Publisher: Starstorm (2015)
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A world of intrigue, magic, and danger awaits Lily Coltrane in K.C. Finn’s The Book of Shade.

On her very first day at university, Lily and her roommate enlist in the IMLS (Illustrious Minds Literary Society) at the student fair and, despite warnings from her history professor, take one step further and visit the Theatre Imaginique.

The show seems too real – the lightning, levitation, and the fact that Lemarick Novel, the theater’s top showman and proprietor, keeps locking eyes with her. She tries to put it out of her mind, but a month later, Lily and her roommate return to the show, and this is where author K.C. Finn puts her character in delicious jeopardy.

Lily learns she’s a shade – a being with the ability to generate and control the natural elements (earth, air, fire, and water). This revelation sets her off down a rabbit hole of mystique and magic. Novel is also a shade, one who is fairly accomplished in his abilities, and he decides to train Lily in her newfound abilities. What follows is an adventure woven with trials, romance, danger, and a whole world of the unknown.

K.C. Finn does an excellent job of weaving the paranormal and magic in with the modern-day world. She introduces concepts that we’re all familiar with, such as voodoo, vampires, werewolves, but does it in a way that doesn’t feel overly stereotypical.

Finn takes her time with world building in The Book of Shade, and the reader’s patience is rewarded. Finn develops her characters very well, even foreshadowing here and there. The characters and the story itself are slightly more important to the author than the setting.

Once the author reveals the world of shade, any reader will find it virtually impossible to put the book down. The book does contain some grammatical errors which could and should be corrected, but the writing, on the whole, is good, which is appreciated. From featuring “playbills” for Theatre Imaginique inserted at the beginning of each chapter to the care Finn takes in creating this imaginative world, this title remains a good read.

Magic and intrigue throw Lily Coltrane’s world all kinds of upside-down when she discovers she isn’t who she thought she was in K.C. Finn’s The Book of Shade.