Shadow Falling (Avatars Series #2)

Shadow Falling (Avatars Series #2)

4.5 4
by Tui T. Sutherland

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I was born in a world ruled by gods.

This worked out well for me, as I am a god.

For centuries we were the rulers of our worlds.

But things changed.

Now, the stakes are high.

Let the games begin. . . .

Caught in an ancient rivalry not of their making, on an earth devoid of all other humans, a group of teens learns they


I was born in a world ruled by gods.

This worked out well for me, as I am a god.

For centuries we were the rulers of our worlds.

But things changed.

Now, the stakes are high.

Let the games begin. . . .

Caught in an ancient rivalry not of their making, on an earth devoid of all other humans, a group of teens learns they are avatars of immortal gods, put on earth in a form that�s only too mortal. Now they are bound to fight one another�and only one of them can survive.

Do they resist the forces controlling them and unite to save themselves and perhaps even return to their own time? Or can one of them win this battle and seize immortality and the life of a god?

Tui T. Sutherland ups the ante in this second volume of her witty and absorbing fantasy trilogy about life, immortality, and what it means to live among the gods�and to do their dirty work.

Editorial Reviews

Kirkus Reviews
Set in a future Manhattan nearly devoid of people but well-stocked with squabbling gods of several pantheons, this second episode adds even more Avatars-teenaged mortals imbued with the powers of a selected deity and sent forth to duke it out with each other until one achieves supremacy. The Avatars (most of them) have other ideas, however, and here they continue to band together to help one another while trying out their new abilities. Focusing on her young cast's inner and outer conflicts, the author doesn't move the plot forward much, but she does throw the sponsoring gods, particularly the Greek ones, into an unflattering, often comic light while trotting in several new characters with unknown identities or agendas. Reading like a role-playing game that's just moving out of its character-oriented, set-up phase and into the action part, this closes with some of the Avatars sailing off for Africa, and leaves plenty of openings for future numbers-plus a heavy hint that the setting isn't as real as the players suppose. Gamers with a literary bent may be drawn in. (Fantasy. 11-13)
ALA Booklist
“There’s excitement here.”

Product Details

HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
Avatars Series, #2
Edition description:
Library Bound Edition
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.25(h) x 1.17(d)
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

Read an Excerpt

Avatars, Book Two: Shadow Falling

Chapter One

Day One: Awakenings

Central Park
New York City

There were intruders in her territory.

She could smell them, and she could hear them, and if she came out of her den, she could probably see them, but that was the problem: If she came out of her den, they might see her.

And she knew the others thought they should attack. All in the pack were hustling up, brushing too close, fur against fur, waiting for her to lead them out into the down-coming wetness, and show the intruders their teeth and chase them off with snarls and fierce fierceness.

What they did not know, because they were not the alpha dog, but which she knew because she was, was that these intruders were large, and they were much larger on the inside, and they were more alpha than any alpha she'd ever met, even her original alpha from long, long ago.

These intruders were not for challenging.

But if she did not, the pack would see and the pack would know and the pack might think the time had come for a new alpha to come sniffing at her paws.

She growled.

Most of the pack scooted back with lowered heads and tails, but one, a dachshund with suspiciously moony eyes, bounced up instead of down and let out a wild yap of excited-and-fierce-am-I-am-I.

Alpha dog leaped to her feet and showed all her teeth and grrrrrrrrrrrrred him back down to the ground until he rolled belly-up sorry-sorry-sorry.

The intruders had been standing in her wide-sky space for a long time, so long that she had forgotten when it began, but not so long that she or any of the packhad come back around to sleepy.

If they did not leave soon, she would have to bite their ankles.

Alpha dog must protect her territory.

But these ankles were much fiercer than she and there could be stompings and thwackings and worse, and perhaps it would be safer to wait and fight a challenger for alpha spot than to attack with the pack, but safer was not alpha, and this she must do, or else the big ones might stay and bring more.

So many alphas in one place. She did not know how they could all be together at once with so little snarling and biting and peeing on things. They seemed to do all their fighting and alpha growling on the inside, which was scarier and harder to smell.

Something else was in the air, too. Something big and very, very alpha was happening not far enough away and she did not like the smell of it.

Suddenly, finally, the intruders began to move in their not-right way.

Most of them left as they had come, through the air and water and earth, which raised her hackles and twinged her teeth, because if they could disappear from air, they could reappear from air, and that made all spaces not-quite-hers.

Four stayed solid, but two went west and two went east.

Follow-follow-follow with teeth out and tails high, said the pack, pressing against her again. Snarl them out of territory.

If the intruders were leaving anyway, and it would make the pack happy . . .

Attack the less alpha pair. She growled again and leaped forward, and the pack followed close on the paws of her wise alpha greatness.

"Did you hear something?" Tigre asked, glancing around again.

"I'm hearing everything right now," Gus replied. "And I'm pretty sure every noise is some creepy new god coming to kill me." They pushed through the trees around the edge of the Great Lawn and found an overgrown paved pathway leading south. Only minutes ago, they had been standing in a circle of gods, finding out that they were avatars sent across time to battle one another to the death. Then Diana had walked away with Zeus, to stay with her pantheon and learn how to be a goddess, and Gus had no idea when he might see her again.

"They can't make us fight each other, right?" Tigre said. "Diana would never try to kill us, and I'm pretty sure Kali wouldn't, either."

"'Pretty sure?'" Gus said, looking over his shoulder nervously. He couldn't shake the feeling that someone was following them. Earlier that morning—shortly after he and Diana had arrived in New York—the biggest crystal hunter had seized him and carried him off to the top of the Empire State Building. The other avatars had rescued him and destroyed the crystal hunter, but he couldn't help still feeling nervous.

On the plus side, now he was supposedly magically protected from them, like the other avatars were. That was one of Diana's conditions before she agreed to go off with the Greek gods. And the spell also seemed to have calmed down the violent sick feeling he'd had ever since the earthquake. Maybe the magic was helping the war god inside him adjust . . . or maybe the god was finally getting comfortable. He wasn't sure he liked that idea.

Gus squinted up at the overcast sky and realized that it probably wasn't even noon yet. It felt like this had been the longest morning of his life. Had it been only yesterday that he'd been with his brother, Andrew? And lost him . . . but he wasn't going to think like that. There had to be a way out of this. A way back to their own time, where Gus could have his life back . . . and Andrew's. He had to stay focused on that.

"You know what's weird?" Gus said. "I lost my glasses when the pterodactyl grabbed me, but I don't seem to need them anymore. I mean, everything's still a little fuzzy—but not as fuzzy as it should be. Maybe it's like a Spider-Man thing, where his superpowers gave him perfect vision. Except mine's not perfect yet. And, you know, no sign of those superpowers." Nor is my ideal girl falling head over heels for me. I mean, if she were, she wouldn't have walked off with Zeus, would she?

Avatars, Book Two: Shadow Falling. Copyright � by Tui Sutherland. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

Meet the Author

Tui T. Sutherland is named after a rather noisy New Zealand bird. She loves lost civilizations and postapocalyptic stories, and she has recurring end-of-the-world dreams (perhaps a side effect of being a Buffy fan!). Tui was born in Caracas, Venezuela, and lived all over the world before ending up in Boston, where she now resides with her husband and her dog, whose superpowers include hiding half-chewed things in the couch and woofing at noises no one else can hear. Tui is also the author of the first two books in the Avatars trilogy as well as This Must Be Love.

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Shadow Falling (Avatars Series #2) 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
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I loved this book