[eARC Review] Falls the Shadow by Stefanie Gaither

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Title: Falls the Shadow
Author: Stefanie Gaither
Series: Standalone
Genre: YA Science Fiction Mystery
Format: Hardcover, 352 pages
Release Date: September 16th 2014
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Source: eARC received from publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review

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When Cate Benson was a kid, her sister, Violet, died. Two hours after the funeral, Cate’s family picked up Violet’s replacement. Like nothing had happened. Because Cate’s parents are among those who decided to give their children a sort of immortality—by cloning them at birth—which means this new Violet has the same smile. The same perfect face. Thanks to advancements in mind-uploading technology, she even has all of the same memories as the girl she replaced.

She also might have murdered the most popular girl in school.

At least, that’s what the paparazzi and the anti-cloning protestors want everyone to think: that clones are violent, unpredictable monsters. Cate is used to hearing all that. She’s used to defending her sister, too. But Violet has vanished, and when Cate sets out to find her, she ends up in the line of fire instead. Because Cate is getting dangerously close to secrets that will rock the foundation of everything she thought was true.

In a thrilling debut, Stefanie Gaither takes readers on a nail-biting ride through a future that looks frighteningly similar to our own time and asks: how far are you willing to go to keep your family together?

I am really skeptical when it comes to science fiction books because I get lost very easily and i get bored if there is too much information thrown at me at once. So when I saw this book and read that is was science fiction but with a hint of murder mystery I thought I might like it, and i was right!

I am going to start with what I really liked about the book. I loved Cate's character because I felt she was real and someone who I could easily relate to. I thought as the book went on she got to be a very interesting character, she was flawed and yet you rooted for her in the end. I also loved her relationship with her sister because it was different from everyone else in her life considering her sister is a clone and not the real thing. I found their friendship was the best part to read because did Cate really know her sister, because since she came back from the dead as a clone, she was different. And when she was investigated for murder I knew it would get interesting. And in the end I really like how everything was resolved and how real it felt, it was contrived and fake and tied in a pretty little bow.

The only things that I was not so happy with were the lack of background info that we got. I wanted more in depth information on why the cloning happened. We get a bit of info on this but for me I wanted more on how everything collapsed and the world thought cloning was a good idea. I also thought that at times the pacing was off, I was bored at the beginning but then it picked up again, but then near the middle it slowed down again and by the end it was back up again. I just wanted a page turner from front to back, but it more all over the place for me.

Overall this book was a great read. I really liked the characters and the mystery element but felt that the pacing and background could have used a bit of work. I recommend this book to anyone who is skeptical about sci-fi because it is not too intense and has a great contemporary feel.

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