Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Review: The Shadow Cabinet [Shades of London #3] by Maureen Johnson

Title: The Shadow Cabinet
Author: Maureen Johnson
Author Info: Website|Tumblr Blog|Facebook|Twitter
Genre: Young Adult
Series: Shades of London #3
Source: Publisher
Publisher: Hot Key Books
Publication Date: 5th February 2015
Rating: 3 stars

Tell Me About It
Grieving, shaken, and feeling very much alone, Rory's life as a member of the Shades of London has changed irrevocably. It's only been a matter of hours since Stephen was taken from her, possibly for ever. Her classmate Charlotte is still missing, kidnapped by the same people who tried to take Rory. Rory is no longer a schoolgirl haplessly involved in the dealings of a secret government unit. She is their weapon in a matter of life and death.

With hardly a moment to think for herself, Rory is back to work. Charlotte must be found -- as must Stephen, if he is even out there. Lines must be drawn and forces rallied. Something is brewing under London, something bigger and much more dangerous than what has come before. The Shadow Cabinet holds the key to everything, and it is up to Rory to unravel its mysteries before time runs out...

My Thoughts
I'm kind of confused about writing this review and what to say. I feel like I didn't really do the book justice for how I went into it, but I also want to actually get a review out, rather than it sitting in a draft post waiting for me to re-read the book with a different perspective on it.

The Shadow Cabinet picks up after the events of The Madness Underneath. Stephen is gone and Rory now finds herself in the company of Boo, Thorpe, and Callum, trying to find Stephen, but also find Rory's friend Charlotte who has disappeared.

I was really excited to make a start on The Shadow Cabinet and once again dive into the world Maureen has created. But once I began reading I just couldn't connect  with the characters like I used to, as I continued reading I felt like I wasn't getting the happy ending I wanted, that it wasn't all wrapped up and tied with a bow. It wasn't until I was ready to write this review that I realised that The Shadow Cabinet is not the final book, that there is another one after it. And I think if I had known that prior to making a start in this book then my expectations would have been different and I would have enjoyed this more than I did. I was waiting for the end to come and for this series to be wrapped up nicely, and it never did.
Now taking into consideration my statement above, this review is based on what I was feeling and expecting at the time of reading The Shadow Cabinet, so my review would have been different if I had know there was another book to come in this series, which is again my fault for assuming this was the end.

Reading The Shadow Cabinet I felt the plot was too slow for me, while it did pick up near the end with a life or death moment, the lead up to the finale didn't draw me in as much. The characters didn't really have that draw with me, that spark or connection to really capture my attention, and I found it hard to click with them. However I was still invested in their outcome, especially Stephen, and was shocked over things that happen towards the end of the book that I did not expect at all.
There is also a new face that joins the team who I was never really sure about until near the end of the book. I felt they had ulterior motives for being around and they never really settled with me.

The Shadow Cabinet has the usual paranormal activity, gruesome death scenes, and lots of twists and turns, but there are also humorous moments in the pages, and one that stood out is the following quote from Rory.
I had to admit I felt very CSI snapping on the gloves.

Final Verdict
An enjoyable book which I would have really loved if I had know this wasn't the end. I will have to read this again at some point with the new knowledge in my head.

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