When the angels of the apocalypse arrive, they are not here to save mankind. Just the opposite. They are avenging angels who are sent to destroy mankiWhen the angels of the apocalypse arrive, they are not here to save mankind. Just the opposite. They are avenging angels who are sent to destroy mankind in revenge for mankind killing the Angel Gabriel - known as The Messenger. The story opens in a war-torn California town not far from Silicon Valley. Seventeen year old Penryn accompanied by her paranoid schizophrenic mother and her younger wheel-chair bound sister venture away from their home as conditions worsen. Only minutes after they depart, they come upon a band of angels who are mercilessly cutting the wings off one of their own. They leave the bloody and battered angel victim where he lays as they make their departure but not before one of them swoops back and lifts Paige, the younger sister, from her wheelchair and carries her away.
Penryn vows to get her sister back and care for her family. But she sees an opportunity before her and acts on it. If she can nurse the wounded angel back to health perhaps he can lead her to where the angels have taken her sister. What follows is a thrilling roller coaster ride through what remains of humankind as they fight for our world and what remains of mankind.
I found this to be one of the best futuristic stories I've read in a long time. The characters came alive for me. Not just the humans but the angelic ones as well. The descriptions were vivid and put me right in the middle of the action. I found myself rooting alternately for the angels and the humans and sometimes both at the same time. A world where angels were enemies of humankind rather than our friends took some getting used to but it didn't take this reader long to acclimate to this new and terrifying world.
Fast paced action will keep you turning pages. Complex characters that surprise at every turn will keep your interest piqued. Looking forward to reading Book 2. ...more
This book was won in the Early Review program from Library Thing.
Seventeen year-old Jillian Macombe can't understand why she is so tired all the timeThis book was won in the Early Review program from Library Thing.
Seventeen year-old Jillian Macombe can't understand why she is so tired all the time. And neither can her boyfriend of six months, Jamie, who begins to call her 'old lady' - not just because she'd rather sleep but because she won't sleep with him. Jillian has pledged to remain a virgin until she marries. Her worried parents (Dr. Marc Macombe a Divinity School professor and Sara Macombe a medical professional in her own right) arrange for Jillian to have a 'school' physical. That is when the family doctor, Dr. Richards, finds that Jillian is in her fourteenth week of pregnancy.
Stephen Jacobs, a Divinity student, has a prophetic dream the night before he is to travel to Bradford University where he has been awarded a fellowship to work with Dr. Macombe. In Stephen's dream he is portrayed as a protector to a pregnant girl who is being stoned in old Jerusalem. The dream leaves him shaken. Upon his arrival in Nashville he meets Dr. Macombe and his family, at once recognizing Jillian as the girl from his dream. He keeps that knowledge to himself for the time being.
What ensues is the retelling of the story of Mary and Joseph and the Holy Birth of Jesus Christ. When Jillian swears that she had no idea she was pregnant and vehemently denies having had relations with any man, she is met with disbelief and disdain.
Stephen's dreams continue and while Dr. Macombe must deal with his teenage daughter's pregnancy, Stephen turns to Father Andrews for guidance. His story of prophetic dreams through which he converses with Gabriel is met with skepticism on the part of Father Andrews although events that transpire in the end open Father Andrews' heart and mind.
As the story progresses, Jillian's angel Arianna convinces her that she is pregnant through an act of God and that she is carrying a Blessed Child who shall be called Benjamin (from the right hand of God). Once she accepts her fate, Jillian becomes more complacent. With Stephen as her protector, she manages to escape the greed of big government, mad scientists, and the throngs of faithful who hope for miracles to cure them of their afflictions.
I must admit I had high hopes for this book. With so much interest in the End Times these days I anticipated a Christian version of their interpretation. Christian yes, in the sense that we have the Second Coming in the birth of a child via a virgin mother. While the characters are finely drawn, I found their dialogue a bit stilted - especially teenaged Jillian. Stephen as well spoke more like the elder Dr. Macombe than a twenty-some young man.
The build-up of the story is finely crafted by the author but the ending was rushed. There should have been a minimum of three or four more chapters where the reader is given more details of the final days and of young Benjamin's life. Instead we are given an epilogue of sorts where short paragraphs, almost bullet points, give readers the wrap up.
Overall I liked the stories and the characters, enjoyed the action scenes, but didn't feel really involved until the last sixty pages or so. ...more