Grace Fonseca's Reviews > Illuminate

Illuminate by Aimee Agresti
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May 29, 12

Read in January, 2012

Title: Illuminate
Author: Aimee Agresti
Series: Gilded Wings #1
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Genre: Young Adult
Pub Date: March 6, 2012
Pages: 544 pages
My Edition: Net Galley


Book Synopsis:


Haven Terra is a brainy, shy high school outcast. But everything begins to change when she turns sixteen. Along with her best friend Dante and their quiet and brilliant classmate Lance, she is awarded a prestigious internship in the big city-Chicago-and is sent to live and work at a swanky and stylish hotel under the watchful eyes of a group of gorgeous and shockingly young-looking strangers: powerful and alluring hotel owner Aurelia Brown, her second-in-command, the dashing Lucian Grove: and their stunning but aloof staff of glamazons called the Outfit.


As Haven begins falling for Lucian, she discovers these beautiful people are not quite what they seem. With the help of a mysterious book, she uncovers a network of secret passageways from the hotel’s jazz-age past that leads her to the heart of the evil agenda of Aurelia and company: they’re in the business of buying souls. Will they succeed in wooing Haven to join them in their recruitment efforts, or will she be able to thwart this devilish set’s plans to take the souls of her classmates on prom night at the hotel.


Book Review:


Now this book was an interesting read. Interesting in the fact that I was attracted to it, by the cover. The cover is often the first thing that I’m drawn to in a book. I love how in the shadows, there are wings on the cover or the outline of the shadows.


So my first thoughts on this book, is that it’s going to be an Angel book. Yes, it’s an Angel book, but it is not like other angel books that I’ve read. What I really like about this book, is the development and progression of the storyline of the book.


Haven is a very likeable heroine. She is your typical teenager or so we are led to believe, but she is not. Haven lives with her guardian Joan. Joan and Haven seem to have a very caring relationship. Joan cares about Haven. Haven cares about Joan. In fact, Haven’s ability to care immediately make her likeable. This in fact will be very evident later on in the book.


What I like is that when she is offered this scholarship, Joan encourages Haven to take it, but doesn’t realize there is something sinister behind it. This plot point was a little bit of a sore point. I like the idea or the concept of it, the writing was done well, but felt that it should have been shorter, what I mean was everything was good, but needed to be a little bit faster in the pacing of the storyline. There were points that I felt dragged on and on.


Like that she is given things to do. This is a great opportunity for her. She is a gifted photographer and that is evident in the photos she takes, but there is something going on in the photos. There seems to be something that Haven is illuminating or revealing things that are in the photos that her boss doesn’t want to know.


Then the book she gets gives her strange messages and it is very good that she reads it, because it warns her. This was handled well. It told her what to do. This was good, because it saves her quite a few times.


I liked the twists and turns, but found at times this book took, but found that it needed a little faster pace at times. What I liked was the characters were well written and seem to be very human, even though they are going to be eventually very powerful, they are still flawed.


This first book was good. I’m intrigued by the world and would like to return to this world at some point. It had some points where it dragged. I would read the second book in this series.

Rating:

Four Hearts
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