Cover Image: This Eternity of Masks and Shadows

This Eternity of Masks and Shadows

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

I thought the idea of this book was amazing but something felt missing for it. I think there was not enough explanation and background. I couldn't connect with the story or characters so I just couldn't bring myself to finish that. Perhaps I will return to it at another time since I love mythology but not sure at this time. Thank you to Netgalley for the arc !
Was this review helpful?
This book was quite some firsts for me. My first Netgalley book, my first mystery book, my first young adult toeing the new adult line… and it was a good one. In the beginning, the gods and mythology theme caught my attention because I’m the biggest Percy Jackson fan, and now I can tell you that this book is ideal for Percy Jackson fans that are looking for something more adult (it does come with some slight triggers so I advise researching beforehand if you need to). While it does have its similarities due to the integration of mythology in the present, this is its own unique story.
It caught my attention right from the beginning, the first chapter opening with a bang and setting the overall tone for the book. I did not know what to expect from a mystery book but this one kept me flipping the pages, there was always something happening. The whole book was so fast-paced that, while I never got bored, I struggled to keep track of the new characters and developments and needed to take a break from what felt like a race, or the transition between events sometimes felt rushed, not giving enough development or dept to certain characters or parts when it could’ve.
I also have to mention how the diversity of this book blew me away. Besides being a strong and funny main character, Cairn is part of the LGBTQ community and unlike how most mythology adaptations focus on Greek or Roman myths, this book doesn’t stop at one mythology. While you could say its most important one is Inuit, it also includes Egyptian, Aztec, Haitian Vodou, and so many others besides Greek and Roman mythologies.
I guess it could be said that the most crucial part of a mystery novel is the mystery being solved unexpectedly… and this one did it perfectly. At the risk of sounding cliché, I thought that I knew what was going on, but in reality, I literally did not see it coming. The twists and how everything unfolded felt like it attacked me from the back and slapped me in the face (but in a very good way).
Finally, I need to talk about the ending (or in this case, the epilogue). It was the kind of balanced ending that leaves you asking for more and that could perfectly accommodate a sequel but at the same time leaves you satisfied in case the book ends up staying as a standalone. Having said this, while you could say it was the ideal ending, it felt slightly anti-climatic for me. Compared to the fast pace and the constant new developments that I read during the book, this last part felt tame and didn’t necessarily add anything new.
Overall, it was an enjoyable and engaging read. I vastly recommend it, especially if you like ancient mythology, mystery, or are looking for a fantasy book that is easy to get into.
Was this review helpful?
The story is a mix of many genres, fantasy, specially about mythology, superheroes and villains and mystery. May times, books want to be too much, but in this case, I felt like it all came together nicely. Even though it would have been nice to have a list of gods and goddesses so it is easier to remember and find out who they were, there weren’t too many mythology elements that would make it too confusing. This makes the book great for someone who wants to know more mythology, but doesn’t want a book that is only about that.

Cairn is the main character and she is flawed for sure. She has a messy personality and makes chaotic choices that don’t always work out the way she wants. It was refreshing to read about that. However, I do agree with some reviews that say she was good at a lot of things in a short amount of time. Fighting was one of those things, something that happens in this book a lot. On the other hand, her flawed choices come back into play with her girlfriend, Delphine. Her relationship with her was great to read about and felt like what a real one would be.

Other side characters were nicely written, though I felt like they could be a bit more than their god and goddess persona, making the entire cast interesting enough. Mythology was well mixed with real life. I felt myself caring for many of them, especially for Nook and Vulcan. Their characters really added to the story, ultimately making this a found family story.
Was this review helpful?
I loved this story. Terrific perspective, characters I want to see in all the fan art I can get my hands on, and twits and turns I wasn't expecting!

ome vendettas have more lives than others.

The gods walk among us. Some lurk in the shadows, masquerading as mortals; others embrace their celebrity status, launching careers from Hollywood to Capitol Hill.

One of them just murdered Cairn Delacroix's mother.

As Cairn sifts through the rubble, she uncovers a conspiracy two decades in the making: a cursed island, the fellowship of gods who journeyed there, and the unspeakable act that intertwined their fates. One by one, the members of that voyage are dying, and Cairn's investigations land her in the crosshairs of the rogue goddess responsible.

With the help of Nanook, a polar bear god turned detective, Cairn descends into Boston's underworld of supernatural crime and political aspiration. To avenge her mother and unmask her assassin, she’ll first have to reckon with a gut-wrenching secret that will rewrite the life she thought she knew.

