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Reactionary Reading: Shade & Shift

August 25, 2011
Writing book reviews can be really, really hard. Lately, it seems as if some of my favorite things about books, or some of my gut reactions to things that occur, don’t make it into my reviews either because they don’t make sense in the “review aspect” or because I don’t want to give things away.

However, I recently wrote a review for both Shade and Shift by Jeri Smith-Ready and for some reason I couldn’t get the tone of the review to capture how much fun I had while reading the books.

So I’ve decided to publish my reading notes. Yep, that’s right—I take notes as I read. Typically I use those notes to help guide me when I’m writing reviews, but sometimes (I think) my notes are really, really amusing and very in-the-moment. They include everything from favorite quotes to my gut reactions to tangential musings, and sometimes provide absolutely no context to what is actually happening in the book. Suffice it to say, they are kind of random.

But BE WARNED! I have gone through and redacted major spoiler information. (Yep, just like the government does.) If you’ve read the books, or if you don’t care about being spoiled, feel free to highlight the redacted portions so you can read the text. (It’s like a game! Sort of.) But there might still be minor spoilers involved. So if you’re the type that hates knowing things before you read, DO NOT PROCEED. And please keep in mind that this is all in good fun and are just my thoughts and opinions. 

All right, now that the disclaimer is out of the way, let’s get this show on the road!

May I present, my reading notes.

Shade by Jeri Smith-Ready

p. 33: For some reason, I’m finding the fact that Logan is all proud of his Irish heritage and the fact that Zachary is Scottish, really hilarious. I don’t know when or why, but at some point in my life I decided that the Irish and the Scots don’t like each other and that they’re constantly feuding. So the Logan/Zach heritage business is highly funny and makes competitive sense to me.

p. 60:  I really have no idea if I’d want my dead boyfriend to just be dead so that I could mourn and move on, or to stick around so that I could still be with him. Geeeeez.

p. 69: I also have no idea if I could get my ass out of bed to work on a school project two days after my boyfriend had died, even if a dude with a Scottish accent was involved. I’m thinking no.

p. 80: I think I like Eowyn mucho. And the whole thing with Zach switching his teacup with Aura’s so she could have strength? So super sweet.

p. 106: Yeah, I really don’t think I’d be okay with my dead boyfriend hanging out with me in the middle of his funeral. It’d be all too . . . antithetical. I think my mind would explode. My heart def would.

p. 110: You know, I really like that both Aura and Megan have after-school jobs.

p. 119: Oh praise God. I’m glad Gina is there to voice the way I feel about the dead boyfriend ghost business. I don’t feel bitchy and coldhearted anymore.

p. 132: “Back at the bookshelf, Eowyn flipped up one of the posters and pinned it to the frame of the shelf, which contained old, leather-bound, musty-looking books, the kind that make you want to roll around in them. (Well, that make me want to roll around in them. but I’m weird.)” I’M SO LIKE THIS ABOUT BOOKS. *bounces*

p. 156: Maybe I didn’t make up the animosity between Ireland/Scotland! Or maybe the animosity is just a Logan/Zach one and Logan is using any information he knows about the two countries to fuel it. I guess that’s possible.

p. 182: Relationships are so fucked up.

p. 185: Hey there, female masturbation scene. (!!!!)

You know. I’m a little tired of the Logan side of this story. I really want to know more about Aura’s mom’s missing journal entries and how she knew Eowyn . . .

p. 190: Oh good! The birthday twin business is going to be talked about. I have been waiting for this.

p. 192: Holy shit. Every minute four hundred babies are born. That is insane. And gross. And incredible. *Googles to verify* Oh hell, every website says something different. I will just TRUST Jeri Smith-Ready and her editors.

p. 194: Zach really is the most patient—and most honest—guy ever.

Zach: ” . . . but he didn’t tell me to join your research project. That was my idea. . . . So was falling for you.”
Aura: ” . . . Falling for me?”
Zach: “Come on, you’re not blind.”

