Posted in Reviews

Review: A Shimmer of Angels

A shimmer of angels cover

Title: A Shimmer of Angels (Angel Sight #1)

Author: Lisa M. Basso

Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal

Sixteen-year-old Rayna sees angels, and has the medication and weekly therapy sessions to prove it. Now, in remission, Rayna starts fresh at a new school, lands a new job, and desperately tries for normalcy. She ignores signs that she may be slipping into the world she has tried so hard to climb out of. But these days, it’s more than just hallucinations that keep Rayna up at night. Students are dying, and she may be the only one who can stop it. Can she keep her job, her sanity, and her friends from dying at the hands of angels she can’t admit to seeing?

I received this book from the publisher in exchange for a review.

3 stars

After spending the past three years in a mental hospital, Rayna is back to trying to live a normal life. But regardless of how many times she tries to convince herself that angels aren’t real, she still keeps seeing them. And the latest angel she’s seen is Cam, the new guy in her school. The first day she sees him, their classmate commits suicide after drawing an angel. That’s when Rayna’s life changes, though I still can’t say if it’s for better or for worse.

When I started reading this, I loved Ray. She’s doing her best to stay normal and often repeats to herself that angels really DON’T exist. Her biggest fear is that she’ll be forced to return to the mental hospital. Finding out that angels are, in fact, real and she’s not (and never has been) crazy, is both good and bad for her. She finally knows for sure that what she sees is real and that makes her more free and more confident. But now that she knows, she has to actually deal with angels. But what exactly do they want from her?

There’s Cam, the good guy. He also happens to be the boring guy. I didn’t feel almost any chemistry between him and Rayna. There’s a really unnecessary scene where he saves her from being run over by a car. It’s only there so Ray can later think “He saved my life!” It’s a very random scene and the book would be better without it.

Then there’s the “bad but oh wait maybe he’s not” guy, Kade. Rayna and Kade have great chemistry. He’s more fun to read about than Cam. But there’s a certain detail about his past that makes their relationship quite creepy.

My favorite character is definitely Lee. He’s Rayna’s best friend and he curses in Dr. Who references. That’s always a plus, even if the references seemed a bit forced. There wasn’t nearly enough of Lee in the book. Hopefully in the next one there’ll be more of him and Luke and details on exactly why they don’t like each other. An explanation of Luke’s crush on Rayna would also be nice. (But right now, my opinion of Luke is that he’s a complete asshole and I don’t think he’s gonna be redeemed easily).

This is yet another book where I loved the first half and was disappointed by the rest. I loved meeting the characters and figuring out their relationships, which I’m sure are more complex than this book lets on. But then there was the really evil guy who didn’t scare me at all and a boring love triangle where yet another main female character thinks: “I have to choose.”, meaning that this teenage girl must decide which of her two suitors she’ll spend the rest of her life with. Ok, so it wasn’t exactly like that, but it was very dramatic.
I just really don’t like the idea that she has to choose between them. No you don’t! You can dump them both, it would probably make your life a lot better anyways. If you gotta pick, pick Lee. He’s so much more awesome than the angels are.

The “good vs. evil” fight was a letdown after the creepy setup. I also really dislike the idea that if you commit suicide, you’re most definitely going to hell. Everyone in the book is so damn sure of that, even if the people are forced to kill themselves. The behavior of Rayna’s family didn’t make sense to me. Her father and her sister are horrible characters with zero positive qualities.

I’m gonna keep reading this series, I really wanna know how it all works out.

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