My Rating: 4/5 Stars
Incarcerated on Earth as punishment for breeding with humans, the Watchers found a way to escape. Zach is living proof of that… even though someone has cut out his heart.
When Zach turns eighteen he develops an insatiable thirst for blood, but he tries to bury his fears and go on enjoying his birthday. His best friend Kim has scored them tickets to the hottest gig in town. But a charged encounter with his idol, the enigmatic rock star known as Grigory, leads to a revelation that shatters everything Zach thinks he knows about himself and the world, and places everyone dear to him in grave danger.
Zach is a Naphil, the forbidden offspring of a mortal woman and a Watcher. When those who seek to destroy him snatch Kim, Zach is forced to embark on a journey of discovery spanning continents and ages. With the help of a mysterious stranger named Sam, Zach must unearth the truth about his parentage, find Kim, and discover who has stolen his heart… before he triggers the apocalypse.
When I first read the blurb for this, two things instantly caught my eye — the fact the MC, Zach, has had his heart cut out, and the obvious allusions to vampires. But the premise is actually quite a bit more fascinating, combining the mythology behind angels and vampires into something altogether new. I will admit that I find the cover design a bit repulsive, but since the story does contain graphic violence and sex, it’s a good representation of what readers should expect. This is most definitely not a story about angels in the traditional sense, but it is intriguingly refreshing.
None of the characters are clearly good or evil, and the four arch-angels (the Watchers) are far from the pristine creatures you’d normally see. Instead, they’re much more reminiscent of The Authority in True Blood, or The Volturi in Stephenie Meyers’s Twilight Saga. The history of their fall from grace was one of the better aspects of the story for me, and it was clear the author had done a lot of research into angel mythology. But I did feel that the fast pace of the story sort of prevented me from ever really connecting to any of the characters. It’s told from a distanced, third person omniscient point-of-view, and I found the shifts between the characters to be jarring. Many of them are short, barely a full page, which created a sort of whip-lash effect as I was thrown from one person’s head to another. The graphics used to separate the scene breaks often overpowered the text itself, and only further emphasized that disconnect.
I would have liked to see the story expanded a bit more, delving deeper into the characters, rather than sitting on the surface. That said, the fast pace will send you through a whirlwind of action, with plenty of twists and turns to keep you guessing. So while I was perhaps a little disappointed that it wasn’t a more immersive experience, I do recommend this series and will most definitely be checking out more books by Ms. Young in the future.
**Disclosure Statement: I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. **