I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

SHADOW GIRL By Liana LiuShadow Girl by Liana Liu
Published by HarperTeen on 12/19/17
Genres: Contemporary, Mystery & Detective, Paranormal, Young Adult
Pages: 336
Format: eARC
Source: Publisher
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The house on Arrow Island is full of mystery.

Yet, when Mei arrives, she can’t help feeling relieved. She’s happy to spend the summer in an actual mansion tutoring a rich man’s daughter if it means a break from her normal life—her needy mother, her delinquent brother, their tiny apartment in the city. And Ella Morison seems like an easy charge, sweet and well behaved.

What she doesn’t know is that something is very wrong in the Morison household.

Though Mei tries to focus on her duties, she becomes increasingly distracted by the family’s problems and her own complicated feelings for Ella’s brother, Henry. But most disturbing of all are the unexplained noises she hears at night—the howling and thumping and cries.

Mei is a sensible girl. She isn’t superstitious; she doesn’t believe in ghosts. Yet she can’t shake her fear that there is danger lurking in the shadows of this beautiful house, a darkness that could destroy the family inside and out...and Mei along with them.

Short and Sweet

Mei is an academic tutor and this summer she gets a job working for the Morison family at their house on Arrow Island. Mei expects this experience to go well, she gets to go stay at the family mansion on an island and get away from her life in the city. But what Mei doesn’t know is that the Morison household my be haunted and even though she doesn’t believe in ghost she can’t help but to feel that something is wrong.


Mei: Mei is our main character, and I tried really hard to like her but I just couldn’t. Mei is smart and is focused on her work. I like how she tried to relate to Ella and understand her more. What I didn’t like about Mei was how she tried to come off as a nice person but she really wasn’t. She would make mean remarks and once she realized what she said wasn’t nice she would try to pass it off as a joke and it bothered me because its not like she did this once or twice she did this a lot.

Henry: The Morison’s son. Mei made Henry seem like a snobby rich boy, but the truth is he’s actually pretty nice and you can tell how much he cares especially in scenes with Ella. I liked Henry he was pretty forgiving of Mei and even tried to teach her to swim.

Ella: Ella is the girl being tutored by Mei. Ella is shy and not really focused on her work, but she is interested and is a firm believer that there is a ghost in the mansion.


Mei and Henry: I don’t know how I feel about this relationship… actually after thinking about it I don’t like it at all. Mei would like Henry and then she wouldn’t and it was just off. You could tell that he liked her and she would push him away and say something about how he doesn’t know what it’s like to not have everything in life handed to him and I don’t know why he put up with that or how he could still have feelings for her but he did.

My Thoughts

~ Okay so lets get into this haunting mystery. So weird things happen at night and only Ella and Mei seem to notice.  We don’t get much information about the ghost or why it’s haunting the house which was really annoying because this book is being considered a mystery and it wasn’t.

~ The book alternates from the city and the island. On the island we see Mei’s life with the Morison family and her tutoring sessions with Ella and the ghost. On the city we learn more about Mei’s brother who has just returned home and is trying to turn his life around.

~I liked Andy he was really trying but Mei wouldn’t give him a chance because she didn’t think he could change.

~ There was also a point in the book when Vanessa, Ella’s mother would ask Mei to do things and Mei wouldn’t want to do them because she was an academic tutor, and yet she would still do these errands for Vanessa, but don’t get me wrong she would complain the whole time.

~ I can’t really explain to you guys why this is considered a mystery. Sure there’s a ghost haunting the house and the Jeffrey Morison is a little shady but other than that theres nothing to suggest a mystery. Mei isn’t putting on her Nancy Drew hat and investigating she’s just laughing it off and tries to tell herself its nothing.


I wanted to like this book I really did, especially because it was described as a mystery and I love mysteries. This book just didn’t do it for me. The plot was mundane the ghost was only mentioned several times and the ending was awful. I wish things were more explained but what I was left with was an ending that made me think I was missing something everything was wrapped up quickly with no explanation. I thought this was a good book but it didn’t live up to my expectations.


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