At first I was hoping to find another good urban fantasy series to follow. Then my hopes diminished and I just kept on reading for completness's sake....moreAt first I was hoping to find another good urban fantasy series to follow. Then my hopes diminished and I just kept on reading for completness's sake. So my expectations for most of this book were not very high. It was, in a way, better than I expected then. The writing style kept me reading, the world building was intruiging enough too. The problem was the plot and the characters. I wavered between liking the heroine and being too annoyed at her. She is not the smartest, which is not necessairly bad, but at times was somewhat annoying. She jumps to conclusions and is not acting in a logical way at times - which ties with my beef concerning the plot. It's rushed. And not thought through, I guess. The mystery was not really foreshadowed much, the romance was rushed and the relationship that seemed to be promising (with Samson) was completely dropped (view spoiler)[ he even dies offpage! (hide spoiler)] - and that was a nicely teased element that goes completely nowhere. After the main mystery resolves the book goes on - the romance parts, and that felt a little tacked on, uneven, especially since I did not much care for the hero.["br"]>(less)
2.5 I don't have anythign against the writing itself. The style is ok but... So chapter 8, our heroine learns what she is. If I were as invested in myth...more2.5 I don't have anythign against the writing itself. The style is ok but... So chapter 8, our heroine learns what she is. If I were as invested in myths about angels as i am in other mythologies (mostly Greek) I'd have been annoyed at the changes the author does to the myths about Grigori.
Anyway, our heroine is mostly -hm, I can't even find an adjective to describe her so far. She is not special in any way, does not make me interested in reading more about her. On the plus side, she is more interesting than her love interest, Lincoln.
She's lonely-ish, thinks of herself as more mature than she seems, her life outside school mostly revolves around Lincoln and she has a strained relationship with her dad - because her mother died and he is distant. She is pained about her mother's death - even though she died when our heroine was born. And her birthday was terribly awkward (from my point of view) -drinking and flirting, with her dad right there...
So 7-8 chapters that seem wasted to me. Not only did I not learn much about the heroine, her love interest, the mystery/supernatural/ intersting part was not even hinted at much either.
It's a bit hard for me to emphatise with Violet. She's been told she is special, will get cool powers, longer life, destiny, and if she chooses not to embrace it she'll only put herself in danger. Her dilemma, really is a non issue, imho. But she doesn't really even spend all that much time on really thinking it over. She's stuck on wondering just who and how much lied to her (only Lincoln?, her mother? etc), and woe is her, it's so unfair, the change, and does he love her... yada yada. Not telling someone something is not lying.
There are about 7 characters in this book. One serves as a plot device, to make the heroine feel guilty, one is her bff who serves as her sounding board and dress provider, one is her mostly absent dad who serves as the source of info on her mother (just barely), one is her love interest number one - absent for at least a quarter of the book, and one is love interest number two - her would be enemy who she should stay away from if she was smart. And there's the exposition guy for two chapters. Not many people and yet they still feel barely 2d. So the cover and synopsis promises angels- they're here, but they could as easily be removed, it's mainly an angsty romance novel.
Chapter 18 - finally some plot, other than romance and angsting. Also new character, Magda - she is pretty and has a nice car= clearly evil.
So finally the last part of the book starts (chapter twenty something), where the heroine decides to embrace her destiny (surprise surprise). I'm almost starting to consider Violet a strong character, but no, first thing she does after her semi quest is launch herself at a guy crying how scared she was... oh author...
In the end, the book is not as bad as I expected from reading some reviews but it's not great either. Most of it, I wanted to slap the heroine for being stupid (right after hearing about the dangers she ignores all the warnings and goes into denile about being able to go back to her normal life) and selfish. She was just too hard to understand for me, not really that realistic - she's in danger but really only thinks about romance, is told how she will always be in danger and yet choses denial, is told a giant clue but doesn't wonder why some evil dude tells her a story.
But, I liked the last part much better. Less angsting, more action. And the relationship with her best friend - nice surprise in having her included there. Can't say I enjoyed the love triangle (I still dont really know why the Grigori can't get together) but at least it was more complicated and plot related than some (and more mature- sex!) - Phoenix and his motivations interest me more than the bland Lincoln, even thought Phoenix still seems very creepy and in no way a good relationship material and over all his character is just as bland as Lincolns's but he's got more potential plot and mythology wise.
