A Reflection of Shadows
Author: Anne Renwick
Narrator: Anais Inara Chase
Audio Speed: 1.3x
Series: Elemental Web World #3.6; An Elemental Web Tale
Genre: Steampunk Romance
Having read and enjoyed A Reflection of Shadows, I jumped at the chance to listen to and review the audiobook version. I found that I delighted in the story equally as I did the first time around. Ms. Renwick pens a clever steampunk historical London, and the tales are full of exciting adventure. The story explores the idea of humans exhibiting animal-like traits (something that started in the previous title). Colleen, with her golden eyes and increased dexterity, uses her unique features as a thief of goodwill. In her journeys and among her society engagements, she’s befriended the handsome Nick, an agent of the queen.
As an agent of the queen, Nick has seen it all, but when he hears of an experimental device that may save his dying sister’s weak heart, the mission becomes personal. Seizing the opportunity to express his admiration of Colleen, and win her over by making him his partner, Nick proposes as a matter of convenience, but intends to make Colleen his bride. The pair work to discover the truth behind layers of subterfuge and hope to save his sister in the process.
Overall, the story was gripping. I love watching the pair work as truly equal partners. Nick trusts Colleen completely and respects her intellect and decision-making. He knows the way to her heart isn’t through flowers and dances, but secretive roof-top missions and clandestine rendez-vous. He is her perfect partner and I loved watching him pursue her affection.
Narration: This is the third of the Elemental Web Tales stories narrated by Ms. Anais Inara Chase. A Reflection of Shadows is shared in the alternating POVs of Colleen and Nick. Ms. Chase presents a British accented female narrator for both the male and female parts, with dialogue altered slightly to fit the age, gender, and station of the speaker. The primary two characters’ voices aren’t very distinct from the narrator, but a mild attempt to differentiate is noticeable. Overall, Ms. Chase has a pleasing voice; she adds appropriate pauses and provides loose emotional cues; however, I prefer a bit more of a distinction between characters.
A Reflection of Shadows is filled with exciting adventure, surprising twists, and a lovely, sexy romance. I adore Colleen and Nick. Their story is an excellent addition to the Elemental Web Chronicle world.
Review copy provided by the author.
About the Book:
Shunned for her odd eyes and an unnerving habit of slipping into shadows, Lady Colleen Stewart refuses to be caged–should she decide to marry, it’ll be for love and to a man of her choice. After all, she’d rather be racing over rooftops than waltzing across ballroom floors. So when the only man to ever tempt her heart invites her on a covert mission, she leaps into danger.
Nicholas Torrington, Queen’s agent, is running out of time. While work has him chasing his tail, his sister grows increasingly ill, and Colleen, the woman he would make his bride, has acquired another, determined suitor. To coax his favorite thief back into his arms, he’ll break every rule and lead her through the underbelly of London on a hunt for a mad scientist and a cure for his sister.
But the discovery of a burned-out laboratory provides more questions than answers, and they find themselves caught in a deadly game where they have become the prey. Surviving the ambitions of their pursuers will bring everything into sharp focus as they risk their very lives.