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Finding Angel

(Toch Island Chronicles #1)

4.14  ·  Rating details ·  133 ratings  ·  55 reviews
"Angel doesn't remember her magical heritage...but it remembers her."
Magic and science collide when she embarks on a journey to her true home, and to herself.
Angel lives with a loving foster family, but dreams of a land that exists only in the pages of a fantasy novel. Until she meets Gregor, whose magic Talent saves her life and revives lost memories.
She follows Gre
Paperback, 294 pages
Published September 1st 2011 by Splashdown Books (first published August 28th 2011)
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4.14  · 
Rating details
 ·  133 ratings  ·  55 reviews

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Lisa Godfrees
Sep 16, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya-fiction, fantasy
Looking for a Christian fantasy novel that isn’t in-your-face Christian? I have the pleasure of recommending this delightful novel. The feel of this novel is like all of the fantasy books I enjoyed reading when I was younger. It transported me back to a time when I longed to have a secret destiny and be called into my own adventure.

Theology: Unseen Creator God

The author actually warned me before I read this book that there weren’t any overt Christian references. What I did find, were several bib
Jun 10, 2013 rated it liked it
My copy of Finding Angel was given to me by the Author through Goodreads First Reads giveaway. I was not obligated to write a positive review. This is my full and honest opinion.

Cover Blurb: Yes or No? Yes, I do like it. It's simple yet intriguing - and I love lockets. :-) While it's not exactly indicative of a fantasy novel (I actually thought it was some inspirational tween story when I first saw it), there still is something attention-grabbing about it, and once one reads the story, one can d
Keven Newsome
Dec 07, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ebook-library
The bad news:

Finding Angel felt at times as if influenced way too much by Harry Potter. A child raised in secret, returned to the world of his/her birth by the very person who carried him/her to safety. A prophecy about the return of the villain, thought to have been destroyed trying to capture/destroy the child in the first place, and a certain magical item inheritance a la Deathly Hallows. Not to mention the wonder of discovering a new world of magic. Sure there were a lot of unique spins and
Jeff Chapman
Nov 30, 2011 rated it it was amazing
The title of Kat Hechenbach's first novel, Finding Angel, is intriguing and becomes more so after you've read the book. One might even argue it's a bit of a misnomer. You expect the story to be about someone looking for Angel and discovering her, a kind of missing person story. But no one is looking for Angel in the story. Angel is the protagonist and point-of-view character. She knows where she is but not necessarily who she is. Gregor is looking for a girl named Anna but finds Angel, who used ...more
Krisi Keley
Oct 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: all fantasy fans
Shelves: sci-fi-fantasy, ya
I really enjoyed this well-written and original YA fantasy novel about a young teenaged girl, Angel, whose sense of being destined for another life turns out to be literally true, sending her on a magical journey of self-discovery filled with adventure and danger.

In a very general way, the story reminded me of the Harry Potter books – in the sense that it also features a young adolescent character who, though living with a “normal” family, discovers that her real heritage is one of magical talen
May 06, 2013 rated it really liked it
Finding Angel tells the story of a teen who is living with a foster family after being found wandering along the road with no memory when she was younger. Her foster family calls her Angel because when she is found she is wearing a charm bracelet and the charms spell out Angel. Her foster family is loving but they don't understand her fascination with fantasy books and creatures. One day she meets Gregor, and when he saves her life, he also brings back some memories. Angel is suddenly whisked aw ...more
James Maxon
Sep 13, 2011 rated it really liked it
Having written stories for several anthologies, Heckenbach launched her debut novel “Finding Angel” on Sep 1, 2011. As a homeschooling mother, fantasy lover, and science geek, Heckenbach put her skills into creating the Toch Island Chronicles. There are currently two books released in the series, with Seeking Unseen (Book 2) published a year after the first. Finding Angle is available as a Paperback, eBook, and Audiobook.

Story overview:
Angel knows that her family isn’t related to her by blood, b
D.M. Dutcher
Oct 09, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: young-adult
It's good for a YA novel, and avoids a lot of cliches while getting a teen girl's voice right. The world is interesting too. I think though the plot is a bit too complex, and the book could have ignored some of the complications to focus on the lot of good things it has.

Angel is a pretty average teen. She likes fantasy animals, likes to draw, loves her little brother Zach, and lives a pretty decent teen life. One day she meets Gregor, and through him is drawn into a hidden magical world. Angel i
C.O. Bonham
Aug 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Alana Folk, Carissa Bonham, and all lovers of fantasy
This is the book for every science geek who's read Harry Potter and pulled their hair out yelling, "Conservation of Energy Harry." Or maybe that's just me.

Though author Kat Heckenbach doesn't go into deep scientific detail she covers enough laws of physics and uses more than enough explanation to give her magic system a believable scientific edge. More then enough to justify the tag line, "Where magic and science collide."

