About the Book
Book: The Good Shadows
Author: Carol Alwood
Genre: Young adult romance with a supernatural twist
Release Date: January 10, 2020
She believed him when he told her some Shadows were good.
When sixteen-year-old Violet Blackstone seeks to belong outside of her Christian community, she opens doors to a dark world she doesn’t understand.
Her parents’ secret separation and conflict at church fuel her desire to find something more. She sneaks out to a party at Chuckanut House and meets Dakota Selby, the mysterious new guy at Bellingham High School who reads her tarot cards and tells her she doesn’t belong. When she discovers his family owns Chuckanut House, she plans to hold her parents’ twenty-fifth-wedding-anniversary party there to reunite them in the beautiful mansion surrounded by forest and ocean—and to spend more time with Dakota to prove she fits into his world.
Violet works her way into Dakota’s life and must face the secrets and Shadows buried deep within Chuckanut House and her own family’s past. Entrenched in darkness, Violet searches for light and love as she battles Shadows threatening to capture her soul.
When her life falls apart, where will she turn?
Winner of the 2016 Orange County Christian Writer’s book proposal contest.
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In Alwood's letter from the author at the end of the novel, she says she wanted to show how beautiful magick can seem but how it leads to spiritual death. To that end, there is a great deal of magick portrayed in the novel. There are many ceremonies and activities included in the story in some detail. And they do seem attractive to Violet. It is only near the end we see the ensuing danger come to light.
Alwood has done a great deal of research to accurately portray the attractive yet destructive nature of the dark arts. I think potential readers need to know that some things, like spells, are described completely. I found the amount of that kind of information included a little disconcerting.
My concern was eased when I read the author comments and very good Bible study at the end of the book. I would urge parents to read that part of the book first and then read the rest of the book along with their teen. Although the potential harm to Violet does come out in the end, it is also quite near the end. Parents may feel more comfortable if they are reading about the attractiveness of the dark world, most of the book, along with the youth.
My rating: 4/5.
About the Author
Author Carol Alwood grew up in the green haven of Bellingham, Washington, the setting of The Good Shadows series. Now living in Southern California, she misses the raindrops on maple leaves, so when she isn’t home for a visit she writes stories that take place in her hometown. Carol adores fiction and is the author of the novelette, Ghost of a Girl. She also wrote Focused Backstory: The Key to Writing Deep Character Journeys, a newly released writing-craft book.
More from Carol
Magic isn’t a new topic for Christian fiction.
Many readers of this genre often enjoy spell-filled stories that take place in faraway lands because they know the narrative involves make-believe creatures and battles. But what if by becoming used to magic in stories we have allowed a gentle pathway for magical ideas to trickle into our lives? What if in one sudden moment (in the same way other things have become acceptable overnight) magic, a.k.a. magick, touched our fingertips in the real world, and we felt compelled to wield its power? Could it be that magic is already here? All one has to do is check online for tarot card readings, potion recipes, and steps for casting spells. What if while we scoffed at the thought of magic as something more than the stuff of fantasy our children stumbled upon it? From this logic, The Good Shadows was born.
Violet Blackstone is a sixteen-year-old pastor’s daughter who struggles to feel whole. Her parents hide their secret separation, she feels like she doesn’t fit in at church, and she meets a Wiccan priestess’s son who shows her another way of thinking. Nestled in the shadowy forests of the Pacific Northwest, Violet sets out on a new pathway that leads toward love and magick. Meanwhile, she uncovers disturbing information about her own family’s past. Her friend Owen tries to stop her from heading down this dark path, but she’s drawn in by a boy with forest green eyes and the desire to exercise control over her crumbling life.
What will it take for Violet to realize she has opened doors to a dark world and there are shadows are after her soul?
This award-winning book is available on Amazon in paperback and as an ebook (Kindle Unlimited). The Bible study at the end is ideal for small groups or individuals to enjoy an in-depth study on magick and sorcery. Don’t miss Ghost of a Girl, a novelette in The Good Shadows series, and The Dark Shadows (book two coming out June of 2020).
Carol Alwood is also the author of Focused Backstory: The Key to Writing Deep Character Journeys and the book’s corresponding workbook. Both are available on Amazon. While Carol lives with her husband and two daughters in Southern California, she loves visiting her hometown of Bellingham, Washington, where The Good Shadows takes place. The road to Chuckanut is a real place with stunning views and inviting forests. Check out her website for a virtual hometown tour and to read chapter one of The Good Shadows.
Library Lady's Kid Lit, May 9
Just the Write Escape, May 10
Texas Book-aholic, May 11
Debbie's Dusty Deliberations, May 12
Blogging With Carol, May 13
For the Love of Literature, May 14
Genesis 5020, May 14
Emily Yager, May 15
Locks, Hooks and Books, May 17
Inklings and notions, May 18
For Him and My Family, May 19
deb's Book Review, May 20
Pause for Tales, May 21
I received a complimentary digital copy of this book through Celebrate Lit. My comments are an independent and honest review. The rest of the copy of this post was provided by Celebrate Lit.
(My star ratings: 5-I love it, 4-I like it, 3-It's OK, 2-I don't like it, 1-I hate it.)