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Sins & Shadows (Shadows Inquiries, Bk 1)
Sins Shadows - Shadows Inquiries, Bk 1
Author: Lyn Benedict
Sylvie Lightner is no ordinary P.I. She specializes in cases involving the unusual, in a world where magic is real, and where death isn't the worst thing that can happen to you. But when an employee is murdered in front of her, Sylvie has had enough. After years of confounding the dark forces of the Magicus Mundi, she's closing up shop, ...  more »
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PBS Market Price: $8.09 or $4.19+1 credit
ISBN-13: 9780441017119
ISBN-10: 0441017118
Publication Date: 4/28/2009
Pages: 368
  • Currently 3.6/5 Stars.

3.6 stars, based on 42 ratings
Publisher: Ace
Book Type: Paperback
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review

Top Member Book Reviews

reviewed Sins & Shadows (Shadows Inquiries, Bk 1) on + 4 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
This book was fast-paced and complex, which I liked, but I also felt like it was the second in a series as there were repeated references to action that occurred previously. I felt like I was missing some depth of the characters and their experiences which might have helped me understand the current situation better. I really enjoyed the book...all the way up to the ending, which I hated. Just as I felt thrown into the middle of something from the start, I felt like I was dangling at the end. I would read the next book just to see if the author ties up some of the hanging threads --- the ending definitely didn't feel "over."
LM avatar reviewed Sins & Shadows (Shadows Inquiries, Bk 1) on + 24 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
This book was interesting. I can't say it was good or bad, because it really wasn't more one way vs. the other. It kept me coming back for more, which I would normally label as being good. I didn't come away with a clear feeling of the good guys won or the bad guys won which I would normally label as bad. The main character has A LOT of unbelievable traits and had A LOT of things happen to her that just leads to the "fantasy" description on the spine of the book. It's also very full of action (good) and also a lot of fluff (bad). It's not a romance, it's a kick ass sorta good vs. mostly evil. All I can say is that it was interesting. Would I read it again if I had it to do all over? Probably - it'd suck me in again. That being said, I must give a "hats off" to this author as making me go "hmmmm".
solarawynn avatar reviewed Sins & Shadows (Shadows Inquiries, Bk 1) on + 724 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Felt like I dropped in the middle of something And was completely lost. Eventually the story started to make sense. I didn't really like Sylvie,she is too obnoxious. Might read the next one.
reviewed Sins & Shadows (Shadows Inquiries, Bk 1) on + 77 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
This book had a sharp learning curve to get into it. It definently read like the 2nd or 3rd book in a series instead of the 1st. Things are discussed without any background given. A couple examples: The character has a voice in her head that "had woken during Sylvie's first brush with the Magicus Mundi. Sylvie wasn't certain what it was..." No explaination is given for what the Magicus Mundi is - a group, a thing or whatever. Later she starts talking about a government organization, the ISI, that she has a history with. A third of the way into the book and I still don't have no clue what ISI stands for, or what they do, besides the fact that it's got something to do with the supernatural.

My other problem with this book was the main character, Sylivie. She is a hard-bitten, tough girl detective. Which is great, as long as that tempered by something that makes the reader care for the character. Ilona Andrews character Kate Daniel is a great example - no matter how much she wished it were otherwise she's got friends that she cares about who care about her. Sylvie has people that care about her, but that she doesn't actually show any affection for (no matter what the character monologue says). Before the book started an employee was killed and Sylvie's reaction is to try to pack up shop and leave everyone behind, no matter if that's what they really need or not. And this pattern continues through the rest of the book (or at least the part that I read). We aren't given anything to make us care about Sylvie.

The story seems interesting, but the book just had too many problems for me to put up with it long enough to figure out how the story plays out.
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tarheelcoin avatar reviewed Sins & Shadows (Shadows Inquiries, Bk 1) on + 84 more book reviews
I wasn't particularly impressed with this book. I found the main character Sylvie to be just downright unlikable, and the writing style to be rushed, especially at the end. Not interested enough to pick up the next one.
jai avatar reviewed Sins & Shadows (Shadows Inquiries, Bk 1) on + 310 more book reviews
I thought Sins & Shadows was well-written. Good sense of place (Chicago), characters with depth, and good pacing. I've seen reviews who disagreed about the pacing, but for me I just picked it up to read the first chapter and then it was 2 hours later and I'd read 150 pages. It starts out as a mystery, but turns into much more. I think my favorite part was anything to do with the gods and how they worked. Actually, how magic worked. This book had some really interesting ideas that sort of made me go, "Ohhh. Cool." because it made sense and things fit together. Most of it was about the Greek gods, but the Christian god fits into it as well, and the way Benedict brings in well-known characters associated with the deities (such as the Furies and others) was really nicely done.

The big make-it-or-break-it part of the book is definitely (as you'd guess from what I'd said about pissed off characters) Sylvie. You know how it can be really annoying when the main character is the type who just doesn't know when to shut up? It's a really close line here. I can see people finding Sylvie abrasive, but for me, these moments came in spurts (the more danger she's in, the worse she is). She starts off mean to her loyal employee Alex, trying to get Alex to stay away from the job in an effort to protect her, but then after that Sylvie didn't really seem that bad until much later on. It actually seems to work with the plot, which I was a little impressed by. There is an angry voice inside her which she hears, and I was beginning to wonder if that had deeper implications, but you have to read the whole book to see what I'm talking about. Sylvie is a dark heroine, one who is flawed in a way where I disagreed with what she was doing and saying. She's very motivated by revenge. It clouds her judgement where others look at her in dismay but she refuses to budge in her thinking. Yet this works because she has to deal with the consequences of this, and I want to know if she can redeem herself or not. It's truly a toss-up, because all through this book, she hasn't done enough assure me that she can change. It makes me really want to read the next book though and find out. Weird, huh?

One issue I had with the book would probably be that I kept getting the sense that I was reading the second book of a series rather than the first. The first chapter throws you in midstream with Sylvie closing up shop and you don't really find out why until much later. Then there's Sylvie and Alex's shared back story which sounds substantial but only piece together bit and pieces of it. And there's Sylvie's relationship with ISI agent Michael Demalion and other hints dropped here and there about Sylvie's past. I wanted to know more information but because it wasn't directly related to the current action, it wasn't forthcoming. I hope this is remedied in later books.

Overall: Has a pissed off main character, so avoid if you hate that, but I think there's so much potential there for character growth, and I'm so interested in what the author did here that I'm looking forward to the next book. (So I guess I kinda liked it).

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