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Angel Eyes by Shannon Dittemore
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Mar 27, 12

Read in March, 2012

Really enjoyable and fabulous use of theology.
It may not be for everyone with the religious theme but I enjoyed it.

I will begin by saying that although I really enjoyed this book I can see it isn't going to be for everyone. There are heavy religious undertones which are only to be expected from an author whose father and husband are both preachers. Although the religious aspect is fundamental to the story-line it doesn't advocate a particular belief system, which was refreshing. Both sides of the theological debate were equally depicted giving the reader plenty of food for thought.

Told in dual first person narrative from the perspective of Brielle and Jake. Brielle has just returned to her home town following a tragedy in New York. This tragedy is shrouded in mystery, cleverly woven into the narrative adding an ingenious plot twist as all the elements are revealed. Having lost her mother at an early age, Brielle doesn't have much faith in God. Jake is the opposite, he oozes faith and calm, the mysterious new boy at school Brielle is drawn to.

As the story unfolds fate and destiny are examined closely, showing beautifully the way free-will and external influences can alter the path we choose to take with our lives. The writing style is vividly descriptive balancing deep philosophical debates with touches of humor and engaging characters.

The clever weaving of the Old Testament into the plot gave depth to the story as a whole. The theological debate within the story was very interesting; begging the question I am sure most of us have thought at one point or another - why does God let some people suffer or die while others that may deserve to suffer don't. Is there a bigger picture, does God have some sort of plan, do people move onto another plain where they have a purpose to fulfill??? The examination of faith was skilfully depicted no matter what your belief system.

I especially liked the way fear was portrayed, used by evil as a means of control. How fear holds people back in more ways than we fully comprehend at the time, how it can paralyze and corrupt.

I have to say the ending was really unexpected and has completely left me longing to know what happens next. I have become invested Brielle and Jake's future. I cannot believe I have to wait an entire year to find out what happens.
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