Anything, including making a deal with an enemy angel.
Raffe is a warrior who lies broken and wingless on the street. After eons of fighting his own battles, he finds himself being rescued from a desperate situation by a half-starved teenage girl.
Traveling through a dark and twisted Northern California, they have only each other to rely on for survival. Together, they journey toward the angels' stronghold in San Francisco where she'll risk everything to rescue her sister and he'll put himself at the mercy of his greatest enemies for the chance to be made whole again (goodreads).
That's right, my first 5-star rating of 2012. AND IT FRICKIN DESERVED IT.
I apologize. Okay I apologize. Initially coming into the book blogging world I had taken a firm stance against reviewing self-published novels and I stood by that until I read this book. Everyone who has a "I don't accept self-published novels" attitude needs to to stop thinking, go to either amazon or BN and buy this mother fucking book.
Penryn Young and her family stumbles across a battle of five angels against one. She watches as one of the angels viciously slash the one angel's wings off and leave him for dead. When the angels turn their sights on Penryn and kidnap Paige, Penryn's wheelchair bound sister, Penryn forms a temporary alliance with the wingless angel left for dead. He will help her find her little sister while they try to find someway to reattach his broken wings to his body. They encounter many interesting characters and Penryn finds herself slowly falling for her enemy.
This plot is so complex and beautiful it is impossible to put into words. Susan Ee's FAQ section explains her attraction to this novel; of angels who were meant to seek and destroy instead of save humanity. What makes this book so beautiful is humanity's desperation to survive and how two people from opposite sides of the battle field can start to feel more than disdain for the other. Everything is perfectly paced with perfectly placed drama and danger that all comes nicely together in the last chapters. I must say that I did not expect the sci-fi bit of it and made me raise an eyebrow as I tried to imagine the creatures that are introduced halfway through the novel.
The characters were remarkable. Penryn is a strong willed girl with a lot of bite to her. She has only one mission in the World After, protect her innocent sister and keep her schizophrenic mother out of trouble. I loved the idea of her insane mother who heard voices, thought demons were after her and had a love for rotten eggs. While her mental state is nothing to laugh at, her mother was a usually the source of comic relief with her well timed appearances. The angel Raffe is just to die for. He has definitely been added to my (really short) list of book boyfriends. He's got the whole tragic hero look with a good helping of sass and kick-assery. The interactions between Raffe and Penryn tugged at my heart and I kept hoping with every page that there would be some breakthrough in their slowly progressing love story.
When I first approached this book, I was afraid that the writing style would not be up to par, it was. Penryn's voice is strong with an incredible will to survive in a desolate America. The banters were cute with well timed quips. One thing that I adored about the Penryn's voice was her descriptions. When she witnesses Raffe having a group of angels attack him, she picks one feature about each of the angels to refer to them as (ie: Raffe being referred to as "Snow" to reflect his snow-like wings). She does that a few times throughout the novel which I thought made scenes more interesting and avoided a lot confusion.
I could really go on and on about this book but that would take forever and I simply do not have to time. If you aren't convinced yet that you need to read this book, it's only 99 cents.
Susan Ee storms the YA genre with her complex and well researched plot, charming characters and witty dialogue. This is a novel for any dystopia fan who does not mind a bit of sci-fi.
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