Shadows on the border ebook and audiobook
I received an advance review copy of the audiobook in exchange for an honest review.
Lost in Time and Shadows on the Border are the two half of the same story and the first books I have ever read written by A.L. Lester. These two books are among my favorites ever since. This is not my first review about the author’s books, you can check out my previous reviews on the following links: Inheritance of Shadows and The Flowers of time.
In order to better compare the two books, the structure of this review is the same as Lost in Time’s.
About the book
Cover and blurb (Goodreads)
Newspaper reporter Lew Tyler and his lover, Detective Alec Carter, are working out the parameters of their new relationship. Meanwhile, time traveler Lew is trying to decide whether he wants to stay in the 1920s or find a way to get back to 2016, and Alec doesn’t know if he can bear the vulnerability of being in love with someone who uses such dangerous magic. (…)
This is my favorite cover among the books in the series, I really like the sepia tones and vintage style, not to mention the cursive font used for the title which is in a well-balanced contrast of the old typewriter font of the author’s name. The after-war atmosphere is perfectly grabbed and reflected by the colors, the dark London alleyways or by the clothes of the cover models. Also the vibe of danger lurking in the shadows is still there making our skin prickle.
The Book and the Audio: characters come to life
Shadows on the Border is narrated by Callum Hale, same as Lost in Time was, and the quality of the narration is exactly as perfect as it was in the previous book. All the characters are back from Lost in Time, and they are represented during the narration with full of care, attention and tenderness.
Along with Lew and Alec, Will Grant also get his fair share of the spotlight with the new introduced character, Fenn from the Border who is used as a new source of information, Fenn is the one expanding the other characters’ (and of course the readers’) understanding about the world.
The emotional roller-coaster will certainly make your heart hurt for the characters regardless of reading the book or listening to the audio – but the audio will bring the experience to its fullest. Callum is a wizard as he makes you feel everything the characters feel during their ordeals and adventures, you can feel the laughter or see the tears, hear the little trembles of fear or sadness in their voices. In Callum’s narration you can hear all the emotions evoked by the fear of an uncertain future or the lingering traumas of the war, and of course the happiness when the circumstances let the characters to… be happy or easy with each other.
What I really liked about the story or what bugged me a bit
The emotional part, obviously. I’m a sucker for emotional stories, I can feel for the characters deeply. I routed for Alec and Lew to gather the strength to be honest with each other and work out how to be a couple when being gay was a crime and against the law.
The well developed world is the same as it was in Lost in Time, there is no contradictions, loop-holes in the story or inconsistency in the story telling. A.L. Lester continued along the same string of events she set in motion in Lost in Time, but added a lot of necessary and new information for the shake of the readers in order to get them more invested and interested in the story.
Based on all I said above about the book and audio, there is nothing I could mention as a negative aspect, I loved every bit of the story.
I loved this story from the first letter to the very last. l’d recommend it to anyone who likes novels taking place in the after-war London, with a thrilling storytelling and unfolding mysteries. The characters are likeable as before and are tested to their limits while the story pushes them into seemingly insurmountable obstacles. The character development picks up where it was left in Lost in Time and reshapes Alec and Lew into their best possible versions. The romance is still slow-burning, but Alec and Lew take steady steps in the direction of a heartwarming happily ever-after. If you are searching for a slow paced, but action-packed story with an emotional roller-coaster, make sure to hop on this time-traveling train.
- Source of cover image: unsplash.com (Daniele Levis Pelusi)
- Source of book cover: Goodreads
- Source of adiobook cover: Audible
- Other image: unsplash.com (Sergey Zolkin)