Ghost of a Shadow: Book One of the Sadie Myers Chronicles
Ever since tragedy struck her family one year ago, Sadie’s life has become a dark brew of unearthly visions and vivid dreams in which a mysterious shadow man follows her every move. Are all these bizarre happenings real or figments of this fifteen-year-old’s troubled mind? When she’s pulled into a world so different from her own, everything she thinks she knows is turned upside down. Will she find the truth behind these unsettling episodes? Can Sadie walk through the shadows, the fear of unknown evil, and get to the other side alive?
“An otherworldly setting, grounded by irresistible melodrama and an unshakeable protagonist worth rooting for.” -Kirkus Reviews
"Ghost of a Shadow is something that is very hard to come by these days: original. .Ghost of a Shadow treads entirely new ground. The authors tell an innovative, engaging and thoroughly entertaining tale weaving two characters, and really two worlds, together seamlessly. Sadie Myers is someone everyone can relate to and more importantly, someone to look up to. She resonates with a genuineness and honest quality that was both refreshing and thought provoking. I enjoyed every moment of reading this book and in this topsy-turvy world, what more could you ask for? Sadie Myers rocks!" -Scott Young, author of Falling into Place
“'Ghost of a Shadow' is a coming-of-age story that seamlessly weaves reality and fantasy into a lovely tapestry. Curious from the first page, I cannot wait to see what happens next in the series.” -Stephanie Sommerlad Bello, author of Trinkett and the Legend of the Locket
“One of my new favorite Young Adult books this year.” -LM Hart, author
About the Author
Andrea and Leslie are two sisters collaborating on writing through obstacles and illness. It is an entirely new way to know each other while working on their mission of Peace and Empowerment. Andrea earned a culinary degree and worked as a chef and general manager for many years. She now focuses on her passion for writing. She writes short stories and continues to work on additional collaborative writing projects. Leslie earned degrees in Literature and Education. She taught elementary school as well as writing and technology to teachers. A successful grant writer, she later evaluated incoming grants for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. More recently she worked on her certification in Life Coaching. She's drafted four novels and various short stories.
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“Run, Sadie! Run!” Gramma Rose yelled.
Where’s her voice coming from? “I’m running as fast as I can!” I screamed, but the wind swallowed my words. I looked down at my feet; they disappeared into darkness.
Terrorized by the lightning storm overhead, I jumped every time an earth-shaking boom of thunder followed a jagged strike. With the tempest so close, I feared being struck by the next bolt. Sideways heavy rain pelted my face like burning needles, stabbing mercilessly.
“I can’t see!” I ran smack into a tangle of branches that formed a maze. Their sharp teeth snapped at me as I crawled through. I knew home was on the other side. I had to get there.
Rumbling peals of thunder cracked, one after the other, shifting the ground beneath me. I pushed my hands hard against my ears to block out the loudest booms. Red lightning jolted my body with electric vibrations. Red flashes strobed all around. I sensed the shadow man behind me, but I couldn’t tell where he was.
“Keep running, Sadie!” Gramma Rose called out.
Petrified, I thought this was it: The End of Sadie Myers.
“I don’t want to die!” I yelled back.
The sound of footsteps squished behind me. I imagined breath on my neck. I felt his fingers graze my hair with creepy restraint.
“No! Leave me alone!”
Wake up, Amnesiac!
Using his fingers, the boy pulled his eyelids apart, as others might gently peel off a bandage so it would hurt the least amount possible. Objects gradually came into focus. Black shadows grew into white surfaces. What were they? The word wall appeared in his mind.
Eyes tearing, he looked down and saw that he was lying on a soft platform of some sort. This foreign space enclosed him like a box, and his breathing intensified. Trapped. His fight-or-flight response activated his body’s fiery nerves.
He stood up, spotting a face he didn’t recognize in a piece of glass high up on the wall. He jumped, and his breathing sped up even more. His mind raced.
The boy took a deep breath and let it out slowly. His courage returning, he inched forward and studied the unknown face.
It looked vaguely familiar. Perhaps he’d seen it in a dream? Pale skin, nearly white, adorned dark circles above and below, not quite like blackened eyes.
He concluded this was his own face, long and narrow. His straight hair reached below his shoulders. It was dark brown, and so were his eyes. He looked down to see ribs that rose like mountain ranges on his lanky frame. He was wearing a white T-shirt and slightly loose aviation-themed pajama bottoms.
