Fantasy Book Review – Shadow Gate – Crossroads #2 by Kate Elliott

Synopsis (from Goodreads): The captivating, bestselling Spirit Gate swept readers into the turbulent world of the Hundred, where the peace and order of life under the protection of the immortal Guardians has given way to chaos and violence. In the face of a vast horde of marauders led by a rogue Guardian, the bravery and resourcefulness of a lone eagle-reeve and others who risk their lives for the common good have prevented death and destruction from overwhelming the Hundred.

This review will contain spoilers if you have not read book 1, Spirit Gate

The first novel of this trilogy started by introducing the character of Marit. She was a very likable character and I thought she would be at least one of the main characters of the book. Unfortunately, Marit dies early in the book and the focus shifts to her lover, Joss, and introduces other characters soon after.

While there is nothing wrong with this, it wasn’t what I was hoping for and I found it somewhat disappointing. So, when Shadow Gate opens once again with Marit, I was pleasantly surprised and realized that she was a lot of what I found lacking in the first book.

While reading Spirit Gate, I didn’t feel a strong connection to the main story and the characters. With Shadow Gate, I started to feel that connection more as back stories about what were initially side characters were slowly revealed. Turns out, I really like the secondary characters better.

The characters begin to feel more developed in this book as well. Characters i didn’t particularly care for in the first book were suddenly more interesting. Shai, in particular, gets more character development as he starts to come out of his shell and really come into his own. New characters are introduced and old ones return.

I have to say that I enjoyed this book much more than the first one. Though to be fair, I was entering a reading slump as I was reading the first one and my brain just wasn’t into reading at that time. I think I have finally come out of that slump and will be back to regular reading this year.

My rating for Shadow Gate is 4 out of 5 stars. I would recommend it to anyone who loves fantasy novels, though you should read book 1 first.

Thanks for reading!

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