Monday, March 19, 2012

Angel Arias by Marianne de Pierres


Book blurb:

Retra - now called Naif - has escaped from Ixion, the island of ever-night. She doesn't know if her friends on the island survived the battle between the Ripers and the rebels. But she does know that she must return home, behind the sealed walls of Grave, to find out why the Ripers have been seen there talking to the councillors. What links the two worlds?

First she must convince Ruzalia to help her. The fierce pirate captain saves those who face terrible fates on Ixion, but that doesn't guarantee their gratitude. Instead, she faces a revolt - and Naif is caught in the middle.

Naif will need all her courage to survive. For Lenoir, who wants to keep her safe, for her friends Suki and Rollo, if they live, for Markes, who has secrets of his own, and for the new friends she will make on this journey.

The fate of worlds depends on it

---------------------o_O-------------------

Hahahaa… don’t you just love it when blurbs ends with an ominous sentence?? Somehow they just make the book that much more compelling… And the cover, argh! Absolutely drool-worthy.

And so, onwards to the actual review!

When I first picked up Burn Bright, I admit, it was because of the gorgeous cover. When I picked up Angel Arias it was also partly because of the gorgeous cover, but also because I was curious about the fate of Naif/ Retra and her gang of misfits.
And so, I dove back into the mystifying, terrifying and whatever else–fying world, created by Marianne de Pierres.

And….I hate to have to say this… I wasn’t completely disappointed. But somehow I expected something a tad better, what I mean is that I wanted something more. The ending bugged me, the book seemed slightly repetitive and things dragged on for a while…

**BEWARE ALL YE WHO CONTINUE—THERE WILL BE SPOILERS**

Ok, now that I’ve got the warning out of the way...
The ending was, in my opinion, rushed. There was no lead up. There was no reason, no story to it. I have yet to read the third book, but from what I’ve read in Angel Arias, the betrayal was completely ridiculous. Yes, it was inevitable that someone was going to betray them, but why Gurney? Or whatever his name is. Why Gurney?

Perhaps I skimmed past the section where it was explained, and I sincerely apologize if I did, and you’ll have to bear with me.

Anyway, all whist Jarrod was helping Naif, he kept mentioning this Gurney fellow, ah yes, Gurney. And so they enlist the help of Gurney who is a slightly odd character who finds them the location of the “secret meeting” in which all will make sense, and smuggles them there. Whoop-de-doo.

And then what? Well, pretty much nothing. They FINALLY get the information they came for, arrive at the old harbor with a few minor distractions and then, the horror, they realise that someone has betrayed them all, giving the Wardens (is that what they’re called?) their location and exposing them. Oh Noes.

Hmmm. Who could it possibly be? The quiet girl, that was Markes betrothed to? Jarrod, the girl’s brother and their newest ally?
No. It was Gurney. Who, Gurney!? Yes Gurney.
WHY?!?! I CRY! WHY?!?! I just don’t understand the lead up to this, why was HE the one to betray them, what was his motive?
Phew. Now that that’s off my chest, I can continue with the rest of the review. And again, I apologize if I misread the entire ending, I tend to do that :)

**THE SPOILER HAS ENDED, FEEL FREE TO READ THE REST OF THIS REVIEW AT YOUR LEISURE**

Ok. Apart from my little spat with the ending, all is good. The concept of the book is one that is undoubtedly interesting, dark, twisted etc, I’m sure I’ve said it before.

I’m not sure how I feel about the “main” characters; I don’t feel as though I have any sort of attachment to them, not one bit. I’m not sure if it’s because of their lack of background, or maybe it’s the way they act.

Naif/ Retra. She annoyed me. And again, I’m not entirely sure why. Come to think of it, I’m not sure of a lot of things. I think it may be because of how she contradicts herself at times. In the previous book she was free from her “Seal self” and then in this book some of it has returned? I’m just a little confused at that. Then there’s the fact that she pines after Markes who frankly, is a fool. I don’t like him; he has no real character, someone who is always so conveniently there. He’s a splodge on the page, a splodge put in so that some dementicated (new word by the way) love triangle can form. Eugh.

And Gurney, oh noes, don’t even get me started on what a stranger, if that's the right word, he was, he was just THERE, he was the one that filled in the gaps, the one who freaking ended the story. Refer back to spoiler section if you desperately want to know.

The only person I found interesting was Liam, one of the humans who were fused with a Night Creature, only the process went wrong and they were sent to Grave to spy for Lenoir. Oooooh. Oh and Jarrod, who was actually decent! Jarrod was the one who was there and helped the book move along, thank goodness.

I wanted to see more of Lenoir, Rollo and Suki, but all I got were short snippets and odd conversations. I’m thinking there will be more of them in the third book.

The “baddies” of the book were actually quite well developed, excluding Gurney (no, I am not getting over that). The elders, with their secret agendas, the Ripers and other assorted peoples actually made my skin crawl, well it was more the Ripers that did the skin crawling but the Elders were still quite interesting, especially at the ending, when all was revealed… I feel like doing an ominous voice for that last line :D

And so, I conclude that Angel Arias wasn’t exactly awful, but it did lack some teensy tiny bit of decent action, I say decent because the only action occurred when they were running away and that is what we are trying to steer clear of, and plot. I mean seriously, the majority of the book consisted of Naif and Co. running away from the big bad wardens.

I am still very much intrigued by the whole idea, and so I think I’ll still be reading the third book.
These were just my opinions of the book, still read the books if you want to. Just because I didn’t like it doesn’t mean others don’t. And if I got the whole Gurney betrayal thing wrong, I am sincerely sorry and feel free to correct/ scream at me. I can take it. (I think…)

Happy Reading, Ro.

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