Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Release Day Review: Erasing: Shadows - K.D. Rose

18405421Erasing: Shadows
K.D. Rose
Series: The Erasing Series #1
Genre: Fantasy, Paranormal
Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Word Rating: Half n' Half
On Goodreads

About the book:

What if to save the ones you love, you had to unlock the key to a different reality?

Generations of mystery smash together when a seemingly traditional family must shatter their illusions of normality to confront themselves and their friends, leaving no possibility unexplored in order to rescue- well, who exactly? Watch the Ross family, the High Five Gang, and multiple generations dig into an innovative explosion of imagination where they must confront numerous realities, real-world danger, and worst of all—their own teenage hormones!

In a place where nothing is as it seems and shocks are around every corner, even the people you thought you knew may find themselves strangers in this moving and provocative reality-bender. With breathless pacing and psychological intrigue, Erasing: Shadows and the High Five Gang will keep you guessing until the very end.


This book was generally cool. It stays (mostly) true to the section above. A myriad of worlds have collided and this book does a decent job of sorting everything out. And yeah, there's plenty of teenage hormones to go around. It has its ups and downs and could definitely be four stars with a bit of polishing and a teensy bit of downsizing and paying a lot more attention to some kind of 'main' cast and their development throughout.

The best:

It's hard to consider the best of this book because I automatically think of the worst. And generally, Shadows is just all over the place in terms of good and bad. Some parts I'm so sucked into the universe(s) and the situations and especially the description (I'm always a sucker for poets who incorporate their styles in prose). But in other parts, I just find myself generally confused as to what the hell has happened.

With that said:
'Mira felt a tug as she watched the last ankle go, the left shoe still limp in her hand. A bloodcurdling scream rent the air.
It came from her.'
Is pretty good pacing and breaking. Nearly without fault, Rose executes a great balance between these two. Her paragraphs are easy to follow and most of them flow from one to the next with ease.

Her characters are also, generally, relateable (Mira is a stay-at-home parent with whistling quirks) and act as great mediums for the supernatural and awesome things that revolve around them (i.e., her baby disappearing).

The . . . uhm:

There's very little middle ground for this novel, not really. Everything is either top level or lost on me.

'He took in the smells and sound of the skateboard park. The scent of stale beer was overwhelming. It mostly came from the covered bags lying around. He was also getting hungry as the smell of hot dogs and pretzels worked their magic. In the background the skateboard wheels rolled over the concrete. He heard yelps as random spills tore at hands at knees and hands of the riders.' (21)

When zoning in on certain characters, in this case Michael, the author shows decent clarity and insight into her character's sensory perception, but not always so much on the thought side of their experience. Furthermore, its at these junctures where the author becomes slightly less clear in her work. The first couple of sentences are fluid, and the whole thing has great variation in syntax, but the third sentence . . . really? His stomach couldn't grumble or something to indicate his hunger? Could the fourth sentence not be rephrased? What the hell is a 'rider'? Skaters skateboard, Riders . . . well I only know of one by the name of Flynn and he's often tangled in thieving and smoldering. In addition, there are a shit ton of characters also in the scene and this novel basically revolves around a bunch of characters in different scenes conversing about those scenes and it can get weird when she zones in on more than one at a time, but generally we have one or two viewpoints on a situation.

Seriously, lots of shaky ground at times, back and forth between 'I really want to read this book' and 'why the hell do these characters only have names and descriptions why aren't they doing anything, should I care about them?'.

The not so good:

There is no character development. We have nearly a dozen characters running around, and they're all thrown at your face in the first few chapters. I forget who Trina is just about every time she isn't mentioned. There are just too many people here and so while I don't blame the author for not developing every single character, maybe just one or two main ones? Maybe one from the Ross family, one from High Five, etc? I liked Michael enough as he helped make the novel clear, but does he always have to seem so suspicious of everyone? I did not understand the tension between Michael and Stu and in the greater context of the astral planes and Mrs Ross's secrets, I couldn't bring myself to care. I would have liked a few characters just . . . to not be there, and in their places I would like more background on the High Five gang and more development on the characters. Seriously, they literally experience puberty multiple times and face death and different universes over and over again . . . that should put things into perspective. . . .

So generally, this novel was interesting and it's a quick afternoon read. If you need to kill time, then go ahead and pick it up. The worlds that are introduced are often fascinating and the mysteries unfold brilliantly beneath the pages. With a bit of polishing and development, this could definitely be a four star novel.

- Marlon

What's your favorite alternate universe? Narnia? Oz?
Let us know in the comments!

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