Thursday, November 14, 2013

Angelfall ( Penryn & The End of Days #1 ) by Susan Ee

Angelfall by Susan Ee

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.




Remind me again why did I start on an incomplete series? I know Book 2 World After is coming out in 1 week time, Hurray! But I much prefer to have a complete series in front of me so I can devour everything in one go, instead of trying to recall later what I read eons ago.

This book is label as YA dystopia, which is not my usual genre. Now I'm damn glad that I took the plunge and dived in. Our heroine Penryn, is a very mature 17 year old, who live in this post-apocalyptic world that had been demolish by the angels. She had to scavenge for food and look after her mentally ill mother and her wheelchair bound sister, Paige. Due to her mum's paranoia, she is well trained in all self defense moves and manage to kick some serious ass. 

“I'm Penryn. I'm named after an exit off Interstate 80."

One night when she was out looking for new hide out with her family, she witnessed a violent brawl between the angels and one of them got his wings cut off by others much to her shock. When her presence had been detected, she decided to help the now wingless angel to avoid her own death, but the last thing she expected was to have her sister kidnapped by the angels.  

Raffe is the now wingless angel that was stumble upon by Penryn. We are unsure of his status within the angel's politics and what causes them to fight against him. Due to her needs to save her sister, Penryn decided to keep him alive for further interrogation. The only other angel that I read before was Raphael from Nalini Singh's Guild Hunter series. Raphael is otherworldly, stoic and larger than life. To my surprised Raffe is very much different and I adored him to bits, although he can be full of himself sometimes. Who knows an angel can be so sarcastic and full of dry humor.

“My friends call me Wrath. My enemies call me Please Have Mercy. What’s your name, soldier boy?” 

Penryn and Raffe formed an unlikely allies with their common goal of reaching the angel's aerie together. She wants to save her sister, he wants to get his wing put back. There were feelings of reserve and mistrust a midst the hopelessness of the situation. I appreciate the fact that they didn't turn chummy with each other and their interaction were realistic for beings an enemy due to their race. Their banter was hilarious and I constantly had a smile on my face thinking these two were awfully cute together.

"I'm not moping."
"Of course you're not. A girl like you, spending time with a warrior demigod like me. What's to mope about?"

"You are nothing but a bird with an attitude."

They encounter a lot of weird things during their journey to San Francisco, from meeting a human resistance group, little demons to cannibals. I'm in awe with the world building and enjoying all of Raffe and Penryn shenanigans. The starting might be a bit slow, but as the story progress there is much shocked element and surprises. The setting might be gloom and dark, but the characters were lively and they shine through to help make light of the situation.

“You're like a little girl demanding answers to questions during a covert operation. Why is the sky blue, daddy? Can I ask that man with the machine gun where the bathroom is? If you don't stay quiet, I'm going to have to dump you.” 

Of course, I need to comment on the romance part of the story. Although this is a YA and being Book 1 there isn't much romance, but there is a presence of undercurrent romantic development that have me deciphering and rereading some of the precious scene between Penryn and Raffe. I can see they were both tried to be sensible and make the right judgement, but for once I was hoping that the characters do less thinking and just go with their guts.

“It is not the gentle kiss of a couple on a first date, nor is it the kiss of a man driven by simple lust. He kisses me with the desperation of a dying man who believes the magic of eternal life is in this kiss.” 

Book 2 World After is coming out next week. I hope there isn't any cliffhanger awaiting me. Finger crossed.