The Shadows Between Us by Tricia Levenseller
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
Alessandra is tired of being overlooked, but she has a plan to gain power:
1) Woo the Shadow King.
2) Marry him.
3) Kill him and take his kingdom for herself.
No one knows the extent of the freshly crowned Shadow King’s power. Some say he can command the shadows that swirl around him to do his bidding. Others say they speak to him, whispering the thoughts of his enemies. Regardless, Alessandra knows what she deserves, and she’s going to do everything within her power to get it.
But Alessandra’s not the only one trying to kill the king. As attempts on his life are made, she finds herself trying to keep him alive long enough for him to make her his queen—all while struggling not to lose her heart. After all, who better for a Shadow King than a cunning, villainous queen?
There are probably many ways to describe The Shadows Between Us, but the easiest would be to describe it as a villain romance. Like, a ruthless Slytherin character trying to seduce another ruthless Slytherin character for the throne, and they end up falling for each other. Alessandra is no stranger to murder – she did kill her first love for dumping her – and since then she has carried on a string of flings to bide her time until she could officially be ‘on the market’ after her older sister’s bethrotal. She sets her eyes on the highest target – the Shadow King, who is known for avoiding the girls the whole kingdom has been throwing at him, and who has an iron-clad rule about no one touching him – and for a girl who doesn’t know even about the extent of his magic, I would say she has guts! Her plan, as apparent by the synopsis is to go the Ravenna way, so that she can be free to rule over the many kingdoms as she pleases.
Alessandra hits on an excellent strategy to catch his eye, but it sort of backfires on her when he misunderstands her motives and instead offers her a deal. Cue some fake dating and her trying to seduce a celibate king. But meanwhile, she also has to keep her past out of the news, especially the murder she did, and a couple of suitors who still seek her hand – she has ingenious ways to get rid of the obstacles in her path, once she puts murder off the table, of course. As she gets to know the king, and liking him, though, she fears she might lose her conviction. He himself has a murder mystery to solve regarding his parents, and they have differing opinions on what would constitute an excellent faked relationship, but they find common ground in how to run kingdoms.
“Are you mocking my outfit? I designed it myself.”
“Quite the opposite. I rather like it.” A pinch of humor lurks at the edges of his lips.
I think it might be at my expense, and I don’t like that one bit.
I say, “Give me your measurements, and I can have one made for you.”
Both of them are morally not good, like they really don’t care about the people, just power, and their interactions about it can come off as cartoonishly evil aristrocratic. At the same time, they are also the most entertaining things in the story – she has a sharp wit, and he has a wicked sense of humor, and honestly, they are pretty much made for each other. Truly, the only obstacle between them is him sticking to his immortality for them to have a physical relationship. I do feel that I had went into the book expecting a darker vibe, but mostly it is just comedy and romance. The plot doesn’t take itself very seriously, either, so it is pretty much a hoot to read the story, despite the many plot-holes I could point out. It has sort of a Galavant vibe, and some casual diversity, and is a quick read. Overall – recommended if you want some villain-on-villain romance with a dash of comedy!
Received an advance reader copy in exchange for a fair review from Viz Media LLC, via Edelweiss.
Other books by the author
Releases on February 25, 2020
2 thoughts on “ARC Review: The Shadows Between Us by Tricia Levenseller”
I didn’t expect.to like this as much as I did. I loved the morally grey vibe for sure and loved all the wit and banter. I thought it was a fun read and didnt think I was going to enjoy it bc a lot of the plot centered around the romance.