Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Illuminate by Aimee Agresti [Review]

3 out of 5 Robots!
  
Illuminate by Aimee Agresti
Series: Gilded Wings, #1
Genre: Paranormal Young Adult
Release: March 6, 2012
Hardcover: 528 pages
Publisher: Harcourt Children's Books 
My Copy: Amazon Vine
Reviewer: Rex
Buy the Book: Amazon

Book Summary:
Haven Terra is a brainy, shy high school outcast. But everything begins to change when she turns sixteen. Along with her best friend Dante and their quiet and brilliant classmate Lance, she is awarded a prestigious internship in the big city— Chicago—and is sent to live and work at a swanky and stylish hotel under the watchful eyes of a group of gorgeous and shockingly young-looking strangers: powerful and alluring hotel owner Aurelia Brown; her second-in-command, the dashing Lucian Grove; and their stunning but aloof staff of glamazons called The Outfit.

As Haven begins falling for Lucian, she discovers that these beautiful people are not quite what they seem. With the help of a mysterious book, she uncovers a network of secret passageways from the hotel’s jazz-age past that leads her to the heart of the evil agenda of Aurelia and company: they’re in the business of buying souls. Will they succeed in wooing Haven to join them in their recruitment efforts, or will she be able to thwart this devilish set’s plans to take the souls of her classmates on prom night at the hotel?

My Reaction:
Illuminate is the first installment in the Gilded Wings series by Aimee Agresti. Though it is an extremely unique and refreshing tale of young angels, it tended to drag on quite a bit. I wish it had been a standalone. The ending didn't provide any sort of cliffhanger, so I'm just going to pretend like it is a standalone. Illuminate is a pretty decent read- Definitely entertaining, a new twist added to the angel young adult genre. 

I had a hard time connecting to Haven, our main character. She's likeable- shoot, she's great. But I just couldn't find her believable. The same goes for her best friend, Dante. Lance, on the other hand, I felt like I knew Lance. He's the sweet, mysterious boy next door type and I adore his character. He is the best part of the entire story. He kept me flipping the pages.

Haven is found as a toddler by Joan... They never did find her real family, so Joan adopted her. I don't know why, but it bothered me that she never called Joan 'mom.' This is completely trivial, but it bothered me nevertheless. Their relationship is cute though, it is obvious they have a very caring mother/daughter relationship. The entire thing didn't sit well with me, really- Haven, Dante and Lance being pulled out of school in the middle of the year to go work at a hotel? That just seemed crazy to me. The hotel is also centered around Capone, which I found fascinating. Unfortunately this took a backseat to everything else.

I don't highly recommend this novel because I did a lot of skimming to make it to the end. If the plot moved a little quicker, I could have found myself lost in the story. If the premise sounds interesting to you, go for it. Those that love angels, try this one! I did walk away from Illuminate entertained- just wish I would have been enthralled.   
 

5 comments :

  1. I'm disappointed to hear that this one dragged on. I was really excited for this, but wow that comes in at a lot of pages! I'm still interested and I'll have to wait and see some other reviews. But thanks for this, it definitely makes me want to wait a little longer.

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    Replies
    1. It is definitely worth giving a shot if you were excited about it!

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  2. I've been super anxious to get my hands on this one and it's sad to hear that it drags along. I'll still give it a try though.

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    Replies
    1. I really think you should! I should have mentioned that I did have a lot of fun discussing this book with two friends that also read it :)

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  3. With that beautiful dress on the cover, I was hoping the inside would be a stunner as well, but thanks for the fair warning about it being a "skimmer".

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