Shocking twists cascade toward an explosive finale in this thrilling new mystery from Karsten Knight, author of the WILDEFIRE trilogy and NIGHTINGALE, SING.
Was this review helpful?
I have received this ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

This Eternity of Masks and Shadows kind of dragged on and on for me. Which definitely makes this a disappointment because the synopsis made the book sound so freaking good. Now don't get me wrong, it had some interesting concepts and plots to dive into but it all just fell flat.

In it, you will meet Cairn Delacroix and Nanook. She just witnessed her mother being murdered and he's a polar bear god/detective. Sounds kind of interesting, right? The only downfall was the entire book after that. Cairn was just blah to me. It's weird that she's a god and stuff but knew next to nothing about all the other gods. Or heck, the history of them.

Other than that, there was just so much inconsistency throughout the book that just didn't make anything remotely believable. I get it, it's fantasy and such but dang - at least make the training and other stuff realistic.

The only good thing that came out of this book was the romance between Cairn and Delphine. Which I think is kind of sad to say that I wanted to dive into this book for the mythology and fantasy of it all.. but the romance took the cake? Eh, oh well. I tried the book I guess..
Was this review helpful?

I cannot really say what about this book didn't sit right with me, but something about it completely missed the mark. 
I was intrigued by the description and premise of the story. I love the concept of mythology being woven into current times, bringing to life old gods and different mythical creatures so I believed this would be something right up my alley... but I'm sad to say that wasn't the case.

I simply couldn't find myself in the action. I was so confused most of the time - too many names, too much information. Although maybe that's just me, maybe I wasn't invested in the story enough to make an effort to push through and if I finished it my opinion would be totally different.

I reccommend checking you check it out and maybe it will be something you'll enjoy.

**** Thank you NetGalley for providing me with a copy of this book!
Was this review helpful?
I was surprised how much I liked this book. I tend to go for character-driven stories and realistic fiction. That being said, I was instantly pulled in to the mystery and the characters here. I was also impressed by the ambitious merging of genres in this book- you have vigilante superheroes, gods, murder mystery, and YA romance elements and it all works! I would read more by Karsten Knight and recommend this book to anyone regardless of genre preference.
Was this review helpful?
Thank you to Netgalley for giving me this copy in return for an honest review.

Firstly, the cover of this book is absolutely beautiful and was one of the reasons why I felt so drawn to the novel. It is stunning and really sets a high standard for the book.

Whilst I did enjoy the plot, there was something that just didn't keep me completely gripped. Perhaps it was the characters as I didn't find them as relatable as they could have been and at some points, I found Cairn to be rather irritating.

With that being said, it was a good book and I would like to read more from Karsten Knight.
Was this review helpful?
THIS COVER!! Just as beautiful as the story within. It was just that good! I mean, it has a gay protagonist and cultural appreciation! 
Just so good!
Was this review helpful?
Can’t download it. When I go to NetGalley shelf it says file not found when trying to download ☹️ I was looking forward to reading this myself but my son showed an interest too.
Was this review helpful?
I want to thank netgalley and the publisher for an E-ARC in exchange for an honest review. 

I thoroughly enjoyed this book! I would recommend it to my friends in a heart-beat! I absolutely loved the mythology woven into this story! It was so well done, and was developed in such a unique form. Gods walking among humans? Murder mystery in this fantastical universe? Wonderful characters? I loved it all! I also enjoyed seeing characters grow throughout the story- to me, this is one of the hallmarks of a great story. This book was also incredibly fast-paced and kept me hooked the entire time. Overall, this was an excellent read! 

If there was one thing I was going to change, it would be to have more world building thrown into the story. I would love to explore this world more!
Was this review helpful?
this book was low-key a mess. the plot made next to no sense. the only thing i liked was the actual writing style itself. everything else needed several more rounds of edits and revisions.
Was this review helpful?
i really enjoyed reading this book, the characters were great and I really enjoyed the plot. I didn't read any previous books by the author. I really liked the way the author writes.
Was this review helpful?
The storyline itself was interesting, but it felt a bit rushed sometimes. There are also many genre crossovers which make it hard to get the right emtions. The characters on the other hand, were amazing. They were well written, and had a round character-personlity. Also loved the way the author described the surroundings.
Was this review helpful?
Thanks to NetGalley and Karsten Knight for giving me and eARC of this book in exchange of an honest review.

The minute I got this book I started it, that was around 90 minutes ago, why am I writing this then? Because I DNF'd the book at 48%

I was really interested in this one since I first heard about it, anything with gods? Sign me in. And in that regard, this one definitely delivered, the mithology is quite diverse, taking from many different ones, for example, the mother of our MC is the Inuit goddess Sedna. In this world, gods, are reincarnated in human bodies and that is just such a great concept. As good as the premise being Sedna appering dead and our MC trying to find out who did it.