And then he just lets it go and moves on! It’s the most low-key declaration of feelings ever made. Which I love, actually.

p. 210: Oh good. SPY DAD! I’m actually really excited to meet him.

p. 214: OMG. Zach and his dad (Ian, whom I might be in love with . . . this remains to be seen) are yelling at each other in deep Scottish accents. I can only imagine Craig Ferguson and James McAvoy yelling at each other. Not that those particular actors would ever play father/son (since they’re only like ten years apart) but, I think they may be the only Scottish actors I can identify with certainty as Scottish off the top of my head. (OH! Sean Connery. But maybe he’s too old at this point?) Anyway. I like it the thought of them yelling at each other in deep Scottish accents.

p. 219: Alright. Now I’m uber-curious about Aura’s mom/dad situation. Time for theories!:

  • Aura’s mom met a ghost, fell in love, somehow had ghosty sex, and then had Aura, which caused the Shift. So, Aura’s dad is a ghost. Maybe he’s a famous ghosty. No, that would just be too much.
  • Maybe Aura’s mom had sex in one of those monolith cave thingies. And that caused the Shift. Hmm. But how shall that explain the Zach/Aura thing about them being the only ones borned on their respective minutes? Hmmmm. HMMMM.

p. 222: OMG. Ian and Maria (Aura’s mom’s name) had met before:
Ian: “We were once in the same place together. The circumstances of our children’s births, I believe, are connected by an event that happened to us—an event I cannot, for security reasons, elaborate upon.” O_O


p. 245: YODA PUPPET!

Shift by Jeri Smith-Ready

p. 14: WHAT WHAT WHAT. Oh this changes things.

p. 26: Yeah, I’m still far more interested in the Zach/Aura/Shift origin story and the backstory re: their parents than I am about Logan…

p. 29: Zachary is the nicest, most understanding guy ever.

p. 46: Oh, I like angry Zach. And Aura needs to hear it.

p. 89: I wanna go to Ireland…

p. 104: Wait. Zach and Logan can’t be around each other since Zach is all ghost-repellant. And while I like the idea of the three of them working together on the thesis, it isn’t possible…right?

Oh nevermind. Aura worked that part out.

p. 111: I am so freaking intrigued by the Ian/Maria connection at Newgrange I can hardly freaking stand it.

p. 132: I really, really like Megan. Between the yoda puppet and the umpire joke, I think I want her to be my bestie.

p. 135: Yay! My Scots vs. Irish competition idea is still intact!

p. 151: Ok. Where is Eowyn? WANT. EOWYN.


p. 161: If the light in the cave on the winter solstice can make a wish come true, what if Aura’s mom’s wish was to have a baby?! And Aura is some sort of divine conception sitch?! Which means she is like Jesus! Oh boy.

p. 163: OH HAI, FIONA!

p. 173: I want to punch Mickey in his stupid ass face.

p. 176: KIIIIIIIIIILT!!!!!!

p. 177: Oh how I loathe Becca and her slutty, slutty sluttiness. Although, let’s be honest, if I were Becca and at prom with Zach, I’m sure I’d be all kinds of slutty, slutty, slutty too.

OMG, and it only got worse with that bathroom scene! I hate girls. Girls are awful, horrible bitches.

p. 192: Awe, Dylan.

p. 195: Haha. Scotty, beaming. I might be Team Dylan.


p. 207: Is it bad that I think it’s funny Aura is hungover after just three beers?

p. 223: Okay. I’m super Team Dylan. But I don’t want Aura to hurt him. And that’s the only way that’s going to end….Dylan needs to go hook up with that Amy chick.

p. 249: LITTLE LION MAN!!!! ❤

p. 251: Spooky, investigative scavenger hunt. Hell. Yes.

p. 272: Oh holy shit. I think Aura’s dad is a ghost. Or maybe he turns corporeal and he and her mom had sexy times before he turned back to ghost. Either way. WHAT.



p. 293: Oh no. Was Zach shot?!

Oh ok, he wasn’t. Whew!

p. 318: These two are far more vocal about sex and feelings than I ever was at their age. I mean, of course, they’re fictional, so of course they are. But. Still.

p. 326: Wait. Did she just give him a hand job? Or did they have sex?

Ok. After the re-read, I have determined: Hand Job.

And then I think they had sex?

Oh, nope. They had no sex.

p. 349: Awe. I actually really loved the Logan concert. I thought I’d hate it and his diva-ness, but it was really cool.

p. 358: 🙂

p. 367: SUCH a good last line!!!!

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