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Minutes Before Sunset (The Timely Death Trilogy #1) by Shannon A. Thompson

Minutes Before Sunset, Shannon A. Thompson, The Timely Death Trilogy, YA, Paranormal, book review, On My Kindle Book Reviews

Source: I bought this book from the author at Penned Con 2016.
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal, Clean Romance
Format: eBook, Print
Publication Date: July 28, 2016

Back Cover

Two destinies. One death.

"Her kiss could kill us, and my consent signed our death certificates."

Eric Welborn isn't completely human, but he isn't the only shade in the small Midwest town of Hayworth. With one year left before his eighteenth birthday, Eric is destined to win a long-raging war for his kind. But then she happens. In the middle of the night, Eric meets a nameless shade, and she's powerful—too powerful—and his beliefs are altered. The Dark has lied to him, and he's determined to figure out exactly what lies were told, even if the secrets protect his survival.

Jessica Taylor moves to Hayworth, and her only goal is to find more information on her deceased biological family. Her adoptive parents agree to help on one condition: perfect grades. And Jessica is distraught when she's assigned as Eric's class partner. He won't help, let alone talk to her, but she's determined to change him—even if it means revealing everything he's strived to hide.

Minutes Before Sunset is the first book in The Timely Death Trilogy.


Eric Welborn is not your typical high school kid. He is a shade; not just an ordinary shade, but the shade that is prophesized to battle with The Light on his eighteenth birthday. Blaming himself for the death of a friend, Eric has isolated himself from his human peers and the opposite sex; until he meets a human, Jessica, and an unknown shade. Inexplicably drawn to both of them, he takes risks that could reveal himself to The Light and end the foretold battle before it even begins.

Jessica Taylor and her adoptive family move to Hayworth, the town in which her biological parents lived until they died in an accident. Jessica wants to find out who her biological parents are, but her adoptive parents have a stipulation; she must keep her grades up. Unfortunately, one thing stands in the way of finding her parents; her rich, offstandish lab partner, Eric Welborn.

Will Eric be able to deny his attraction to Jessica and the unknown shade, or will he lose everything to The Light? Can Jessica persuade Eric to work with her on a project so that she can find her biological parents?

Minutes Before Sunset is a paranormal YA novel in which Eric and Jessica are both struggling to reconcile their identities. Eric is grappling with the fact that he will face The Light on the battlefield on his next birthday while Jessica tries to find out who her biological parents are. Needless to say, there is a certain amount of teenage angst and rebellion going on in the plot that is reminiscent of Twilight.

The dark and magical setting is pretty detailed, and the two protagonists are well developed; more so than what I was expecting from the first novel in the series. I was expecting a vampire novel, so I was pleasantly surprised when Thompson created a plot about shades and a battle between The Light and The Dark. At first glance, there are some parallels between Twilight and Minutes Before Sunset; however, the dynamic between the protagonists, the mood, and Thompson's writing style differentiate it from Twilight. For example, the mood in this novel is more dark and magical than dark and goth. I also thought that the angst and rebellion were less dramatic and more realistic than Twilight.

I personally would have liked a longer discussion of the prophecy and how The Dark and The Light became two separate factions. It may be that this will be revealed in later books, or it may be something that is not discussed in detail since the book was written for young adult readers and not adult readers.

I enjoyed it and I would definitely be willing to read the next books in the series. It is clean, cleaner than Twilight, so it would make a great gift for a teen who enjoyed that particular series. Adults who enjoyed Twilight will likely enjoy this book too. However, if you enjoy a more in-depth history of two clashing factions, this may not be a good match for you.

About Shannon A. Thompson

Shannon Thompson, Minutes Before Sunset, book review, On My Kindle Book Reviews
Shannon A. Thompson, author. Courtesy of Goodreads.
Shannon A. Thompson is a young adult author, avid reader, and a habitual chatterbox.

As a novelist, poet, and blogger, Thompson spends her free time writing and sharing ideas with her black cat, Bogart, named after her favorite actor, Humphrey Bogart. Her other two cats bring her coffee. Between writing and befriending cats, Thompson graduated from the University of Kansas with a bachelor’s degree in English with an emphasis on creative writing, and her work has appeared in numerous poetry collections and anthologies. Represented by Clean Teen Publishing, Thompson is the best-selling author of The Timely Death Trilogy and the Bad Bloods duology. When she is not writing, she is climbing rooftops, baking cookies, or watching murder shows in the middle of the night, often done with her cats by her side.
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