This is my second Marcy Kate Conolly book and I enjoyed this more than the other one. The story is what the premise promised. We have Emmeline who is gifted with shadow weaving. She excels at it. She loves it. She acknowledges it. Only that her parents and the people surrounding her have grown wary about her power as the years went by. Then the day came when her parents couldn’t take it any longer and desired to send her away to get cured. So Emmeline ran and took refuge in the woods wherein she met a lovely family whose only son is gifted with magic as well. And so, her adventure begins.
I think the beauty of Shadow Weaving lies on the characterization of our main protagonist, Emmeline. . She’s clueless, lacks the basic sense of right and wrong, suffers from “I am the victim” syndrome, and thinks that the world revolves around her and her sufferings. What’s surprising is that Emmeline is not aware that she’s any of these things. She really thinks that her life is woefully pitiful without realizing that it was she who had alienated everyone around her, including her parents. Though her parents are not exactly good, they, at least, in their own ways, tried to provide good guiding hands for Emmeline. But they’re not just equipped (in skills or in experience) on how to handle such a child like Emmeline so they actually failed despite their efforts to give her a normal life. For Emmeline’s part, she’s really self-centered refusing to even take the time to reflect about why her parents act like that or why the servants shy away from her. Instead, she lets herself be easily led by her shadow, which is, by the way sentient and has no qualms of inflicting harm to people. But Emmeline thinks that her shadow is beyond reproach.
But other than Emmeline’s characterization, Shadow Weaver has nothing more to offer to the table. The lore of the Cerelia Comet and its blessings felt very shallow, I could not bring myself to be interested in it. The main conflict (good vs. evil) was too simplistic and easily resolved that it didn’t make an impact. And most importantly, I was only invested in Emmeline but couldn’t empathize with any of the other characters including Lucas and Dar.
I was really glad that Shadow Weaver was a very short book, thus, my patience didn’t run thin. Overall, this is not an inherently bad book but it sure would benefit from a little tweaking here and there.