Cover Image: The Girl with the Whispering Shadow

The Girl with the Whispering Shadow

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“The Girl with the Whispering Shadow” is the second book in The Crowns of Croswald series, written by D.E Night. I was, again, contacted by their publicist Daniela and they offered me a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.
   The concept of this book is similar to the first, it revolves around a school of magic, The Ivy Halls, where several students who have a gift for magic are invited to study and develop their skills. There are two categories of magic manifestation, and all young nobles are entitled to a crown with a stone that gives them a specific ability, having to learn how to use it. On the other hand, we have those who can become scrivenists, magicians with the ability to draw everything they see with precision, having a photographic memory, and the function of studying and writing about all their discoveries in order to contribute to the advancement of magic. In addition, each noble family is assigned a scrivenist. The concept is what makes this book amazing and beautiful, it was what enchanted me the most, because throughout my reading I always felt that I was in a magical and joyful world, being able to immerse myself in it. That's why I give the concept two stars.
   Regarding the story, we continue to follow Ivy's point of view after the events of the first book. The new school year starts at the Ivy Halls and Ivy is not allowed to study there, as she would be too unprotected and exposed to the Dark Queen. So, the solution arranged by the director and Derwin was to send Ivy to a secret city, hidden by the mists in the middle of a forest, of which no one knows its location, not even the Dark Queen. It is there that scrivenists train and study their magic without being discovered. It is in this city that all adventures will begin, as strange things are happening and no one knows how or why. In general terms, the story has the same strengths and weaknesses as the first, the story is very easy to read and its fun, however it can get a little predictable, so I give it one star.
   The protagonist is Ivy Lovely, a seventeen-year-old girl who has already completed a year at the magical school of the Ivy Halls. She remains an upbeat, fun-loving, empathetic and friendly to others, young woman, helping everyone whenever she can. However, since the first book there hasn't been a big growth as a character, I felt that she was the same and that she hasn't changed in the face of the events of the first book. Despite this, Ivy continues to make the story more magical, as we follow her adventures in the secret city of Belzebuthe, she is enchanted and impressed by everything she sees, bringing the magical atmosphere of the book to the fore. I give one star.
   As for the antagonist, we have the Dark Queen again, the current queen of Croswald. In this book we find out a little more about her plans and why she didn't kill Ivy in the final battle at the masked ball and how she managed to get in without anyone knowing. I still don't really like the queen as an antagonist, because she didn't appear throughout the story, we always followed her minion, which made the threat not seem as serious as it was. I continue to give zero stars.
   The various secondary characters remain, for the most part, the same, we have Fyn and Rebecca and when Ivy is in Belzebuthe, she meets other students who are part of the Quogo Club and forms a friendship with all of them. Fyn is Ivy's love interest and they get a little bit closer to each other in this book. He remains a polite and friendly young man and we see a little more of his personality in this book, seeing his passions and his more rebellious side, so to speak. On the contrary, Rebecca is Ivy's roommate, a noblewoman with a cheerful and fun personality, she is Ivy's best friend, helping her whenever she needs it, even when the plans might be a little risky. I liked all the characters, but I felt there wasn't much growth, they're all the same, so I give one star.
   In short, I give, again, five stars out of ten to the second book in the saga The Crowns of Croswald. However, I want to make it clear that this is a middle grade story, that is, it is for children, and since I would recommend this book to that target audience, I think it would be a good story to start in the fantasy genre.
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This was a great addition to this series. Once I started reading I could not put it down!  What a wonderful adventure perfect for young readers who love adventure.
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3.5 stars but let’s round it up to 4.

I received this e-book from the publisher, via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review, and for this I would like to thank everyone involved in allowing me access. I’m extremely grateful!

I’ve already read the first volume, which I enjoyed, and I now moved on to the second volume of Ivy’s adventures. I highly appreciated the writing style in the first volume, and we have the same writing here. We don’t sense any changes, which I enjoyed as it feels like we are continuing where we left of.

The story makes a lot of sense considering the first volume. I liked the transition, which was gradual. We don’t sense we’ve left the characters for a long time and a lot has happened so we need to catch up. However, as a downside, I felt the development was too slow. I sensed the same in the first volume, but I’ve felt it made sense as we were being introduced to the new world developed by the author. By the time we reach the second volume, we are already familiar with the environment, so the action could have developed faster, at least during the first half. The second half is more fast paced, which I enjoyed.

