Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Review + Giveaway: Angelfall

(Penryn & the End of Days #1)
Susan Ee
Paranormal Young Adult/Dystopian
255 Pages
Amazon Children's Publishing
Available Now
Received from Authors on the Web for review

THE STORY (from Goodreads)
It’s been six weeks since angels of the apocalypse descended to demolish the modern world. Street gangs rule the day while fear and superstition rule the night. When warrior angels fly away with a helpless little girl, her seventeen-year-old sister Penryn will do anything to get her back.

Anything, including making a deal with an enemy angel.

Raffe is a warrior who lies broken and wingless on the street. After eons of fighting his own battles, he finds himself being rescued from a desperate situation by a half-starved teenage girl.

Traveling through a dark and twisted Northern California, they have only each other to rely on for survival. Together, they journey toward the angels’ stronghold in San Francisco where she’ll risk everything to rescue her sister and he’ll put himself at the mercy of his greatest enemies for the chance to be made whole again.


MY THOUGHTS
Angelfall is a striking debut, easily capturing our attention from the opening pages with Ms. Ee's version of a California newly decimated at the hands of entities we may have previously described as comforting, heavenly, and protective, but we must quickly revise our preconceived notions to include words like dark, brutal, and most disturbingly, evil. Though the concept of vengeful angels is certainly nothing new, Ms. Ee’s world still manages to feel unique, possessing a grittiness that has us instantly on the defensive as Penryn is met with violence in the very first chapter, her loyalty to her family something we can easily grab onto and hold tight as we’re pulled unceremoniously into the deep waters of an existence we’d much prefer stay relegated to the pages of fiction.

Penryn is a glorious young heroine, pushed into an unwanted leadership role with a wheelchair-bound younger sister and a severely paranoid schizophrenic mother, but she accepts her responsibilities with grim determination, even when faced with the horrors of her sister’s kidnapping and the rapid deterioration of her mother’s sanity. She’s not only quick of mind but also extremely strong of body, able to fight off angelic and human foes alike, yet she does so in a remarkably ordinary way to make us feel as though we might be able to achieve the same results were we in her shoes. When she's navigating this new and desolate world we are right there with her, easily projecting ourselves onto her as she continuously stumbles but always manages to right herself again, putting one foot in front of the other until she achieves her goal, large or small.

Raffe is different than we anticipate after reading the synopsis and learning of the destruction his kind have caused the human race, expecting a cold and hard warrior but instead finding a man with a wry sense of humor and youthful personality. He banters with Penryn from the moment she drags him bleeding from the street, often teasing and mocking her for the assumptions she makes about him as well as her remarkably ineffective attempts to restrain him. As Penryn often muses, he comes across amazingly human, the indifference and cruelty shown by others of his kind finding no home in his countenance as he continually protects Penryn from harm. Their relationship is one comprised of tension and hesitant partnership with an underlying romantic tinge, and their dealings with one another slowly and deliciously evolve from antagonistic to something thick with possibility. Perfect happiness is not to be found however, and our hearts suffer a stunning blow once we learn just how impossible this new and as-of-yet-undefined thing between them truly is.

Angelfall is not without it’s minor flaws, those readers who find themselves asking “why” a great deal while reading may balk at the lack of reasoning behind the angel attacks and their purpose in playing with humans the way they do, but it’s incredibly easy to tuck those few questions into the recesses of our minds as we travel with Penryn and Raffe, so caught up in their journey that the whys of their circumstances become inconsequential. Inevitably future books will expand what was only touched upon briefly in this first installment, with angel politics sure to become a much larger focus moving forward. The ending is a touch abrupt as well, though our main criticism upon reaching the last page is not that it leaves us hanging a bit, but more than it ends at all, our desire for more time with Raffe and Penryn a throbbing need we desperately want sated as soon as possible.

