I’ve got to say that when I first began to read Nightfall Gardens by Allen Houston I was very confused. I kept reading on and as I got further on in the book, it began to make more sense. Lily and Silas share that sibling bond that most siblings have. When they are separated from their parents and eventually from each other, they are always making sure the other is alright. Not only do they care for each other, but they also grow close to those around them. Lily is often looked down to and seen as weak, but this doesn’t bring her down. She follows with the destiny she was born into. The Shadow Garden, the sequel, takes fear to a whole new level. Lily faces greater, more powerful threats. The entire fate of the world rests in her being able to face her biggest fears.
Honestly, I feel bad for all the pressure that young Lily has to face. In my opinion, this is way too much for a teenage girl to have to go through without her family to support her. Now don’t get me wrong, I loved both books. I have read too many books to count and most of them have been awfully predictable. These books, however, never let me down. I was never bored reading them. They had mystery, suspense, some horror, mythology and more. I never would have expected what was to come from it.
I think anyone who enjoyed reading the Fablehaven series would enjoy these books as well. I also believe that both girls and boys would like this book, that it is not meant for just one group. However, if you only enjoy books with a cheesy love triangle, these may not be the books for you. Going on to the structure of the book, it was very well paced and was well thought out. I definitely learned a lot about writing structure from these books. I dislike books where the author either takes every bad thing that can happen to the main character and writes it in, or books where the main character’s life is extremely happy and is filled with butterflies and rainbows. These books were a little unbalanced but that made it more interesting. Houston shows things that can happen to both Silas and Lily but he knows the boundaries to how much horror and happiness a reader can take. When it comes to these books, don’t judge them by their covers. Sure they may be slightly creepy, but when it comes to what’s inside, you won’t be disappointed.