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Synopsis: From Amazon
Written in first person narrative in what I can only describe as 'common' language and phrasing, which I did feel lowered the intelligence of the story but can easily be attributed to a 16/17 year old girl. Mild use of bad language which although fits in with the characters is not really necessary for the storyline.
The actually layout of the book is very visual with the start of each chapter having black misty swirls at the top of the page, making it look sinister and instilling a feeling of dread.
The story starts with a shocking twist that draws the reader right into the plot. The idea of an alternate world inhabited by monsters/vampire/werewolves/etc living side by side the human world brought to mind Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr and The Night World Series by L.J.Smith, I actually think at one point there is a reference to the Night World in the plot. We are drawn into the protagonists (Dru) world where she is trying to maintain a normal facade when her life is anything but.
The writing is very descriptive with lots of dramatic tension and some gory imagery. The description of the weather in particular actually made me feel cold. There are lots of references to snakes (not good if you have a snake phobia like me added together with my technicolour imagination) I could actually feel my skin crawling at the descriptions, which I guess is the point.
The characters were well developed and interesting, there 'secrets' have yet to be fully revealed so there is plenty of scope to develop them further in Betrayals. Reminiscent of The Twilight Saga with the love triangle element. I am actually taking bets with myself at the moment to see if one of the main characters will have green eyes. The relationship between the characters is believable and easy to relate to (especially that of the friendship between Dru and Graves).
Although the action is fast paced very little of the plot is revealed. There is a major cliffhanger ending; although some plot questions are answered there are a lot more left to be revealed (hopefully) in the next book, Betrayals.
In conclusion, a good read if you like paranormal romance and lots of fast paced action and dramatic tension but be warned you will be left with a lot of unanswered questions and definitely have to read Betrayals to get more of the answers (great marketing strategy). Not for those looking for a stand alone story, this is definitely a series.
Strange Angels is the first book in the series of the same name by Lili St. Crow. It was published by Quercus on 3rd September 2009. It is 304 pages long.
The Real World is not what everyone thinks it is. It is actually a place full of ghost, vampires and werewolves, amongst other scary things. Unfortunately for Dru Anderson, she knows all too well what The Real World is all about. All her life, Dru has known about the bad things that go bump in the night. Travelling from town to town with her father, Dru has experience in how to kill these monsters. Her Dad taught her well and she has come to terms with her life.
With her Dad out on a mission that she couldn't go on, Dru feels extremely alone. Days go by and her Dad doesn't come back and she begins to worry. When he finally comes through the door, he has changed. He's a zombie. Dru know what she has to do but will she be able to find the strength? If she can, what will become of her and her life?
What I thought
I am a massive fan of YA series and have a habit of reading some of the largest ones. Strange Angels, however, was a series that sipped through my radar. Once I did manage to start reading it though, I was hooked and couldn't put it down.
I have to say, Dru was pretty awesome. I loved her from the very start and couldn't wait to find out what she was all about. Dru has grown up in a family surrounded by hellish creatures so up until now, she has had far from an easy life and it doesn't look like it's going to get any easier. Having to kill (maybe not the right way to say it) her dad, Dru is put through a very emotional time. Everything she has ever known is taken away from her and she doesn't know how to cope and this starts a path of destruction. After a few days of wallowing and feeling sorry for herself, I was glad that Dru was able to find a friend in loner, Graves.
Graves was a great character and one I grew to love over the course of the book. Yes, he was very strange to begin with but in the end, some of those weird traits that he has were what I loved the most. If you have read these books, are you wondering when the free ones are going to end? (Sorry if that doesn't make sense to everyone else). Even though Graves was a loner and didn't have much at all going for him, I was still quite sad to see him dragged into a world full of madness, not that Dru could have done anything to stop this from happening. He and Dru had a little bit of chemistry going on from the moment they met but nothing ever happened between them. I am hoping that this is developed on further on in the series.
Christophe was an interesting addition to the group of characters. He doesn't seem to be all that he makes out to be though and I was left unsure about what I thought of him. I did want to like him, as he was smoking hot and has a whole lot of charm but he also seems to be hiding a lot. Christophe comes across as the nice guy, wanting to help Dru but I'm really not sure how sincere he is being. He is one of the biggest mysteries that this book left me with.
The story is built up really well. Getting to know what Dru has been through in the past helps to set the scene for what is to come. This part of the book made it possible for me to really connect with Dru and to feel for her and the things that happen around her. The whole book is built up with elements of mystery, action but it also has a softer side to it, much like Dru herself. I do love a book full of action and surprise but I also love to see that there is so much more to the characters than kicking some paranormal butt! I really enjoyed the cliff-hanger that St. Crow left me with. I am not normally one to like such open ends to a book but I didn't mind at all this time. The ending left the story open to many possibilities for the second book and this made me excited to find out what was going to happen next.
Strange Angels is a great first book in a series and I cant wait to read more from Lili St. Crow.