Original Title: The Shock of Night
Year Published: 2015
Published by: Bethany House (an arc was kindly provided via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review)
Number of Pages: 400
First Sentence: “Elwin stopped at the edge of the forest, his eyes scanning the trees for any movement that might presage an attack, though the man at his right, Robin, would surely be doing the same and better than he.“
Goodreads Rating: 5/5
When one man is brutally murdered and the priest he works for mortally wounded on the streets of Bunard, Willet Dura is called to investigate. Yet the clues to the crime lead to contradictions and questions without answers. As Willet begins to question the dying priest, the man pulls Willet close and screams in a foreign tongue. Then he dies without another word.
Willet returns to the city, no closer to answers than before, but his senses are skewed. People he touches appear to have a subtle shift, a twist seen at the edge of his vision, and it’s as though he can see their deepest thoughts. In a world divided between haves and have-nots, gifted and common, Willet soon learns he’s been passed the rarest gift of all: a gift that’s not supposed to exist.
Now Willet must pursue the murderer still on the loose in Bunard even as he’s pulled into a much more dangerous and epic conflict that threatens not only his city, but his entire world–a conflict that will force him to come to terms with his own tortured past if he wants to survive.
This book was super fantastic. I was slightly apprehensive when starting it but it totally surprised me. I would definitely consider this an epic fantasy. The initial apprehension was due to the fact that I found myself confused by the first chapters, something that was caused by me reading it over several days and just like a page at a time since I started it during final exams at uni. Not a smart move.
Willet is a very interesting character and although I didn’t like him at first, I ended up loving him. He is smart, head-strong and a sarcastic little twit. Absolutely brilliant. And instead of being the overly manly hero, he is caring and allowed to feel things, such as fear, love and just overall being an emotional man. I loved that he struggled with his no position, instead of just excelling at it.
Other characters played important and interesting parts and balanced the story perfectly. You have some good, some bad and some that will annoy the crap out of you, but they still play important roles.
The plot was very interesting and quite original. It was entertaining from the get-go and just go better and better as the story progressed. Sure, it sometimes felt like I didn’t progress at all (page wise) and sometimes they just flashed by.
Do I recommend it?
Yes, I do.