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British high fantasy is hard to come by, which makes the "Celestial Creatures" even more special.

When angels initiate a war, humans on Apkallu die.

Deprived of human worshipping, angels resort to burning human souls to sustain themselves when the ancient Qal of an assassinated archangel wakes up on Earth… inside a human, disturbing the precarious peace.
Holding the key to all three realms, the allegiance of this archangel will mean eternal dominance in a game on a global scale.

Set on the backdrop of high fantasy, “Celestial Creatures” explores taboo topics such as borderline personality and social effective disorder, effects of abuse and insecure attachment in young people and the inner world which is so rarely spoken about.
***********************************

In a dull and misty English town, an ordinary girl lives her trying life.

But alongside her boring world another world lingers.

The world of angels: with Heaven and Hell, with cities, suspended high in the skies and cities, hidden deep beneath the surface, with creatures, harvesting humans… and prophecy of assassinated archangel one day reborn within a human.

"Celestial Creatures" is a dark high fantasy on Christian mythology with Sumerian religion and language influences.

308 pages, Paperback

Published September 13, 2018

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About the author

Olga Gibbs

15 books31 followers
Olga Gibbs is a Russian/British novelist and a mental health expert, who has experience of working with disturbance in adolescents and young people. Using her Masters in Creative Writing, she explores taboo topics such as borderline personality and social effective disorder, effects of abuse and insecure attachment in young people and the inner world which is so rarely spoken about.

She was born and raised in the USSR and now lives in the UK.

Olga Gibbs is also a creative writing coach and mentor.

Please visit author website www.OlgaGibbs.com for more information on upcoming books.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 55 reviews
Profile Image for Jordanne.
198 reviews44 followers
June 17, 2018
I received a physical review copy of this book from the author in exchange for my honest opinion.

🌟🌟🌟

Overall I really enjoyed this book - it's choc-ful of potential to be something big, it just needs a teeny bit of a tweak.

I love anything to the backdrop of angels and a new perspective of celestial lore and stories so this was right up my street. It's not like Clare's Shadowhunters though, do not be fooled. Where her characters are descended from Angels, these are angels. It's a little like Twilight but with angels and a less ridiculous adaption of the beings at that. Just to clarify - from me that is a compliment. I really liked the Twilight books, back in the day and much like with those books, I ship the other guy. This book I would say could entertain a slightly more mature audience than Twilight due to some of the subject matter. But enough about Twilight because aside from a paranormal love triangle, that is fairly where the similarities end.

Ariel, our fearless heroine, is just that. Whilst being both frank and honest with her situation she takes all in her stride and the more you learn about her past the more you have to admire her strength. She is not anyone's fool and hates to play the damsel in distress. My kind of girl. I'll admit she accepted the truth slightly faster than would have, but then I've never been confronted by a guy with wings sprouting out of his back, so yeah. I love the general message behind the story which I think should really be projected more in YA. My one issue with her is how easily she attaches to people, Tabby, Sam. It felt too ... trusting, like she fell into love too easily and the rest of her character traits wouldn't stand for it, you know?

did have a few nitpicks, it is true. But reflecting on them I feel most would be remedied by a professional editor. This is by no means a detrimental comment! I know from past reading that the first books in phenomenon series like Harry Potter and the aforementioned Twilight in their original incarnations were not what we all know and love today. Even in their published forms, the books in those series improve as time goes on. This would help with the main issue of spelling and grammatical errors but then again it is a review copy, so there are allowances to be made. It would also help with the cover which could be really very much a lot better and really does not do the book justice.

I think the real issue I had was that I wanted a lot more of it. The pacing was quick which is often good but at the same time, a 100 or so additional pages to expand and linger on certain parts would have really elevated it even more so.

My only problems that weren't simply a matter of editing and are purely down to my personal preference were Sam and some the Americanisms that found their way in there every now and then. I really didn't like Sam, I'm afraid. I just found him really cringey at points and a bit annoying and sometimes creepy. I really liked Rafe. So much. That's my team right there. #TeamRafe all the way for sure. Sam? I did not get that, at all.

The Americanisms were infrequent, to be honest, and were only little things but little things like 'feds' and things I know Brtish teenagers wouldn't really say (that I know of, I mean I am 19 and have lived in Northern/Midland England my whole life but I don't pretend to be the authority on what the 'kids' say). Speaking of kids, I was a little ambiguous on how old the characters were meant to be, they acted very much like the age of American high school students but were evidently attending UK high school where they only go to age 16 and at the upper end of the school you take GCSEs for 2 years and they take up a pretty prominent part of your school life at that point but weren't mentioned even in passing leading me to believe Ariel at least must be younger than 14/15 but she seemed a lot older? It's not a massive issue of course as not many people would even notice that but just something I saw.

All that being said, and I did like the book, it kept me hooked on the plot and awoke the fan art girl inside of me all over again to the point I'm going to put my pen to paper once more (huzzah!). I shall most certainly read the next book.

Trigger warning: This book does contain some graphic scenes of violence and alludes to, with a brief flashback to, a time of sexual and emotional abuse that some readers may find upsetting.
Profile Image for Angela Cuéllar.
856 reviews95 followers
May 11, 2018
pooled ink Reviews:

If you're on the hunt for an intriguing celestial read that will have you constantly guessing and featuring a spiky protagonist against a backdrop of ancient battles and beautiful faces, then Heavenward just might belong on your list. The first book of the series and it takes no prisoners as it leaves you breathless with each twist and turn.

However, while I feel this book had an undeniable something that drew me in, I do think that it requires some more work. To be honest some of the issues kept me from attaching to any of the characters and from getting a consistent grasp on the story, yet for some wholly unknown reason I just didn't want to stop reading. So the magic is definitely there, it just needs a bit more fine tuning to live up to its full potential.

Still an entertaining read overall!

Read my FULL review here: https://pooledink.com/2018/05/11/heav...
Profile Image for Bree Howland.
Author 2 books49 followers
April 1, 2018
Q&A

Physical or Ebook?
EBook from Kindle Unlimited

Have you ever read a book by this author before?
This is the authors debut novel.

Genre?
Paranormal romance/Fantasy

Star Rating?
4 Stars

Rereadable?
I could actually see myself rereading this. Especially to refresh my memory for the other books in the series

If it’s a series, would you continue reading it?
Yes. I will definitely be continuing this series.