Rating: 4.5/5


SPECIAL RAFFE EXTRA
I was recently given the opportunity to ask Susan about Angelfall, and I enthusiastically jumped at the chance to talk to her about Raffe, requesting any tidbits of information about him she might be willing to share. She oh-so nicely sent me 5 important things we should all know about him, and if you're not in love with him after my review and this list, perfect, because that means I'll have a better chance with him ;-)

1. He's loyal to his angels
2. He's a legendary warrior
3. Everyone wants him on their team
4. He's led the campaign against angels fraternizing with Daughters of Men
5. He's been alone for a long, long time

 

How many of you volunteer to help Raffe out with number 5? *raises both hands*
GIVEAWAY
Thanks to Authors on the Web and Susan I have one copy of Angelfall to give away on the blog today. To enter, please just leave a comment on this post with a valid email address so I can contact if you if you win. Giveaway is open to US and Canadian residents only and will run through midnight EST on Friday, September 7th after which time a winner will be chosen and emailed. Good luck everyone!

66 comments:

  1. I wasn't sure if this was one I would enjoy or not but you have definitely made it sound very good! And the 5 things about Raffe have me curious.
    candace_redinger at Yahoo dot com

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  2. I still can't believe I haven't read this and I bought it months ago. I have read so many glowing reviews. I am one of those readers who asks why so I might have some issues with that but I am certain I will be mad that I didn't get to it sooner!

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  3. *raises hand* Oh, I can help with number five! ;)

    Such a lovely review, Jenny. :) I've been meaning to read Angelfall ever since I read so many glowing, four and five star reviews of it! :) In spite of the lacking of explanations, it sounds original and utterly captivating. Thanks so much for the giveaway, darling. :)

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  4. This sounds like an awesome angel book.
    kassandralopez32@yahoo.com

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  5. Oh I love Angel Stories and I heard awesome things about Angelfall. Heather loved this book and I Raffe sounds awesome! Must.Read.Soon!

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  6. YAYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY! Jenny, you have NO IDEA how incredibly happy i am that you loved this<3 I absolutely loved Raffe and Penryn's relationship :) AND THAT ENDINGGGG! Gosh, I REALLY need the second book now- MOREEE RAFFE AND PENRYN PLEASE<3

    OMGOMGOMG Hahaaa like Leanne, I can totally help with number 5 :)

    FANTASTIC review Jennyyy! And thanks so much for sharing the extras :)

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  7. I really loved Angelfall! It was just so different from the fluffy angel books out there. Not that I have anything against those. It's just so nitty, gritty I love it!

    And Raffe. I can't hate Raffe though 50% of the time he's a jerk =))

    Glad to see you liked it too, Jenny! Beatiful review as always ;)

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  8. I can't believe I still haven't read this one. I really like the sound of this story. Thanks for sharing your great review and the extras :D

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  9. I love the look of this one! And I'm glad you enjoyed it - a fabulous review, Jenny. :)

    If only I lived in the US so I could enter your wonderful giveaway!!! Anyway, good luck to everyone who enters. :) xxx

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  10. (not entering) Good luck everyone! this does sound like a fantastic read :)

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  11. This book sounds so intriguing and the review was so beautifully written that I almost went out and bought it right now ... and then I remembered I'm on a budget :-( Well thanks for the opportunity to win a copy!

    ashleyvanetten@Yahoo.com

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  12. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  13. This book sounds awesome..you know I have thing for Angel and Vampire books, so its just my cup of tea...:D Fingers crosses, fingers crossed!!!!!

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  14. Wow! That's great that Penryn fights like a normal person and rate also sounds like a great guy! Wonderful review Jenny!
    rsblueviolet@gmail.com

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  15. Definitely raises my hand to number 5! LOL I loved this book so much and would love a hard copy for my shelf while I eagerly await the sequel! Thanks for the giveaway! :)
    sarabara081(at)aol(dot)com

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  16. I'm so glad you enjoyed this! I haven't heard of it before, but I adore your review! Penryn sounds so incredibly strong, whilst the story itself sounds wonderful. It's a shame you were left with many unanswered questions, but hopefully the answers can be revealed to you in future books. Wonderful review, and good luck to everyone entering the giveaway!

