I don't always jump on board with every fad, but the new movement of short stories between books in a series is one I am whole heartedly standing by. I mean what could be better than not only continuing a story you love, but also getting it from a different character's point of view. This, my friends, is genius.
"Shadow Cats" by Rae Carson is the most recent novelette I have read. And, I absolutely loved it. "Shadow Cats" tells the story of Elisa's sister, Alodia and is a prequel to The Girl of Fire and Thorns. Now I've got to tell you, when I read The Girl of Fire and Thorns, I didn't like Alodia very much. Maybe I just really felt sorry for poor Elisa, or maybe Alodia is a little snotty. I don't know. I just didn't like her very much. But, "Shadow Cats" Rae Carson really knew how to to pull me back around so I love both sisters equally. Well played, Carson.
In "Shadow Cats" Alodia takes center stage, and readers see her strength, courage, and determination. We follow her and Elisa travel to attend a wedding of an acquaintance of their father. Unexpectedly, when they arrive the girls see a land that seems to be suffering from a drought. However, normal rain patterns exist. No food is growing; no flowers bloom. The natives begin to blame the newly arrived bride to be. This isn't good for anyone. As if that weren't enough, a bizarrely fierce jaguar terrorizes the land.
Well, as you may have guessed it, Alodia takes matters in her own hands in order to save the land and help make a name for herself as a princess who was born to rule. I for one am convinced. Alodia is an amazingly strong person in all the ways her sister is not. It is so amazing how completely different these girls are, but they are both so strong and perfectly suited to rule.
Please read both The Girl of Fire and Thorns if you haven't and then follow up with "Shadow Cats". "Shadow Cats" is only available as an ebook. The second book in the trilogy The Crown of Embers will be available September 18. That is plenty of time!
Also, if you enjoy the novelette concept as much as I do, check out "Dream Dark", a Beautiful Creatures story, "Hana", a Delirium story. Also, "Free Four" a Divergent story will be out August 7. I love it; I really hope this trend continues. Hint, hint.