Is this a part of a challenge?
No.

Who would you recommend this for?
I would recommend this to fans of Fallen or other paranormal YA romances.

Conclusion:

The author approached me to read this novel. She offered to provide me with a free copy for review, but I saw that it was available through Kindle Unlimited, so I decided to get it from there. I am hella impressed by this novel. I didn’t expect to love it as much, but honestly it’s like everything I wanted Fallen to be. It’s Fallen, but better haha

The main issue I have with this novel is the cover. The cover is not eye catching at all and kind of looks like it was done in Paint. But this is another case of not judging the book by it’s cover. The content of the novel is absolutely fantastic. You get action, drama, a strong heroine and definitely a peak at some romances that I’m excited to continue reading about.

I do have to admit that some of the descriptions were completely unnecessary and could probably be scrapped. But other ones were done literally to perfection. I’m pretty sure Im going to have nightmare guard dudes, because screw those guys lol.

All in all, I think this was a fantastically written and planned novel. I’m very much looking forward to continuing this series.
Profile Image for K.S. Marsden.
Author 19 books718 followers
April 29, 2019
Ariel hasn't had the easiest life, but she keeps her head down, hoping to stay unnoticed at school, until she can leave. She realises that she's missing a much bigger picture when angels start to fight over her.

I downloaded this for free, in the run up to the release of the second book, Hallow.

Ariel's life is far from perfect. She hears voices, and she's afraid that people are going to figure out she's crazy. She's also stuck in the social system, after she was taken away from her abusive step-father. She has survivor's guilt, and is terrified that she won't be able to protect her little sister from being his new victim.
She has never believed in higher beings, so it is a shock when angels start to track her down, and fight over her.
Ariel is whisked away to another world, in a bid to escape a killer angel, and to learn about her own hidden abilities.

This was a very creative adventure. The history, and warring factions of angels, don't get bogged down into too much detail, but you get the feeling that it's a much bigger world.
Ariel suddenly has to cope with being thrust into the limelight, trying to satisfy all of her new friends; and work out who she can trust.
In a world full of vengeful angels, not everything is as it seems.

This is quite a dark YA fantasy read. It doesn't go into a lot of detail about Ariel's abuse, but there is a lot of violence and betrayal.
Heavenward is clearly the first book in a series, and it spends its time building the foundations; establishing the characters, the histories and the potential villains. As such, it did often feel slow, or like step 1 in Celestial Creatures, rather than a story in its own right.

The copy I got could do with editing/proofreader. There were enough errors to distract from the story overall.

Overall, this was a 3.5 out of 5 for me, and I look forward to the next part in the series.
Profile Image for TBM Horror.
93 reviews12 followers
September 18, 2018
This book is a fresh, agile dark fantasy tale, I enjoyed it so much because first, it's not my usual read, and second, because the author plays with the characters in a way it’s very easy to read, very pleasurable. The protagonist is a broken soul, which allows Gibbs to build many different layers and shades in her personality, reactions and inner thoughts.
Without falling on cliches, the author knows what the reader wants, and implements those traditional factors we all need in a world of fantasy. Who wouldn't dream about becoming... one of them?
I loved the jumps between scenarios and how the characters come and go from them, it makes it quick and applies a brush stroke of action that puts the last cherry on top of the cake.
The end is not predictable but smooth and it will satisfy the readers.
I recommend this book to dark fiction lovers and people who like to swim between thriller and paranormal fantasy.
Profile Image for M.L..
Author 2 books168 followers
April 16, 2019
I don’t know why this book was set in England. The phrases and colloquialisms were off, and I felt that little research had gone into life in the UK. When reading I felt like the book was set in the US in everything but name.

Ariel (MC) made little personal progression throughout. Naturally, every other woman or girl in this story old enough to be a ‘rival’ for Ariel’s love interests was a massive ‘bitch’ and (obviously) evil. I was left wondering what Rafe’s role or relationship to Ariel was by the end of the book as he didn’t get much development.

The prose was very descriptive, and though this was good for world building, at times it did make the plot drag. I did a little eye-roll when Sam (love interest) figured out that Ariel doesn’t actually need glasses, but wears them to hide her ‘true self’—you know, the whole ‘girl isn’t really ugly after all because she doesn’t actually need to wear glasses and now we can get rid of them’.

The plot was entertaining, however, and I enjoyed the exploration of angels, which, at the beginning, reminded me of Twilight. I wanted to know how the story would unfold and because of this the book was a bit of a page-turner. I felt that Ariel's past was very well dealt with and there were several interesting facets to her character. I must admit that I began to skip towards the end because I felt like I was rereading most of the description I had read earlier.

I liked Sam as a character and would have liked to hear more about Rafe. Tabby also worked well. With the book being so descriptive, I did wonder why we didn’t get a full description of Ariel. This book had an interesting concept and imagined a whole world of angels and realities. Though I enjoyed Heavenward, for me it didn't quite reach it's full potential. However, I am sure that the right audience would love this book.
Profile Image for Olga Gibbs.
Author 15 books31 followers
June 4, 2020
That’s my story and it’s not a comfortable one.
It happened to me when I was 13.
I will never be the same.
(“It’s important for everyone to understand that victims of traumatic events, such as human trafficking, will not always react or behave in the way that we might expect.” Trauma-informed care.)
I live in a care home now.
My life is horror. By showing you the gore, I want you to see what my life is really like for me, every day, even among you.
Americanisms you say? You never had dealings with gangs, right?…
If you want a sweet tale about young life and young love, full of hopes and dreams – don’t read about me. I no longer dream of happiness – I’m just trying to survive, and every day is a battle.
Profile Image for Toya (the reading chemist).
1,071 reviews78 followers
May 10, 2019
I was immediately drawn to Heavenward by the synopsis alone. I am by no means religious, but I love reading stories about celestial beings…especially when said beings are on the brink of war.

Ariel is a refreshing heroine that is much needed in YA fantasy. She’s not average teenage girl that comes from this amazing family and discovers she has supernatural powers and magically wants to save the entire world in an afternoon. Instead, Ariel just wants to go unnoticed and survive. Ariel has a haunting past of abuse from the hands of her step-father. She was removed from her mother’s care by Child Protective Services and put into the system to escape her living hell. However, her younger sister Jess was left behind to endure his wrath. Every single day she grapples with survivor’s guilt because she is no longer around to protect her sister.

