The Book of Shadows by E. R. Murray

In this exbookofshadowsciting follow-up to the Dublin UNESCO City of Literature Citywide Read 2016, ‘The Book of Learning’, heroine Ebony Smart is settling into her role as guardian for the Order of Nine Lives.

All seems quiet until she receives a peculiar silver box from an anonymous sender and is tasked with returning it to a mystery owner. Ebony discovers that Zach and Judge Ambrose have allied with a powerful ancient demon, and are more determined than ever to steal her soul and control the fate of the world.

To defend the Order and defeat the demon, Ebony and her pet rat, Winston, must unravel the mystery of the silver box, free the trapped souls in the Reflectory and mount a daring rescue. Can she find the strength and courage needed to defeat the enemy, prove herself the rightful guardian and save all of their lives?

Publication Date: Expected September 2016

Blurb and Book Cover via Goodreads.

Disclaimer: I recieved a copy of this book from Mercier Press in exchange for a fair and honest review.

I read the first book in this series way back in February (you can read my review here), before I even knew who E.R. Murray was. Shortly after I published my review, the author herself got in touch with me about reading her book Caramel Hearts (which you can read the review of here), and low and behold here I am with her third book, the second book of The Nine Lives Trilogy, The Book of Shadows. If you have read The Book of Learning, well then all I can do is recommend this book, because you are in for a treat.

The Book of Shadows continues the story of Ebony Rose and her pet rat Winston (who I find is the most adorable thing, and by far my favourite fictional pet!). In The Book of Learning, Ebony learned a lot of new things, and this time around she is learning a lot more. I loved the whole thing as it was nothing but constant adventure, learning how to enter the shadowlands, fighting shadow walkers, and trying solve a mystery all at the same time! When I started reading The Book of Shadows, it was like fitting into an old pair of slippers that I forgot I had, and forgot that I loved. I instantly reconnected with the characters Ebony, Winston, Aunt Ruby and who could forget Uncle Cornelius and Mulligan. I have to admit, I even remembered how evil Judge Amrose was, and dare I say that Zach became even more twisted and evil. The writing style was flawless, and the story was fluid, continuesly leading us from one point to the next, never leaving you long enough to become bored or even tired of the story.

When it comes to writing book reviews, my one weakness is picking out the negative parts, unless it was a really bad book. This was not a bad book by any means, in fact it was very far from it, although considering I was so invested after reading The Book of Learning, I knew was going to be a great read. So bare with me as I scoure to find something to nitpick about… My only disappointment throughout the whole book was that there wasn’t actually a Book of Shadows. Maybe I was naive to think this, but considering that Ebony got her hands on the actual Book of Learning in book 1, I was anticipating there to be an actual Book of Shadows. Like I said, my only disappointment, but I won’t hold it against anyone. We did get the mysterious silver box, so I’ll take that, haha.

When I picked up The Book of Shadows, there was a lot of anticipation behind me starting to read it, and I was worried that after reading and loving The Book of Learning (and Caramel Hearts) that I was building myself up for some disappointment. Boy, was I wrong! Reading The Book of Shadows was like fitting on an old pair of slippers that I had forgotten about, and forgotten how much I loved them in the first place. I slipped right into the story right away, back at the mantle, exactly as if it were the next chapter in Book 1. I felt like I was still reading the story I read back in February (in a good way), and even though there was six month time gap in the story’s timeline, and a six month gap in real life too, it still didn’t affect me in the slightest. I loved every morsel of this book, and I already cannot wait to read the Book of Revenge. Speaking of which, what about that cliffhanger, eh? Elizabeth, you tease! 😉

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