Book Review: Nightshade

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Nightshade Nightshade by
Series: Nightshade #1
Published by in 2010
Genres: , ,
Pages: 452

Calla Tor has always known her destiny: After graduating from the Mountain School, she'll be the mate of sexy alpha wolf Ren Laroche and fight with him, side by side, ruling their pack and guarding sacred sites for the Keepers. But when she violates her masters' laws by saving a beautiful human boy out for a hike, Calla begins to question her fate, her existence, and the very essence of the world she has known. By following her heart, she might lose everything— including her own life. Is forbidden love worth the ultimate sacrifice?

My Review:

OK first, can I have a moment to squee over the cover? The color they picked is absolutely gorgeous, plus it shimmers! I would almost buy the book just to be able to look at the cover regularly!

Twilight fans rejoice! This book is exactly the kind of book you are looking for! It has all the elements of the Twilight romance – two hunky guys, each with his faults and a few merits, and a girl who has to choose between them. I’ll admit I’m not a huge fan of Twilight as literature, but it is a pretty good piece of fluff!

It occurs to me that I often use the term fluff to describe a book, and I haven’t really defined it yet. It would be easy to think that I’m being derogatory – I’m not. Fluff is a necessary part of the reading experience. For me, fluff is a book that I fly through twice as fast as most books and most importantly read simply for the pleasure of reading a story. I don’t go looking for a second, third, or fourth deeper meaning in these books, because I’m having too much fun just taking in a story. I don’t care what the deeper implications are, essentially. Now don’t get me wrong, you may have gotten some deep, wonderful message from Twilight (though looking back I’m having trouble seeing where you found it). But that’s the point – what counts for fluff is different for everyone. For me, fluff tends to be mostly romance (though not always) and has little or no bearing on my own life. And I love fluff for the simple, toe-curling pleasure of the experience of reading a story!

The thing with Nightshade is that while it was a fluff novel for me, it did have some issues in it that are good to think about – there are lots of arguments about individualism and oppression that have good points to make. I can see how feminists might not like the book (I saw some really negative reviews wandering around GoodReads) but if you can make it to the end of the book, it does get better, and I’m hopeful for the rest of the series. (I would argue this makes an even better point – if the heroine is able to get herself out of the anti-feminist situations and fight back then that makes a stronger point about feminism than if the book was all “GIRL POWER” the whole way. She just hasn’t got herself to that point yet – dealing with double oppression takes some working up to!)

OK, back to reading, I have so many books that I’m excited about in my TBR pile right now!

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