Official Review: The Shadows Behind Her Smile

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kimmyschemy06
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Official Review: The Shadows Behind Her Smile

Post by kimmyschemy06 »

[Following is the official OnlineBookClub.org review of "The Shadows Behind Her Smile" by Karen Millie-James.]
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4 out of 4 stars
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The Shadows Behind Her Smile is a mystery novel by Karen Millie-James.

Written in the third person perspective, the story is about Cydney Granger, a smart and beautiful corporate forensic specialist who has the gift of mediumship, that is, she has the ability to see and communicate with the spirits of dead people.

The book begins with a prologue which happened four years earlier when Cydney had a vision and knew right away that her husband, Capt. Steve Granger, was dead. The book, then, moves on to the first chapter showing Cydney, at the present time, on her way to a meeting with her long-time friend and client. While contemplating on her life, her twins, Jake and Lauren, and her work which she enjoys, she suddenly feels the familiar sensation of being approached by a spirit and finds Ray Gordon, a middle aged man who just died, next to her in the taxi.

Though the story is basically about Cydney’s inability to connect with her dead husband when she can easily communicate with her dead father and her newly-found friend, Ray, it also presents multiple subplots including that about a greedy brother who is trying to rob his sister-in-law and her kids of their inheritance, a pair of dishonest businessman who are willing to resort to criminal acts to have their way, a maltreated half-brother who is too scared to confess the truth to the woman he loves and a soldier who is trying to get back to his family.

I commend the author for successfully bringing in too many subplots in one relatively short novel. The story is fast-paced with plenty of suspenseful scenes. The descriptions, especially of Cydney being approached by a spirit, are creepy and chilling. The author also adeptly creates a cast of relatable and memorable characters. Cydney is a brave single mother who finds it difficult to let go of her deceased husband. Sean is a loyal and protective friend who stands by Cydney all these years. Ray is a loving husband and father who tries to take care of his family even after death. George is a patient and kind man who hides a sad past. Richard, Jenny and Ash are Cydney’s efficient and trusted employees.

However, I find the subplots too many for my taste as I, personally, prefer it if the author focused on the main plot and maybe a subplot or two. Then, there are scenes that I find confusing like the reception that Cydney and George attended. It was held at a hotel but the setting suddenly changed to a hospital. I reread it but still did not get what happened. Finally, there are too many flashbacks that detract the smooth flow of the story.

Despite those, however, I really enjoyed the book. So I give it the rate of 4 out of 4 stars and I recommend it to readers who enjoy mystery, thriller and paranormal. However, there is a specific issue in this book that is left unexplained and which, I presume, will be the subject of the second book.

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Post by bluemel4 »

Interesting review. The book sounds like a fun ride.
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Post by kimmyschemy06 »

bluemel4 wrote:Interesting review. The book sounds like a fun ride.
Thank you. Fun in a creepy kind of way especially if you're into spirits and all.. :)
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Post by bookowlie »

Nice, insightful review! The book looks interesting, although I get a little creeped out by mediums. :)
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Post by kimmyschemy06 »

bookowlie wrote:Nice, insightful review! The book looks interesting, although I get a little creeped out by mediums. :)
Thank you. Yeah, me too :) I'm thankful I'm not one :D
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Post by TrishaAnn92 »

Great review! This sounds like an intriguing read! Congrats to the author on a positive review! :)
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Post by kimmyschemy06 »

TrishaAnn92 wrote:Great review! This sounds like an intriguing read! Congrats to the author on a positive review! :)
Thank you very much. It is intriguing and enjoyable :)
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Post by Amheiser »

Good review! This books seems like a very interesting read. I like reading about what might be beyond what we know in this world. This seems like a good idea the author had in bringing many different stories into one main story, and although maybe there were a few too many stories in one, it seemed like the writing and the character development were good enough to overcome this. Thanks for the great, informative review. It makes me want to add this book to my list of books to read.
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Post by CrescentMoon »

This book sounds very interesting. I love reading mystery books that have a paranormal element. It adds a nice twist to things. I also don't like too many subplots as that usually makes the books very busy and hard to keep track of. But this sounds like a very intriguing story. Great review!
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Post by kimmyschemy06 »

Amheiser wrote:Good review! This books seems like a very interesting read. I like reading about what might be beyond what we know in this world. This seems like a good idea the author had in bringing many different stories into one main story, and although maybe there were a few too many stories in one, it seemed like the writing and the character development were good enough to overcome this. Thanks for the great, informative review. It makes me want to add this book to my list of books to read.
Thank you. I hope you get the chance to read it.

-- 02 May 2016, 09:07 --
CrescentMoon wrote:This book sounds very interesting. I love reading mystery books that have a paranormal element. It adds a nice twist to things. I also don't like too many subplots as that usually makes the books very busy and hard to keep track of. But this sounds like a very intriguing story. Great review!
Thank you very much. It is intriguing and very enjoyable.
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Post by Heidi M Simone »

Wonderful review, kimmyschemy06! Connecting with the dead reminds me of a TV show...can't remember the name of it since I didn't watch it, just the previews. But, it certainly was creepy!
Congratulations to the author for receiving such a great review! :tiphat:
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hsimone wrote:Wonderful review, kimmyschemy06! Connecting with the dead reminds me of a TV show...can't remember the name of it since I didn't watch it, just the previews. But, it certainly was creepy!
Congratulations to the author for receiving such a great review! :tiphat:
Thank you very much. I'm pretty sure I didn't watch that show either :) This book may be a bit creepy, but it's enjoyable nonetheless.
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Post by Heidi M Simone »

kimmyschemy06 wrote:
hsimone wrote:Wonderful review, kimmyschemy06! Connecting with the dead reminds me of a TV show...can't remember the name of it since I didn't watch it, just the previews. But, it certainly was creepy!
Congratulations to the author for receiving such a great review! :tiphat:
Thank you very much. I'm pretty sure I didn't watch that show either :) This book may be a bit creepy, but it's enjoyable nonetheless.
I've had that experience a couple of times recently - reading a creepy book, but really enjoying it regardless. :)
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Post by gali »

Sounds good. I am glad you enjoyed the book overall. Thank you for the great review! :)
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Post by kimmyschemy06 »

gali wrote:Sounds good. I am glad you enjoyed the book overall. Thank you for the great review! :)
You're welcome and thank you. It is an interesting and enjoyable book :)
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