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4.5 out of 5 stars

Synopsis
The last thing Dawson Black expected was Bethany Williams. As a Luxen, an alien life form on Earth, human girls are…well, fun. But since the Luxen have to keep their true identities a secret, falling for one would be insane.

Dangerous. Tempting. Undeniable.

Bethany can’t deny the immediate connection between her and Dawson. And even though boys aren’t a complication she wants, she can’t stay away from him. Still, whenever they lock eyes, she’s drawn in.

Captivated. Lured. Loved.

Dawson is keeping a secret that will change her existence…and put her life in jeopardy. But even he can’t stop risking everything for one human girl. Or from a fate that is as unavoidable as love itself.

My Review
While this is technically a prequel, I read it after I completed the other four books in the series while I not so patiently wait for the final book. I wasn’t expecting much because I frankly didn’t care that much about Dawson and Bethany beyond the cursory “he’s Damon’s twin” thing. Told in third person from dual points of view, it was a departure from the other books in the series, but I think that actually helped me get into it. It wasn’t trying to be Obsidian 2.0. It is a story of two people who aren’t Daemon and Katy but have an awful lot in common with them. For one, Dawson is Daemon’s identical twin brother, and for another, Bethany is also a human girl in love with an alien.

The story of how Dawson and Bethany fell in love, and what happened to them prior to Katy moving in next door to Daemon and Dee, is as compelling as Katy and Daemon’s story, and in some ways more so. Their feelings are just as deep and intense and their story is far more tragic. Before long, I was as invested in their story as I was Daemon’s and Katy’s.

Plot
Because I essentially knew their story from reading the other books, this book was more about their relationship. As much as it helps the reader understand why Dawson risked everything for Bethany and why he was covered in blood the day they went hiking, it also does just as much to help us understand why Daemon is the way he is. I suppose it’s possible Daemon had some serious character issues before his brother went missing, but we now understand why he reacted to Katy the way he did the first time he met her. Mostly because we get to see how deeply affected he was by Dawson’s disappearance.

Characters
This is mostly about Bethany and Dawson and getting to know them is fun. But it also gives us another perspective on Daemon from the boy who knows him best. We get to see the playful side from his twin’s point of view. We also get to see how different these two identical brothers are from one another. As the mother of identical twin boys, I really enjoyed this aspect, because while my sons are a lot alike, they are also very different. The fact that the author showed true differences in personality made them all the more real to me. Well, as far as fictional made up aliens can be.

Bottom Line
Shadows is a solid prequel to the series that introduces us more fully to Dawson and Bethany and helps the reader understand in far more detail the backstory that brought us to Obsidian.

Title: Shadows
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Pages: 165
Category: Young Adult Paranormal Romance
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 Stars
Links: GoodreadsAmazon | Barnes & Noble