Shadow Cat

Reena Jacobs
Shadow Cat
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Release Date
February 2011
Book 1 of The Striped Ones
Contemporary Romance, Fantasy Romance

Eric Randall's plan is simple—fix the mess his researchers have created in Malaysia, experience the pleasures the country has to offer, and return to the comforts of America. All it takes is one beautiful aborigine, and Eric finds himself stranded in a world of Malaysian myths and legends.

A novice shaman amongst her people, Berani is free and independent. Yet all is not well in her homeland. Demons prey on her people, pushing them to extinction. When a strange speaking man invades her forest, she has one more worry to add to her already troubled life. Attraction or no, she will fight Eric tooth and claw to maintain her freedom. But will she destroy herself in the process?

If Berani wishes to save her family… if Eric wishes to reclaim his old life, they must stand together against the threats of encroaching wehr-tigers and bloodsucking demons… or perish.

Book Review by Sueroe (author)
Apr 03, 2011   [ OFFICIAL REVIEW ]
263 people found the following review helpful
Would you like to be transported to the rainforests in Malaysia, smell the humid air, hear the wildlife, discover unknown tribes? Then read SHADOW CAT. But be careful – the tigers aren't what they seem.

Eric Randall, CEO and big cheese of a pharmaceutical company, has arrived in Malaysia to sort out the problems his researchers have created in the forest. He wanders off on his own and is attracted by a beautiful woman with "exquisite bronze skin" who appears through the leafy shadows in the jungle. He should know something's up when she bats his hand away and nearly cuts it off. In fact, I believe he'll be asking all plane tickets to Malaysia to display a health warning: "Warning, rooting around in the rainforests can seriously damage your health". Berani, the woman he falls deeply in love with, is a wehr-tiger and it comes as quite a shock to him when he finds out.

Berani is a sassy, courageous shaman, recently grown to adulthood and is mad at the scientists who have destroyed a fair part of her beloved forest. She and her grandmother's tribe are also battling ferocious demon-like creatures called pennangalan who destroy anything and anyone in their path. They have a penchant for sucking out souls.

Ms Jacobs evokes a wonderful world. She has obviously researched – or even been to – Malaysia and the language to perfection. Her descriptions of being in the dense undergrowth of the rainforest bring the novel alive "…a trail of betel vines climbing a tree and (she) plucked the…leaves. Its sweet smoky aroma filled the air…"

If I must criticize anything, it will be the pacing of the story. The storyline is ever-increasingly interrupted by hot, sizzling and explicit sex between Eric and Berani. While this may appeal to many readers, I found it annoying and would've been content with less with perhaps more emphasis on the struggle between the wehr-tigers and the pennangalan which seems like a forgotten add-on at the end.

Just a very quick mention about editing -- I noticed some word-use errors and spellings. Not many, and certainly not enough to distract from the story. As we receive the pre-publication copy, it's possible that once published, these little slips will have been edited out.

Ms Jacobs has written SHADOW CAT from the heart, if her poetic prose and emotional style are anything to go by. It's gruesome in parts and certainly violent. But this sentence from the book, I think, sums up the whole premise: "The jungle had different rules than (sic) the streets of New York, but both were cutthroats."

She manages to portray believable characters, which isn't easy, when the two main characters speak different languages and can't understand each other.

In general, SHADOW CAT is an entertaining read. It's the first of a series and I, for one, will certainly read book two.
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