Release Date: March 11th 2014
Series: Into the Dark #1
Genres: Fantasy & Magic, Young Adult
Haden Lord, the disgraced prince of the Underrealm, has been sent to the mortal world to entice a girl into returning with him to the land of the dead. Posing as a student at Olympus Hills High—a haven for children of the rich and famous—Haden must single out the one girl rumored to be able to restore immortality to his race.
Daphne Raines has dreams much bigger than her tiny southern Utah town, so when her rock star dad suddenly reappears, offering her full tuition to Olympus Hills High’s prestigious music program, she sees an opportunity to catch the break she needs to make it as a singer. But upon moving into her estranged father’s mansion in California, and attending her glamorous new school, Daphne soon realizes she isn’t the only student in Olympus who doesn’t quite belong.
Haden and Daphne—destined for each other—know nothing of the true stakes their fated courtship entails. As war between the gods brews, the teenagers’ lives collide. But Daphne won’t be wooed easily and when it seems their prophesied link could happen, Haden realizes something he never intended—he’s fallen in love. Now to save themselves, Haden and Daphne must rewrite their destinies. But as their destinies change, so do the fates of both their worlds.
THE SHADOW PRINCE was a novel I wasn’t entirely sure I’d enjoy. I’d been hearing mostly mixed things so went in with basically no expectations. What I got was sort of what I’d expected: a nice easy paranormal/urban fantasy to read that paralleled those I used to read really well. You know, the special snow flake who has to save the world or something and has abilities they know how to use without ever knowing they even had abilities (yeah, I used to really like those). But there was also more to the book than that.
At 512 pages, THE SHADOW PRINCE is biiig. And it takes a while to get through. For the most part I didn’t mind. Chapters passed quicker than I expected once I got past the introductions and early chapters, but the pace overall is fairly slow. Annnnd not much happens. It’s setting up stuff, introducing the characters and their backgrounds, slowly incorporating the Greek/mythology elements.
The mythology in this isn’t so much Greek as it is based on Greek myths. And it didn’t really play too big a part in the actual story. Sort of. I mean, one of the MCs is one of those mythical creatures, and it was hilarious watching him try to adjust to our modern world. It is through Haden that a lot of our understanding of the book’s world comes. But it’s scattered, with big significant events every now and then with… I can’t even remember what happened in between. Character relationship development? Singing stuff (which is hard/weird to translate in a novel I think. And made me think about High School Musical for some reason. I never even liked High School Musical) I don’t know.
Speaking of MCs, both were quite enjoyable. Haden irritated me a lot at the beginning, but once he got to Earth he was very entertaining and grew on me. So many of his scenes made me laugh as he tried to comprehend the strangeness of humans nowadays. The only thing I probably didn’t like after his douchebaginess at the start was his ability to watch someone do something once or twice and then replicate it perfectly. I WANT THAT ABILITY DAMMIT
Daphne was our other MC and narrator. Our special snow flake that doesn’t know it. Her chapters were the best to read (despite the hilarity of Haden’s). I think I just connected to her better. She’s fully aware of Haden’s stalker qualities and pretty level headed and some of the decisions she makes
Girl has her priorities in order and I approve.
Another thing about this: NO INSTA LOVE. And it totally sounds like a book where there would be intalove, BUT THERE ISN’T. I WAS SO SURPRISED. The characters develop a friendship first, and Haden’s first encounter didn’t leave a good impression with Daphne so I’m glad it took him time to get in her good books. Things only just started to look like it could head into romantic territory right before the end. Where all the exciting stuff happened. And then cliffhanger.
THE SHADOW PRINCE is a book I was surprised at how much I enjoyed it. It reminds me of the books I used to read years ago, but it’s also so much better. Though it may be long and slow, the chapters passed quickly and the characters were entertaining. AND THE BEST BIT: NO INSTALOVE OR LOVE TRIANGLES (yet, the triangle bit could change). My only real complaints are I wanted more mythology and action to move the plot faster. If you plan on reading it I recommend going in like I did and enjoying the light story with no real expectations of what it will be like.