Friday, January 20, 2012
Angelfall, by Susan Ee
Release date: May 21st 2011
Published by: Feral Dream
Genre: Young Adult
Rating: 5/5 stars
It's been six weeks since angels of the apocalypse descended to demolish the modern world. Street gangs rule the day while fear and superstition rule the night. When warrior angels fly away with a helpless little girl, her seventeen-year-old sister Penryn will do anything to get her back.
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.
If you’re hesitant about Angelfall, unsure if you will like it or not, if all the positive reviews and blurbs are right… here’s a tip: they are.
Angelfall has everything I enjoy in a dystopian novel – if this book can be considered that. Honestly, it feels like a paranormal dystopian. A society destroyed by angels sounds both interesting and mysterious. I particularly enjoy this kind of dystopias, simply because I love a good paranormal element in the story. Just like Angel Burn, I expected Angelfall to be all about bad angels and how they’re not as fluffy and cute as everybody believe.
I was right, but that’s not the only thing that impressed me. Penryn, the main character, is the kind of girl you’re proud of in a book. She’s aware of the destruction going on around her, and with her schizophrenic mother and wheelchair-bound little sister, Paige, surviving may not be so easy. So, to gather food and enough protection, Penryn does what needs to be done. She eats cat food if need be, fights with guys twice her size, and beat the hell out of an angel to find Paige.
It’s so nice and refreshing to have a heroine that’s that badass. I loved Penryn, her sarcasm and frequent questions, but most of all, her devotion to her family. I’m probably going to sound very cold and cruel, but in the real world, not a lot of people would risk their lives to save someone else. But with the whole universe telling her that Paige’s dead, Penryn still goes out there and through some seriously rough situations for Paige. Even if making a deal with an angel, her worst enemy, is what it takes to reunite her family again.
The angel in question, Raffe, is the kind of guy – and love interest – that make an example out of the YA literature. He simply doesn’t care a bit about humans. He’s truly an angel, not a human with wings, and only helps Penryn because he wished to get his beautiful wings back. Two enemies falling in love is not something uncommon when you think of it, especially in books, but to be convincing, it has to happen slowly, and not all of a sudden. The romance in Angelfall is so well developed that it feels natural at some point, and not something forced. Their conversations were dripped and covered with sarcasm and uneasiness that had me laughing at 5 o’clock in the morning. Yeah, that was how I began my last day of 2011, by the way - on my bed, cheering for Penryn and Raffe to save Paige and be together at the end.
One thing that I felt joyous about is that, not even for a single minute, Penryn forgot that Raffe is an angel, that he’s not human, and that they’re enemies. I simply despise those kind of relationships that are all about “Oh, you’re my foe, and you want to kill me? I don’t care. I trust you.” No, Penryn didn’t trust Raffe, and always wondered if he would betray her at some point. By the end of the book, they loved and hated each other, and that, my friends, is a good romance. xD
Another point that’s oddly great about it is how even the most disgusting thing didn’t make me want to stop reading. I don’t like books in which there’s a very vivid narration about gruesome parts. It just makes me feel bad, and I can’t enjoy the story after that. But Angelfall, strangely, didn’t fall into that category. Don’t get me wrong, there’s a lot of weird and … bloody situations involving scorpions, but the narration, while still detailed, is contained enough to be realistic and not unnecessarily gross.
Now, I just have to talk about the ending… Authors love to break our hearts, and Susan Ee was no exception. It left me with a longing and need to know what the hell is going to happen next. Seriously, what was that ending? Though not as heart-breaking as Cassandra Clare’s books, it still filled my eyes with tears. I profusely regret not reading Angelfall sooner that I did. Thank you, my Goodreads friends, for writing such positive and good reviews, and encouraging me to read this book. It was SO, SO, SO, SO worth it <3
Ps: I read this book back in 2011, but am only posting the review now on the blog because, you know, I had completely forgotten about it.