Book Review: Guild Hunter #2: Archangel’s Kiss by Nalini Singh

Rating: StarStarStarStar

Synopsis:

The New York Times bestselling author of Angels’ Bloodreturns to her world of angelic rulers, vampiric servants, and the woman who has been thrust into their darkly seductive world.

Vampire hunter Elena Deveraux wakes from a year-long coma to find that she has become an angel and that her lover, the stunningly dangerous archangel Raphael, likes having her under his control. But almost immediately, Raphael must ready Elena for a flight to Beijing, to attend a ball thrown by the archangel Lijuan. Ancient and without conscience, Lijuan’s power lies with the dead. And she has organized the most perfect and most vicious of welcomes for Elena.

***** ***** *****

i won’t apologize, Elena. It would be a lie – i couldn’t let you leave me.

first off, the cover is just stunning. Elena appeared sexy and dangerous. plus the indigo-almost black angel wings. wow.

i started reading the moment i finished book 1. why? i was hungry for more!

i finally got over the vampires-slaved-by-vicious-angels/archangels thing and enjoyed reading.

mostly the book explained more of the angelic world. Elena’s brutal past, and Raphael’s. and Michaela’s.

and i finally got to meet all the members of the Seven!

a year after Elena’s coma (surviving death and becoming an angel), she woke up. only to find herself (again) the target of Raphael’s enemies. even some members of the Seven want to kill her for what they saw is a threat to Raphael’s power and stature as the Archangel of New York.

Elena is considered an infant in the angelic sense so naturally, some would take advantage of that to hurt Rafael. She can’t fly at first. She felt her hunting skills is being hindered by her wings. But the ability to scent vampires extended to scenting angels.

UPSIDE

this scenting captivates me. each description of scent is unique. elderberries with sugar. snow falling on apples. thunderstorms with lightning and fire. i applaud the author for associating scents with the personality of the characters. it’s refreshing.

The one thing that made me love this book is the growing relationship of Elena and Raphael. They learned trust. acceptance. submission. and the link between their minds? amazing.

“There are some humans-one among half a billion perhaps-who makes us something other than what we are. The barriers fall, the fires ignite, and the mind merge.”

Lijuan had killed the mortal who’d touched her that deeply.

Raphael had chosen to love, instead.

BUT i have to say this: i’m falling in love with Ilium *sigh* but it seemed he’s falling for Elena. bummer. Raphael is jealous of her friendship with Ilium but i don’t care. i can relate to Ilium more than to Raphael. and Ilium’s easy to picture: black hair tipped in blue. golden amber eyes. i found myself super enthralled with him… *uh, Raphael who?*

i was also entranced by the choice of names the author gave to the angels. Ilium (of course!). Dahariel. Anoushka. Aodhan. it felt real. it made believe that yes, they are really angels. *leaving reality for a moment*

there are intriguing parts that i hope the author would elaborate in the next books.

an angel who fears touch. an angel who hasn’t sing in centuries. an angel with a past that cost him his wings.

DOWNSIDE

one thing i begin to dislike is the constant sex scenes. everytime (as in every FREAKIN’ time) Elena is with Raphael, they always end up getting it on.

his smoldering cobalt blue eyes. his touch that makes Elena catch her breath.

and so on.

it got tiring reading those scenes over and over again. does it really need to have so many ravishing sexcapades?

i get that Elena escapes the horror and terror of her past through sex. but i think once or twice (i even go for thrice) is enough to make that point.

oh, there’s also the blatant possessiveness of Raphael to Elena. in some ways its endearing but there are times i feel it to be a toxin that can poison them both.

The nightmares have no claim on you Elena. You belong to me.

1st half – sex. sex. sex.

2nd half – finally, some gore and mystery to make this book interesting. vampire evisceration. angel wings’ cut and slashed. oooh, i’m so bloodthirsty right now! and the reborns with their potential as an army terrified even the archangels.

what happens in the end?

Elena gained a new enemy, an archangel no less (what’s new, right?). Elena finally confronted the memories (and the monster behind it) that has been haunting her in dreams and lately, when she’s also awake.

