Siege Of Shadows (Effigies #2)
Author: Sarah Raughley
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Genre/Themes/Demo: YA, Fantasy
Release Date: November 21st 2017
Page Count: 448
*Disclaimer: An ARC of Siege Of Shadows by Sarah Raughley was provided to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not effect my opinion in any way.
There’s nowhere to hide. Not when you’re an Effigy. No matter where they go, Maia and the other Effigies can’t escape the eyes of the press—especially not after failing to capture Saul, whose power to control the monstrous Phantoms has left the world in a state of panic. It’s been two months since Saul’s disappearance, and there’s still no sign of him, leaving the public to wonder whether the Sect—and the Effigies—are capable of protecting anyone. When Saul suddenly surfaces in the middle of the Sahara desert, the Sect sends Maia and her friends out after him. But instead of Saul, they discover a dying soldier engineered with Effigy-like abilities. Even worse, there may be more soldiers like him out there, and it looks like the Effigies are their prime targets. Yet the looming danger of Saul and this mysterious new army doesn’t overshadow Maia’s fear of the Sect, who ordered the death of the previous Fire Effigy, Natalya. With enemies on all sides and the world turning against them, the Effigies have to put their trust in each other—easier said than done when secrets threaten to tear them apart.
It feels like I just read Fate Of Flames yesterday…but it also doesn’t?! On one hand, I still remember everything that happened in the first novel. On the other, it feels like I have ben waiting for this sequel for a while now! I’ve been eager to find out what happens next with the Effigies and I was so happy when Simon & Schuster Canada provided me with an ARC of Siege of Shadows!
What I Liked
The Effigies. I love so many things about the Effigies. I love that they each have their own distinct individual personalities. I love that they’re diverse. I love that they have their own unique powers and abilities. Whenever a novel contains multiple characters, it’s always nice to see them be so different from one another. This really helps you to remember who each of them are without getting confused. These girls came back stronger and more badass since the first book in the series and I’m so glad that they are as awesome as they were when we first met them!
The antagonists. Yes. Plural. I love a good bad guy. Especially within a story that contains 4 girls that can kick some serious ass! The bad guys are always the characters are always the characters that I am drawn to as they have this sense of mystery to them. I consistently want to know what made them the way they are and what they are truly after! While Fate of Flames had a really great antagonist, Siege of Shadows upped the antagonist game and I absolutely loved that about it!
The Toronto references. We all know that award show was inspired by the MMVAs 😉
That ending though. Um, what?! Excuse me?! How are you just going to end a book like that?! Are you kidding me?! I need to know what happens next NOW please.
What I Didn’t Like
A little slow-paced at times. It felt as though the middle section of the novel dragged a little. The beginning of the novel kicked off with an action sequence right off the bat and the end…well, see above for my comments on that ending…but the middle kind of got lost in my opinion. There was a lot mentioned about the Effigies and their stardom and what I was really craving was the action sequences and more villainous drama!
Overall, that ending is going to make my mind spin until book three is released! I mean, holy cow? What the heck?! I have no coherent thoughts, I just know I’ll be reading book three as soon as it’s released!
Q&A with Sarah Raughley!
Now that many readers have finished the first novel in the series, Fate Of Flames, did you find that you changed your plans for the story based on what fans have mentioned they’d like to see? Or did you stay true to your original vision for the sequel?
Nah. To be honest, it’s almost impossible to change your plans based on reviews, not only because of scheduling and timelines (by the time the first book comes out, the second book is already with the publisher) but also because reviews can often be contradictory. I try to take in from reviews what I think might help me for the next series or perhaps for the third book in terms of strengthening my writing, but my overall plan for the story hasn’t changed in any fundamental way.
Did you find the transition from writing your debut novel to writing its sequel smooth or was it difficult to get back into the story?
Honestly, when I was faced with writing Siege of Shadows, I found it really hard to get back into the story. With the Fate of Flames, I had all the time I wanted to write it, to tweak it. But then for the sequel, Siege, suddenly I had a deadline and that felt a bit daunting to fit into an already busy academic schedule. Then there was the fear that I may not live up to expectations, not to mention the pressure to outdo the first book, to take it further. That, at times, made it difficult to jump back into the story. But once I wrote the first two chapters, it got way easier and I remembered how much fun being in that world really is!
I absolutely love both of the book covers that we have seen in this series so far! How involved are you in the creative process when your book covers are being designed?
I was actually really pleasantly surprised by how Simon Pulse really made an effort to include me when it comes to the English covers. They asked me my opinions throughout the process and asked me about the symbols, as well as which scenes from the books might work. I’m really pleased by how the covers have come out, they always feel larger than life to me and the colour schemes go together so well!
Have you ever loved a book so much, but literally have seen no one talk about it? What is your favourite under-appreciated novel?
I wish more people knew about The Sea is Ours: Tales from Steampunk Southeast Asia! It’s an Asian-influenced steampunk anthology edited by one of my friends and the stories are just incredible! I guess it makes sense that you may not see a lot of people talking about it since it’s from an indie publisher but you all must definitely check it out! I am still waiting for steampunk to become more of a thing in the mainstream Young Adult Lit industry, by the way!
If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be?
Appreciate every second of your life. Do not doubt yourself. Love yourself and keep that love in your heart forever.
About The Author
Sarah Raughley grew up in Southern Ontario writing stories about freakish little girls with powers because she secretly wanted to be one. She is a huge fangirl of anything from manga to SF/F TV to Japanese Role Playing Games, but she will swear up and down that she was inspired by ~Jane Austin~ at book signings. On top of being a YA Writer, she is currently completing a PhD in English, because the sight of blood makes her queasy (which crossed Medical School off the list).
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