I probably wont try the next book in this series, though.(less)
I've been reading this in small chunks for a while. The writing style is not terrible and the plot is not really slow but it's just not that engaging....moreI've been reading this in small chunks for a while. The writing style is not terrible and the plot is not really slow but it's just not that engaging. It has potential. I liked the prequel but the really really stupid heroine and not that complicated plot were making this a hard read. I like twisting a little the angel/fallen angel mythos. The succubi are interesting as well, but I find it hard to follow a heroine that is this slow. Oh, and the emphasis on her body made me a little uncomfortable - as in, the love interests seemed to only care about her body, so the love traingle felt thin. Not that I didn't like all the hot scenes - coz they were hot, but let's not pretend it was about love there.(less)
Started, abandoned, started again, abandoned, and then again. In the end I pushed past the so so 1/3 of the book and it actually went more smoothly fr...moreStarted, abandoned, started again, abandoned, and then again. In the end I pushed past the so so 1/3 of the book and it actually went more smoothly from there. Maybe because we were past the worst infodumps... and some more characters started to show up, and a bit more of an actual plot and conflict.
I still don't like the main characters. I still find the heroine utterly unreal and unrealistic, and I'm still not seeing anything great in Kaidan. They're both not very consistent. If someone had both good and bad in them, well, they'd basicaly be human, right? How is it that Anna is so saintly? Was she raised in a completely separate world or something? So the whole part showing us how she's soo good didn't work for me, I kept thinking what kind of life she would have had to have to end up like that and it didn't seem the author presented her background in a way to match that. Also, Patti- not that great a parent. Could she perhaps not cry so much?
The world view in this book- at times it feels very black and white. I suppose it goes hand in hand with the mythology presented but it seems very far from todays reality.
I know it's hard to present a girl so pure and making her relatable, making her opposite of what the guy (bad boy) is supposed to be. But the whole book seems to skew towards the goodness and purity, shying from the other side of things. The bad guys, or bad guys in name only, Kaidan, other Nephilim, the Duke of Substance Abuse (lol), are all really, deep down, good. But it's not earned. The kind of thing when you have characters presented as bad, you see them do bad stuff, you hear about how bad they are, truly, only to find out later they're really deep down good at heart - that can be a powerful twist/hook/relief, whatever you want to call it, something that shows how the characters are more complex. But here we don't really get much of that first stage.
All in all I'm more interested in Anna's parents than her, and I suppose that curiosity, to see more of how her father is presented is what keeps me reading.
I'm not a fan of introducing characters late in the story, if they're meant to be, for instance, part of the main love triangle, at least mention them couple times early on, a very brief meeting somewhere in the beginning? anything to not make it seem as it's there just because the author is running out of ideas to make the book longer.
I have a feeling the author doesn't really want to make the heroine suffer much. The conflicts are resolved quickly and without much pain and hardship (they're mostly one, two scenes long). As a reader I don't feel tension or fear or uncertainty of what might happen next. The demons are so mild and their threat so small - they're almost scary one moment, sending ugly visions but the next we are told it wont ever happen again... Way to create tension. The last quarter is worse than the middle. And the conflict is resolved by a deus ex machina. The heroine really doesn't have to do much in this book....(less)
1.5 based on 3 chapters. It's technically an ok book but not what I expected. I got the feeling this was more paranormal romance than urban fantasy bu...more1.5 based on 3 chapters. It's technically an ok book but not what I expected. I got the feeling this was more paranormal romance than urban fantasy but didn't realise it would be almost only romance. There's the demon guy and the naive innocent angel girl and they have insta attraction (I'm not a fan of that cliche). Let me guess how it ends, they'll be together in the end. Hm. I'm not sure there's more of a plot here than that. 50 pages in I'm giving up. I was hoping for a stronger heroine, and this girl is not it.(less)
Full 5 stars. I don't think I have anything bad to say about this book. Really. Can't think of anything. Just finished, and loved it. I want more!
The...moreFull 5 stars. I don't think I have anything bad to say about this book. Really. Can't think of anything. Just finished, and loved it. I want more!
The plot comes along nicely. You don't get overwhelmed with details but smooth your way into this new world slowly. Over time we get to meet more and more characters and things get more complicated. It's well written, keeps a nice pace, every character is pretty distinct and every scene feels like it has a purpose. The creepy scenes were suitably creepy and it in general felt 'full', not like a barely there idea stretched too thin and padded with teen angst but like a pretty epic novel with kick ass protagonist that just brings more and more to the table. Interesting family dynamics, relationships, bleek dystopia, survival, fighting, mysteries, evil plots, creepy science and some mythology (or religion depending how you see it). The writing style is great, the author doesn't need to be wordy to pack an emotional punch in a scene.
