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Nessa's Thoughts

Just a British girl who reads a bit too much.

Currently reading

The Dead Zone
Stephen King
The Diving Bell And The Butterfly
Jean-Dominique Bauby
Clarissa, or, the History of a Young Lady
Samuel Richardson, Angus Ross
Orange Is the New Black: My Year in a Women's Prison
Piper Kerman
The Cuckoo's Calling
Robert Galbraith
Angel (Angel Trilogy, #1) - L.A. Weatherly I was really excited to pick up Angel. I'd been craving a YA angel book, and Amazon had one of those rare psychic moments where it gives you the link to a book that's currently on sale, and doesn't sound too bad. Angel isn't a bad read, but it has some pretty glaring flaws here and there, but I ultimately didn't finish it because it just wasn't my cup of tea and I found myself incredibly bored by it.My main problem was with the characterisation. Both Willow and Alex felt like stereotypes when we were first introduced, and they never really developed beyond that. Willow is just this psychic girl who fits two special snowflake quotas, being both the daughter of an angel and a human and possessing a talent for fixing cars. She's also a tad psychic. You can practically hear her crying: “Look at me! I'm not like the other girls!” Alex, on the other hand is generic boy raised to be a soldier, with an icy heart. That's pretty much all there is to him. Not once do you get a sense of his personality outside of the stereotype.The plot revolves around angels as villainous, parasitic beings, who have come down to Earth, set up churches, and are slowly brainwashing and converting the populace. Angels like to feed off the human population, harvesting their energy to grow stronger. Their aura is extremely powerful, and usually renders their victim in either a state of bliss or a state of serious illness. This is described in the chapter before we meet Willow's mother, who has had catatonic schizophrenia ever since Willow was a child. Your cells can become cancerous, you might develop conditions such as multiple sclerosis, and there's also the potential for - like Willow's mother - schizophrenia.Considering how often it's implied how different Willow is to her peers at the beginning of the book, interspersed with Alex sort of building the world of the angels as threatening figures, it wasn't much of a stretch at all when Willow's mother was introduced to put two and two together. It's safe to assume that she's the product of a human mating with an angel. Yet... There's really no stakes to this at all. Weatherly introduces us to this world where angels are dangerous beings slowly colonising our planet. Yet not once are the angels anything to really inspire fear in the reader. Sure, they feed on people and run these enormous cult compounds, but everything seems so distant and non-threatening. I get that these angels are supposed to be ever-smiling, oh so nice beings that have a hidden dark side that makes your skin crawl, but it just didn't come across that way to me in the writing.In fact, the angel problem has gotten so bad that apparently the CIA hire special weapons agents to travel around the US and take them out, yet the general populace is ignorant of their influence. Somehow. Yay, another secret society story, coupled with a boy who seems to have closed his heart after a traumatic event! And a half-supernatural girl. Oh hi Ash and Meghan from Julie Kagawa's Iron Fey series! Or Clary and Jace from Cassandra Clare's The Mortal Instruments. There's pretty much no other characters to get attached to, so we're left with these personality vacuums, sadly. I mean, sure, Willow heads to that Angel church because this girl she did a psychic reading for early in the story ran off to them and now wants nothing to do with the world she left behind. (This girl being a student Willow never actually talked to much at school before today.) Of course, her plan goes horribly wrong and Alex has to rescue her. And that seems to be the end of that. Willow also has another best friend character, who hangs around while she's repairing a car at the beginning of the story and does nothing but talk about Willow's strange affinity for cars and how they work. Urgh.The angel characters we did get to meet weren't very threatening either, which is a bit of a shame. Just generic villains, really.While I did like how both Alex and Willow are both proactive characters, they didn't really have much personality outside of their character templates, as I said in an earlier paragraph. The villains weren't threatening, and even though the world was fleshed out enough, it ultimately fell short of my expectations and really bored me. There's enough story there and I wouldn't say it's bad from an objective standpoint, but subjectively, I don't really recommend it. 2/5.(This review is also available on my blog: http://book-wyrm.blogspot.co.uk/2013/04/angel-angel-1-by-la-weatherly.html)