SHADOWED STRENGTH (Shadowed Series Book One) by Wendi L. Wilson
A teen romance filled with the angst of first love, mystery, suspense, and the paranormal…
She should have run.
While walking home at night, sixteen year old Melanie Johnson is tackled to the ground by a masked assailant with nefarious intentions. Her savior, a large black dog with soulful eyes, vanishes as quickly as he appears.
You are mine.
She starts receiving threatening notes from her attacker, promising to finish what he started.
I am Ace.
To complicate things further, her long-time crush Jeremy reveals a secret that Melanie is not sure she can accept. He is more than he seems. Something untamed. Forceful. Wild.
I have to stop him.
The truth about her assailant’s identity is almost too much to bear and Melanie must find the strength to put an end to the terror, once and for all.
**This is a YA Paranormal Romance intended for teens and adults 16+ due to language and sexual situations.
I ran across this book in a reading group. The cover and blurb drew me in and I’m so glad I decided to read it. There are tons of books about teenagers who suddenly discover they’re special. Unfortunately, the books themselves aren’t. It’s all on how the characters are portrayed, and this one fits the bill.
The main protagonists is sixteen year-old Melanie. She’s overweight, has a huge inferiority complex, and has been bullied most of her life by Sissy. Even though Sissy is nothing but a mean, spiteful person, she is the epitome of what Melanie wants to look like. It doesn’t help that Melanie also has the hots for Jeremy, someone she’s known must of her life, but he only sees her as a friend. Unfortunately, Sissy has her eye on him too.
One fateful day, at a party, Jeremy strolls in with Sissy on his arm, who proceeds to belittle and bully Melanie. Upset, Mel takes off on foot to go home, in the dark, alone, and along the way, she’s attacked. Someone has had his eye on her for awhile,and now it’s his time to make her his. Her savior is a huge dog Melanie has never seen before. Who is the dark man that assaulted Mel? And why is he still stalking her?
I have to admit, I figured most of the plot out pretty fast, though I was sidetracked at one point. But I didn’t care, as I really fell in love with the characters. I enjoyed the banter between Mel and her best friend, Tara, and caught myself chuckling a few times over their antics. Wendi Wilson did an awesome job portraying the insecurities of a teenager in high school. Even though it’s been 40 years since I graduated high school, she took me right back to all the teenage drama.
Most of the story is about Melanie and coming to terms with her body, finding the guy that’s stalking her, and the developing relationship between her and Jeremy. The paranormal elements were slowly blended in and I anxiously waited to see who Melanie really was. I was mildly surprised to find out the real answer. This book does leave you on a cliffhanger, and I definitely want to read the next book in the series.
I didn’t find anything really wrong with the tale, other than some very minor proofreading issues. The plot was fast, the characters relatable and likeable, and it was well-written. I highly recommend it for YA lovers of the paranormal and I give it 5 feathers. Well done.