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The Girl of Fire and Thorns ended on such an exciting note, so when I heard The Shadow Cats was to be released, I instantly made this a must-read. Rae Carson has done a splendid job of world-building in The Girl of Fire and Thorns, incorporating Spanish and Catholic influences into a fantasy world and she has continued the expansion in the prequel as well.
The Shadow Cats expands on the strained relationship between Elisa and Alodia that is brushed on The Girl of Fire and Thorns. The tension between the two is explained, as well as the surprising amount of emotion that Alodia shows when Elisa leaves their home to another land to be queen in The Girl of Fire and Thorns.
The intensity between the girls is one that is thought-provoking. It can be seen that Alodia is the more responsible of the two, and she knows that. Because of this, Alodia resents Elisa for her naive and gluttonous outlook on life. Elisa receives all of the attention because she is the bearer of the godstone, while Alodia has to work for the attention she receives. I enjoyed seeing how each sister foiled each other, which is emphasized throughout The Shadow Cats.
There were parts of the novella that made me feel that the condensed novella was too short. During the action scenes, the descriptions, dialogue, pretty much everything was rushed and finished off quickly. Disappointment is an understatement of my reaction when I reached the final page of The Shadow Cats. Although there are hints of Elisa and Alodia working together in future books, I just felt let down. There should have been more development on how Alodia's opinion of Elisa changed exactly.
Even though The Shadow Cats was somewhat of a letdown, I really enjoyed diving back into the world of Fire and Thorns. I cannot deny the thrill of re-entering the world of danger and character maturation that occurs in The Shadow Cats. The prospect of seeing Elisa and Alodia together again in The Crown of Embers is definitely one of my many reasons to get my hands on it as soon as possible. The Shadow Cats is a great companion novella to the epic The Girl of Fire and Thorns that I would recommend for all Fire and Thorn lovers.
Angie @YA Novelties