    [P.S, without even knowing him, I'd gladly help Raffe with his problem in question number 5.]

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  17. This book is SO HIGH on my to-read list, it isn't even funny. I LOVE that you loved it so much. Everyone seems to really like it.

    I love that list. *winks*
    asheley.tart@gmail.com

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  18. JENNY! YES! YOU READ IT! *dances* I'm so happy you enjoyed this! Gosh, I would TOTALLY help fulfill #5 on that list for Raffe. Seriously, I'd jump into a Hunger Games for that spot! ;) Anyway, lovely, lovely, review and I am SO thrilled you liked this! I have Angelfall on ebook, but I'd loveee a paperback copy for me to carry around and hug, so my email is ivybookbindings@gmail.com. Thanks for the giveaway and for sharing your amazing review with us, Jenny! :D

    ~Keertana
    Ivy Book Bindings

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  19. This definitely sounds like it tosses out all previous ideas about angels! I would probably be one of those constantly asking why though...lol (not an entry)

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  20. So glad to see you enjoyed this as much as I did, Jenny!! I would soooo like to help Rafe out with point number 5! Gosh I can't wait for the sequel! Wonderful review Jenny. :)

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  21. Excellent review Jenny!
    I am one of those few readers who gave this book a single cheap star. I really didn't like it but I am glad to see your point of view and understand why you, and other readers, enjoyed this book. It is always welcome to know other perspectives and your review gave me that. Although I keep strong hold to the one single star I gave this book.

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  22. Loved this book so freaking much. I bought it off of amazon cause another blogger beg me to buy it that night and read it. I did and never looked back!

    bwithbite at gmail dot com

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  23. Hm, was this the one everyone I know loved...I do think so. And I mean everyone

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  24. I need to read this book!!! A keep reading amazing review about it!!!

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  25. *bumps Jenny out of the way* *grins*

    What?

    Well, it's your fault for exposing me to Raffe like that. Plus, Penryn sounds like someone I also need to know. Yep... all your fault.

    Oh I do want to read this one.
    books (dot) things (at) yahoo (Dot) com

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  26. I loved this novel! I read it ages ago and never reviewed it. I just didn't know how, so much happened. You did a fabulous job! I missed the part where Rafe is against the Daughters of Men being with Angels. But this was an absolutely phenomenal novel! I'd love to have a physical copy so I can read it again at my leisure.

    Heather
    hrose2931(at)gmail(dot)com

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  27. Everything I've heard about this book has been stellar!! The reviews have had me wanting a physical copy of this one for months. So eager to read it!

    Vivien
    deadtossedwaves at gmail dot com

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  28. Wow! Even though I'm a bit burned out on angels at the moment, this story sounds pretty darned good! I do love when an author takes something that's stereotypically fluffy and protective and turns it on its head. Dark and gritty have my vote every time.

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  29. I definitely volunteer to help Raffe out with number 5. :D This sounds like a really unique take on the angel legends and I'm looking forward to reading it.

    Barbed1951 at aol dot com

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  30. I keep reading angel books even though I usually end up disappointed. I can, however, get behind attack angels; that sounds interesting.

    geoarchs(at)gmail(dot)com

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  31. I love this book so much so I'm glad you loved it too, Jenny! I love Raffe's dry sense of humor too and I love his relationship with Penry. Too bad they're never going to have babies. :(

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  32. *Sheepishly raises hand* Yeah, um, I'm that person who constantly asks why and hates not getting any answers. :? I think I'm going to hold off on this one and see if we get more answers to the why questions before plunging in with a new series. Great review, Jenny!

    p.s. Sorry for the late comments. Works is seriously kicking my butt right now!

