I don’t even know where to begin. When a book is so good that a person contemplates skipping work to finish it, you know you’ve got a winner. (No, I didn’t actually do this…but I thought about it. I did take the book to work with me, and I read it during my too brief lunch break.) Nightshade by Andrea Cremer is the book I’m talking about. It is absolutely amazing, and I cannot begin to express how much I loved it. The cover alone is a work of art, and the writing is just as artistic and beautiful. I highly recommend this book to teen and adult readers alike.
In Nightshade, readers are introduced to Calla Tor, alpha female to a pack of werewolves (for lack of a better term). Calla has always known and accepted her destiny. She knows that, come Samhain, she will join with Ren, her chosen alpha male, to form a new pack. Calla is secure in her role as a Guardian, and, though she sometimes cringes in the presence of the Keepers, masters of the Guardians, she realizes that the Keepers provide for her pack and depend on the wolves for protection of their most sacred sites.
Calla’s certainty, however, begins to fade when someone new enters her life. When Calla is on patrol in her wolf form, she saves a human’s life and reveals her true self to him–a major violation of the laws of her kind. Imagine her surprise when he shows up at her school the very next day. Shay is new in town, and no one knows much about him. No one knows of his first meeting with Calla. He is human, but he lives with Bosque, a feared and unknown Keeper, in a sprawling and secret-filled estate. Will he reveal how Calla saved him? What is his connection to the Guardians and Keepers? And why are the Searchers–the enemies of the Guardians and Keepers–so interested in him? Calla is intrigued by Shay, even though she knows she shouldn’t be. She’s promised to another, and getting close to Shay can only lead to trouble.
Well, it seems that trouble is what’s in store for Calla and Shay. As the time of her union with Ren draws near, Calla and Shay begin to uncover the many secrets of the Keepers and Guardians. Calla does not know what to do with this new knowledge, and she’s torn by her duty to her pack and Ren and her growing feelings for Shay. As Calla goes against her nature and the very laws that govern the Guardians, she grows closer and closer to the truth. Will her discoveries cause her to drift from what she’s meant to do and the people she cares about the most? Will these truths change how she views everything around her–including who she should spend her life with? Unravel the mysteries when you read Nightshade by Andrea Cremer.
If this post hasn’t made it abundantly clear, I adore this book, and I’m looking forward to seeing what happens in future books. The second book, Wolfsbane, will be released in the summer of 2011, and the third book, Bloodrose, will come out in the spring of 2012. A companion novel to Nightshade is also in the works for the fall of 2012. There’s lots to look forward to, but if you just can’t wait to learn more about Nightshade, upcoming books, and author Andrea Cremer, I encourage you to visit http://www.andreacremer.com/index.html. I hope you enjoy this wonderful book as much as I did.