A member of the Seven goes down. very bad.

Elena, who is once mortal, is turning to be as merciless and lethal as Raphael. She should be if she wants to survive as a new angel and dodging death threats from the archangels.

An archangel went sleep.

So, it is bad to wish Raphael will die so that Ilium can take his place as archangel and lover of Elena? *wink*

And he would never let her go… even if she begged for her freedom.

*

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.: maria :.

“giving up is the ultimate tragedy.”

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Book Review: Guild Hunter #1: Angels’ Blood by Nalini Singh

Rating: StarStarStarStar

Synopsis:

Vampire hunter Elena Deveraux is hired by the dangerously beautiful Archangel Raphael. But 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.

***** ***** *****

Love. Happiness. Joy. What did any of that matter when the flip side was murderous rage, blood-soaked anarchy?

i admit it. i have a thing about angels. blame it on the frustration i have from the Hush, Hush and Fallen series. After reading Unearthly (and i couldn’t stop gushing about it), i crave for more angel stuff from YA.

well, let me tell you about Angels’ Blood. it is not YA. and it is not about goody-two-shoes angels (archangels, no less) that i grew up imagining them to be.

Even when i was already halfway through the book, i couldn’t get past the concept of archangels with vampires as slaves. i just couldn’t past it. but i read on.

Story:

Angels and vampires live among humans.

Archangels rule specific parts of the world. Raphael, for instance, has New York as his domain. Archangels are a race of immortals, and not descendants from God. They are ruthless, cruel, and has no regard with human lives.

Archangels have the discretion who will be ‘Made’ into vampires. There is a waiting list and you have to be compatible, otherwise your request to be Made will be denied.

Hunters like Elena doesn’t necessarily kill vampires. They hunt vamps who ran away from their Makers/Masters (the archangels), bag them, tag them, then bring them back to their Masters. This reminded me of Evie from Paranormalcy.

Elena was summoned by Raphael to hunt not a vamp, but an archangel. Elena is hunter-born, scenting vamps is her specialty. but scenting an archangel? no way.

the charged electricity between Elena and Raphael intervenes with her doing her job. not to mention her being scared out of her wits of Raphael.

Even if the concept of vamps made by angels is new to me, i really liked this book.

Elena:

She has a death wish. this heroine is hardcore! there was this scene when a vamp wanted to taste her (erm, have sex is more like it), and instead of just saying no, she slit his throat then she ran. 😀 i loved her witty remarks, her constant denial to Raphael, and her tendency to protect her family even if they (her father, specifically) disowned her for choosing Hunting as her profession. There are many who wanted her dead. Dmitri. Michaela. Venom. Riker. even Raphael. what does she says about that? Get in line! lol

Raphael:

despite his cruel streak and and an iron fist to rule New York, i liked him. more so when he’s beginning to show a little humanity. all things he did (and didn’t do) have a purpose. like Elena said, he doesn’t torture someone just for the sake of torturing them.

Ilium and Jason:

these angels intrigue me! i want them more in the next books! Ilium the blue-winged angel. Jason the midnight-black-winged angel, sigh… can someone slap me back to reality?

first half of the book was all seduction and sex. c’mon, Nalini, am i here to read just about sex??? (uhm, maybe?) *big evil grin*

second half was all about bloodbath. and mutilation. and sex. 😐 well the bloodbath and mutilation reminded me of Dexter so i love it!

fave scene:

Raphael is into the Quiet state. Elena realizes he is not himself. Raphael still sex personified but detached. Elena realizes he’s going to kill her, so she did what is needed. she protected herself. BANG! so who’s immortal now, huh? 😉

verdict:

this book is a pretty good start for a series. as Raphael would put it, “i’m ready to f*ck you into oblivion.’

He watched over her for the rest of her days, knowing she no longer knew him. Is that love?

Don’t you know?

I’ve seen love defined a thousand ways over the centuries. There is no constant.

*

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.: maria :.

“giving up is the ultimate tragedy.”