Pros: Gorgeous, imaginative world, plot, and characters that’ll suck you in and not let go
Cons: A bit more angsting and introspection than I might have liked
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
Review book courtesy of Penguin Group
Vampire hunter Elena is still adjusting to her new life as Archangel Raphael’s Consort, a role that simultaneously gives her great privilege and paints a huge target on her back. Unfortunately, that target also extends to those she holds dear. A vampire has viciously attacked a girls’ school, the same one Elena’s half-sisters attend. The archangels are exhibiting signs of uncontrolled rage, while vampires dive headfirst into bloodlust. Around the world, storms rage and threaten to engulf whole cities. It doesn’t take long for the angels to recognize the signs that an Ancient wakes—one of the truly old, powerful, and insane archangels—Raphael’s mother.
Despite the number of authors starting to jump on the idea that angels might be the new paranormal bandwagon, Nalini Singh still has the monopoly on sheer originality in how she’s executed the concept. In her world, angels have ruled the earth in divided-up territories for as long as anyone can remember. They Make vampires to serve them, and for the most part humans are beneath their notice. Nalini shows true skill in her ability to depict the sheer alien nature of these creatures.
The first book in this series, Angels’ Blood, addicted me to Singh’s world immediately. The depth of originality, the beauty of the characters and story… it’s one of the top books I’ve ever read. I don’t say that lightly. The follow-on, Archangel’s Kiss, continues Elena’s magnificent tale by plunging her head-first into the often-fatal world of archangel politics and power-games. Now, Archangel’s Consort sees Elena trying to protect her family, overcome the tragedies of her past, and protect Raphael from the repercussions of his mother’s waking.
I expect that I was oversensitized to the presence of Elena’s reminiscences and dark memories thanks to having read a different book this weekend that overindulged in such things to a much greater extent, so take my complaint with a grain of salt. Certainly the events that affected her were huge, character-shaping things, so it’s normal to expect them to continue affecting her. I simply would have preferred perhaps a slight bit less introspection and angst over the matter.
I continue to adore Singh’s multilayered characters, her depiction of angels and archangels, and the fascinating world of the Guild of vampire hunters. Once again I hit the end of the night, knew I needed to get some sleep, but could not put the book down until I’d finished it. This is one series it’s utterly worth keeping up with, and tracking down any books you haven’t read yet. I do recommend reading them in order, as there’s a very strong arc to the tale.