Everything changes for Ariel when new strangers show up to her school, which is incredibly rare in her town. Following an attack in her science class by one of the new students, Ariel awakens in a foreign world (with the gorgeous new guy Sam) surrounded by celestial beings. Ariel is now forced to choose a side in this angel war, which is not what she signed up for. All she wants is to get back to Jess.

When it comes to the writing of this story, I really enjoyed the rich, descriptive language because it really made me feel like I was alongside the characters in the story experiencing what they were. There’s a certain scene that describes human beings who sold their souls, and these beings are essentially skinless carcasses. I felt like I could smell the deteriorating flesh from the pages.

As far as characters go, I loved Ariel. I think the fact that she comes from such a dark past made me fall in love with her character faster. I also admired her love for her sister. I’ll be honest, I was not a fan of Sam. He just reminds me of the over the top jock who has a hidden agenda. I loved Rafe though. I can’t wait for book two, so we can learn more about him.

Overall, if you’re looking for a fast paced fantasy that features incredible world building, epic battles, and plot twists then pick up Heavenward now.

Thank you to Olga Gibbs for providing a copy of Heavenward. This did not influence my review. All opinions are my own.
Profile Image for Emma Canning (Emma's Chapter).
184 reviews32 followers
May 2, 2018
It's time for us to recognise where the dreams stop and reality begins

I seriously need to stop being so judgy when it comes to certain areas of fantasy.

Heavenward follows Ariel, a girl who has suffered through a life-time of pain in a short period of time. Neglect, abuse, domestic violence and a recurring nightmare have plagued her causing her to question her sanity and strength. However, Ariel is soon drawn into an ancient conflict that she wants no part of, but if she doesn't act humanity itself might be at risk.

I clearly need to be more open minded because on paper this is something I wouldn't particularly pick for myself. It is paranormal-Esq. Romance-y. Two things I'm not too fond of. However, from the first chapter I found this book scarily addicting. I just wanted more. I was consumed and intrigued. I didn't know where it was going or what was going to happen and was pleasantly surprised.

The description doesn't tell you much, but it tells you enough. By reading the synopsis Ariel is the only character you know by name and that adds to the intrigue. You obviously know something is going to kick off but you know nothing more than that. It gave the reveal and the moment of realisation impactful. The cover definitely doesn't give you anything at first glance and it took me a while to figure out what it actually was, but after reading the book and thinking about it, I know exactly what it is and what it symbolises - or at least I think I do, unless I'm wrong.

Ariel is impeccably complex. She has gone through a lot of trauma and it's affecting her mentally and emotionally and Olga Gibbs doesn't shy away from showing that. I also found her extremely likeable and sassy. The sarcasm is strong with this one!
However, I sense a love-triangle coming. I don't mind them if they're done well and you don't see much of it in this book so I can't really judge yet. There were a few good spots of banter though and I love a bit of banter. I think I prefer the guy she isn't going to go for but then again that's nothing new.

Lovely bits of world-building in places. A lot of attention to the smells, which was unexpected and something I never knew I needed, but much appreciated. Authors need to pay more attention to smells - and not just the pinewood smell of the love interest we have too much of that already. Anyway, lovely description. I definitely think it could be toned down in places, namely when describing the male characters. There was just a bit too much there for me. We were in eye-rolling territory. Other than that pretty solid.

Overall, I found Heavenward a really enjoyable and easy read. There is a lot of action, drama, a quality heroin. I think I should mention the book is only 170 pages. I was slightly concerned at first because I thought,'what can happen in only 170 pages?' The answer; a lot. It actually lessened the probability of useless content. There was no faffing around. It was all good until the end and then the dreaded "I love you" made an appearance. *insert Darth Vader 'no' gif here*. Why did you have to do that! Honestly, I could be biased because I prefer the other guy.

I would definitely continue with this series. I need to know what happens next! Well written, well planned out. Reminded me a little of Hush, Hush, so if you like things like that then you should definitely check this out.

Thank you to Olga Gibbs for contacting me and sending me a copy to review it was a pleasure

Blog | Twitter | Instagram
1 review
September 21, 2018
First of all, thanks so much for sending me this book's pdf for a review.

*

Let's start with answering some questions about what I think about this book.

• Did you like the book?

- To be honest, it was one of the best fantasy books I've read, I liked it a lot. I really like reading fantasy books and this one didn't disappoint me.

• What was your favourite part of the book?

- 5, 7, 8, 9, 13, 14, 15, 20 these chapters were my favourite ones. But the part when Tabby and Ariel was talking is my most favourite one.

'Then she leans in, closer to me. "The dead are not allowed back into the human world”, she whispers, looking around, sharing a secret with me. “But sometimes they sneak in, but you will never be allowed”. “Why not?” I mumble, shocked. It’s not like I plan to get back from the dead to look after my sister, but I want to know why I would never be allowed. “You’ve already crossed it”, she whispers, smiling with excitement, her bright eyes are bulging out of their sockets.' (FROM CHAPTER 8)

I still don't know about this part. I was so confused when I first read it.

And ofcourse we shouldn't forget this. "I would've never hurt you, Ariel. I love you." (FROM CHAPTER 20)

• Do you have a least favourite part of the book?

- Not really but I want to read it again because since English isn't my native language I struggled to understand some parts. Actually I understood it but there are stilll things that I don't know. Maybe I'll learn them in the second book.

• If you could change something, what would it be?

- I would change the ending to a sad one. Not because I don't like it as a reader but I used to write stories too and I liked writing sad endings :D But this is the first book of the series. It didn't end yet so...

• Have you ever done or felt some of the things, the characters did?

- Not really but sometimes I think like my life is a dream and I want to wake up just like Ariel.

• What type of person would like this book?

- Anyone who likes fantasy books would like this book because it's unique and different.

*

~What I think about the characters~

Ariel: She's strong and talented. She is just very new to these things but I'm sure that she will be the most powerful angel. She loves her sister and wants to protect her.

