Willow Jane’s power awakens—as does an ancient enemy.
In predominantly white and Irish South Boston, an odd lightning storm on Willow Conning’s 16th birthday awakens supernatural beings from their slumber. While a handsome, cookie-cutter paranormal-romance hero named Harken animates the corpse of an unfortunate white homeless man, a trio of teens (including one of Willow’s best friends and her ex-boyfriend) disturbs a grave containing a newly disturbed evil in search of treasure—which, unsurprisingly, doesn’t end well. Meanwhile Willow struggles to pay her family’s rent, dealing with a grasping landlord who’s after a Meissen egg that Willow secretly pawned and is desperate to get back. Soon Willow is manipulating time, people are turning up dead, powerful beings are after the egg, and a poem warning about the Shadowless haunts Willow. Refrains—the poem and a creepy singsong rhyme—occur frequently enough to lose impact, and the disdain that the text shows toward the killed characters before their deaths (and the mild reactions displayed by other characters) doesn’t inspire readers to care either. Hundreds of pages after receiving a letter written years ago by her dead father, Willow reads it and learns about the family magic—only after her younger sister is threatened. She and Harken make their way through predictable misunderstandings, using the egg to fight the Shadowless.
A bloated, sloppy mess. (Paranormal romance. 12-adult)