Review: “Shadowshaper Legacy” by Daniel José Older


Release Date: January 20, 2020
Publisher: Scholastic
Series: Shadowshaper #3
Genre: Young Adult, Urban Fantasy


A house divided

Sierra and the shadowshapers have been split apart. Juan, Anthony, and Izzy are in jail, anxiously waiting to find out what will become of them. Back in Brooklyn, the other shadowshapers have been getting threatening messages from whisper wraiths, catching strangely shaped figures stalking them, and fending off random spirits. A war is brewing among the houses, and the very magic of the shadowshapers is at stake.

The fate of the worlds

Sierra is determined to protect her own in the coming conflict. Even if that means keeping secrets from them. But a deal with Death by one of Sierra’s ancestors has far-reaching consequences in the battles of the present, and as old fates tangle with new powers, Sierra will have to harness the Deck of Worlds and confront her family’s past if she has any hope of saving the future and everyone she loves. Only doing so will mean following the magic to places the shadowshapers have never gone before . . . and may never return from.”


My Thoughts

ShadowshaperLegacy-coverThe Shadowshaper Cypher is all about social justice, but not in the faux-woke, Black friend having, would’ve voted for Obama a third time kind of way. No, Older goes all in. Using storybook-esque interstitials that tell the story of how La Contessa created the Deck, the Houses, and the Hierophants, Older shows how white supremacy corrupts everything it touches. Exiled from Spain, La Contessa lives on Puerto Rico as a colonist. She detests her youngest daughter in part because she is the product of an affair with an islander servant, making her not Spanish but Afro-Boricua; she is la bastarda in parentage and ethnicity. La Contessa can only see magic through a colonial lens – as a means of domination and conquest – while her youngest sees it as an ally and a tool for resistance…

Read the rest of this review at

Thanks to the publisher for sending me a review copy.

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