Such an enjoyable read! The Shadow of What Was Lost pulled me in right at the prologue and it was a fun ride from there. If you are looking for a fantasy book that has magic, quests, mystery, and some politics then I think this may be a great option.
In Shadow we follow a group of Gifted friends - Davian, Wirr, and Ashalia - as they embark on a series of adventures following an incident at their school. Along the way they meet up with a mysterious young man named Caeden who has no recollection of his past but has troublesome rumors of murder following him.
There are twists and mysteries unfolding everywhere and I did not really find any portion of the nearly 700 pages to be dull or dragging. Islington has a brusque writing style that leaves out flowery detail and instead relies on character dialogue to relay the world building, magic system, and character development. I may be in the minority, but I really don't have an issue with description when it comes to world building (as long as it is not delivered in the form of an info dump) and I did find myself missing the descriptive sections at the beginning of the book. I eventually grew used to the style, though, and ultimately think that it fits this book quite nicely. The brusqueness of his writing lends the story a fast-paced feel and I was flying through the story to find out more about the characters and the world.
If I were being overly analytical I might place this story more at a 4.25 or a 4.5, but I easily decided to round it up to a 5 simply because of the ease in which the story drew me in and intriguing world and characters. I am very much looking forward to An Echo Of Things To Come!