Oh what a ride this has been!!! After the agony of that cliffhanger ending in DreamFever, I just knew Shadowfever had to be amazing. No author would leave her fans hanging like that unless she knew the finale was going to be magnificent. And it was. The final installment of Mac's story was everything I wanted it to be. Mac's long and winding trail to find the Sinsar Dubh was a twisting, turning, sometimes upside down and inside out journey. So many times in the previous books, Mac would pepper Barrons with questions, and he would tell her that when she didn't need to ask anymore he would like to know her then. Mac finally became that woman, and I liked her a lot.
~Karen Marie Moning
Hardcover: 608 pages
Publisher: Delacorte Press (January 18, 2011)
From the author's website:
"Evil is a completely different creature, Mac.
Evil is bad that believes it's good."
MacKayla Lane was just a child when she and her sister, Alina were given up for adoption and banished from Ireland forever.
Twenty years later, Alina is dead and Mac has returned to the country that expelled them to hunt her sister's murderer. But after discovering that she descends from a bloodline both gifted and cursed, Mac is plunged into a secret history: an ancient conflict between humans and immortals that have lived concealed among us for thousands of years.
What follows is a shocking chain of events with devastating consequences, and now Mac struggles to cope with grief, while continuing her mission to acquire and control the Sinsar Dubh--a book of dark, forbidden magic scribed by the mythical Unseelie King that contains the power to create and destroy worlds.
In an epic battle between humans and Fae, the hunter becomes the hunted when the Sinsar Dubh turns on Mac, and begins mowing a deadly path through those she loves.
Who can she turn to? Who can she trust? Who is the woman that haunts her dreams? More importantly, who is Mac and what is the destiny she glimpses in the black and crimson designs of an ancient tarot card?
From the luxury of the Lord Master's penthouse, to the sordid depths of an Unseelie nightclub, from the erotic bed of her lover, to the terrifying bed of the Unseelie King, Mac's journey will force her to face the truth of her exile, and make a choice that will either save the world...or destroy it.
And Barrons, oh Barrons...we get to see Barrons like we've never seen him before, and I loved it. We learn some of his secrets (and they're doozies!), and we finally get to see what's under the garage!!! Barrons has been "my guy" from the beginning and that did not change at all in Shadowfever.
My favorite highlander (and lie-detector), Christian MacKeltar, is one of the few unfinished story lines in the book. All I can say is "WTF? I did NOT see that coming." (Luckily, KMM said in her Q&A that we will be seeing Christian in future books).
I'll admit I was never "Team V'lane" and Shadowfever did not change my mind.
And Dani - You know, Dani has been one of my least favorite characters throughout the series. She really shone in Shadowfever though - she had some of the funniest lines in the book. Her story isn't finished either and I never thought I'd say this but I'm actually looking forward to the telling of it.
I loved Barron's "Band of Merry Men". They were so testosterone-filled and angry. They were mad, bad men and I couldn't help but like them. I'd love to hear their story. I laughed out loud at the scene where Mac's mother talked about how she cooked for them and what they liked to eat. And when Lor propositioned Mac - wow, just...wow. The MacKeltars are back, and there's a cameo by Adam from Ms. Moning's Highlander series, which was nice. Fiona was a bitch to the very end. As far as Dreamy-Eyed Guy - I had a theory about DEG, and I was wrong. He surprised me.
There are just enough loose ends that I'm looking forward to whatever spin-off Ms. Moning decides to write, but not so many that I'm left feeling unfulfilled.
All told, I love Mac's growth through the series and this book in particular. She questioned herself constantly. She analyzed and made lists. She got scared. She got mad. She was epic. Ms. Moning said from the beginning that Mac's story would ultimately be a happy one, that things would be dark before they got light, and she was right.
A tip of the hat to you, Ms. Moning. Bravo!