Sam: At first I didn't like him a lot but I think he's the best person to protect Ariel. He's better than Rafe and I believe he loves Ariel.

Rafe: I felt sorry for him when he lost his wing and got injured. He did his best to protect Ariel and teach her how to use her wings.

Tabby: She was one of my favourite characters. I really hope she is in the second book. I love her friendship with Ariel.

Mia: I'm glad that she died.

Baza: I used to like him but I'm not sure now.

*

~What I think about the book in general~

It was fun to read it but it took a long time to finish because I used translator in some parts, I took notes and read it chapter by chapter (with long breaks)

I love the style of author's writing. It's nice and simple.


*

•chapter by chapter reviews•

chapter 1: It was a good beginning. My favourite thing on fantasy books is to not know what is going to happen afterwards when you're reading the first pages. some characters are very mysterious, especially the new students. I want to know more about them. And I don't know why but I like Rafe more than Sam. But it was just the beginning so things may change.. My favourite part of this chapter was when rafe talked to ariel at the lunch table. She acted very strange and was mesmerized by his voice. It was awkward.

chapter 2: I'm so confused about the thing between Ariel and Rafe. I can't wait to find out what's happening. It was a very good chapter and my favourite part was when rafe joined to ariel's group in music class.

chapter 3: I don't understand why ariel always rejects talking to rafe... The story keeps being so mysterious, I should continue. I don't have a favourite moment this chapter :D

chapter 4: Ugh I hate daisy :D no favourite moment again. And I still like Rafe more than Sam.

chapter 5: Wow I really loved this chapter. It was amazing. Descriptions were perfect. I could feel what she felt. But I didn't understand who she was blaming about what happened to her sister. My favourite moment was definitely when her skin glowed. (finally some fantasical things are happening)

chapter 6: I wasn't expecting that... I thought Mia was good. I guess Mia is resistant to fire so that's why she did that on purpose. By the way I love how the new students have their own different scents.

chapter 7: This chapter was very exciting and I wasn't expecting Sam to say this: "I'm an angel and so is Mia. And she will try to kill you again". I don't know anything about Rafe. I wish I did because I like him but it seems like Ariel doesn't :D I hope he isn't evil like Mia. My favourite moment was when Ariel touched sam's wing and he couldn't keep still.

chapter 8: Confusing and exciting at the same time. Maybe Ariel died in the fire.. Previous chapter and this chapter were so exciting. I love how Ariel stays at Sam's house and Tabby is so nice to her. I hope they stay friends.

chapter 9: "I was sent to your school to find and protect you from Mia and Rafe" so, Rafe is evil too :( - "You are an angel" i was shocked when i read this - "Whatever happened that night was a very strong catalyst for the essence. It allowed for the essence to take over. What happened to you two nights ago?" everything is clear now. this is why her skin glowed. - the book gets very exciting as I read it. I got to know a lot of things so far. sam explained everything and the storyline is so interesting. I've never read a book that had angels as its characters before. fascinating!!

chapter 10: Sam's house is so beautiful. It has so many nice details, I love it. And I hope I never see Lis in the next chapters. she's so annoying.

chapter 11: It feels like a dream where they live. If I was Ariel I would definitely stay there forever :D everyone is nice to her and they protect her from Mia and Rafe. It's so nice. I'm sure she will be safe there. And I like Baza, he's very kind but my favourite characters are Ariel and sam right now.

chapter 12: I didn't expect Ariel to kiss sam. It was kind of shocking :D nice chapter!

chapter 13: Wow. I never knew Ariel could be that cruel. I feel bad for that man but I think he deserved it. ariel is such a powerful character!

chapter 14: This is one of my favourite chapters so far. It was so exciting and I still lowkey like sam. He just obeys the rules from Baza and wants to protect Ariel (I guess). I also love Tabby so much, she's so nice. She accepted Ariel's request and I hope they succeed. I'm like in between, don't know what to say. My favourite moment was when Tabby accepted helping Ariel to leave that place.

chapter 15: This chapter was insane!! I was like pushed into the story and I felt everything they've been through. Also I love the colour of Rafe's wings. I wish I could see them. I want to trust Rafe but I'm not sure... And I hope tabby is alright

chapter 16: I feel sad for ariel. I don't know what she's going to do but I trust rafe. And Ariel is a powerful character. She'll be the strongest angel

chapter 17&18: I loved these chapters especially the 18th, it was so exciting and I feel sorry for rafe's beauiful wings...

chapter 19: "I stand here and listen to more of his lies, but all that I want to do is to curl up in my bed, throw a blanket over my head, and pretend that the last few days were just a bad dream, a nightmare, from which I can wake up at any moment."
The chapter was exciting but I still don't know where Tabby is. I hope she's okay.
Also I think this story could be a perfect movie.  I always imagine the things that I'm reading and it's so fun.

chapter 20: "She's here! she's here!" at first I thought Tabby came back but it was Mia. I was scared because I didn't want it to be a sad ending but it was beautiful.

I can't believe this was the last chapter and I can't wait to read the second book!

My favourite moment on this chapter was when Sam said "I would've never hurt you, Ariel. I love you." I definitely ship Sariel :)



typing mistakes

-page 4 on the last line the word "had" is written twice.
-page 34 on the 5th paragraph "his beautiful face is serous"

these were on the pdf I'm not sure if they are correct on the book but I just wanted to tell so the author can fix if it's not fixed.




I think that's all.. And I know this review isn't really good but this is the first time I'm writing a review for a book. Anyway thanks so much for reading.

(Also my old cat's name was Fluffy too!)
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Zoé-Lee O'Farrell.
Author 1 book175 followers
May 13, 2019
The beautiful book cover is what caught my eye first, the main character called Ariel…well, I am in!

So angels are real! Yes, I said it! They walk around our world but we can not see their wings! Awesome right! Well….not so much if you are Ariel and you have an all-powerful essence hidden away within you!

I loved getting to know Ariel, she is the “nerdy” kid, the one from a broken home, the one who does not want to socialise. However, three new kids come to her school, all of them make a beeline for her! But why?

Upon discovering Ariel’s backstory, it made my heart break for her, to go through what she has done and still fight, well that is no small feat. Ok, so sometimes her attitude needs to be kept in check, and her Rage, who has its own personality!!, but in some respects, she owns it and is entitled to it.

