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Reviewed by Liz Konkel for Readers' Favorite
Shadows of Aizai by Mary-Jean Harris is the second book in The Soul Wanderers series. Wolfdon and Toulouse have learned of their destiny to help form the paradise Aizai and work alongside a group called the Magicians. The creation of paradise is threatened by the Magi, dark Magicians who will do whatever it takes to stop the rise of Aizai. When Wolfdon is sent back in time, he lands in the Middle Ages and is quickly drawn into servitude to become a monk where he turns to a few surprising allies and uncovers secrets that could change the future. Meanwhile, Toulouse turns to a sorceress and a strange Magician for training, leading him to a surprising discovery. From two different times, the two must find a way to stop the Magi before it's too late to create paradise.
Mary-Jean Harris has created a variety of different characters which showcase the natural dynamics between them and add depth to this journey as each character plays a role in how everything unfolds. Toulouse and Wolfdon's friendship has a great deal of strength to it because they have so much trust in each other even when they're not together. Though they end up branching off into individual story lines, they remain connected throughout and stay on similar paths. Both are working towards the formation of Aizai and trying to understand exactly what their role is. Two key animal characters are seen throughout. Kosmos is a snake and is often seen attached to Toulouse in some fashion while Sagittarius is often with Wolfdon. Harris explores the concept of paradise through each character by having those who want to see it come to pass and others who don't, while also opening up a world of shadows and a trip to the Middle Ages. Shadows of Aizai is an exciting journey across time and a fight against dark Magicians as two heroes find their way through the shadows and the past in order to save a future paradise.