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Literature / I Become Shadow

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At age 14, Ren Sharpe is kidnapped by the FATE center, a secret government program. Over four years, she is trained as a Shadow. Shadows guard people who will become leaders or make important discoveries in the future. FATE knows this because they've invented technology to see into the future. Ren is assigned to protect college student Gareth Young. This book by Joe Shine was published in 2014.

I Become Shadow contains examples of:

  • Action Girl: Ren became a deadly and effective fighter after four years of training.
  • Battle Couple: Ren and Junie are both fierce Shadows, and a couple.
  • Becoming the Mask: Early on in her training, Ren panics and tries to run. She charges into Cole, and the others assumed she was attacking him. Because of that, she gets a reputation as a fierce fighter that she learns to live up to.
  • Feel No Pain: The Shadows are given a treatment that stops them from feeling pain.
  • Fighting Fingerprint: When Gareth is attacked by kidnappers, Ren realizes from their fighting style that the kidnappers are actually Shadows.
  • First-Person Smartass: Ren. She constantly gives sarcastic commentary in her narration.
The world is annoyingly too small sometimes - and I imagine that's especially true at college.
  • In Medias Res: It starts after the training, when Ren is about to get her assignment. Flashbacks show the reader what happened previously.
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  • Knife Nut: Though she's proficient with many weapons, knives are Ren's favorite.
  • Make an Example of Them: Invoked. FATE scares the first-years by "killing" one of them for disobeying. (Actually a Shadow, who doesn't actually die.) Pretending to be killed by the teachers is actually part of the final exam for a Shadow.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: "Ren" is short for "Rennes".
  • Tomboyish Name: Ren mentions that she's not fond of her name, because it sounds like a boy's name.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Ren goes from a terrified fourteen year old to a lethal killer.
  • Training from Hell: The Shadow training is very intense. Many get injured, die, or go insane.
  • Training Montage: In chapter 10, there's a montage of Ren's Shadow training.
Okay, so let's imagine we're in a movie, and this is the sweet montage sequence in the middle of it.


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