Because I read these books back to back I am going to write one review for all of them. A general overview and impressions, if you will.
Book 1: Angels’ Blood
I first came across this series at Barnes & Noble a month or so ago. I was wandering the isles looking for nothing in particular. Oddly enough, this was located in B&N’s Teen section, which in hindsight, it shouldn’t have been…
Vampire hunter Elena Deveraux knows she’s the best—but she doesn’t know if she’s good enough for this job. Hired by the dangerously beautiful Archangel Raphael, a being so lethal that no mortal wants his attention, only one thing is clear—failure is not an option…even if the task is impossible.
Because this time, it’s not a wayward vamp she has to track. It’s an archangel gone bad.
The job will put Elena in the midst of a killing spree like no other…and pull her to the razor’s edge of passion. Even if the hunt doesn’t destroy her, succumbing to Raphael’s seductive touch just may. For when archangels play, mortals break…
Nalini Singh creates a very dynamic and engaging alternative world within the pages of Angels’ Blood. The mythos built into the worldview is intriguing. As with most paranormal romances (there is no doubt that this is a romance novel) the female character is strong and spunky and the lead male stubborn as all get out.
There was plenty of action and a good dose of emotional turmoil all balanced just right as to not be too sappy on the romance angle. I enjoyed this introduction to Singh’s Guild Hunter Series and was rather glad I had the next book immediately available to start as soon as I was done.
Book 2: ArchAngel’s Kiss
Quick Glance :
Vampire hunter Elena Deveraux wakes from a year-long coma to find herself changed—an angel with wings the colors of midnight and dawn—but her fragile body needs time to heal before she can take flight. Her lover, the stunningly dangerous archangel Raphael, is used to being in control—even when it comes to the woman he considers his own. But Elena has never done well with authority…
They’ve barely begun to understand each other when Raphael receives an invitation to a ball from the archangel Lijuan. To refuse would be a sign of fatal weakness, so Raphael must ready Elena for the flight to Beijing—and to the nightmare that awaits them there. Ancient and without conscience, Lijuan holds a power that lies with the dead. And she has organized the most perfect and most vicious of welcomes for Elena…
If I wasn’t already convinced that this series is a romance – this would. There’s plenty of hot sweaty sex to go around. Actually, almost too much. It comes dangerously close to eclipsing the actual plot of the novel.
Within the pages of the second Guild Hunter book, we are introduced to more intriguing and dynamic characters and can already see threads of future novels in the making. We are shown just a little more of what’s behind the curtain of a world ruled by Angels and the dangers inherent when a newly Made-Angel interacts with said Angels. *Spoiler Alert* (highlight only if you absolutely want to know what’s waiting for Elena) There are ZOMBIES!
Book 3: ArchAngel’s Consort
Vampire hunter Elena Deveraux and her lover, the lethally beautiful archangel Raphael, have returned home to New York only to face an uncompromising new evil…
A vampire has attacked a girls’ school—the assault one of sheer, vicious madness—and it is only the first act. Rampant bloodlust takes vampire after vampire, threatening to make the streets run with blood. Then Raphael himself begins to show signs of an uncontrolled rage, as inexplicable storms darken the city skyline and the earth itself shudders.
The omens are suddenly terrifyingly clear.
An ancient and malevolent immortal is rising. The violent winds whisper her name: Caliane. She has returned to reclaim her son, Raphael. Only one thing stands in her way: Elena, the consort who must be destroyed…
In almost a yo-yo effect, Singh focuses more on the plot than on the sex in the third book. It’s not every day that a truly ancient being wakes up. And given the history we are already aware of from the previous books, things are going to get interesting.
Singh splits the focus of ArchAngel’s Consort between Elena and Raphael, forcing each of them to deal with their upbringing/past in an immediate fashion. I mean really, how do you deal with the fact that your mother made an entire city disappear when she went to sleep AFTER breaking every bone in your body?
ArchAngel’s Consort pulls you along at a pace that is practically break neck (think roller coaster) and in the end doesn’t disappoint.
Book 4: ArchAngel’s Blade
The severed head marked by a distinctive tattoo on its cheek should have been a Guild case, but dark instincts honed over hundreds of years of life compel the vampire Dmitri to take control. There is something twisted about this death, something that whispers of centuries long past…but Dmitri’s need to discover the truth is nothing to the vicious strength of his response to the hunter assigned to decipher the tattoo.
Savaged in a brutal attack that almost killed her, Honor is nowhere near ready to come face to face with the seductive vampire who is an archangel’s right hand, and who wears his cruelty as boldly as his lethal sensuality…the same vampire who has been her secret obsession since the day she was old enough to understand the inexplicable, violent emotions he aroused in her.
As desire turns into a dangerous compulsion that might destroy them both, it becomes clear the past will not stay buried. Something is hunting…and it will not stop until it brings a blood-soaked nightmare to life once more…
(Note: When reading the above Quick Glance does anyone else think of Highlander and the quote – “I know his name…” from the the Kurgen? No? It must just be me then.)
Okay then…book four begins the focus on other characters. Of course it would be Raphael’s First, Dmitri. A Vampire with a dark and tragic past. What’s not to love?
Actually, I liked a lot of things about this book. Dmitri’s past was tear jerkingly interesting. And felt that Singh was touching new areas when she gave Honor such a scarred recent history – there is a lot of potential there.
Unfortunately, that potential was wiped out just over half way through the book. Dmitri was too accepting of the answers given (or non answers as it were) and Honor’s reactions to certain aspects of sexual nature were completely unbelievable given what had occurred. It just seemed very out of character for either of them.
Still, the book was a pleasant read. It had the only scene so far that actually made me cry. Real tears. Seriously.
Even with the minor flaws I am really enjoying this series. I am still baffled by the fact that I found it in the Teen section of a bookstore.
The next book ArchAngel’s Storm is scheduled for release in September of this year. The focus of book 5 is Jason, Raphael’s Spy Master. Now there’s an Angel I wouldn’t mind getting to know…