I’ve felt several Harry Potter vibes, closer to the end of the book. I love Harry Potter but I don’t know where I stand with the Harry Potter vibes on this book, as the story could be much more, so there’s no need to reuse an already used formula. Still, I  would recommend, both this and the first volume!

This review will also be available at my Goodreads profile and later at my instagram profile - @cat.literary.world
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A great second book in this series. I was transported back into Ivy’s magical world where her life is being threatened by the Dark Queen and the adults around her are trying to protect her.
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Initial thoughts - full review to come soon! 

I thoroughly enjoyed this book, even more so than the first! It is a perfect read for middle schoolers with all its magic, adventure, & fun. There was excellent growth in the characters & the story plot from book one. I am loving the budding relationship between Ivy & Fyn!!! 

 I can't wait to pick up the third installment with my niece & nephew.
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What an amazing sequel!

The book picks up almost immediately after the events of the first book. The story continues with Ivy Lovely and her quest to find who she really is and is tasked to find a mysterious town that can only be found by few. 

It was amazing to go back to this amazing world and all its inhabitants, from the hairies, plants, mythical creatures and to see Ivy become more and more at ease with her mission. The town was absolutely wonderful and exciting, especially because its where all the scrivenits come from. I especially loved the magic system and how it worked and how important it was to not take it for granted.

I am absolutely excited to continue with the series and see where the story will take us.
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Ivy Lovely has reached the end of her first year at the Hall of Ivy and instead of spending her summer with her best friend Rebecca she is getting sent off to The Town, indefinitely! Darwin has tasked her with finding the other pieces of the Kindred Stone and the Selector believes Ivy will be safe from the Dark Queen there. But something is off even in the safest place I'm Croswald strange dark storm clouds are breaking through the Town's barrier and even though Ivy was told she'd not be returning to the Hall of Ivy, she recieves a letter from the Selector bidding her to return shortly after the new school year starts. Ivy returns only to discover the Selector never sent for her and that the Shades that were in The Town seem to have followed her as well. As Ivy works with Derwin to retrieve his memories of where he put the missing fragments of the stone, Ivy feels that the Dark Queen is close, planning another attack from the shadows. 

There is no better feeling than when a title of a book makes sense, except when the author has cleverly weaved that moment into the story itself as Night has done with The Girl with the Whispering Shadow. The title of the book is introduced early on in this story, which was so unique that I was absolutely intrigued to figure out why Night had decided to do that. She did not let me down. 

Ivy is still the amazing character she was in the first one. She makes a plan and she sticks to it even if the consequences could spell trouble for her. And her unwavering loyalty to her friends is wonderful. And in turn their loyalty to her. This book focuses a bit more on Fyn and Ivy's relationship and I enjoyed that especially since we find out more about Fyn's background and a connection his family has with the Kindred Stone. We are also introduced to a whole group of new friends with the QQC, it's a secret so you'll just have to read the book to find out what QQC stands for! 

I am also 100% sure the Selector has to be a bad guy. She has to be working for the Dark Queen, she says she has to appear to be on her side but I think she's lying, I think she's totally on the Dark Queen's side. 

In terms of pacing this was well done and followed the same formula as the first book, which I thought would kind of be annoying but I ended up enjoying it as we get introduced to all sorts of new creatures and magic from Croswald. My absolute favorite this time has to be Silius (I hope I spelled that right) I'm really hoping we see more of him in book three! 

Overall, a perfect second book with a fantastic cliffhanger ending that has left me excited to find out what happens next! Highly recommend for fans of Kiki's Delivery Service and Eva Evergreen, Semi-Magical Witch! Also, since this is a middle grade book this would make a perfect read along with the kiddos whether as a bedtime story or a buddy read.
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Definitely another installment that couldn’t quite make it to 4🌟:

This second book in The Crowns of Croswald Series was definitely more action packed and exciting than the last and I enjoyed it more than the first. I still feel like there’s just too much going on at once without enough depth to it to really keep me engaged and attached to the characters. A lot of the side characters feel underdeveloped, but then play a large part of important scenes, and the large jumps in time made it even harder for me to feel really invested in any of them. 

Overall, it’s a fun series and I’m still curious to see where it goes, but it’s hard to place it high on my to-be-read pile currently. I’d say if I could I’d give it 3.75🌟 at most.

