Rob Wasserman's latest novel is an engaging mix of history, romance, and mystery. Dark secrets, crumbling documents and relics, and shady secret societies abound in this meticulously written story. Nora's search for answers to her friend's death and the mystery brought up by Elizabeth's letters go almost hand in hand with her own issues questions regarding faith and religion in the aftermath of her brother's tragic death. These personal issues are what make her connect with Elizabeth and her experiences and help emotionally invest herself into the mystery of the Lumen Dei. The mystery is very complicated and convoluted—the chronology of Elizabeth's letters and clues can be a little hard to follow, especially when Nora travels to Prague to find answers. There is plenty of action and many plot twists that play out through the streets of the old city as Nora gets closer and closer to the truth, which will test her beliefs and values and make her re-evaluate her relationships. The conclusion is surprising and maybe a little abrupt; there doesn't seem to be a lot of falling action, and there are a few loose ends to puzzle through still. However, the way that Wasserman sets up The Book of Blood and Shadow is clever, and despite any lingering questions this extremely well-written and unique story will keep readers thinking long after the final page.
Cover Comments: I adore this cover! I love the shadows of the title font and the way the building is reflected in the girl's eyes, the angle of her face. It's just so cool! And I definitely recommend getting this one in print--the book is beautiful. I love the deckle edges and the end papers on this one.
Review copy provided by publisher.