The Theme of Hope in Shadow Eyes
Shadow Eyes Blog Tour and Kindle Fire Giveaway
Thank you for hosting me, Kate, and for such a great review back in September! (See review here.) I’m super excited to be on your blog again and to share one of my favorite things about my YA urban fantasy, Shadow Eyes – the theme of hope!
First of all, everyone, don’t forget to enter the rafflecopter below for a chance to win a print copy of Shadow Eyes, your full name in the sequel, and a KINDLE FIRE!
Let’s check out the synopsis for Shadow Eyes before I delve into one of its themes. It will probably make more sense that way.
Iris Kohl lives in a world populated by murky shadows that surround, harass, and entice unsuspecting individuals toward evil. But she is the only one who can see them. She’s had this ability to see the shadows, as well as brilliantly glowing light figures, ever since an obscure, tragic incident on her fourteenth birthday three years earlier.
Although she’s learned to cope, the view of her world begins to shift upon the arrival of three mysterious characters. First, a handsome new teacher whose presence scares away shadows; second, a new friend with an awe-inspiring aura; and third, a mysterious and alluring new student whom Iris has a hard time resisting despite already having a boyfriend.
As the shadows invade and terrorize her own life and family, she must ultimately revisit the most horrific event of her life in order to learn her true identity and become the hero she was meant to be.
Hope is so important for everyone, but especially teens who are trying to grow up in our jaded world. It’s easy for them to look at the society around them and become negative and cynical. They need to be able to hope for a positive future, even if it seems unlikely. I’m not saying they shouldn’t be realistic and instead think life is a great big fairy tale. I’m simply saying they need to see that there are positive outcomes, even through tough times, that they can hope for and strive to achieve.
So how do books help with this? Well, think about. We, as readers, live vicariously through the main characters of the books we read, experiencing what they experience to an extent and feeling what they feel through all their ups and downs. If the characters have hope, the readers get to latch on to that hope as well.
For example, if the main character has hope that her relationship will last, the readers get a sense of hope that they too could have long-lasting, amazing relationships in the future. If the main character has hope that their family situation will improve and maybe even does by the end of the book, the readers may gain some hope that their family issues can be resolved too. Even if it doesn’t work out for them the same way it does in the book, living with that hope will have a positive effect on the person.
No matter what the character’s issue, if readers can relate to it, they can get healing and comfort from seeing the character get healing and comfort.
In Shadow Eyes, Iris struggles with self-worth and confidence, while having to endure so much with her family and friends and turmoil in her own relationships (sorry, can’t be specific – spoilers!). On top of that, she has to deal with the tragic event that happened three years ago and that’s been eating away at her since. Through all of this, by the end of the book, she goes through a healing process like no other where she acquires a new sense of hope, confidence, and inner-strength. The reader, especially if they’ve experienced any of the same events or emotions as Iris, gets the immense satisfaction of undergoing that same healing process.
I was freer. More alive. More like the person I was meant to be than who I had chosen to be in the past. Baggage I hadn’t even known I was carrying and lies I hadn’t known I was believing had been kicked to the curb. I felt like an innocent child again. I had been given a second chance, and I was ready to run with it wherever it wanted to take me.
I’ve heard from readers who have cried, felt uplifted and encouraged, been filled with happiness and satisfaction, or just simply loved the way it ended. Granted, it isn’t a complete resolution because there are a few things left unanswered for the sequel (which is in the works), but there is definitely a great sense of closure. And it is my hope that this sense of closure in the book will help even just a few readers gain closure with their own issues, giving them the confidence to replace their worry with hope.
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Buy Shadow Eyes at http://musapublishing.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=176
(also available at all major online bookstores)View the book trailer at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v7UP9A0Fm78