Title: Of Dreams and Shadow (Forget Me Not #1)
Author: D.S. McKnight
Release Date: February 3, 2014
Publisher: Stone Bay Press
Synopsis: We live. We die. Is there anything more? Jenna Barton is about to find out. After moving to the coastal North Carolina town of Parson’s Cove, Jenna has unwittingly stepped into the middle of a mystery involving a missing child. Unfortunately, the predator is still on the loose and Jenna has become his new obsession. With a little luck and a bit of paranormal help, Jenna might survive.
Characters: Main is Jenna, who moved to Parson’s Cove with her mother from North Carolina. At first, she is lonely and bitter about leaving her friends, but then she starts making new ones and blending in. Then there is Chase, her next door neighbor and classmate, who seems to hate Jenna on the spot. When Chase was younger, he saw a little girl, Sarah, that lived in the house before Jenna vanish. But it turns out, Sarah was taken by a mysterious evil shadow who’s been around since the 1800’s. Jenna is your average teenage girl and other than her strong bond with her mother, I didn’t find anything remarkable about her, but she was developed enough to push the story along. Chase seems torn between love and hate for his new neighbor, so his behavior is kind of erratic for most of the novel.
Plot: Jenna’s new life is going smoothly until she finds an old, sparkling necklace in her backyard. Then she begins having terrible nightmares and visitations from a teenage girl, who she later finds out is Sarah. Sarah is still under the dark shadow, which is the spirit of an angry murderer named Silas. But Sarah wants to destroy Silas, so together, she, Chase, and Jenna come up with a plan to bury him permanently.
Writing: Although Jenna is the main character, the novel takes on the point of view of some of the other characters, including Chase and Silas. Since Silas has been around for a couple of hundred years, his thoughts and words are in Old English. McKnight nails this beautifully. She also portrays the modern-day teenagers in a realistic way. The story is captivating and unlike anything I’ve ever read before. Although I think the ending happened a little too fast, the sequence of events flowed nicely. I would recommend Of Dreams and Shadow to all lovers of young adult, since it appeals to both paranormal and contemporary fans.