for such an intense story they were a bit immature. And certain events that took place with them towards the end were a little hard for me to believe as a parent. In my opinion it just didn’t fit with everything that happened in the story. It felt a bit like Rutkoski just needed to fill some pages. But, in the end, it is fiction so I am sure some readers won’t have this same issue.

My rating for The Shadow Society is 4.5 out of 5 Stars!

Order your copy today


  1. Love alternate histories! Cannot wait for this one!

  2. This sounds really great! I love that it's set in Chicago. I will be adding it to my list.

  3. I've been curious about this one- thanks for the review!

  4. I've really been wanting to read this one! Good to know you enjoyed it!

  5. This books sounds really good! Any book that has you thinking about it days later has to be a great book!

  6. I am so excited to read this one. It is such a different story, and I am excited to hear that it left a positive impression on you.

    1. It really did! As reviewers we read a lot of books that are very similar, and this one sticks out big time! I haven't read anything like it yet!

  7. this book sound amazing cant wait to read it!!

  8. I really like your review! I would have been a little undecided as to whether or not to add this to my TBR, but now I am definitely going to!

  9. I haven't heard about this book before seeing your review of it, but it definitely sounds like a book I would bring home with me in a heartbeat. After reading your review, I am even more excited about The Shadow Society. And, the cover is awesome. And the name of the book sticks out. All in all, this is a book I can't wait to read!

    1. Jaime, it was really good! When I was done reading it I was like holy WOW lol It's really different!

  10. This sounds really weird... but I'll give it a shot. Nothing is as fun as seeing whether a book's going to be your friend or not. :)

  11. This book sounds really good! It's on my TBR list already, and your review makes me want to read it ASAP. I love alternate realities and histories, reminds me of a couple TV shows I watch; so I can't wait to see how the book uses this theme :)


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