This book starts out at what you might think is a typical “Young Adults” love story, but what unfolds is something much more beautiful and darker! The action starts so much quicker than I anticipated and I loved it! One huge scene in the book, I actually thought it was a dream, I was waiting for Ariel to wake up and the nightmare to be over……then I realised this nightmare was a reality and then the fun began!

When I was reading this, and if you have read this you know which bit I mean, but boy did I have chills! When Tabby and Ariel are travelling towards the lighthouse – oh boy oh boy, that was truly horrifying! I felt like I was there, the sand and the dust in my face, I felt like grit was in my mouth, the sounds, the wind, the stink and the darkness, the true darkness from the fields, I was there with Ariel. Urging her to get through, just get to the gate and get passed the field and lighthouse as QUICK AS POSSIBLE!

Ariel had to pick up her pace and learn quickly, and you feel that when reading. An element near the end of the book was action packed and everything was driven so quickly as the excitement and anticipation ramped up urgently as the chess pieces were being put in place. I am really excited to see where Ariel’s story takes us! You know as well that there is so much more to come with the Angels, the fight of good vs bad and especially with more revelations to come.

I have not read anything by Olga before, and she has given me a right treat with Heavenwards. A story unlike any I have read before. I did not want to do any adulting this weekend, this book was constantly playing on my mind. I was just too eager to get back into the action and pronto! It is the sort of book, that when you are putting it down you are fearing for what is going to happen, fearing that some might not make it back out alive!! As soon as I read the last page, I jumped straight into Hallow (book 2), I am not ready for any of this to be over yet.
Profile Image for Fraser's Fun House.
136 reviews2 followers
May 20, 2018
Heavenward is the first book in Olga Gibb’s Young Adult Celestial Creatures series. In this book we meet Ariel, a seemingly normal school girl with a secret past filled with neglect and abuse. Just trying to make it through each day Ariel’s life is thrown into turmoil by the unusual arrival of three new students at her school. She soon realises that these are no normal students and after a dramatic classroom incident awakens to find she has been whisked away from the life that she knows, stranded in a foreign place filled with unearthly beings. Confused and frightened Ariel tries to discover the truth about who she is and who she can trust in this unknown land, often questioning her sanity along the way.

I have really tried not to give too much away about the plot of this book for fear of ruining it! The beginning of this book starts off fairly slowly, telling the reader about Ariel’s everyday life and dropping subtle hints about the abuse she has suffered, details of which are filled in as the book progresses. Once the action kicked in though I was gripped and found the book to be a real page turner, finishing it in two days.

It’s fantastically written using highly descriptive language throughout allowing me to feel like I was transported into the story -I could almost smell and feel what the characters are experiencing. There are a few nightmare inducing, gruesome parts of the story which are described so vividly, really helping me as the reader to see what Ariel finds herself up against. It’s not all action though there is a small amount of romance thrown in the mix for luck and we see the emergence of a love-triangle starting to form.

With regards the characters I feel I really got to know Ariel more than any of the others and presume as the series continues a more rounded picture of the main characters will emerge. I love that this series has a strong female lead, especially one who’s past could easily have broken her. Brave and strong this first book sees her start to believe in herself and realise that she can control her future and I’m looking forward to seeing this belief grow as the series continues.

This book ended quite suddenly on a real cliff-hanger and being impatient (as I am) I can’t wait for the release of the second instalment. I thoroughly enjoyed this book even though it’s not usually a genre read I lot of and can really envisage this being made into a movie, it would make a fantastic watch!

**This book does contain scenes of violence that some readers may find upsetting.*
Profile Image for Kristina (Books-and-dachshunds).
126 reviews63 followers
May 10, 2019
See full review on my blog

** Thank you so much to the author to providing me with a copy of her book for review purposes. This has not influenced my review in any way, shape or form. **

I’m not usually a fan of fantasy nor series, and yeah it does demand me more effort as my imagination is lacking and it’s written in my second language to top it off, but I just loved this !!

As it’s obviously more of a dificult read for me, I’ve been reading strictly at night. That way, I can concentrate to the best of my ability and not be distracted; Which led me to a “problem” where it would be 3am and I would had read two chapters that night already, but NEEDED to go further … when alas it wasn’t a good idea – as we probably all know where it was gonna lead 🙈 Once im started, I just can’t stop myself from reading it and almost constantly think about it while awake, torturing me. Stranger to this genre, I wasn’t aware this book would make my heart race so much and that my little imagination weels in my brain would be on fire!
Profile Image for Charis Constantine.
Author 11 books92 followers
July 27, 2018
This is not really my genre of reading, but I was attracted to it through Olga's advertising and offers on twitter.
Book covers are a bugger to get right at times, while I like the thinking out of the box of the cover of this book, I feel it needs a change to attract readers.
There were a few problems with the story line, but I did enjoy the read myself and the twists and turns. The descriptions were well written and Ariel is indeed a complex character.
I found Heavenward a great read and will continue to read the subsequent books.
Good on you Olga!
1 review1 follower
April 4, 2018
I enjoyed reading "Heavenward"and found it very ineteresting .The first page caught my attention immediately, after that I was hooked. I really only put it down when I literally fell asleep with the book in my hand.
Can't wait for the second book to come out. I will definitely order it from amazon once it's available
16 reviews30 followers
April 18, 2020
I must admit this is not my usual genre, thus the 4 stars. I really enjoyed the story, though. I'm going to read more from this author!
Profile Image for Llamacorn.
2 reviews
May 27, 2018
I loved this book so much. It kept me gripping on to my seat, and I was honestly struggling to put it down.
This book is a YA fantasy-romance kinda book, and I'm obsessed. Usually I read horror books, the scarier the better, like the Gone series and Frozen Charlotte, but I decided to pick this one up as a change. Wow. This book had a warning at the beginning about some disturbing scenes, but I thought they were amazingly descriptive and detailed, it felt like I was always in the book. After I finished it, I just wanted more, kinda like when you eat chocolate! I can't wait to read the next book in this series!!!
Profile Image for Ge - Calypso.
44 reviews9 followers
April 4, 2019
Heavenward follows the story of a girl named Ariel, she lives a somewhat normal life which can be seen as quite miserable. She keeps herself to herself and she likes it that way. Ariel is burdened by her past and is struggling to keep her nightmares at bay.

