Benni's Reviews > Angelfire

Angelfire by Courtney Allison Moulton
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's review
Dec 30, 2010

did not like it
bookshelves: to-read
Angelfire is the first book in the Angelfire Trilogy. The beautiful girl on the cover is seventeen-year-old Ellie, who has begun having nightmares about past lives where she fights reapers. Ellie notices a boy stalking her, but since he’s handsome, she is intrigued. The stalker, Will, turns out to be her immortal guardian, and she turns out to be the Preliator, Latin for “warrior.” Every time she dies, she eventually reincarnates into another human body, but Will has to wait until she’s seventeen to activate her memories and her power.

An uninspired love interest
If you guessed that despite Will’s immortality, he looks about twenty, then kudos. If you thought seventeen, sorry; that’s Twilight (which I liked much more than Manon). Will is the kind of immortal who never bothered over his years to learn the meaning of humor or levity, because (1) how else would a girl know that this guy is ancient and “wise” unless he’s also unfunny? and (2) this reaper threat is serious business. Serious, but not urgent, it seems, since he has to wait for his Ellie, who sometimes bides her time in the reincarnation process and must grow to the ripe age of seventeen before her powers are activated. Since there’s no competing love interest, all that’s keeping the lovebirds apart is Will’s sense of… honor? I’m not completely sure. After a half-twist reveal, though, I suppose I would also feel uncomfortable if they were to become an official couple.

More (unrequited) romance than adventure
Ellie’s girl friend proclaims that girls are hardwired to desire nothing more than a shining white knight, a sentiment that proves unfortunately sincere in Angelfire. However kickass Ellie may turn out as the series progresses, it will remain secondary to her love for Will and his oh-so-noble sacrifices to protect her. This is disappointing.

That is not to say there is no action; though I would distinguish said “action” from “adventure.” There are plenty of fight scenes in which reapers randomly attack and bellow threats while Ellie’s trying to date Will and convince him to do normal teenager stuff. These scenes seem contrived, failing to build any suspense because Ellie and Will are never in real danger. While they accrue battle wounds, those wounds heal quickly because the two have supernatural abilities. The fights serve more as an excuse for the pair to cry out each other’s name and declare their love for each other without actually declaring their love for each other.

An unimaginative story
As I was reading Angelfire, I could not help but fantasize how even smallest touches would have injected the story with more life. Since Ellie is in part a different person every time she reincarnates, why couldn’t she have, for once, not been attracted to Will? Think of all the additional moping Will could do. Or, since Will never knows exactly how long it takes for Ellie to reincarnate, Will could feel bitter towards Ellie. Maybe he could even decide to abandon her. Think of all the additional moping Ellie could do. I don’t mean these suggestions in earnest, just as a warning that this book can prompt meandering thoughts.

Why should you read this book?
The author absolutely nails the young adult experience; perhaps that is why legions of teenagers who have received advanced copies of this book vehemently disagree with me. However, I cannot imagine very many adults who would enjoy this book.
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Comments (showing 1-9 of 9) (9 new)

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Nickyrian Based on your comnent, the theme of this series is almost similar to Fallen by Lauren Kate. I thought it would be more like The Mortal Instrumens of Cassandra Clare. Thanks for your comment. At least, I know what this book is all about.

Amanda is this book anything like Fallen or Torment? because it sounds strangely similar

Benni Fallen is on my to-read list. As soon as I read it, I'll be sure to let you know. Thanks for the comment!

Rachel i agree with you 100%, and im seventeen so i dont think that its just adults who wont like it. but to be fair, i didnt like the Fallen books either.

message 5: by Ekta (new) - rated it 1 star

Ekta I agree with Rachel. I'm only 16 and I'm having the hardest time getting into this one. It's taken me more than 2 weeks to finish half of the book and I usually finish books in 2-3 days. I don't think age really matters, it's more about preference.

message 6: by Benni (last edited Mar 29, 2011 03:47PM) (new) - rated it 1 star

Benni I didn't mean to offend anyone with my age comment, so I'm sorry for having written that! Thanks for letting me know your thoughts. This happened to be the first book I read on my Kindle, so what kept me reading was more the fascination with the e-ink than anything else...

message 7: by Ekta (new) - rated it 1 star

Ekta You didn't offend me at all!! No need to apologize. I know what you mean though, some books tend to be really popular among one age group while it does nothing for another. And it's nice to read honest reviews like yours because when such a huge number of reviewers love a book that I can't get into, it makes me wonder if there's something wrong with me!

Nickyrian @Benni~ None taken. I rate a book based on the level of my enjoyment. You are entitled to your own opinion. So, no need for apologies. ~smile~

Abby "The fights serve more as an excuse for the pair to cry out each other’s name and declare their love for each other without actually declaring their love for each other." - Oh my god, I laughed my ass off at this. :))

I'm (also) only 17, and I just don't see how I can settle it with Miss Moulton.:/

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