On Toch Island (somewhere off the coast of Ireland) lives a community of E
Teddi Deppner
May 28, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
Enjoyed this story of a girl discovering her true heritage. Very typical of the "coming of age" YA storyline, but unique enough to be interesting. The way magic works in Angel's world makes so much sense that I am miffed that it's not real. It could totally work like that!

I like that the story isn't focused on a romantic relationship (although there are definitely a couple of cute guys to drool over if you're into that sort of thing), and one of the strongest examples of "love" is the relationsh
Barbara Brink
May 22, 2012 rated it really liked it
Finding angel was a fun novel with a touch of magic. Angel lives in a foster home but never feels quite "at home." Along comes a boy who tells her that actually she doesn't belong. She comes from a magical island where fairies, and dragons and other creatures live undisturbed by the rest of the world. But there is evil on this island as well, lurking and waiting for her return because he needs something that only Angel can provide.
This is more of a middle school age story than YA but older kids
Matt Wallis
Oct 22, 2012 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed reading this book. The writing style is engaging & descriptive without droning on too much. The characters were well developed in a way that I felt as though I knew them by the end of the book. Having been a long time fan of Terry Brooks' writing, I found this to be as engaging and impossible to put down. I am currently looking for the time to read the second in the trilogy and am looking forward to the third! This author was a great find and I look forward to following her as she ...more
Belinda Knight
I really really enjoyed Angel and Gregor's story.. not only were there dragons, which I absolutely adore, but there was also Horatio.. a totally cool and awesome beetle. Never have I been a fan of beetles, but Horatio completely won me over.. :)

I'm definitely looking forward to reading the second book. I can't wait to see what Angel/Anna does with her wish..!

Thank you Kat for a great read, somehow I get the feeling #2 will be even better.

3 1/2 stars for Angel's first story
K.M. Weiland
Nov 13, 2012 rated it really liked it
This is a delightful YA romp, free of many of the genre's recent cliches and objectionable material (a la the Twilight romances). The characters are likable and the stakes high. The plot grows a bit leisurely in places, but the worldbuilding is exquisite: an imaginative fairy land hidden in plain view. The author has done a lovely job of taking standard fantasy tropes and turning on them on their heads to find new originality.

And then, of course, there's the gorgeous cover art!
The book Finding Angel is about a girl who gets adopted after an evil villain Darwic starts a wild fire on the island and Angel gets moved to a part of the world without magic. One day she meets Gregor, who is from the island, and follows him back to the island. She then learns she has a Talent and with Gregor's help, she uses it to Find many useful items. Later into the novel, Angel discovers a prophecy that throughout the novel everyone is a part of.
Also throughout the novel, Angel finds out
Aug 20, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
I received this book (and the sequel) through a Goodreads giveaway. The opinions stated below are my own and were not influenced by the fact that I won this book.

Finding Angel was a magical story about an adopted girl who finds out she can perform magic and may be part of a prophesy. She is rescued by the same boy who helped her escape her magical island, who teaches her how to perform her magic and becomes like a brother to her. It is a pretty classic good versus evil magic type story that was
Jun 22, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
Overall: 3.5 stars, rounded to four
Finding Angel is the story of a girl separated from her magical heritage. She lives a normal life, until pieces of her past begin to catch up with her. A beetle, a charm bracelet, a boy with silver eyes…they all lead her back to Toch Island, the place of her birth, and her strange powers, which may help Angel solve the mysterious disappearances around the island – or reveal her to the evil man who desperately wants to find her.

This was a light, fun read with un
Jul 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. That being said, I honestly had no clue what to expect upon starting this book. Let's just say, I was pleasantly surprised. I finished it within 24 hours of beginning it.

This book follows a young teen, Angel, who is found when she is about 6 years old, just wandering along a dirt road. She is placed with a foster family, and unlike her foster brothers, is never successfully adopted by them. The call her Angel, because of the charm
Katherine Coble
May 05, 2012 rated it really liked it
This review opens with three confessions:

1. I love Harry Potter unreservedly and have read those books enough to have whole passages memorised.

2. I don't care for Christian-themed fiction as a rule.

3. I know Kat Heckenbach through an online writing forum.

So I guess I'm halfway biased for this book and halfway biased against it. But you don't care about all that. You just want to know if it's good. The short answer is: yes, very.

The longer answer goes like this:

Because of my love for Potter a
H.A. Titus
Oct 14, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Storyline: Angel doesn't remember her magical heritage...but it remembers her.

Magic and science collide when she embarks on a journey to her true home, and to herself.

Angel lives with a loving foster family, but dreams of a land that exists only in the pages of a fantasy novel. Until she meets Gregor, whose magic Talent saves her life and revives lost memories.

She follows Gregor to her homeland...a world unlike any she has imagined, where she travels a path of self-discovery that leads directly
Tahlia Newland
Apr 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Finding Angel is a well-crafted and enjoyable contemporary fantasy for younger teens. I was impressed by the clean style and creative story. It's refreshing to get away from vampires, witches and werewolves. There is magic in this story, but not witches or wizards, simply those with Talents.