A flash of white caught his eye, and he looked out the window. As tiny white shreds of clouds fell to the earth, small bumps formed on his skin. Before he could panic, whether from the cold or the surprise, the words and meanings came to him: Goose bumps. They’re okay. And so are these…snowflakes.
The door opened. He looked at the lady who entered. She was at least two heads shorter than him. Her frizzy hair had some pink here and there. She wore thick glasses that sat low on her nose. Her striped dress was partially hidden by a bland sweater.
No recognition sprang to mind. He took a step forward and noticed that she took an immediate step backward. He was the superior animal here. He felt it in his bones.
Character Development: 4.5/5
Plot Development: 4/5
Written by the sisters’ duo Andrea and Engel, Ghost of a Shadow is the Book One of the Sadie Myers Chronicles and explores the Genre of Fantasy in a lucid and crisp manner. Divided in three parts, GoS is a journey of Sadie Myers, who is enduring a stale existence, being bullied adamantly by a goon gang led by Dave and simultaneously experiencing a transitory phase in her life as she is left lonely because of the loss and departure of her family member and friends (Christopher and Melanie) from her life.
In the beginning phase, the story seemed to float in the realms of Sadie, Gramma Rose and Ruby (occasionally), which resonated sheer nostalgia that anyone who has to lose something to the sands of time could easily connect to.
And then we meet Finn Montgomery, a confused teenager who seems to have lost his memory.
Further, there is a world of Mystashan, ruled by the likes of Thelonious and guarded by Banyan. Characters like Mr. Felix and Penelope are also introduced in the process of this lovely tale.
It’s a saga mystified by reverie, loss, and more reverie. The articulate usage of allegories and the definitive descriptions through the tale was interesting.
I really enjoyed how Sadie explored the Mystashan world. The entire concept was articulated with intriguing details. The characters were depicted with lyrical lexes and loved to explore the vociferous verses.
But parallel to this amazing tale runs a story about an amnesic boy, Frank Montgomery which is quite interesting as well. I believe the most interesting chapters in the book are the Chapters 8, 19, 27, 46, when Sadie remembers about the rare music box that was a gift from her Gramma, remembers her times with Christopher or her visits to Mystashan or Penelope’s introduction. Here after the intensity slowly starts to build for an very interesting climatic experience.
In Chapter Four and Chapter Forty Seven, “The Place beyond SaponiStraime and Whiskers and All,” Thelonious meticulously explains the art of reading cloffuls to Sadie, our protagonist in his own meticulous manner.
“What are clouds to your skies are cloffuls to Mystashan,” Thelo explained. “Cloffuls help Mystashanians to read and know what’s impending in the future.”
The loyalty of Basset to Mr. Finn also seemed to move me at times and he even tried to convince Mr. Finn by saying that “Florida oranges are considered some of the best in the world”
Now a little sneak-o-peak from my favourite chapters.
“Thelonious rested on the velvet moss. He loved this hilltop, which was alive with the sweetest-tasting air. It was peaceful, and he could see most everything from this vantage point. In the valley below, Saponi Straime wound along its semicircular way, its waters glinting with errant rays of light. As the breeze changed direction, he sensed the presence of his most trusted ally. “The sky is magnificent today. There are so many arbanious cloffuls, would you not say, old friend?” “Yes, I have to agree with you, Thelonious. Mesmerizing as always but many more cloffuls than usual.” They didn’t always agree with each other but did more often than not. They had experienced many challenges over the eons, so they remained alert despite the recent years of calm. The cloffuls parted to bright sunshine. The light revealed the glimmering essence of Thelonious’s old friend, though his body remained across the straime. They enjoyed the view of the silken cloffuls and their forever-changing shapes and colors.”
“First, let me explain. Our time runs differently from yours, Sadie. The question is ‘How much faster or slower?’ I have noticed that whenever you are here, your earth clocks run much more slowly. “We translate time through our Velluminator, but that discussion might be best saved for another day. What I will say about it, though, is that it allows us to see things on earth in the present and past. Only the cloffuls can see into the future. Sometimes they share with us what we need to know. Other times we must run the course of fate. That completes my answer to your question about why you are here.”
The best part of the book I loved mostly comprises of the beautiful framework that the authors have casted through each diligently dealt chapter. Big kudos for their effort and webbing such a fabulous tale. Can’t wait to read what happens next in the Series.
At first, you're confused as the story transfers from Sadie and Finn's point of view mostly, but that's the point - to leave you wanting to know what will go down.
All the characters were easy to get attached to and the author did an amazing job in creating Finn. What a surprise he was. I really enjoyed this story and I'm looking forward to the next installment. 😊