Author: Shannon Dittemore
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Published: May 29, 2012
Add On: Goodreads
Brielle’s a ballerina who went to the city to chase her dreams and found tragedy instead. She’s come home to shabby little Stratus, Oregon, to live with her grief and her guilt . . . and the incredible, numbing cold she can’t seem to shake.
Jake’s the new guy at school. The boy next door with burning hands and an unbelievable gift that targets him for corruption.
Something more than fate has brought them together. An evil bigger than both of them lurks in the shadows nearby, hiding in plain sight. Two angels stand guard, unsure what’s going to happen. And a beauty brighter than Jake or Brielle has ever seen is calling them to join the battle in a realm where all human choices start.
A realm that only angels and demons—and Brielle—can perceive.
Angel Eyes is the tale of a guilt-ridden girl whose attempt to start over in her old town leads to the unexpected. When Brielle Matthews moves back in with her dad, the last thing she anticipates is for her world to be turned upside down – again. With fear proving to be something greater than she could ever have imagined, and unanswerable questions racing in her thoughts, Brielle soon finds herself caught in the middle of something out of this world – the war between demons and angels.
This is a tricky genre, both because of the sheer number of other angel books out there and also because the handling of religious ideas. Shannon Dittemore’s take on angel lore proved to be a fascinating one, with not only alluring descriptions of both demons and angels, but also a strong presence of thought-provoking questions. There is a real sense of this story being more than just a typical paranormal romance, and that much shines through in the many issues Brielle addresses when it comes to faith. Like how an omnipotent and benevolent god could have let her mother die so young. These deeper themes were nicely balanced with lighter aspects, one of these being the sweet romance between Brielle and the new boy in town.
Jake proved to be an interesting character and the contrast between his livelier personality and Brielle’s deflated one brought a spark to the story. Admittedly, although I did enjoy the romance overall, it felt very clichéd at the start. Jake just happened to choose the empty seat next to Brielle on his first day, which felt all too familiar to me. Things did improve as the story progressed and most of the clichés were ironed out sooner or later. It was nice to see Brielle come out of her shell a little and display some confidence in the second half, and I hope to see the author take that further in the next book.
What I really appreciated in the plot was the element of mystery that shrouded Brielle’s past. The tragedy that she was escaping from was something I was eager to find out more about, and was impressed with the way Shannon Dittemore intertwined events of Brielle’s past with the angels and demons. The latter part of the novel was fast-paced and full of action. Even up until the final pages new twists were revealed – one in particular that makes me eager to get my hands on the sequel.
I have mixed thoughts on this book overall, and while it didn’t blow me away, I still thought it to be a good addition to the angel genre. The author's writing was lovely, and the pacing was nicely controlled. This is worth a read, especially for people who are strong fans of angel books.
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