The Shadow of Loss by Josefina Gutierrez

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The Shadow of Loss

The Shadow of Loss
Josefina Gutierrez
Published: 31st September, 2014


Evelyn Gonzalez keeps losing people, which is always hard, but has she lost something much more? Has she lost her soul? Evelyn has a nervous breakdown and is institutionalized, after months of sorrow and pain she is thrust back into the world. The world of teenage angst and Calculus. Can she trust people again? Especially after hurtful assumptions and judgments made her miss her junior year of high school. Evelyn is just trying to heal what she lost and graduate from high school.

What I liked: I liked the story, it was nice to follow a character as she learned to become a part of society after being institutionalized for so long. Evelyn was a character who grew quite a lot over the book, and though I thought there would a love triangle I was pleasantly surprised by the outcome of there not being one. It was nice to not have to wonder who Evelyn was going to choose if there had actually been one (lets face it, usually it’s really easy to tell who the MC will choose in love triangles so it gets boring after a while). Learning the reason behind why Evelyn was institutionalized and about the other characters and what it did to her, it was something that was drawn out in a way and dribbled to us little by little. It kept me wondering about what had happened so I kept flipping to try and figure out what had happened and when the pieces clicked together it was a moment of “Oh” for me.

What I didn’t like: I personally found the writing very formal and it made me feel detached, so it was hard for me to get in to the story until it relaxed into a less formal tone. Speaking of formal tone, there was a lack of contractions from where it would have made it feel less formal if they had been included (seriously, who uses “We are” when talking to someone in casual conversation? It sounds funny and reads really weird). There were Spanish words that didn’t quite match what we’re told from what I remember (pretty sure Brody’s aunt is referred to as “abuelita” which means “little grandmother,” not “aunt”). There was also unfamiliar Spanish slang that I hadn’t seen before so I had to look it up, and I’m not sure if it would have been used? It just tended to seem out of place to me. Also, the girl named Amber in this book really did nothing but annoy me in every scene we see her in, especially with the way she talked. It made me roll my eyes.

Overall Review: While there were parts that I didn’t particularly enjoy, and I found the beginning hard to connect with, this was an enjoyable read that I’m glad to have read. It kept me interested where it mattered and surprised me in a few ways that I enjoyed, plus I enjoyed the mix of Spanish in the text. I found it fun to read it and know what was basically being said (thank you one and a half years of Spanish, you were actually worth something!).

Recommend?: I could recommend it to people, but I think the writing style could be a bit hard on some readers so that would be my main concern when recommending it. But if the style agrees with you then by all means go read it!

Goodreads: 4.3/5 Amazon: 4.6/5 Barnes&Noble: 4.6/5

Kobo |

My Rating: 3.3/5

Rated Materials:
Cover: 3.5
Idea: 3.4
Story: 3
Characters: 3.3

josefina gutierrez

About the Author

Josefina Gutierrez is a Young Adult eBook author and a forever student currently working towards a Masters in Bicultural-Bilingual Studies at the University of Texas at San Antonio.

Josefina writes Young Adult Multicultural, Sci-fi, and Fantasy literature in her free time when she’s not embarking on adventures with her son and gnomes Fitzgerald and Bartholomew.

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2 responses to “The Shadow of Loss by Josefina Gutierrez

  1. Gracias for your thoughtful commentary! I really enjoyed reading what you thought of my book. I look forward to how readers react to language use, because language differs from region and textbook use. Thank you so much for taking part this week. You’re site is fantastic!


    • De nada! Glad you enjoyed what I thought! I’m well aware to the difference in regional dialect and word usage, the teachers I all had that taught me some of the language have been to several different countries that speak the language so it was always a lot of fun to hear about what they learned by going to different places with what they knew. And thank you! 🙂


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