Sunday, 19 June 2011
Review: Angel by L.A. Weatherly
First published in the UK in: 2010
By: Usbourne Publishing
Willow knows she's different from other girls. And not just because she loves tinkering around with cars. Willow has a gift. She can look into peoples futures, know their dreams, their hopes and their regrets, just by touching them. She has no idea where she gets this power from...
But Alex does. Gorgeous, mysterious Alex knows Willows secret and is on a mission to stop her. The dark forces within Willow make her dangerous and irresistible. In spite of himself, Alex finds he is falling in love with his sworn enemy.
I've been extremely burned out on YA Paranormal recently and a lot of the recent books in the genre haven't really been doing it for me. I put off reading Angel for a while because of this and was prepared to not finish it if the first few pages didn't interest me.
Fortunately, the premise of Angel was good enough to keep me reading. In the world of the book, angels have come to Earth, but far from being celestial beings, they are actually predators who feed off the energy of humans. Once a person has been a victim of an angel attack, he/she has 'angel burn' (the US title of the book and much more fitting, IMO) and will physically and emotionally deteriorate - the angels cause everything from cancer to madness. And the kicker? These humans don't know the true nature of the angels; they see the angels as radiant, pure and good, even while the angels are slowly killing them.
Interesting, right? And the first 150 or so pages of this book are a cracking read as the plot is set-up and gets underway. Willow's psychic ability allows her to see that her classmate is in terrible danger from the angels and tries to save her...just as Alex, a professional angel killer comes to town. Some surprise twists and some exciting clashes get Angel off to a great start.
However, the pace of the story slows down considerably once Willow and Alex are thrown together and it becomes much more heavily - in fact, fully, a romance. I do appreciate that the author didn't fall into the trap of 'insta-love' that is so prevalent in YA Paranormal Romance; it's easy to see exactly why and how Willow and Alex fall for each other. But while I liked both characters and wanted them to be happy together, their love story alone wasn't enough story for me. I wasn't bored, but I wasn't swept away enough by it to not need anything else.
Things get exciting again at the end, but if I'm being totally honest, I do think many of the 500+ pages could have been cut to get there in a more timely fashion. As the first in a series, Angel has a lot going for it - likable characters, intriguing premise - and I'm interested in where some of the plot threads will go. But it's definitely one for readers whose preference is for the Romance part that comes with the Paranormal.
Rating: 3.5 stars