(view spoiler)[I loved the buildup of the relationship between Penryn and Raffe. And the realisation of who he is exactly. Also, the fact that he is an agnostic archangel! :D (hide spoiler)]["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
The main couple- not exactly likable. The heroine is on the 'a little too foolish and selfish' side for me - though I suppose for a 16 yo its not that...moreThe main couple- not exactly likable. The heroine is on the 'a little too foolish and selfish' side for me - though I suppose for a 16 yo its not that far off. There's a love triangle. The heroine moves into a dead girls life (house, bff, boyfriend 1 and boyfriend 2, cheerleading)- kind of creepy. A lot of the scenes seem to be jumping in place and time. The powers the supernatural characters have are not entirely thought through - they don't use them realistically - or maybe the author just didn't describe them well enough, anyway, I was a little lost on whys and hows.
At least it doesn't drag much, though some scenes didn't seem all that needed (in the beginning mostly) while other things required some more explanation - the mother thing. I think it would work better with deeper worldbuilding and characterisation (especially regarding how fast the relationships form, be it love or friendship), and tighter plot.(less)
2.5 I did not really feel any of the characters. I did not much care about them. The only interesting relationship was between the heroine and her fath...more2.5 I did not really feel any of the characters. I did not much care about them. The only interesting relationship was between the heroine and her father and that got resolved in an unsatisfactory way, for me. Too easy.
The vilain was not that scary. He had a lot of promise but it kind of fizzled out. The action felt very removed from the present, from the outside world - at the begining there's mention of Billi going to school but later on it feels like there is nothing but the Templars, Templars hideouts and old churches. All felt very contained and small scale - despite mentions of the plague.
I liked the mythology. But the names were a little much.
I honestly don't see what could interest me in a sequel - the romance was resolved, so was the conflict with Arthur, so was the 'do I want to be a Templar or not' thing.
The book felt a little like it was written to be a movie, a lot of action, little description, flat characters and conflicts. It would have worked better had we seen more depth to those conflicts and plot points. Billi's interactions with Michael were too short - we're supposed to see him betray her, sort of, but they barely had two scenes/meetings. The relationship with Kay is also suffering from too little focus on it for how important it is to Billi and the plot. (less)
This was a very good book. I'm kind of surprised, really. Didn't expect it. Also more complex - plot, characters, mythology- than most ya novels. Most...moreThis was a very good book. I'm kind of surprised, really. Didn't expect it. Also more complex - plot, characters, mythology- than most ya novels. Mostly a mystery novel- refreshing in the ya urban fantasy genre. The romance isn't center stage, the characters don't mope around and there are no boring scenes of high school drama and angsting. It starts strong and doesn't really slow down later on. Things move fast, mystery is center stage, the characters are interesting (and there are quite a few) and all scenes seem to actually have a point. The style is not very heavy on descriptions but it works well to make it all seem to move fast. The mystery is good and the mythology/paranormal elements are woven pretty well. I'm definitely going to read the sequel.(less)
It's not bad, it's not great either. I don't really have any serious flaws to point out, I just didn't feel particularly invested. But it's not long a...moreIt's not bad, it's not great either. I don't really have any serious flaws to point out, I just didn't feel particularly invested. But it's not long and the plot moves rather fast... I'm really not sure how to rate it. I guess it's 3,5.
It's kind of the adult version of Michelle Rowen's Reign series (YA). The heroine discovers her father is a demon, there's forbidden love (with the guy that is supposed to serve her) and a plot to kill her, more or less. Only this one is more complex, with deeper history and mythology behind the plot. Also, demons are demony and angels are not acting in entirely human ways. ...I really should have liked this book more than I did, but it felt a little like paint by numbers sort of thing. Perhaps the second book will be better.(less)
I've spent ages as a kid just browsing this book. It is a dictionary/encyclopedia. Folklore, myths and legends, historical basis for them. It's well w...moreI've spent ages as a kid just browsing this book. It is a dictionary/encyclopedia. Folklore, myths and legends, historical basis for them. It's well written, well researched, easy enough, and interesting.(less)
A really good book. Some questions left unanswered - I'm definitely picking up the next one. It's more meaty than the majority of ya that I read latel...moreA really good book. Some questions left unanswered - I'm definitely picking up the next one. It's more meaty than the majority of ya that I read lately. There's more to it than just the visions. There's the mother and her secrets, the brother, the guys and the new friends and fiting in- it is not terribly cliched in depicting high school and every character felt 3 dimensional. (view spoiler)[ And I felt so sure I knew where the author was going, that Christian would turn out to be or become a Black Wing ;) heh. I'm intrigued what will become of Jeffrey - I'd be annoyed at the heroine for not telling him the dangers or mentioning his not quite right behavior to her mother - because it's such a cliche to have cnflict stem from not sharing info - but I think the author sidestepped that pretty well by getting Clara pretty busy at the time and straining the relationship with her mother, and Clara remaining a lot in the dark most of the time. (hide spoiler)] I liked all the relationships. The romance, the familial ties (including the awkwardness with her father), the new friendships - they all felt real.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)