Death's Shadow

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Death's Shadow
Date Released May 1st 2008
Author Darren Shan
Series The Demonata
Publisher HarperCollins
Number of Pages 238
Previous Book "Demon Apocalypse"
Succeeding Book "Wolf Island"

Death's Shadow is the seventh instalment in Darren Shan's The Demonata series, which was released in May 2008.

It takes place six months after Demon Apocalypse and is narrated by Bec McConn.


Six months after Demon Apocalypse, Bec is back in Dervish's household, but isn't being treated well - she has access to all Bill-E's memories, and is constantly being forced by Dervish to give him more information on his beloved nephew. She feels that Dervish is treating her as an 'interpreter' for Bill-E's feelings and memories, and consequently ignoring Bec as a real human being. So she goes to Dervish and tells him. That's when Dervish's starts to treat Bec like a human.

She also discovers during this time that she has gained the ability to absorb memories through touch, but is frightened by the power and therefore avoids contact. She puts up with Dervish's questions, until one day she confides in Meera, who persuades her to tackle Dervish over it. She tells him about Bill-E 's last thoughts, and the pair reach a new understanding - right as the house is attacked by werewolves.

With three werewolves on the loose in the house, Bec, Dervish and Meera retreat to the magically defended study. Trapped, they try an obvious escape route outside, but discover there are gunmen marking the house. However, Dervish reveals that he has two escape routes. When one fails they decide to use the other and after a tussle with the werewolves, end up at the cellar. Once there Dervish has a heart attack and Meera calls the Disciples, but only Shark and Sharmila are available.

By the time Shark and Sharmilia arrive, the werewolves and the mysterious human gunmen have disappeared. Dervish is taken to hospital while Shark and Meera search for Beranabus to bring him to their aid. Unfortunately, the hospital falls victim to a demon attack, led by a regenerated (but horribly mutated) Juni Swan. During a fight on the roof, she disables Sharmila, pinning her to a wall while other demons bite her legs off. She briefly engages Bec in battle, but Dervish recovers and blasts her into submission. She retreats through the window, injured but alive.

Beranabus, Grubbs, Kernel, Shark and Meera then arrive. While discussing their plans, they discover that Dervish will die without constant magical aid from the Demonata's universe. Grubbs and Bec swap places - Grubbs goes to investigate why and how the werewolves attacked and Bec goes with Beranabus, Kernel, Dervish and Sharmila. While in the Demonata universe, they fashion new legs for Sharmila and strengthen Dervish's heart with magic.

After some brief recuperation, they discover that Juni has moved to a boat in the human universe (This is where the original title 'S.S Demonic' comes from.) Suspecting a trap, they follow anyway, knowing that this is their best opportunity to find out about the mysterious Shadow. On the cruise liner, they find all of passengers slaughtered. They also discover that the ship is encased within a bubble of magic, akin to Slawter, which allows Sharmila's artificial legs and Dervish's heart to work. Leaving Kernel behind to guard the window, the others proceed to the lower decks, accompanied by Kirilli, a 'spy' disciple that survived the attack by shielding his presence with a masking spell.

At the base of the ship they find Juni, a lodestone of magical power and a magically restrained Cadaver. Lord Loss speaks through the mouth of Cadaver, and tells them that piece of the Kah-Gash lay dormant in him, but was transferred to Bec when he gave her some of his power 1600 years ago. While he also gives his usual taunts, he attempts to persuade Beranabus to join the Demonata. When this fails, he makes Cadaver's head explode, soaking the lodestone with blood - and releasing the Shadow creature seen at the end of Demon Apocalypse. This also causes all the slaughtered bodies on the ship to re-animate and attack Bec, Beranabus, Kirilli, Dervish and Sharmila. The Shadow attempts to kill Bec and obtain her piece of the Kah Gash, however, as it touches her, she steals some of its memories, of which she tells Beranabus. With this new knowledge, the magician takes desperate action and fully unchains his demon side, transforming him into a monstrous form. He rushes to the lodestone and attempts to destroy it, while the Shadow attacks him viciously. Beranabus succeeds in breaking the lodestone, however, the Shadow rages and lands a fatal blow on Beranabus killing him. Beranabus uses his last ounce of strength to lift up his head and to say what Bec believes to be "flower", something he often said to her in Bec as his way of telling her he loved her.

The Shadow is pulled through the bottom of the ship, and Juni escapes again. The ship starts to sink and the group battle their way up through the hordes of zombies to Kernel and the window. However they arrive just in time to see him, the window and a zombie with which he was battling vanish in a flash of light. However, a new problem arises: the ship is trapped in the magical bubble, which won't fade until the boat has sunk and drowned all of its passengers. Since there are no demons at hand with which to break a hole in the bubble, Sharmila demands they use her crippled body to tear a gap in it even though it means death - and after some emotional debate they comply. They eventually manage to get out through the hole on the lifeboat. As they escape, Dervish's heart starts to weaken again in the non-magical environment.

With just Bec, Dervish and Kirilli left, Bec reveals what she had learned from the Shadow's memories - that it was no demon, but "Death" itself.


  • The book's title could be a pun as there is an apostrophe in Death's. It could mean Death is Shadow or it could be just like a name, e.g. Bob's Shadow.