Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Title:     Shadow of Time
Author: Jen Minkman
Rating:   ★★★ 1/2

*Copy given by author for an honest review.

It took me quite a while to finish Shadow of Time, not because it was not enjoyable or entertaining; it was simply because it was my first time to read about the Navajo Nation and I am unfamiliar with their ways and history. I took the time to thoroughly read and understand the interaction between the characters and the history and practices of the Diné people.

All Hannah needs is a nice and quiet vacation after her first year of teaching French at a high school. She joins her brother Ben for the summer in their mom’s log cabin in Arizona. There, she meets Josh again, Ben’s childhood friend from the Navajo reservation. The little boy from the rez has grown up fast, and Hannah can’t help but feeling more for him than just friendship.

But fate apparently has something else in store for her. And it’s not peace and quiet. Night after night, Hannah is plagued by strange nightmares about the past of Navajo Nation and terrifying shadows chasing her. They seem to come closer – and why is Josh always present in her dreams?

Sometimes, the past has a way of catching up with you.

The story is interesting, although a bit predictable. Thankfully, we are entertained by likeable protagonists Hannah and Josh and secondary characters Ben and Emily, and by the truly interesting story about the Diné people. Part of why I love reading books is because of the new things I learn; I know these are fiction so what I tend to do is research up on the new things I learn so I'll know what is factual and not.

Hannah and Josh were quite adorable, and Minkman's characterization of how they are as a couple is so life-like. Do you still remember how you were in the initial throes of your relationship with your main squeeze? I think the description of Hannah and Josh's actions around each other were described to a T. And while some may call it too cheesy, I actually enjoyed reminiscing about my own relationship. However, I do have to say that I was a bit turned off at the start because Hannah liked Josh because he was so cute...and then she starts saying she's in love with him. And he's in love with her too. Honestly, if the book didn't end up the way it did, I'd be quite lamenting about it instead. I'm really not the type who likes the one-look-I'm-in-love story.

There were times I just felt frustrated with both of them because of the secrets they keep on hiding from each other. But then again, Minkman presents logical arguments for each side, and you can't help but agree. I felt like one of their friends who just wanted to shout at them for all the unnecessary drama between them!

Ben was genuinely nice, although it surprised me because I think this is the first book I've read where the brother-sister relationship is genuinely amiable. They get along so well, and Ben doesn't even give Hannah a hard time! I've never had a brother myself, so I can't really relate, but I'm just thinking about all the other brother-sister relationships I've read in other books and can't help but think how different Ben is. Also, props to him for not cheating on his girlfriend who's touring in Europe, even with the other girls around him.

However, there were times when I felt the story was going on too long unnecessarily. Moreover, the "battle",  truly disappointed me! I was all riled up and ready to read how Josh could defeat the witches but sadly, I was thwarted.

Still, I did enjoy the book, and I think fans of supernatural and paranormal, with slightly pacifist themes would enjoy the book :)

Ciao, happy musings!


  1. Thanks for the review, Goldie! I understand why the ending was a bit different than you expected, however, after writing the whole book with a certain mood in mind, I couldn't have written it any different. And I am happy you liked the relationships between the characters so much (Hannah/Josh/Ben), because that was one of my favourite things to write about as well!


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