What should have been an ordinary life for her gets turned completely upside down when three new students appear at school. Since their arrival, things had started to change. Ariel finds out that Angel’s exist. In her ordinary world, Angels are at a war of their own and she is involved. After ending up in the care of an angel, who has sworn to protect her; she realizes that her life is going to change forever.

Ariel struggles to accept her new information and ends up revealing some darker secrets about herself and her past. When the people surrounding her turn out to be not who she thinks they are. Ariel finds herself being thrown into a world, she not only didn’t know existed but a world where she holds the power.
This book has completely thrown me. I’m always skeptical when starting a new book and when reading a new author. I started Heavenward 2 days ago and managed to binge read the entire novel.
I love a book I can binge read and then feel guilty about afterward for not dragging it out longer. I really wish I had done that because I did not want this book to end!

Ariel is the only character that you are introduced to in the Blurb of this book meaning I didn’t know what other characters to expect. Ariel’s character development can be seen so much through the story when she realizes she is not weak like she thought she was. She is strong and powerful but at times she does let slip that she is still very much mundane in the sense that she wishes she’s dreaming and that she could wake up back in her ordinary life.

The other main characters in this book are Sam and Rafe. Sam is an angel who swears to protect Ariel and he is very forward with his feeling’s towards her. I sense that Ariel is quite naive to feel such an attraction for somebody who is a complete stranger. Sam seems quite comfortable in himself and possibly slightly cocky.

The next character is Rafe, who originally I didn’t really understand, he was very much sidelined for a good portion of this novel. And then takes center stage for the other half. Rafe is a caring, strong character and I felt a lot of emotion for him during the novel. Rafe is the second angel that swears to protect Ariel, which can only really mean one possible thing.

There’s enough basis in this story for a possible love triangle in ‘Hallow’, I hate to say it but I really hope not. I have a hunch that there isn’t but I said NO-SPOILER review so I won’t share the information I think I have ciphered from this novel. (Sorry, not sorry.) I hope there isn’t but not because I don’t like them. But because I’m a sucker for them. They are so cliche but if the main character can’t choose between two people then how am I supposed to?

Heavenward is written in the first person in the P.O.V of Ariel, I would like to see some other P.O.V’s at some point in the series as I think it would be nice to see how the other characters think and possibly be able to get to know them and their background more.

I do have a few unanswered questions that I hope will be answered in the next novel. And I would like to mention that some of the scences in this novel are quite voilent/ gruesome in parts and they are described very well so that’s a prewarning for anyone who is a little bit on the off-side about that type of thing.

This was my first time reading a Dark Fantasy style of book and I have to say I really did fall in love, with the story, the characters, the author and her writing style. I have felt a lot of emotion during this book especially towards the end, and I can not wait to get started on ‘Hallow’.

I have rated this book a 4/5 stars and I am slightly tempted to change my answer because I really fell in love but there were only two things I disliked about this story. There was a particular scene which I must have re-read about 6 times and I still don’t actually have a clue what happened during it. It was well written but the reference of what it was based on isn’t explained anywhere which makes me sad because I love to delve deep into the why about books and certain chapters. The other reason is quite personal to me so I won’t be sharing the why.

Favourite Quote:

“You’ve managed to unlock the door to the library – Now it’s time to learn how to read.” Rafe from Heavenward. (Kindle Page 199)

Read my review over at : https://whatsinmywonderland.com/2019/...
Profile Image for Ezzy.
161 reviews48 followers
December 12, 2018
''You've managed to unlock the door to the library - now it's time to learn how to read.''

★★★★✩

This review is part of the Heavenward blog tour organised by Melanie @ Fraser's Fun House and the author of this book, Olga Gibbs.

I want to start with how amazing the synopsis already is (you can read it below). There aren't many fantasy books out there that focus on celestial beings and I am glad there is a whole series in the making. I am not religious, but I find celestial lore very interesting (The TV-series Lucifer is a big fav because of this). Points for originality for that.

The main character Ariel is written like a realistic girl. She isn't like all the other girls in fantasy that get dragged out of their normal lives, get told about their great destinies, grotesque powers, rare bloodlines, etc. and after a short moment of shock says something like "Where do we start?". Ariel reacts like any girl that just wants to keep her head down. I really love that about her as it is nice to read about a girl like myself who doesn't want to get waltzt over by others without having a say in the matter.

The book itself was even better than imagined. The book was 209 pages long on my e-reader and the pacing was absolutely perfect for the amount of pages. The book starts with how Ariel meets the 'gorgeous strangers' from the synopsis as new students on her school. I was really afraid this would be a long, dragged out introduction of the story before the 'fun' begins. This is because in most fantasy books where the MC is in the 'normal' world at the start and is oblivious of powers/destiny/true home etc. etc. the parts at school or the normal world in general are so long, I lose interest. But not in Heavenward, thankfully. The intro was well paced and not a page to long, but it wasn't rushed either. This is goes for the entire book as all parts of the story had perfect pacing according to whatever was happening and made this book a real page turner.

The story itself was honestly so good. I am not going into too much detail as that will ruin the magic, but the course of the story was very unpredictable, which kept me surprised and curious at all times. Places and situations were described so vividly, you always had a good sense of the surroundings. I kept saying to myself how this book would be amazing as a movie, which is quite rare for me to say.

I gave this book four stars, as it was really good, but it wasn't perfect. But that is okay, as debuts are never perfect. I do think Heavenward is one of the better debuts I have read so far. The level of worldbuilding, complexity of some story aspects and fluidity of the writing are at a point other authors reach in their second (published) book from what I have read so far.

I would definitely recommend this book. It is perfect for lovers of fantasy, magic, all things angels and celestial beings without the religious part, a realistic MC and an amazing worldbuilding. I included a link below, underneath the synopsis, to get a free e-copy of this book, so all my blogreaders can read it!

I can tell you I am very excited for book two and participating in the matching blog tour. Participating in this one was a really amazing experience and I loved working together with Olga Gibbs and the other bloggers. I want to give Olga a shout-out for being so involved in this tour and being so kind, I can't wait till the next tour even though this one is still going.

