Whether it’s fast cars or fast women, Stefano Ferraro gets what he wants. When he’s not fodder for the paparazzi, he commands Ferraro family businesses—both legitimate and illegitimate.
While their criminal activity is simply a rumor yet to be proven, no one knows the real truth. The Ferraros are a family of shadow riders capable of manipulating light and dark, an ability Stefano thought ran in his family alone—until now…
With little left to her name, Francesca Cappello has come to Chicago in hopes of a new life. She wasn’t expecting to attract the attention of a man with primal hunger in his eyes, driven to claim her as his to protect and to please. And if he discovers her secret, it could ruin her…
Worldbuilding: Nice Chicago setting, but the coolest element is the paranormal element of shadow riders – an original and exciting concept. The shadow rider clans/families come across as a bit mafia-like maybe, and they are assassins by trade. I loved the darkness of their world, no pun intended, lol. And loyalty was a big deal in this world, which I very much approve of.
Characters: Francesca was a nice person, altruistic in nature and sweet. I didn’t really like her, but I didn’t dislike her either. She’s been through a lot, poor thing. But there was this sort of passivity about her that somehow didn’t sit well with me personally. Lovers of damsels in distress will love her, though, I’m sure. I like my heroines with a bit more bite to them, if you know what I mean.
Stefano was uber-alpha, possessive, protective, kind of old-school (in the chauvinistic sort of way, as he himself admits at one point), rich, and very hot ofc. I found I respected his frankness and family values, the fierce way he protected his loved ones. Maybe I would have liked him more if challenged or tempered a bit by a stronger lover.
Their chemistry was very hot and they made a fun couple, with some power-play vibes in the bedroom cause uber-alpha, hehe. Hot stuff.
Plot: The paranormal assassin billionaire trope (that just happened, lol, the all-in-one trope of doom, hehe) was fun and had interesting elements to it. Despite the explosive insta-mate chemistry, the romance was a more slow burn sort of thing and I enjoyed all the tension. The story aside the romance, regarding the murder of Francesca’s sister and the guilty one paying the price was a nice addition, though it ended in a pretty violent, sadistic sort of way for the killer – and it was pretty much earned, mind you.
Writing: Third person, past tense, his/her POV.
Curb Appeal: Hot cover, hooking blurb – impulsive buy material.
This actually was my first Christine Feehan read. It was a pleasant introduction xD I really loved the world of the Shadow series, and I’m sure it will appeal to fans of original paranormal elements, fans of assassins and mafia-like setups. I recommend Shadow Rider to fans of the alpha bad-boy billionaire too, of the uber alpha in fact. If the damsel in distress/savior hero is your thing, Shadow Rider will hit your spot.