I will likely read further installments at some point but there are other books I’m more eager to get to first.
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I liked this second book in the Crowns of Croswald series by D.E. Night better than the first one. Maybe it is, because I am more familiar with the characters and the world, but I think it is because the book is just deeper than the first one. 

I still feel like I am missing a lot of world building information, such as the political system, the royals and the squinches, though we do get to know more about the scrivenists at least. We also get a lot of in depth information about Quogo, the main “sport” in Croswald, which is very magical and entertaining. There are of course many other magical things that are interesting and beautiful, such as starfishing and the creatures the characters run across. 
I loved how funny many of the scenes were, such as the potion fight, and the shadow of doom not always looming over the characters. It was still much darker than the first book as Ivy now knows she is being hunted and that the future of Croswald rests of her shoulders, which leaves her constantly worrying and like she is not doing enough. 
I like her character arc in this book, she relies heavily on her friends and while she does not ask grown ups for help, she is always willing to rely on her friends (who are much less qualified, but still somehow manage). But seriously, grown ups can help you, use their knowledge! You don’t have to do everything alone. 
The characters in general feel a lot more three-dimensional than in the first book, showing their own interests, feelings and fears. I also enjoyed getting to know Ivy’s new friend group, I think a lot of the characters there have a lot of potential and hope the author uses it in the sequels. 
Another positive note is that parts of the prologue are mentioned within the first chapters and you can start putting together clues and figure out what’s going on – much faster than Ivy of course, so you have to wait for her to figure it out as well. 
The plot itself ties neatly together, there is a red string you can follow through the whole book and pick up a lot of additional information along the way. Still, there are many scenes that give you a “breather” from the main plot and show the characters in new lights, which is also important and makes them feel more alive. 
Many things are still very obviously inspired by another franchise, but the author puts a new spin on them, making it a very enjoyable read.
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I was SO excited when I was asked to review the 2nd book of The Crowns of Croswald! Thank you Netgalley, D.E. Night and Stories Untold for this Ebook. 

Ivy is in Belzebuthe, a secret town where scrivenists go for protection. Until she's invited back by a mysterious letter to the Halls of Ivy, this is where she lives, works and does school work. When she's back at the Halls of Ivy she keeps running into situations with a shadow. She's also on the main quest to find the second piece of the Kindred Stone. Between secret quills club, the secret town, invisible creatures, spells, and battles with the Dark Queens doings, The Girl with the Whispering Shadow is sure to keep you on your toes! 

This book was so magical! It's really something when your mind is able to set the scene. Nothing short of amazing. 

My favorite character in this book has to be Ivy this time! She's just so cool. She's got such a beautiful soul. She is a great friend, loyal, adventurous, and brave. 

If you need to escape from the real world and really love magic, spells, secret battle clubs, giant invisible creatures you use for transportation, and an all around exciting adventure then snag this book up!
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The Girl With The Whispering Shadow 
4/5 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Loved this book, this was the perfect second part of an intriguing series. The story gets more and more intriguing as we go, we get more information and more characters to love. Ivy is proving to still be a badass queenly heir. I love Rebecca and how the author is showing her growth as a character as well. Fyn and Gilstle's interactions killed me. I love how the author ends every book, it is just the perfect type of ending, it's not quite a cliffhanger but it is enough to leave you stated waiting for the next one but also excited to start it. This is the perfect book for all ages, it may be advertised towards middle age but as an adult, I am saying it's a wonderfully whimsical story that any age can adore.
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Such a great fun sequel! I loved all the much and they whimsy feeling of it! Can't wait to continue on with the 3rd book before the 4th one comes out!!
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I enjoyed this more than the first book in the series mainly due to the fact that I knew the characters and how they were all linked. I felt that the story flowed really well with some great descriptions of not only the characters but the places and events as well. s I character I like Ivy Lovely and was pleased that we got to know more about all the other characters and how they are all connected. Thank you to Daniela at Stories Untold and Netgalley for the opportunity to read this magical book.
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Thank you to Netgalley and Stories Untold for the e-ARC in exchange for an honest review. 

The Girl with the Whispering Shadow is the second book in D.E. Night’s The Crown of Croswald series. It starts off hours after Ivy has discovered that she is the fulfillment of the Moonsday promise, and has she is whisked away to Belzebuthe, ivy must set out on a mission to uncover the Kindred Stone while avoiding the Dark Queen’s wrath. 

