• Carey PW

Book Review: Shadows that Speak by Gitte Tamar


I received an advance review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily. Foremost, this review is only my opinion as a reader. I appreciate that other readers may enjoy this novel, but it was not for me. I struggled to get engaged from the very beginning.


In terms of the actual writing, the writer is a good writer in terms of language, word choice, and sentence structure. The story and characters, for me, had no depth. I think the story and characters had promise. The premise of the story was intriguing but not well executed for me. I found the novel full of unnecessarily long descriptions that repeated for pages and for chapters. The story may have been better executed in a short story format. Furthermore, I felt that the characters lacked any depth. I understand that the main character’s mental health is questionable, but no nuance is given. The character falls flat for me. Also, I do not understand how the novel is commenting on the stigma of mental health. I can only guess the backstory is supposed to connect here, but again, I would say the theme is not well-executed.


The story is overly descriptive, and the descriptions are repeated just in different words each time. I found myself wanting to skim the book frequently.


The novel read the same way from beginning to the end for me, so the climax of the novel also fell flat. However, the last chapter provided an interesting backstory, and I liked that the novel closed with that chapter. I did not catch any rise or fall of action, and I felt that the murders happened so quickly that there was no time for any anticipation. Also, the murders did not seem very creative to me. It seemed like there were pages of repeated descriptions and then a few lines of murder. I guess I wanted more exploration of the act of murder itself.


I think the author has writing talent, and I apologize that their style is not for me. I can appreciate that other readers may enjoy it. However, I will pass on the next book in this series.

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