Aaron's Reviews > Angel Time

Angel Time by Anne Rice
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Nov 21, 2009

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Anne Rice is starting off a new series entitled Songs of the Seraphim with her newest title. As you can probably guess, they will be focusing on angels. This first volume tells the table of a man called Lucky. It is not his true name, but it is the name that he goes by to protect himself since he is a hired assassin. He is visited by his guardian angel, who offers up the name Malchiah when Lucky wants to know his name. Like Lucky, angels are not supposed to share their true names, so this will just have to do.

After their introduction to each other immediately following a hit, Malchiah tells how he has seen Lucky grow and develop into the person he is rather than living up to his one-time asperations of becoming a priest. Lucky, who was born Toby O'Dare, is offered an opportunity at redemption. It is an offer he takes up quickly.

As a result, Toby is brought back in time to the 13th century. He takes on the guise of a friar who will protect a Jewish couple being hunted down because the people in their English community believe they killed their daughter for converting to Christianity.

Rice became famous with her vampire novels largely because of interesting characters and rich descriptions of their environs, and she continues to try to do that now that she has given up the occult to focus on novels that better express her new-found faith. Her first two works in this new vein shared the tale of the early years of Jesus Christ.

While she continues to work with the same writing style, she seems to struggle a bit. Rather than just using the florid detail to place her readers in the setting, she seems to get bogged down in the detail, letting scenes (and chapters) drag on longer than they should. In fact, it takes almost the first half of the book for Toby to get Malchiah's offer.

With that said, Rice has created an interesting look at the way Jews were cheated in the Middle Ages. It is a part of history that not many may be familiar with, and the story of the Jewish family nicely parallels the journey Toby is making as he works his way back to his faith.
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