Book two, HALLOW, is available for pre-order on Amazon, Bookdepository and several digital stores!

Read more reviews on my blog:
https://ezziesbookshelf.wordpress.com
Profile Image for Stephanie Augustine.
Author 1 book25 followers
August 16, 2018
Overall, Heavenward by Olga Gibbs was a successful debut novel. She created such an interesting and colorful world. While some scenes did seem a little long, overall the story and pacing were coherent. Gibbs created a strong and fierce main character with a traumatizing backstory. I am excited to see how her story will continue in book 2. I have a feeling I will also grow to like Ariel more in the future. I recommend this book for those who enjoy paranormal stories where every choice matters.
Profile Image for Haley Renee The Caffeinated Reader.
694 reviews57 followers
July 2, 2020
First off I really enjoyed this book. I thought the pacing was great and that the ideas were fun! Gibbs really knows how to capture her target audience and I swear, 15 years old me would be eating this book up in an hour and demanding more, and thankfully there is more! I received a digital copy for this as I'm doing the blog tour for the second book Hallow, and I'm so glad I got a chance to read this and that I have the next book ready because that's quite the ending! The book has you holding your breath at times and you just want to know more. I think my reason for not giving this four stars would only because I would have wanted Gibbs to do just as I stated, you just want to know more. The pacing may have been a bit too fast, but, I can't argue that that is just personal opinion and you can bet this is not a 'con' but a pro for some so if you want something quick paced, this is definitely your book!

Ariel is relatable enough and well, who doesn't swoon over Sam?

I do need to know more about Tabby most of all though.

Anyway, I can't wait to read the next one! I just have another book to get through and then I'm diving back into Gibbs Celestial Creatures and plan on enjoying every moment of it!

Content warning: Mention of rape/sexual assault while being held against will entirely. Also, mental health is a delicate subject.

Thank you to the Author and Blog Tour Organizer for a digital copy in exchange for my honest opinion.
November 19, 2018
Synopisis 
Meet Ariel: a quiet, unnoticeable girl with an incredible gift…

Ariel is a trouble teen, plagued by nightmares and living in a facility for troubled girls. Unusually, three new beautiful pupils appear in school, each making Ariel wary for reasons unknown.  After an attempt on her life by one and being rescued by another, she begins to discover who she really is and that not everyone is who they may seem.

Unwillingly drawn into a new world filled with celestrial conflict, it's time for Ariel to choose a side;  

With the power to end the world, would you protect humanity when it broke you or would you take revenge?

Review
When I started blogging book reviews I decided to try and expand my genres of choice so when an opportunity came up to join a blogtour of a young adult, fantasy novel I was well out of my comfort zone and totally up for the challenge.  I was always concerned that I'd struggle with fantasy.  So many new worlds, names and often intricate storylines would possibly be too difficult for me to follow and I'd be lost.  How wrong was I?

Before reading I tried to put myself back into the 14 year old version of me's shoes and this worked really well for reading it as a young adult would. 

Heavenward begins as many young adult novels by following Ariel in her daily, troubled life.  The story beautifully tells of the typical highschool crowd; the cliques, the teenage angst etc and the use of first person really puts you in the view of the main protagonist (Ariel).  Part way into the book the fantasy element really kicks in and takes you on a magical journey to other worlds.  The description in this book is rich and plentiful  and creates a beautiful picture in your mind as you are reading.  That same device is also used to create some pretty gory and intense scenes.  One particular description played on my mind for days.  I wonder if anyone else found a likeness to a real life place?

Just when my head was getting used to this new world, the story began to come to a close.  The ending was at the perfect time.  Just enough information to stop me from going crazy but at a point where I deffinitely need to know more about Ariel's adventures and the potential brewing love triangle. 

I'm so pleased I decided to step out of that comfort zone as I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book and am now looking forward the the release of the second installment in the Celestial Creatures series.   

 

Profile Image for Karley  (Bookish Fawn).
11 reviews41 followers
December 19, 2018
bookish fawn reviews

I was immediately captivated by the whole celestial aspect of the story. You see witches and vampires in YA fantasy much more than you see angels, and since I’m a massive SPN fan, the angelic side of this book had me hooked.
The book was a fairly quick and easy read while doing a good job at maintaining the element of surprise. The overall pacing went well with the length of book – the beginning of it had a slower pace but picked up later on and the story just blossomed into an even better experience.
Olga is fantastic at creating a world and scenes that are so vivid and descriptive that it easily transports you into the story with the characters, whether that be in a place with humans or angels. I loved how rich the details were, from the issues our main character Ariel faces to even the minute features of the people surrounding her.
I have to give Olga credit for doing a good job with how she handled the more sensitive topics of this book, such as abuse and mental health. Even though this book is aimed at teenage girls, and I’m not a teenage girl anymore, I thought that the way she incorporated these issues into the story was very well done in terms of her target audience. I also very much liked how she sculpted a lot of Ariel’s personality around these events that impacted her and I felt like I could relate to Ariel in the way that she just wants to stay out of things and not draw attention to herself. I’m sure it’s even more relatable to the actual teens that will/have read this book and I’m even more sure that Ariel being pretty relatable is appreciated by most.
I don’t recall finding any grammatical errors, which is refreshing. The only thing I took some issue with was in the first half of the book and in some scenes, the flow just felt off. I noticed this most during Ariel’s dreams and episodes. They certainly gave a lot of insight into more of what the main character had gone through and was still going through so I do think those scenes were still necessary. I just think the flow could have been a tad bit more worked on.

Overall, I absolutely loved this book and was so happy to be a part of this blog tour! I’m very much looking forward to the next installment and would encourage anyone who loves angelic lore, fantasy, or really just YA books in general to grab a copy of this book. You won’t be disappointed!
Profile Image for Rebecca McPeake.
15 reviews6 followers
August 8, 2018
*I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

My final rating that I decided on for Heavenward was 3.5/5 stars and this was because I really enjoyed the story and the plot in general. I found that I was gripped by the storyline and that I always wanted to keep turning the pages when I was reading. Olga Gibbs created a world that I have never read anything similar to, and I am so glad that I read this book because I would never have thought before to pick up anything like this.
I enjoyed how the Angels were described and how the whole background of Ariel's fate had came to be and why she had become an Angel was a very original idea. The whole book was just generally very well thought-out. However, I definitely could have done with the story being longer, I think there was bits and pieces that could have been expanded in the plot that would have made the plot twists just that much more enjoyable! But with that being said, maybe the fact that I am wishing it was longer is a very good sign!

