The Shadowverse

A YA Sci-Fi Superhero Adventure

Young Adult - Sci-Fi
547 Pages
Reviewed on 01/28/2019
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

John-Clement Gallo is a 17-year-old Christian author of The Shadowverse, a Science-Fiction Superhero novel. He enjoys astronomy, astrophysics, ambient music, and ice hockey, while also a trumpet player. While living in Houston, Texas, he was the youngest person (11) to become a licensed RC pilot. On the other hand, he is ranked a black belt in Taekwondo and Hapkido, though he is very unassuming and tends to keep that accomplishment a cool secret. Currently, he lives in Orlando, Florida with his family, trying to outlive the constant heat.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Romuald Dzemo for Readers' Favorite

The Shadowverse: A YA Sci-Fi Superhero Adventure by John-Clement Gallo is an adventure that is as satisfying as any can be. Well-written and loaded with action, it features Johnny Sparks, a young protagonist who suddenly discovers that he has powers after an encounter with a mysterious stranger. Perhaps this could be the start of an exciting life for him. When one of his gifted friends is captured by the evil warlord Titan, Johnny and his friends are sent on a rescue mission that takes them across the galaxy. They will need the help of a legendary warrior who has gone missing for centuries. But Titan has grimmer plans for the fate of humanity.

John-Clement Gallo pits his characters against impossible odds with explosive action. The narrative starts with a prologue that captures a moment five hundred years ago and presents a character that will intrigue readers. Then the action moves quickly to New York City in an offset room in an alley where two men are talking about events about to take place. The author grabs the reader’s attention right off the bat by creating a setting that is filled with mystery and putting questions in the reader's mind.

I immediately became curious about the characters and the impending events. The setting is interplanetary, and I enjoyed the powerful images conjured up in the writing, and loved the author's gift for apt descriptions and insightful writing. The novel is fast paced, with plot elements that enhance the unpredictability of events. The characters are real and it is interesting to follow them as they develop through the challenges. The Shadowverse: A YA Sci-Fi Superhero Adventure is written in a cinematic style, filled with ingenuity in plot and imagination. It feels so real and it’s easy to ride alongside the extraordinary characters.

K.C. Finn

The Shadowverse is a superhero adventure written for young adults, and penned by author John-Clement Gallo. Combining science fiction, suspense and comic book action, the plot begins when Johnny Sparks and his three fellow college friends are imbued with superpowers from an encounter with a mysterious stranger. Soon after, they discover that fellow college attendee Rose is actually an alien, sought after by powerful forces from across the galaxy. As tensions rise and danger looms, the new heroes are called out of this world to find the only person who can help them, but even this immortal warrior has issues that must be resolved. What follows is an even bigger battle for the soul of the universe itself.

I enjoyed the progression of the plot very much, from the small-time discovery of Johnny’s powers right up to the whole universe-at-stake blockbuster ending, and I think the pacing is really good for a young adult novel. This was a long read with plenty of concepts to enjoy, and author John-Clement Gallo takes time to really craft the heroes and villains of the piece to give a fully rounded set of people (and aliens) who feel like so much more than comic book heroes by the time the tale ends. The prose is complex, so I’d certainly recommend it as a read for ages fifteen to nineteen in the young adult genre, but I’d also say that plenty of adult readers and fans of science fiction are certain to enjoy The Shadowverse as well.

Divine Zape

The Shadowverse: A YA Sci-Fi Superhero Adventure by John-Clement Gallo is a fast-paced, action-packed adventure that takes readers across the galaxies. An encounter between Johnny Sparks and a mysterious stranger leaves him and his friends with unimaginable powers. But soon after this encounter, one of his friends is taken by a powerful alien warlord called Titan. Now begins the hunt to rescue his friend. The only help they can get is from an immortal warrior who has gone missing for centuries, and to reach him the group has to travel across the galaxy. Titan has sinister plans for humanity and it won’t be long before he destroys the world they know. But can they get the help they need in time and stop a catastrophe that is irreversible?

John-Clement Gallo’s work is highly imaginative and readers will enjoy the young characters. Johnny Sparks has found a purpose for his life, but he also has to learn the hard lesson that special gifts come with great responsibility. Readers will enjoy the journey of this young hero as he learns to forget himself and to seek the common good. While the action is pulsating and the adventure breathtaking, the lessons of this narrative are among the things that set it aside — the importance of teamwork, endurance, the strength of trusting in one’s heart. The characters are strong and believable, and I even loved the way the villain looks. I always believe that the strength of a protagonist depends on the cunning of the villain and this author justifies that belief. Readers will genuinely hate the villain and find themselves rooting for the hero. The Shadowverse: A YA Sci-Fi Superhero Adventure has a lot that readers enjoy in Young Adult fantasy and adventure — non-stop action, great prose, characters who develop through the conflict and high stakes.