The Shadow Man - Mark Brownless

Your hometown is boring, but for Flip and her friends the little village that starred as backdrop to their childhood is anything but. She has felt disconnected from it since leaving school but when Janey, the only friend of the group the stay behind, calls them back to help with recurring fatalities they can't say no, can they?

Huge thanks to Zooloo's Book Tours for letting me be a part of this blog tour! It's been an exciting read, that's for sure! My fellow bloggers are all below and their reviews are always worth checking out!

My first reaction to 'The Shadow Man' was definitely something I jumped into before really settling into the plot, looking back I needed to connect to the pace Brownless set for the reader instead of trying to connect to the standard thriller pace I expected. Brownless takes off running with the story, depicting Flip's return to her hometown, with a mysterious amnesia surrounding it, and the reunion with her childhood friends, however, he then slows us right back down to establish connections with the characters whilst switching between "THEN" and "NOW" chapters to slowly reveal the memories Flip has forgotten. Whilst I initially didn't like this approach, almost a literary whiplash of pacing, I really liked the effect it left on me for the rest of the novel. It established that this book can provide the fast delivery of information but by slowing down the pace it left the anticipation of what is to come at the forefront of the reader's mind.

My aim for all reviews is to not give away the "big reveal" and all I can say about this one is wow. The further into this novel I read the more I enjoyed myself, it is definitely one of those pieces that rewards the loyal reader as the most captivating chapter was the climax of the plot. There was some hint toward the reveal which I actually enjoyed in this instance because it made me go "of course!"which worked to the advantage of this publication. Some thrillers aim to keep the revelation secret right up until the word that gives it all away, I cannot see this working for 'The Shadow Man' because it connects the whole life of the characters so revealing something out of the blue wouldn't have been good storytelling. Brownless took the option to give the reader underhand hints that give us the satisfactory feeling of "obviously" at the end which was definitely the best option, in my opinion.

Honestly? This was a wonderfully creepy read, I would have liked a stronger introduction to Flip as although I enjoyed being dropped straight into the plot I didn't feel as connected to her as I'd have liked until the latter half of the novel. A deeper understanding of her was slowly developed as her memories came through but a better comprehension of her adult character could have knocked this up another level, the same can be said for the other main characters.

Zooloo's Book Tours is a new publicity company that I cannot thank enough for introducing me to this novel! I thoroughly enjoyed picking up my Kindle each night for this, and obviously thank you to Mark Brownless for producing such a thrilling small village thriller! Having recently read another "small town thriller" that was more of a disappointing "small town drama" 'The Shadow Man' was a welcome reprieve!

This novel would actually be 3.5 stars, if I had the graphic for it!

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