Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Heavenly by Jennifer Laurens (Around The World Tours)

Published: August 15th 2009 by Grove Creek Publishing
Paperback, 296 pages
ISBN: 1933963840
ISBN13: 9781933963846

I met someone who changed everything. Matthias. My autistic sister's guardian angel. Honest. Inspiring. Funny. Hot. And immortal. That was the problem. What could I do? I did what any other girl would do-I fell in love with him. Zoe's sister darts in front of cars. Her brother's a pothead. Her parents are so overwhelmed; they don't see Zoe lost in her broken life. Zoe escapes the only way she knows how: partying. Matthias, a guardian sent from Heaven, watches over Zoe's autistic sister. After Zoe is convinced he's legit, angel and lost girl come together in a love that changes destiny. But Heaven on Earth can't last forever.

Zoe's life has been difficult ever since her little sister, Abria was diagnosed with Autism. Zoe tries to avoid her little sister but helps out when absolutely necessary--or if she got paid for it. When Abria runs away like usual under Zoe's watch she starts to freak out a bit. Until, of course, a man holding Abria appears out of nowhere and gives her such a penetrating stare that Zoe immediately feels at ease. Even though she doesn't know why. Matthias.
Going home to the unpredictable rants of Abria and their brother Luke's addiction, Zoe doesn't have an outlet for all the baggage that she carries at home except escaping to the horrendous parties that in the end make her feel pitiful. When things start to get even more out of control, Matthias, Abria's guardian angel begins to make more and more appearances. Through emotional roller coaster rides, we as readers, get a view of the inside life of familial instability, with the lessening pressure of a bit of a fantasy rush.

Reading Jennifer Laurens fourth novel, I had some expectations ready to be met once I had read one of the books under her alias JM Warwick, A Season of Eden. A Season of Eden was an incredible read about forbidden love, and as I read the summary of this book, I thought the same. However, from the very beginning I got the impression that this was going to be completely different and Laurens' didn't disappoint. Zoe's constant frustrations seemed so real and palpable, I believed I was going to start spewing off in anger myself. Filled with multiple high points in the plot, Heavenly was a jab-packed page-turner that had me opposing the necessity of sleep.While it had its slight rough edges like many books that take on many event plays in their plots, Laurens' had skillful twists and turns that made Heavenly a fantastic, sentimental read. 
My favorite character in the entire novel had to be Chase, the intelligent big-eyed geek, that shared Zoe's gift in seeing guardian angels. It seemed like he was the bit of stability Zoe could use in a sea messed with partying. Him and Matthias of course. Zoe and Matthias' romance connection starts off with penetrating gazes and soulful smiles, that soon bloom off into something more titillating.

Recommended to all, not only YA, for a romantic read that leaves you aching with a want unquenchable.
If you've read Heavenly, tell me what you think about it. And how cruel is that sneak peek of Penitence, I mean come on?

Grade: A-

"'Immortal bodies don't have imperfections.'"
"I saw him bend over. And bend over. Again. And again. Sweat broke on my skin. 'Please don't clean my car,' I shrieked. This couldn't be more humiliating."

Check out these links for more info on Heavenly: