I received an advance reader’s copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Historical fiction, I have to admit is an uncharted territory, I can not go on claiming I am adept at it, I was only able to scratch the surface, and so because of this, I took a challenge to read this book, see if my young love for historical fiction will bloom, did it? Absolutely yes, this book made me want to read tons of historical fiction.
I was engrossed by the fact that it involved fallen angels, to me it was something out of the ordinary. The first few pages engulfed me and got me hooked, not by the premise alone, but because of the majestic way of how it was so well-written, I kid you not, the chosen words were flawless, the description of the scenes were vivid, You will fall in love with how each sentences were written.
The story started off with Alia, a fallen angel who found refuge into the body of a beautiful woman. Using the body for whatever pleasure she wanted and same pleasure she then returns to another. She lived through fornication, bedding different men – and yes sometimes women. At this point I should have stopped reading. It’s not that I am a sensitive reader, it is just that books with themes like it, are not really my cup of tea, but then there is also this part of me that is eager to learn how will the story progress and I am glad I was able to get past that stage where I was contemplating on continuing or not. I have learned that yes it contains explicit scenes, but the story did not mainly revolve around it. There was far more beautiful story that was brewing, that was the when the Germans took over Paris and Alia is now presented with the predicament on how to protect all the people she values and loves.
As the story progresses, I noticed that there were quite a few scenes that the book can do without. I was a little undecided if I am liking or hating the fact that i had the barest of idea to where the story is taking me, I guess it felt like the story has been dragging on and I could not find the resolution of it all. Also I badly wanted to see where Alia – being a fallen angel comes into play, well aside from the fact the she can see visions and all that, and she could warn them of the impending harm, I guess this fact that she was once an angel can be dispensed with, I mean the book would have been the same if Alia had been just a normal woman. I just thought the fantasy part of the story did not mix well with the story, if for anything – it was put there to make everything seemed convenient. It was not until the last part that the fact that she was a fallen angel played an important part, however again that ending lacked something I cannot quite put my finger into. It felt like the ending was rushed. \
All in all, I still enjoyed the book and it would not be the last book by the author that I will be reading.
Human beings are complex creatures, caught up in great arcs of cause and effect and poised at the very center of a battle between love and separation.