Then... what happened?

Cairn happened. I just couldn't with the main character, she kept making this stupid. inappropriate jokes, mostly around dead people that simply weren't funny. It reminded me of Gideon from Gideon the Ninth, but in a bad way.. Also, I just didn't connect with "superhero" aspect of the novel. I think it tried to cover too many things at the same time.

So, in conclusion, will this book find an audience? 100%, but you will need to click with the humour and the MC to enjoy it. Something that, sadly, I couldn't do and makes me incredibly sad.

Great premise, not a great execution, so my final rating is a 2.5, right in the middle.
Was this review helpful?
This book had many genres: crime, action, f-f, superhero, and it succeeded in most of them. I loved the inclusion of gods from all sorts of different cultures and religions. So often stories with gods and myths are very European centric and it was great to see so much diversity.

The main character is the daughter of an Inuit goddess, who is trying to solve the mystery of her mother's murder. Her partner in crime was a detective who also was a god, and I think the book could have been a bit longer to incorporate his story more. But the villain was a bit of a surprise and the ending was open-ended, suggesting this could live as a trilogy.
Was this review helpful?
4.5 stars
Thanks to Netgalley for this amazing fantasy book!
But can I call it merely a fantasy book? Because it was so much more than that!
HIS ETERNITY OF MASKS AND SHADOWS was such an amazing amalgamation of mystery and mythology, along with just the right amount of romance, that this was definitely was one of my best fantasy reads of 2020. I wish more people would read it for it was amazing!
The intertwining of the various mythologies from various cultures was what drew me in the most. It was just such a unique idea and yet at the same time, such a fantastic one that I have to wonder how it did not occur to someone before. The mystery element was also well maintained throughout - I surely did not expect those twists. I gasped out loud when I came across them! 
Overall, I think this is an amazing book and a definite must-read for all fantasy and mythology geeks!
Was this review helpful?

If you are a Percy Jackson fan, you will absolutely love this book. There are myths (not only Greek or Roman), there’s magic, suspense and thriller… I assure you that once you open this book you will not be able to stop reading it.

Even with the modern context in which the story is set, you can learn a lot about different myths. There’s a lot of cultural representation -even in a questionable context-, but this book should have a place on your library and here is why:


"In a city of gods and mortals, secrets never die.
The gods walk among us. Some lurk in the shadows, masquerading as mortals; others embrace their celebrity status, launching careers from Hollywood to Capitol Hill.
One of them just murdered Cairn Delacroix's mother.
As Cairn sifts through the rubble, she uncovers a conspiracy two decades in the making: a cursed island, the fellowship of gods who journeyed there, and the unspeakable act that intertwined their fates. One by one, the members of that voyage are dying, and Cairn's investigations land her in the crosshairs of the rogue goddess responsible.
With the help of Nanook, a polar bear god turned detective, Cairn descends into Boston's underworld of supernatural crime and political aspiration. To avenge her mother and unmask her assassin, she’ll first have to reckon with a gut-wrenching secret that will rewrite the life she thought she knew."

Karsten Knight has created a world where the myths are real and the Gods from every culture are real and they live among us as mortals, through reincarnation they have walked this Earth in different eras in secret until someone caught them on film and uploaded it on social media. Now the mortals have discovered that Gods and Goddesses are real and they somewhat occupy relevant positions in our society, from celebrities and politicians to those who belong to the mafia. I loved the way it was constructed, in a way it reminded me a bit of Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson World, with the twist that the Gods do live and interact with mortals and they are not only Greek or Roman. It was very fresh reading a story like this where different cultures could live together. Seeing interactions between Nordic, Egyptian, Maori, Greek and Inuit Gods and Goddesses was totally amazing, although I think that this world is still under construction as some of its rules are not very clear or well developed.

The story centers in the mystery involving the tragic deaths of the members of a group of Gods and Goddesses that work as Centinelas for a non governmental group created by a Goddess that wanted to create peace in the world. It starts with the death of Sedna, Inuit Goddess of the Sea and Marine Animals, she was navigating with her daughter, her husband and her daughter’s girlfriend when she started acting strange and committed suicide. 

Cairn, Sedna’s daughter, starts developing depression and her duelling time is taking its toll, she is destroying her relationship with her girlfriend, Delphine. That is until she discovers that her Goddess mother has been having a second life and she intends to discover what happened to her mother and why she never noticed the apparent struggle that she was having with her mental health. But nothing with Sedna was as Cairn believed. Sedna apparently became a centinela, during the day she worked as a respected marine biologist and by night she fighted against criminal Gods and Goddesses.

