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I Belong

Review: Shadow Run by AdriAnne Strickland & Michael Miller

Title: Shadow Run

AuthorAdriAnne Strickland & Michael Miller

Genre: YA Science Fiction

Series: Kaitan Chronicles (Book #1)

Publication Date: March 21, 2017

Format: Hardcover, 390 Pages

ISBN-10: 0399552537 (Delacorte Press)

ISBN-13: 978-0399552533 (Delacorte Press)

Reviewed by: Tara


Nev has just joined the crew of the starship Kaitan Heritage as the cargo loader. His captain, Qole, is the youngest-ever person to command her own ship, but she brooks no argument from her crew of orphans, fugitives, and con men. Nev can’t resist her, even if her ship is an antique.

As for Nev, he’s a prince, in hiding on the ship. He believes Qole holds the key to changing galactic civilization, and when her cooperation proves difficult to obtain, Nev resolves to get her to his home planet by any means necessary.

But before they know it, a rival royal family is after Qole too, and they’re more interested in stealing her abilities than in keeping her alive.

Nev’s mission to manipulate Qole becomes one to save her, and to survive, she’ll have to trust her would-be kidnapper. He may be royalty, but Qole is discovering a deep reservoir of power–and stars have mercy on whoever tries to hurt her ship or her crew.

Quick & Dirty: A wonderful blend of science fiction and fantasy that I didn’t know I needed in my life until now.

Opening SentenceThe first time I heard the captain’s voice was over the ship’s comm: “Hold on, it’s going to be a rough run.”

Excerpt: Yes

The Review:

Full disclaimer: I am a huge fan of Firefly, my cousin and I wore out the VHS tapes of Star Wars, and I love science fiction novels. So it may not come as a huge surprise that I absolutely loved Shadow Run. All that being said, I think that Shadow Run appeals to a much broader reader base than most YA science fiction novels. Also, if you liked Illuminae, you’ll probably like this one as well. While Shadow Run does take place in space, in a galaxy different than our own, it is a character-based novel that seamlessly blends fantasy into the classic science fiction aspects.

It’s rare for me to not be able to pick a favorite character in a book. I fell in love with all of the main characters, both individually and as a team. Qole was a wonderful character and I liked how the authors portrayed her struggles as a female captain over a mostly male crew. Her struggle with learning how to control Shadow and its side-effects felt like an origin story out of a fantasy novel but somehow wasn’t out of place here. Nev was so idealistic and adorable, I almost didn’t want to see him have to grow up as the story progressed. By the end of the book, he was added to my list of favorite book boyfriends. Basra was such a wonderful surprise. I won’t say much more because of spoilers but I loved the sneakiness and genius. I commend the authors for writing Basra’s gender-fluidity as only one aspect of the character, rather than having that be Basra’s defining characteristic.

Shadow Run was a fast-paced wild ride that went everywhere from the outermost limits of space to the palace in the capital city. We see the underbelly of sketchy trading ports and the inside of spaceships. It is a mad-cap intergalactic adventure that find its heart in the bonds between the characters. There’s a romance that will make you swoon and moments that will make you gasp. The first half was more science fiction while the second half had much more of a fantasy focus. I loved how the politics and commerce of the galaxies were explored. The world-building was excellent. There were hints throughout the book that made me excited to see where the story goes next.

I flew through Shadow Run and already know that the untitled sequel will be one of my most anticipated reads of 2018. This was a wonderful debut that I would recommend to any fans of YA science fiction and any YA fantasy fans who don’t mind the addition of a spaceship to the story.

Notable Scene:

Qole stepped closer to me, and for a second we were face to face as she stared up at me and yet stared me down. For the first time, I noticed something other than anger in her brown eyes—something dark that flickered at the corners.
Shadow. Literally, Shadow, flickering at the edges of her whites. Great Collapse, I’d heard the stories, but I hadn’t really believed it. This wasn’t Shadow poisoning—this was her affinity, active in her system.

I braced myself. For what, I didn’t know.

Then her eyes narrowed into normal anger, and she turned on her heel and disappeared from the hold.

Kaitan Chronicles:

1. Shadow Run

2. Shadow Call (April 17, 2018)


FTC Advisory: Delacorte Press/Penguin provided me with a copy of Shadow Run. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

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One Response to “Review: Shadow Run by AdriAnne Strickland & Michael Miller

  1. Penny OlsonNo Gravatar

    This sounds REALLY good. Thanks for the review!

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