In terms of the characters, I liked Ariel (MC) and her 'no-nonsense' attitude, and how we get to see bits and pieces of her past and the reasoning behind why she is the way she is and the person who she has become. I also really liked Rafe and have to confess that I preferred him so much more to Sam! When it came to Sam, I just couldn't understand why Ariel loved him by the end of the book, especially considering how Ariel isn't the most trusting of people. This was a little too insta-lovey for me... I can understand why she would have had feelings for Sam, even be infatuated, but I found that her sudden realisation that she had fallen in love with him was very shocking to me because it didn't add up with how the rest of the story went...especially because Sam had previously betrayed Ariel!

Another slight issue I had was that the book was filled with spelling mistakes and grammatical errors, so it was hard for me to fully immerse myself in the book! However, of course, this had no effect on the quality of the characters or the plot.

Overall, I really did enjoy my experience reading Heavenward and have to say that I am now really looking forward to continuing on in the series! It is a very intriguing world that Gibbs has created. I also want to thank Olga Gibbs for providing me with a copy of her book to review, I greatly appreciate it!


**There are trigger warnings for this book as it contains domestic violence, rape and references to various mental illnesses including depression, anxiety, possible PTSD and also mentions of Schizophrenia**
Profile Image for Claire.
155 reviews1 follower
May 11, 2020
Heavenward by Olga Gibbs is the first book in the Celestial Creatures series. The book focuses on Ariel, a strong and determined lady who has had a very traumatic and harrowing past. Ariel is drawn into a new world and adventures where she becomes powerful with supernatural powers which she has to learn how to use and cope with. The world of Angels that we were introduced to was addressed so powerfully and intensely which is a credit to Olga Gibbs - the book is so well written. If you are looking for a dark fantasy read, then this is the book for you! You will be totally drawn into the tremendous storyline, the exceptional characters and the extraordinary atmosphere which builds around you on every page. It is definitely a page turner with lots of twists and turns! A five star entertaining and absorbing read - Highly recommended!
April 14, 2019
Heavenward takes us on Ariel's journey as her lonely yet somewhat mundane life gets flipped upside down all because of three new mysterious students that start to attend her high school. Things start to become more complicated than Ariel ever could have dreamt... or have a nightmare about. When right is no longer right, wrong is no longer wrong and she no longer knows who to trust, she learns that some of those things her crazy mother believed in were real after all, among other things...and she has been thrown smack bag in the middle of it all by no fault of her own. With a war at hand and two devilishly handsome angels sworn to protect her she knows her life isn't about to get any easier, the question was, could she handle it?

As soon as I picked the book up I was engrossed and caught up in the life that was Ariel's. With a dark haunting past following her every step's and a new found adventure calling her name...whether she wanted it or not, this book took me on an emotional rollercoaster that left me feeling raw and connected with the characters in the book.

I'm re-reading this book again this week (a thing I hardly ever do) because I'm just not ready for the book to end, I can't wait for the releasing of Hallow!

You can now get your copy of heavenward for FREE by using this link provided by the author herself!: https://books2read.com/u/3nYQ6B
Profile Image for Lourdes.
52 reviews
May 27, 2018
**The author has reached out and had requested me to do a honest book review. Thank you very much Ms. Gibbs for providing me an electronic copy! This is a non-spoiler review.**

Do believe in angels and demons? How will you react if one of your friends is an angel sent to save you? This is a story of a girl named Ariel, who has been through a lot. She does not want attention and rarely have friends. Not until three new students arrived and since then, they had turn her world upside down.

I have always been fascinated with stories about angels or any other Celestial beings interacting with humans. I even remember owning two sets of series - both about falling angels, falling in love with a human teenage girl(s). I was super excited when I start reading chapter 1, but as I continue, I got confused with the story.
It was not clear about Ariel's background story. It did not explain where she lives and her current situation. The story had already jumped into where she met her 3 schoolmates/classmates who just transferred somewhere. There are little interaction which at first I found it mysterious (which I like). But as I reached the climax of the story, I kept on searching about these 3 new students. The meeting with Ariel is brief and again, the author had quickly jumped into the action scene.
Towards the conclusion, the story became interesting. I was a bit disappointed because I felt that it was all rushed. There are so much that had yet to happen and as a reader, I was left hanging. I like the story but it needs more work. I mean there is a potential since it has been years since readers encounter this kind of novel.
Profile Image for Rebecca Hefner.
Author 21 books1,090 followers
April 19, 2019
This is a fantastic YA novel by a new-to-me author. I thought her writing was phenomenal. It drew me into the story from the first page and I felt like I was another character in the book, watching everything progress. Ariel, our main character, deals with so many struggles as she matures and evolves. It's intriguing to watch her learn of her essence. Sam and Rafe, both helpful yet mysterious in their own ways, attempt to help her on the journey but are they who they seem? As Ariel navigates her newfound world, the action and conflict really connect with the reader. If you like YA, this one's for you!
Profile Image for Sahreth Bowden.
Author 6 books40 followers
December 12, 2019
A wonderfully built atmosphere with great characters. I loved this introduction to the world of angels. We typically associate angels as pure, loving creatures, but this story takes us back to the roots of their lore. That being their sheer power and their violence in serving a cause. "Heavenward" has some angels working to keep the universe in balance while others seek to gain control over it. It all centers around the experience of a young human girl who finds out she is an angel incarnate and holds the key to either the world's undoing or its salvation. An excellent start to a fantasy series.
Profile Image for Lynne Piza.
78 reviews
March 22, 2020
This book will take you on a journey to another realm! You’lol get to escape your every day life and become a part of the angels! I absolutely LOVED this book! It’s so exciting and fast paced, full of action and very creative! I really feel for the main character Ariel as she’s had such a hard life and has such a huge change, she has ALOT to take in! Apart from how action packed this book is my favourite thing about it is the authors writing, the attention to detail and the scene setting and descriptions are just MAGNIFICENT! I already can’t wait to start book number 2!
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