by Kelly Creagh


While Varen remains a prisoner in a perilous dream world where the terrifying stories of Edgar Allan Poe come to life, Isobel travels to Baltimore to confront the dark figure known throughout the world as the Poe Toaster. This man, the same man who once appeared to Isobel in her dreams and abandoned her in Varen’s nightmare world, holds the key to saving Varen.
But when Isobel discovers a way to return to this dream world, she finds herself swept up in a realm that not only holds remnants of Edgar Allan Poe’s presence, but has also now taken on the characteristics of Varen’s innermost self. It is a dark world of fear, terror, and anger.
Varen is changed. And now Isobel must face a new adversary—one who also happens to be her greatest love.

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Book #2 in Series

Enshadowed is one of those stories that can simply leave you breathless and exhausted from so much beauty.
I kept turning pages furiously inhaling every word and, even in the moments when there was no actual action, my elevated heart-rate made me feel like I was reading the most exhilarating of the books. In a way I was… because this story is awesomely intriguing and confusing, even though also terribly frustrating.

Now I need to think. I need to understand. If Kelly wanted to leave us in that insurmountable darkness that she wrote about… well she pretty much succeeded.
I am in some sort of state of awe. I have now even more questions than before and I am stuck not knowing what might come next.

To put it simple:
The story is beautiful and it reveals so many wonderful details about Varen, his dream world, Poe, Reynolds and so much more. Isobel’s searching for a way to bring Varen back, her dreams, her struggle all these were so.. palpable. I love it when I can feel a story, when it gets to the bottom of my heart, when I can connect with the characters, when I get to care for them. Yes, I needed more interaction with Varen, but even in his absence I could savor this story as much as I did with the first one. The book is more descriptive compared to Nevermore, but still there was a lot happening, keeping me on the edge from the first page to the very last one.

Note that the synopsis is a bit deceiving; it leaves you thinking that their encounter will be the major conflict in this story, but somehow that is not really the case, as it was all too quick, quite painful and pretty much confusing – all at once.

The Writing:
I love Kelly’s beautiful prose, the entertaining dialogue, the wonderful descriptions, the humorous scenes; also her sassiness and wittiness and the darkness of the dream world… Not to mention how well crafted the characters are (Kelly can make you care even for the bad guys… imagine that!).

Not having the romance in the middle of the story (view spoiler) we could concentrate more on the beautiful details of this vivid dream world (which is not as confusing as before, but still just as mysterious). Its darkness and fuzziness makes you dizzy, you search for connections between the elements hidden inside it, you try to remember if you’ve read about them in the previous book, all the pieces seem to fit, but you still can’t see the whole picture… It’s crazy how you keep running in circles, enjoying the ride even when you realize it. It’s crazy how dreams can keep mixing with reality until you have a hard time distinguishing one from the other (view spoiler)

You know, I wonder if at night, after writing this book, Kelly ever looked into the mirror and expected to see someone else next to her own reflection.

The characters:
Kelly knows how to make you feel part of a family, because finally (in a paranormal story) family is not dysfunctional: they care for each other, they give advices, and they try to help.

Isobel’s parents were full of concern, trying so hard to understand her even though she kept so many secrets. Her little brother was as sweet as I remembered him. There were some funny family moments and even some that involved Isobel’s best friend Gwen, who is the best friend in the world (also witty, caring, funny, and what’s most important – always there for Isobel).

I have some questions about some characters (Brad, Gwen’s grandparents, the teacher, Varen’s parents, Reynolds… and if I keep thinking, probably about all the others too, so I’ll end the list here). We’ve discovered some things, but there are many others hidden from view and I can only hope to unravel them in the next book.

Last page impression:
There is one word that could describe my feelings: shock!
Reading the last chapters I couldn’t stop wondering ‘what the hell just happened?’
The ending is as open as the clear blue sky and I simply don’t know where this all is headed. It seems as all the doors have been closed and I am not sure how this story will unfold.
Somehow it made no sense, but maybe that’s the beauty of this story – this mystery that followed us until the end.

Let’s talk some more:
This should be some conclusion of some sort, but I am still confused and I don’t even know where I want to go with this review. It feels incomplete, but maybe that’s OK because the story is like that as well.

I feel the need to tell you that I loved this story to pieces. I really did.
As hopelessly frustrated as I am now, I embrace this feeling because it also feels good.
I do realize that I have more questions now than when I finished Nevermore. It’s like we took a few steps back rather than forward, but …
Did I enjoy it?
Did I love it?
Do I keep thinking about it?
Does it make me want to read the next book really, really badly?

Yes, yes, yes..Yes!

Happy midnight reading and.. Sweet Nightmares!

Favorite quotes:

“A word to the wise… cover your mirrors. That’s how they find you.”

“Dreaming aside,” he went on, “how can you be so sure your world is the real one?”

PS: I forgot to mention what a great movie this story would make. I saw it all playing in my head while reading the book, it would have wonderful effects (the dream world in this series is fascinating) and it would be creepily beautiful.

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