Sunday, March 29, 2015

The Shadow Cabinet by Maureen Johnson

Genre:  YA Paranormal Romance
Shades of London Series, Book 3

Note:  This is the third book in a series.  I will try really, really hard not to ruin the second book for you, but I definitely recommend you read the first two books before reading anything below...

Description (taken from Goodreads):
Rory and her friends are reeling from a series of sudden and tragic events. While racked with grief, Rory tries to determine if she acted in time to save a member of the squad. If she did, how do you find a ghost? Also, Rory’s classmate Charlotte has been kidnapped by Jane and her nefarious organization. Evidence is uncovered of a forty-year-old cult, ten missing teenagers, and a likely mass murder. Everything indicates that Charlotte’s in danger, and it seems that something much bigger and much more terrible is coming.

Time is running out as Rory fights to find her friends and the ghost squad struggles to stop Jane from unleashing her spectral nightmare on the entire city. In the process, they'll discover the existence of an organization that underpins London itself—and Rory will learn that someone she trusts has been keeping a tremendous secret.

This book picks up right where book number two left off:  in a hospital.  Thorpe is now leading the ghost troupe and taking Rory into a form of witness protection.  As Boo, Callum, and Rory regroup to try to find Charlotte, they slowly begin to piece together what was lost and make sense of the notes they do have.  But when Thorpe asks Rory to remain at the safehouse while everyone else does something to help, she's just not going to listen.

As Rory goes looking for a ghost of her own to retrieve some much needed answers, she finds herself in a cemetery with a little more than she bargained for.  But fortunately for her, she's got a stalker ready to save the day.  Funny how a stalker can save the day, right?  Anywho, as knowledge begins to form coherently, they are closer to locating Charlotte and Jane.  And Jane is the one with a nefarious plan that just might ruin everything in addition to saving the day in the end.  Is it something Rory's willing to risk?

After being so very disappointed with the second one (because I felt like it absolutely did not compare to the first - note: Jack-the-Ripper/historical-London fan right here), I was surprised to see this one kept me reading from the very beginning.  We delve right into the secret ghost societies of London, and there's enough plot-changing intrigue to keep you guessing.  And as one plot wraps up, another one slowly weaves it's way in for the next one (subtle hint that there is a next one).  I think I'm finally adjusting to the psychotic plot-weaving and plot-adjusting that this series tends to do.

I had to take a moment to read my review of the second one because I wanted to better understand why I disliked the second book.  And I think I'm a control freak who has to understand the direction a book is taking before I invest myself in it.  I'm wondering if I would have enjoyed the second one more if I had read it after the third one.  Probably...

I'm still holding onto the opinion that this is a good ghost series for readers.  And the first one is definitely a good one.

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