Angel is a foster child with wonderful caring foster parents and a little foster brother who she loves dearly. Nevertheless, she doesn't feel as if she really belongs with them. She was found at the age of si
Cassie C
Mar 04, 2013 rated it liked it
I received this book in Goodreads FirstReads. This has in no way influenced my opinion of this book.

Actual rating: 3.5 stars

Finding Angel is a wonderful start to what is sure to be a great series. Many reviews said that this was very Harry Potter-esque, but I only saw some slight similarities, and certainly nothing that overshadowed the book. The scenes were richly described, and the story itself was extremely creative. Ms. Heckenbach sweeps you away in her story of Angel and her journey. This b
Mlpmom (Book Reviewer)
Jul 18, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kindle-books
First I have to give a shout out to the cover of this book, it is just gorgeous! Something about it is just so appealing and eye catching. I love the details in the wood of the door and the heart charm, so pretty!

Heckenbach has managed to create a loveable, fun magical world in Finding Angel.

I normally don't seek out fantasy reads but this one has had such great reviews I decided I would give it a go and I am glad that I did because this really was a delight to read.

It did start off a little sl
Kristen Stieffel
Nov 02, 2011 rated it it was amazing
In Finding Angel, Kat Heckenbach creates a community so lovable you wish you could move there. Like some other fantastical worlds we know of, this one exists alongside our own. But one doesn’t need a magic portal or spell to reach Toch Island. You just need the right map. The great thing about this is it leaves the reader with the feeling that you could go visit those magical folk, if only you had the latitude and longitude.

The downside is--within the storyworld--non-magical bad guys can find th
Aug 08, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Finding Angel was one of the two best books I read in 2012. It's a page-turning quest. Angel is a compelling heroine. Gregor may be one of my favorite heroes, ever and I'm a hero-girl.
If you're a Chronicles of Narnia fan, Finding Angel is "that book" where you enter the wardrobe (except that you enter through a hand-drawn gate) and are transported to a world that vibrates with description.
The pace of the story is what catapulted it to the top of my list. I'm not a fan of slow start, action, slig
Wendy C
Mar 05, 2013 rated it really liked it
Finding Angel (Toch Island Chronicles #1) by Kat Heckenbach

Finding Angel (Toch Island Chronicles #1) by Kat Heckenbach is a wonderful book about a girl named Angel who thought that she was not where she belonged. Angel was found wandering on the road by herself. She also was found with a charm bracelet that spelled out Angel. Angel loved her foster family but would dream about a worlds filled with wonderful creatures and people full of magic. Angel felt as if she did not belong with her foster
Morgan Busse
May 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Finding Angel by Kat Heckenbach is a story placed in our world about a girl who discovers she has the magical ability to “find” things. Because of her ability, the villain tried to murder her when she was seven and take her ability (in this story’s framework, if you kill someone with magic, you absorb their magical ability).

Angel is now in her early teens living in a foster home with no memories of her past. But when a young man comes into town, magic starts to happen. Angel finds her way home t
Kathy Golden
Jun 10, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I listened to the audiobook version of Finding Angel.

Jeanne Whitehouse is the ideal narrator for this story. She handles the voices of the women and children, well. Her masculine voices, for the most part, are convincing and in some cases, fun to listen to. Her youthful reading voice easily connects readers to Angel’s point of view.

Finding Angel is a Y/A fantasy, every lover of the genre should read. The author is gifted with the ability to offer readers an imaginary island filled with magical a
Dec 08, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Finding Angel was an excellent introduction to the world of Toch Island, where magic really works, and the world of Angel, the two of which don't always coincide. Angel has been in a foster home in America for a while. Her parents are missing. She likes her foster family, and especially Zach, her little foster brother. The story opens when Angel falls through a tree and meets Gregor, whose family is also gone. Gregor becomes her guide to Toch Island as she learns about her magical heritage, and ...more
Michael and Marlene  Gonzalez
Jun 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing
It’s what every girl dreams of doing- going off into a fantasy world, discovering that she can do more than she ever imagine, meeting cute elf guys... but for Angel, this dream is real.

Kat jumps you right into the action- the reader discovers a world of wonderment and mystery within the first few chapters.

The unusual facet of this book, apart from the delightful blend of fantasy and reality and the CUTE ELF GUYS, is that the authoress has placed magic and science side by side, giving an altog
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Kat Heckenbach grew up in the small town of Riverview, Florida, where she spent most of her time either drawing or sitting in her “reading tree” with her nose buried in a fantasy novel…except for the hours pretending her back yard was an enchanted forest that could only be reached through the secret passage in her closet… She never could give up on the idea that maybe she really was magic, mistake ...more

Other books in the series

Toch Island Chronicles (3 books)
  • Seeking Unseen (Toch Island Chronicles, #2)
  • Legacy Rewound (Toch Island Chronicles, #3)