If you have been around booktube lately, or walked through a bookstore, you have most likely seen a little book called Angelfall by Susan Ee. Don't get me wrong, this book has been out for quite some time, but it took me a very long while to find and purchase. Once I had a physical copy in my hands, I devoured every word until the last page.
Writing about angels is a delicate task. Some authors can write a solid story about angels. Other authors cannot. Susan Ee has proven to me that she falls under the first category. Going into Angelfall, I was skeptical. This book has been hyped up by everyone and those are the books that I usually try to remain wary of. Before I even reached the halfway point, I had become completely engrossed with the plot, characters, and writing style.
To give those who haven't read this yet a mini overview, the story essentially follows our main protagonist, Penryn Young. Her little sister Paige is in a wheelchair and her mother is mentally ill, leaving Penryn to take care of them both. Plot twist: they are also currently living in an apocalyptic world where angels have taken over and the rest of humanity has basically gone to hell. One night, Penryn's sister is taken by some of these bad angels. She doesn't even have to think about what to do; she knows she must set out and find Paige.
The story basically progresses from there based off of that goal. I was thoroughly impressed with the writing and character development. Considering all of my reservations before I started reading, the first page was a clear indicator that I made the right decision in picking this up. Then the next page and the page after that. I was hooked.
Every individual I know has said that they were drawn to Penryn. I now understand why. Immensely. She is one kick ass heroine determined to do everything in her power to keep what's left of her family together. Then there is Raffe. Let us all pause to smack that stupid grin from our faces and continue on. I think everyone who read the first book, or second, basically fell in love with him. Although I don't love him the way I've loved other fictional characters, I do have a soft spot for Raffe. That's about all I can say without spoiling his part in the storyline. Aside from the main characters, I loved the secondary ones just as much, if not more. Penryn's mother. Obi. The twins. All of them.
The weird thing about Angelfall was that I enjoyed the beginning and middle much more than the end. I couldn't stay as interested in the last sixty or seventy pages but nevertheless, it was a good denouement with a minor (okay, slightly major) cliffhanger. However you want to interpret it.
Then there was World After. I read this almost a month ago. It did not meet my expectations, but it wasn't bad by any means. Part of my problem was that my friends and fellow book lovers gushed about the second book, saying that it was better than the first. I disagree.
I thought the first half of the second book was super slow, with a few exciting scenes introduced sporadically. The last half upped the ante. I could not get enough of Beliel. His role became one million times more interesting, you know, ten seconds before the craziness occurred. Finally, the entire plot turned into a whirlwind of twists and turns I didn't see coming. World After ended on a strong note but there was too much build up for the finale. Or at least I hope that's what Susan intended.
When it comes down to it, I enjoyed both books more than I ever thought I would. Susan Ee crafted a spectacular angel centered world. She also left me unbearably anxious with all this waiting around for the third and final book!
Angelfall: 5 out of 5 stars
World After: 4 out of 5 stars