Series: Shadow #1
Published by Jove on June 28, 2016
Genres: Adult, Paranormal Romance, Romantic
Sexual Content: Explicit sex scenes, references to rape
Reviewed by: Kate
The #1 New York Times bestselling “queen of paranormal romance”* is back with a sexy new series starring a Chicago crime family that hides a dark, mystical secret...
Whether it’s fast cars or fast women, Stefano Ferraro gets what he wants. When he’s not fodder for the paparazzi, he commands Ferraro family businesses—both legitimate and illegitimate.
While their criminal activity is simply a rumor yet to be proven, no one knows the real truth. The Ferraros are a family of shadow riders capable of manipulating light and dark, an ability Stefano thought ran in his family alone—until now…
With little left to her name, Francesca Cappello has come to Chicago in hopes of a new life. She wasn’t expecting to attract the attention of a man with primal hunger in his eyes, driven to claim her as his to protect and to please. And if he discovers her secret, it could ruin her...
With it's strong hero and sweet heroine, SHADOW RIDER checks off many of the boxes that I love in a romance, plus, it takes place in Chicago! Though not the focus, Feehan has created an interesting mythology, and given the reader side characters' stories to look forward to as well!
Dark and brutal, SHADOW RIDER has aspects to it that may turn some readers off to the story. With its supremely alpha male hero, and the slightly submissive heroine, I can see how some readers could take issue with the characterization. Stefano frequently was a bit over the top, insisting on getting his way and making it happen when he didn't - whether or not you see that as sexy is really up to your preferences. Francesca was a sweetheart, though most of the convincing of this was done by Stefano telling her how sweet and lovely she was. Together, though, I really enjoyed them as a couple, and I liked how she would stand up to him and show him she wasn't a total pushover. I personally enjoyed the dynamic between the two of them, and didn't mind when Stefano insisted on certain things for Francesca's safety, as it made sense within the world Feehan created.
The shadow rider mythology is really creative, and it seems clear by the setup that the series will follow the other members of Stefano's family as they find their own happily ever afters. If that is the case, Feehan did a marvelous job of getting me invested in the side characters - I am curious about their backstories and lives now, and can't wait to read more!
One issue some readers may have is the violence in the book. It's not shied away from, and if this weren't paranormal romance I would almost categorize it as romantic suspense, since it has that kind of feel to it. However, it's not over the top or gratuitous, generally making sense in the circumstances of the world that Feehan has created.
All in all, though SHADOW RIDER has some issues, it is a really good first book in a series, and an interesting romance. The main characters are easy to root for, and I'm looking forward to the next book in the Shadow series!Series Titles:
- Shadow Rider
- For more by Christine Feehan, try her Dark series.