The Starving Bibliophile

Books before food (and any sort of comfortable life).

Minutes Before Sunset: YA Book Review

minutes before sunsetName: Minutes Before Sunset
Series: The Timely Death Trilogy #1
Author: Shannon A. Thompson
Pages: 247
Published: April 28th, 2013
Publisher: AEC Stellar Publishing
Format: Paperback, eBook, and Kindle
Rating: 4/5 stars

Summary: Eric Welborn isn’t completely human, but he isn’t the only shade in the small Midwest town of Hayworth. With one year left before his eighteenth birthday, Eric is destined to win a long-raging war for his kind. But then she happens. In the middle of the night, Eric meets a nameless shade, and she’s powerful—too powerful—and his beliefs are altered. The Dark has lied to him, and he’s determined to figure out exactly what lies were told, even if the secrets protect his survival. Jessica Taylor moves to Hayworth, and her only goal is to find more information on her deceased biological family. Her adoptive parents agree to help on one condition: perfect grades. And Jessica is distraught when she’s assigned as Eric’s class partner. He won’t help, let alone talk to her, but she’s determined to change him—even if it means revealing everything he’s strived to hide.

I was asked to write this review by the author, but all opinions are my own. You can also find this review at https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/804684476

Positives about Minutes Before Sunset:
1. Story—The story is very creative, and I personally have never read anything like it. It’s its own sub-category in the paranormal genre, Shannon A. Thompson having built a world that is so unlike any other. If someone else has read a book like this before, please tell me because I want to read it as well. We all know the concept of “the light versus the dark,” but in Thompson’s world it is literally Light vs. Dark. They each have powers of their own, and thousands of years ago they were forced against each other, creating the world they know now.

[The Dark] protected the humans from evil, because they weren’t capable of determining evil for themselves. The Light was evil, and it always had been. Forget archetypes. They’re completely wrong, and they always will be.

2. Characters—The characters are pretty well developed by the end of the book. Each has a unique personality, and none blend together. They all have their own unique traits, and Thompson is good about showing them, not just telling the reader that a character is uncaring or protective, etc.

I rushed out of the classroom to the outside lunchroom as quickly as my human body allowed me to. I did not need to talk to Jessica Taylor. She’d give up trying soon enough. Everyone did.

 

Eric’s father had a rather… striking personality.

“Why’s Eric your science partner? I doubt you chose him.”

3. Pace—They story has a good flow to it: not too fast, yet not too slow. I read this book a few weeks ago, but I don’t recall reading anything that didn’t belong. I feel that every scene was there for a reason, even if the scene wasn’t fast-paced. There’s not much more to say about this.

Not-So-Positives about Minutes Before Sunset:
1. POV—I like books that switch from character to character (Ellen Hopkins is a good example), but it didn’t switch every chapter like most multi-pov books do. This wasn’t too big of a deal, but I did feel as if Jessica didn’t get as many chapters until the end when the climax of the book happened. For the first 200 pages or so, Eric gets two or three chapters to Jessica’s one, and then his chapters are longer. Sometimes Jessica barely gets a couple of pages before it switches back to Eric. And then after the climax, Eric only gets one more chapter in the middle of six chapters for Jessica. I liked that you got to see into both characters’ heads, but I wished that it would have been more constant.

2. Backstory—I felt that the backstory was creative, but at the beginning of the book, in the first 50 pages or so, there was a lot of info-dumping. Thompson threw a lot of information at the reader very quickly, and I felt that since the Timely Death Series is going to be a trilogy, the information could have been spread out more, at least throughout the first book. I also felt that sometimes the information was given randomly as if it didn’t fit with what was going on. The information was necessary, but it was given too quickly and not necessarily at the right time. Scanning over the book for this review, I realized that the information given at the beginning is only overwhelming the first time you read the book, but it is still overwhelming nonetheless.

Overall Opinion:
I think MBS was a really creative book, and I really enjoyed the characters, story-line, and especially the ending. I think Thompson has a very good story here, and I can’t wait to read the next two. You can see by her writing that she is very imaginative and good at what she does. I know as she continues to write, she’ll grow, and we’ll see even greater things from her. I was impressed with MBS, and its little flaws did not take away from the story. I would recommend this book.

 

 

 

 

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