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Wednesday, March 16, 2016

REVIEW: Angelfall by Susan Ee

Angelfall tells the tale of the apocalypse with a surprising twist. Angels arrive on Earth, wreaking havoc and demolishing the modern world.  Seventeen year old Penryn is determined to protect her family--her mentally ill mother and her paralyzed little sister--but when warrior angels fly away with the helpless little girl, Penryn will stop at nothing to get her back.

This quest forces her to ally with Raffe, a warrior who lies broken, defeated and wingless on the street. Nursing him back to health, Raffe agrees to assist Penryn in reaching the angels' stronghold in San Francisco to find her sister and for his own chance to reattach his wings.  They encounter many obstacles on this journey but surprisingly grow closer, each breaking down stereotypical barriers from being on opposite sides of the war.

I enjoyed the story and original premise even if the audiobook wasn't amazing. After so many post-apocalyptic books that feel all too similar, Angelfall sets itself apart with a unique perspective and a fierce, if at times terrifying, alternate envisioning of angels.

I found the well developed characters and gradually growing trust and understanding between Penryn and Raffe compelling.  There is a hesitant trust, respect and then progression toward deeper emotion that entices readers forward. Without providing spoilers, I will say that the culminating events provide some shocking development which hint at great implications for the subsequent books in the trilogy. I do wish Penryn wasn't quite as impulsive as she is portrayed but I do see character progression and expect she'll continue her journey in the other books.

Overall, I recommend this for middle school and up who enjoy dystopian or apocalyptic stories with hints at fantasy and some potential romance.  There's great suspense and this book really goes outside the typical box of similar novels.

Final rating: 3.75 out of 5 stars

Follow the author on Twitter: @Susan_Ee

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