I first heard of Daniel José Older when I got Half-Resurrection Blues in my Quarterly Box from Book Riot. I still haven’t read that one. But when I heard someone talk about his YA book, Shadowshaper, at a time when I was just starting to get into urban fantasy. Let’s just say it was a right book at the right time kind of situation.
So Shadowhouse Fall picks up a few months after Shadowshaper ends. Sierra has initiated her entire crew into Shadow House, and they’re learning how to shape as well as they can. At the beginning, another classmate from school crashes their practice session, attempting to give Sierra a card (which I saw as tarot-adjacent) and information. The Deck of Worlds (the aforementioned tarot-esque deck) is in play. Whoever controls the deck has the most power, and someone’s coming for Shadow House. Let the fantasy ensue.
One of the things I loved about this story that I didn’t mention in my review below (because of space issues) was how the makeup of the characters felt like how I imagine New York. Between the differences in ethnicities of the Scoobie Gang (there’s a joke within the story about this, it’s not just me), the inter-generational cooperation, and the fact that that code switch life was real – yeah. I’m here for it. Keep it coming, Older. And good looking out.
So without further ado, here’s the rest of my review
#bookaday Shadowhouse Fall by Daniel José Older. I can't tell you how much I love this world. My hat goes off to Daniel José Older for packing EVERYTHING into this story. Not only do we have the magic and these amazing friendships (that I talk about all the time), but there's also how Sierra, like most teens, has to balance a number of different things: school, friends, family, spirituality, activism, even. Can we take a minute and acknowledge the commentary on police violence deftly incorporated into this story? And it wasn't a flash in the pan. It's one of the places where real life meets the fantasy world. Ugh. Not only that, but how Sierra comments about the houses all in play for power as a system in which they weren't meant to succeed? YA novel with sociopolitical commentary? Yeah, I'm here for that every day. #stickynotereviews #bookreview #urbanfantasy #instabook #bookstagram