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  33. I really want to read this book. Sounds really good. Thanks for the review and giveaway. Please enter me. Tore923@aol.com

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  34. Everyone says amazing things about this book! Really looking forward to reading it :)
    Lacey
    laceyblossom1(at)gmail(dot)com

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  35. I've heard nothing but amazing things about this book! So now of course I am super pumped to read it. Penryn sounds like such an admirable character, and I love that - she is truly someone I could root for through and through. Oh, and Raffe sounds intriguing, too :) Thanks for the chance to win this!
    ayleejaine@gmail.com

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  36. I've heard awesome things about this book and I love the story and the characters:)

    Thank you so much:)

    ccfioriole at gmail dot com

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  37. Thanks for the giveaway!!

    compelledbywords@live.com

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  38. A book about angels and the apolycalypse?? Sounds perfect to me! Thanks for this amazing giveaway! This book sounds great and I would love to win it!

    susanw28 (at) mindspring (dot) com

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  39. Alone? No, we can't have that! I volunteer to keep him company. :)

    "underlying romantic tinge" --- oh, the romance sound intense and tragic. Why can't they be together?! I bought this book a long time ago, and just haven't gotten around to it. I thought it might be all dark, so I'm happy to hear about Raffe's humor.

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  40. Thanks for the great giveaway!
    thebookanalyst[at]hotmail[dot]com

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  41. This book sounds fantastic. Thank you for the review!
    molly(dot)frenzel(at)gmail(dot)com

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  42. Sounds really good!! Thanks for the chance to win!
    natasha_donohoo_8 at hotmail dot com

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  43. This book sounds really interesting! I'm adding it to my TBR list now. Thanks for the giveaway!!

    stephward84(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  44. Another angel novel! I can't wait to meet Raffe; you know how I love my angels ;)

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  45. Sounds like something I need to read!

    jasmyn9[at]hotmail[dot]com

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  46. Nice review and list of reasons.

    bn100candg(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  47. I like your reason list. I'll deffinetly make a note to get this book!

    sudhamalee(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  48. Thank you for the synopsis, review, and the raffe list! I can't wait to get my hands on this book. It has been on my TBR shelf for sometime now, and I am totally a Raffe fan :D! Thanks for the AMAZING giveaway.

    email: ssweett_rebelde@hotmail.com

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  49. I remember seeing this book floating around when I got into blogging, and it's so cool to see that Amazon picked it up! It sounds so good, too.

    Thanks for the chance to win :) maurapedia@gmail.com

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  50. OMG. I've been wanting to read this book!!! Thanks for the amazing giveaway!

    me_winy AT yahoo DOT com DOT ph

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  51. Both my hands are up, too! Definitely getting into all the angel books out there. This one certainly has caught my eye.

    candicerjames [at] gmail [dot] com

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  52. Great review - love angel novels!

    Thank so much for the giveaway!
    Leanne
    leannessf at gmail dot com

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  53. Sounds really interesting! Angel novels are great! Thanks!
    saltsnmore at yahoo dot com

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  54. I have seen many great reviews about this book. I would love to read it. Thank you.

    wendyrailey@yahoo.com

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  55. I haven't read many Angel novels, but the ones I've read were amazing. Thanks for the giveaway!

    snowpup832(at)gmail(dot)com

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  56. Awesome giveaway! Thanks!

    denise13727(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  57. I haven't heard of this book but it sounds awesome! I would love to read it! Thanks for the giveaway!
    temarasheppard(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  58. Book sounds good, would love to read it.

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  59. Book sounds good, would love to read it.
    rabbit.eyes3(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  60. *waving both hands* :) #5 does sound exciting;) Thanks for the chance to win this amazing sounding book.

    sariahwaalters at gmail dot com

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  61. Sounds like a great read. Thank you for the giveaway! :)
    linda_flor019 [at] hotmail [dot] com

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  62. Looks like a great novel. Thanks for the offer!!

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  63. Thanks for the chance!

    fecheerleader@yahoo.com

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  64. i love them post apocalypse stories! - regnod(at)yahoo(d0t)com

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  65. I haven't heard of this book before. Sounds like a great read!

    loen1999196600@live.ca

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  66. As always, fabulous review!! And I liked the extra special interview too :) Thanks!

    hmbryan(at)alumni(dot)duke(dot)edu

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