Her death is not what it seems. And Cair has to trace back her mother’s steps if she wants to find the murderer, as it is now clear that Sedna has been murdered as every member of the initial group of centinelas. With the help of a Inuit God turned police, Nanook or Nook as he likes to be called, she will discover who is behind these assassinations.

Knight’s narrative is so full of details that it is impossible to stop reading, the thrill and the suspense is great, you can see the research that he did to create this story. His characters are very interesting, even the antagonist, there’s only one bit of Cairn’s character that is somewhat fluked: her toxic relationship with Delphine. However in a way it is very realist, as it depicts that some relationships on the LGBTQ+ community can be as abrasive and intense and toxic as are cis relationships.

One quote that I loved the most, because it reminded me of a Dumbledore’s one, was:
«One horrible deed doesn't make a person evil. When it's time to be judged at the end of our lives, it's the sum of our actions that ultimately defines us.»

‘This Eternity of Masks and Shadows’ is a book that everyone should give a try and I hope that this is not the only one adventure of this world.
Without further ado… Mischief Managed!
Was this review helpful?
Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for a free review copy!

CW: suicide, drowning, mention of human trafficking/kidnapping, violence, death of parent, mind control, drugging

The concept of this book? Chef's kiss. This Eternity of Masks and Shadows is a new adult urban fantasy set in a world in which the gods of every pantheon are reincarnated each century. Cairn, the daughter of this century's incarnation of the Inuit goddess of sea life, has adjusted pretty well to her mother's divine identity. Cairn's family is close-knit, she's just graduated high school, and when confesses her feelings for her best friend Delphine, they turn out to be reciprocated. But Cairn's happy life is completely upturned when her mother suddenly dies the summer after she graduates high school. Cairn's investigations into just what happened to her mother take her into Boston's magical criminal underworld, where she discovers vigilante gods, conspiracies, and truths about her mother she never could have expected.

Unfortunately, this book fell short for me in its execution. It's not poorly written at all; it's just a different kind of book than I was expecting. I was hoping for a character-driven fantasy that really digs into the dynamics of gods living in our modern world, and that's not what this book is. My main problem was tone - This Eternity of Masks and Shadows reads like a mashup of a superhero story and a crime drama with some sci-fi elements, and those just aren't genres I particularly enjoy reading. I think the more comic-book-like elements would've worked more for me if this book had a more comedic tone, but they felt a bit out of place in the story as it is.

I also had trouble with the characters. Cairn wasn't the most likable or interesting person to read about, which is a shame because I think she had a lot of potential to be a super compelling and complex character. Her love interest, Delphine, had potential as well, but she felt underdeveloped and one-dimensional. That was a problem for the other side characters too, and some instances of cheesy dialogue didn't help. It's hard for me to get into a book when I don't feel like I really know the characters.

I wanted more worldbuilding, too. If you introduce a world with hundreds (thousands?) of gods with magic powers living among mortals, I want details about it! I love stories that incorporate mythology and gods like this. What are the implications for politics? For religion? For pop culture? We get little glimpses of these things, but not enough.

I think if you pick up This Eternity of Masks and Shadows knowing what you're going to get, you could have a great time with this story. It's got a sapphic Inuit-American demigod as the main character, plenty of great action scenes, a fun mystery, and some interesting genre-blending. I just tend to want more focus on character development and worldbuilding than I got in this book.
Was this review helpful?
When I first came across this book, I must confess, I committed the classic error of judging a book by its cover and title and assumed that the contents would be something overly romantic, high fantasy, and/or pretentious. That said, I saw all the high reviews and decided to give it a shot, and boy am I glad I did.

To my sheer delight, this book grabbed with within a few pages took me on quite the fun ride. I'd describe best it as The Boys meets Percy Jackson with a gumshoe/Nancy Drew buddy-cop vibe. Some drama, some action, all fun.

As a fan of mythological stories/characters brought into contemporary settings, I loved the variety of deities and stories I was introduced to over the course of the book. Forget being limited to one pantheon or another; Knight embraced them all. Off the top of my head, I recall Inuit, Caribbean, South American, Egyptian, Norse, Germanic, Egyptian, Japanese, and I'm sure I'm missing plenty. The characters themselves, divine and human alike, felt well fleshed out, and the relationships between them genuine.

There were a small items I felt were a bit confusing or inconsistent (the motive of the villain seemed a bit murky, the scientific-but-not-quite nature of divinity), but they really didn't impact my enjoyment of the story or the journeys of the characters at all. Despite its minor flaws, I'd give it a solid 4.5 stars and would happily read more in this universe :) Thanks to NetGalley for the ARC!
Was this review helpful?