Monday, 8 August 2011

Angels' Blood by Nalini Singh

5 Stars. (PNR)

Angel’s Blood what to say, what to say. I freakin’ loved it. This book kept me glued to the page, hating work because I had to put the story down, hating my usually calming bus ride because I’d inevitably get to my stop too early, hating my lunch break for only being an hour long. Thsi is my first full read by Nalini Singh – although I own the first in her Psy-Changeling series but have yet to pick it up. I was very impressed by the way Singh took otherwise much used paranormal themes – vampires and angels and melded them to create a brand new idea and unique world for readers to dive into. The mythology she turns on its head is great and I loved the creativity of this plot.

This story is amazing and so so creative. Elena Devereaux the stories main protagonist is a Guild Hunter, in New York (although a very different NY than we’re used to) where vampires and angels are widely known and acknowledged by mortals, Elena is tasked with tracking rogue vampires who have either skipped out on their 100 years of servitude to their Archangel masters or are succumbing to blood lust and are therefore dangerous to the public and must be tracked and eventually punished or killed. In this world it is the Archangel’s who are the only ones who can Make a vampire and there is a sort of signup sheet if you will for those mortals who wish to live a life immortal. It is rare for someone to be Made against their will. So, Elena does her job and does it well, she is one of the best and it doesn’t hurt that she also has the ability to sense when a vamp is near like a type of overactive sixth sense. In this world Archangel’s are the supreme rulers and each archangel holds domain on a different area of the world. In this case the Archangel Raphael rules New York and this 500 year old immortal enlists Elena to track a crazed, psychotic killer who has succumbed to a vicious bloodlust. He must be tracked and killed before his horrific killing spree continues. To Elena surprise the vicious killer is not a vampire but one of the oldest Archangel’s gone rogue.

What progresses is a tightly wound, action packed, thrill ride that kept me reading and reading and reading. I loved the characters, every one of them including the ultra evil and supremely annoying. Elena’s father and Michaela – another Archangel are at the top of my supremely annoying – verging on evil list, but they each provide much drama and give readers much more insight into Elena as a heroine. And what a heroine she was. Tough as nails, able to handle herself, cheeky at times, sarcastic, but also really caring and sweet and loving with those she calls friends and family. I loved that she never backed now with Raphael, who is one majorly tough and often arrogant angel who due to his age is beginning to lose touch with what it means to be human. This disparity between hero and heroine made for some really interesting tension as Raphael continued to use his abilities and strength against Elena in order to get what he wanted from her. Elena was no simpering miss though and each time she felt Raphael overstepped his bounds she called him on it. Which, I loved. I hate it when the heroines – who are always described as strong and in control -allow themselves to be overly dominated by the hero, I always want to scream at them to stand up for themselves and get a grip.

The push and pull between an immortal and mortal was very interesting to see and had a really nice edge to it that kept me wondering how these two would pan out. I also really loved the secondary characters. Elena’s Guild Hunter friends, Guild Hunter director Sara and fellow Guild Hunter Ransom were equally compelling characters and I loved how much the three of them cared for one another. Dmitri, Raphael’s head of security and a vampire to boot was also a fascinating character and I am really excited that he gets his own book later in the series.

The action was great and easy to follow, the suspense of trying to find the rogue Archangel but also of trying to put the pieces together of exactly what has caused this archangel’s psychopathic transition is all part of the fun that keeps you on the edge of your seat waiting to see what happens next in this book.

Elena and Raphael sizzled and I loved their bickering and the ways they tried to understand one another even though they were so very different. Raphael was a particularly fascinating hero, strong and confident but also vulnerable and I enjoyed very much getting to see him come to terms with the part of himself that has always been human. Elena is a heroine to love and I can’t wait to read more about her, especially given the ending of this book.

The only thing I will say that wasn’t resolved was Elena’s traumatic past. You get tiny glimpses here and there throughout the first book and sort of know what happened, but there was never a clear scene that gave readers all the details into the how’s and why’s and consequences of what ultimately killed Elena’s childhood and made her father disown her for her abilities. I hope that we’ll see more of Elena’s past in the next few novels and that the resolution of the hint we got in this one will come to pass.

All around a great intro to what is shaping up to be a wonderful series! I’ve already purchased the next two in this series and can’t wait to dive in :)

No comments:

Post a Comment