Thursday, March 3, 2011

Angelfire by Courtney Allison Moulton

Reading level: Young Adult
Hardcover: 464 pages
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books (February 15, 2011)
ISBN-10: 0062002325
ISBN-13: 978-0062002327

First there are nightmares.
Every night Ellie is haunted by terrifying dreams of monstrous creatures that are hunting her, killing her.


Then come the memories.
When Ellie meets Will, she feels on the verge of remembering something just beyond her grasp. His attention is intense and romantic, and Ellie feels like her soul has known him for centuries. On her seventeenth birthday, on a dark street at midnight, Will awakens Ellie's power, and she knows that she can fight the creatures that stalk her in the grim darkness. Only Will holds the key to Ellie's memories, whole lifetimes of them, and when she looks at him, she can no longer pretend anything was just a dream.


Now she must hunt.
Ellie has power that no one can match, and her role is to hunt and kill the reapers that prey on human souls. But in order to survive the dangerous and ancient battle of the angels and the Fallen, she must also hunt for the secrets of her past lives and truths that may be too frightening to remember.

Review:

With varying levels of reapers attacking, ice-cream-eating, loves-shopping Ellie is unprepared when her nightmares become, not only reality but years of memory. With the help of her mysterious Guardian, Will, she must find a way to enable her powers accessibility for the hunt of these terrible reapers. Along the way, Ellie confronts copious obstacles that prevent her from gaining the strength she's going to need for the ensuing battle to establish Lucifer's return in the Second War, the Apocalypse. Fighting with her swords, her Guardian by her side, Ellie believes that in order to keep her normal, stable life, she must to everything she can to keep a balance between both worlds. However, as she drifts away further and further from her friends, she knows that the inevitable is bound to happen when she gets all her memories back, the bad and the dreadful. But will there be time to gain enough knowledge of this new world she's always known with demonic reapers and archangels, in order to save all of humanity?

In Angelfire, Ellie is portrayed as this ancient bad ass that seems to be humanizing more and more every time she's reincarnated. I'm all for the kick-butt heroine persona, but Ellie she actually trying to avoid becoming someone she knows she can be, but will destroy her inside if she allows it. With chilling arch foes coming out of the Grim--a parallel dimension where reapers can be clearly seen--she fights to survive and control what little she can of her life. A motif in the book that I really enjoyed reading were the flashbacks into "The Preliator's" memory bank. It was thrilling to go through all the action that she got in her previous years as a warrior.

As an overall character, I understood what Ellie was going the through throughout the duration of the novel. She's constantly looking for any guidance provided that will lead her to a saner road in the pandemonium that outlines her existence. Will really seems like the complex, moody macho-man when he's introduced in the book, however, his underlying layers soon became clear as his bond with Ellie becomes ostensibly evident. And really, his depiction just adds to his brooding persona and the visual of a nice hot-bod; it never hurts to create a character like him, even though it has been done before. While Ellie is older than him originally, he acts as a mentor when trying to influence her memories, even if he keeps his secrets. Just one of those characters that love to drive you crazy; when Ellie wanted to slap him, so did I.

I think that Moulton did a wonderful job in creating the overall background to set Angelfire in. Everything truly was connected in a sense that it was titillating to follow along through the building of the angels history and Will's theory of why Lucifer really fell from Heaven. I would be excited to read future works by Moulton, and hopefully with less trashy best friends and more fight scenes.

Grade: B

LiLi