This is not a book review… but I really loved The Shadow Year by Hannah Richell.

The Shadow Year cover It’s not the kind of book I would ordinarily read- it’s not historical, it’s not fantasy, and it’s set in our modern world (something I spend a lot of reading time trying to escape from). But I had heard very good things about this novel, including that it was a great example of a dual narrative structure, and so I gave it a try. It wasn’t long before I was completely lost in the twin tales, which, though sharing the same characters, settings and seasons, occurred at two different times – one in the present  day, and the other thirty or so years before, in the 1980s. Both were equally compelling, and both wove secrets and mysteries together so beautifully that I sat up late into the night to find out how it all ended. My plans to dissect the book as I read in the hope of seeing how it was put together fell firmly by the wayside.

Afterwards, I found myself with a fairly decent book hangover, too- you know, when you can’t move on or get over a book when you finish it. It lingers, a mild depression brought about by the fact that the book actually ENDED, and that, for the time being at least, nothing you read can possibly match it. (I have found that the best cure for a book hangover is to read something completely different, in an opposing genre. A good horror novel often does the job after something sad and lyrical, for example).

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Have you read The Shadow Year? Did you enjoy it? What was your worst ever book hangover?

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