*Some spoilers in this review.*
I enjoyed this very much. The pacing was the same as Angel Fall—fast with unrelenting hooks at the end of most of the chapters. The author has a real talent to keep this pace up and not create false tension.
In this second book, we see more of how Penryn becomes a reluctant hero and the tough choices she makes. She has Raffe’s sword, but when she goes to find Paige, she has to decide to either leave it behind so she can get to Paige on Alcatraz Island or stay with the sword. At this point, we learn the sword is somewhat sentient and is able to share memories of Raffe which provide insight into his character and fosters a deeper connection between the sword, Raffe, and Penryn. So the struggle is real for Penryn, not just because it’s an angel sword, but also because she has a bond with the sword too.
Another similarity from the first book is that Penryn’s goal is the same: save Paige. What I really appreciate is how the author was able to keep the same theme, but add on another layer to this goal. In the first book, Paige is paralyzed so it’s obvious why Penryn has to save her sister (also because she loves her of course). In the second book, the goal is still the same, but we have a very different Paige, so different motivations for Penryn to save her. We’re not sure how to feel about the new Paige, just as Penryn does, but her loyalty to her sister prevails.
Another part that I enjoyed about the second book was the development between Raffe and Penryn. They actually don’t see each other until the second half of the book, but I like the glimpses the sword gives us into Raffe’s history and how that changes Penryn’s feelings and understanding about Raffe. Not only does she know why he’s alone, but she also knows that she and Raffe can’t ever be together no matter how much she wishes for it. I really enjoyed that tension. When they do finally reunite later in the story, their struggle is sweet and their banter charming.
I liked how this book was setting up for a final battle in the third book and how Penryn and Raffe will fit in it.
This series is such a great mix of dystopian, sci-fi, and angel genres. The romance is good. There were some parts that were a bit repetitive in the romance parts (Raffe is always described as warm and he has strong arms.) Other than that, this book is good for readers who like face-paced stories with a lot of adventure and tension. There are some scenes of violence, but it’s in the context of angels fighting.