This was a great sequel, with lots of world building and character growth for Ivy. I especially enjoyed how the author wrote the Dark Queen’s character, she was realistically scary and didn’t feel like a fictional foe. I sometimes forgot that this series is middle grade, as the writing was vivid and kept drawing me in. Overall, an excellent continuation of book 1!

If you like, brave female main characters, lovable side characters that constantly have you smiling, an easy. To understand but intriguing magical system, and beautiful world building, then this series may be for you!
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THE GIRL WITH THE WHISPERING SHADOW is the second installment of the Crowns of Croswald series, and I was just as taken in with this as I was with the first! Another ⭐⭐⭐⭐💫 middle grade read for me! Maybe a young YA? I am 45 and I liked it, so what do I know about reading age appropriateness!

This story has Ivy in her second year in the Halls, but for her safety, she must stay in the Town since the Dark Queen is after her. After getting a welcome letter to attend, Ivy does return and finds it was all a ruse. The danger really increases as her group of friends move deeper into the year. Ivy finds her quest to find the kindred stone pieces is renewed with a urgency she didn't have before and it might cost her.

This story explored the role that fear can have on us. It highlights courage in the face of fear and how friendship can help our hearts be strengthened. I loved the message. I also loved all the glenagerie adventures! This is my favorite fantastical element that I so truly wish was real. (It is an imagined "world" inside a bottle that is not supposed to hurt the adventurer!) I enjoyed Ivy's growth in the story, and I am excited to keep going in her journey!

Thank you so much to @NetGalley, @danielastoriesuntoldpress
And @author.denight for this digital copy. I would have loved this story from middle grades and still do, so...! You should read this if you have any ounce of magical wishes at all.
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After what happened at the Masquerade Ball Ivy Lovely learns the truth about her identity and is in danger of staying upon the Halls of Ivy so to keep her safe from the Dark Queen she must stay at the Town while finding the second Kindred Stone.

After spending time in Belzebuthe, she is summoned back to school only to find out what mystery and danger awaits her there.

"A slurry girl turned royal, an orphan denied her family’s right, with the magic of the moon settled inside her."

The Girl with the Whispering Shadow is the second installment in The Crowns of Croswald series, and the story did get better than the first book. It got me hooked from the first chapter; this book is so entertaining I can imagine how the characters had fun, especially the Quogo parts of the book!😍

Great illustrations as same as the first book! Full of fun and surprises.

(I hate it that I can't talk much about the scenarios in the book without spoiling it; hence the short reviews about this series) 

Best series to bring me back to fantasy books🥺💗.

Thank you NetGalley and StoriesUntold for the copy!
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This book gave me all the feels - it was so good to get to explore the world more and step away from the school. This book felt more confident and I am so excited to read the next two. These will be going into my mini library at school.
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Full of adventure and mystery! 
It’s a slow burn but so worth it. The characters all have well developed backgrounds and it was so fun learning about the royal family and the Dark Queen
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*NetGalley, Stories Untold and the author provided me with the ebook in exchange for an honest review*
Honestly, although I’m not the “target audience” for this book as it’s a middle grade fantasy, I still enjoyed it immensely. I find that the second book in a series tends to be better than the first, or the worst of the bunch and can tend to act as a filler. In this case, this book ended up being better than the first in my opinion, and I’m excited to see where the series leads. 

I found this book had so much more originality than the first. As mentioned in my previous review, I didn’t dislike the use of other commonly used fantastical elements, but it was refreshing to see some more of that originality come to light. I found that I liked Ivy more in this book than the first as well, and her character building was more prominent. 

The thing I probably enjoyed the most was the storyline. I didn’t except some of the plot twists, and we got to explore more of this world than I found we did in the first book. I loved the character relationships Ivy had/developed, and it made me attached to them whether they had an extensive role or not. 

Again, if you’re into any kind of whimsical, atmospheric fantasy, I definitely recommend picking this up! Thanks again to the author + Stories Untold for this ebook!
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I absolutely loved this book. This book brought me deeper into the fictional world that I love dearly. The adventure was gripping, the characters endearing, and overall unputdownable. It is the perfect book to escape from the world and slip into a magical adventure.
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