Saturday, October 8, 2011

Angels of Darkness by Nalini Singh, Ilona Andrews, Meljean Brook, Sharon Shinn

"Angel's Wolf by Nalini Singh." In the spellbinding universe of the Guild Hunter, a vampire becomes obsessed with the seductive angel who rules the Louisiana territory. But in her court, all is not what it appears to be.

"Alphas: Origins by Ilona Andrews." A woman is kidnapped into a world divided by a superhuman civil war. As the captive of an irresistibly dangerous male, she has two choices: submit and become a pawn, or take hold of her own destiny.

"Nocturne by Sharon Shinn." Accepting a position in a secluded and whispered-about mansion, a woman soon discovers the source of its mystery: the blind, tormented angel who lives there, and whose secrets could now destroy them both.

"Ascension by Meljean Brook." When vampires disappear from a community he's protecting, a world-weary Guardian doesn't know what evil he's hunting, but he'd rather hunt alone than accept help from his ex-lover and fellow Guardian, Radha. But Radha refuses to leave him, because she's determined not just to help him save the community...but to save him.

If I had to pick favorites, in this anthology it would go "Angel's Wolf", "Nocturne", "Alphas: Origins", and finally "Ascension". It's a great anthology overall, one that gives readers a look into each of the authors' series, but as usual some of the stories spoke to me more than others.

"Angel's Wolf" is the second short from Singh's Archangel world that I've come across and I should probably just suck it up and read the rest of the series. Interesting characters with a different take on angels and vampires - seemingly devoid of most religious connotations - and romance to boot. I like.

I've never read anything by Sharon Shinn before but if "Nocturne" is anything to go by then at the very least she knows how to write smart heroines who aren't afraid to stand up for themselves. Combine that with a sense of humor and what seems like good world building and I'm definitely going to be picking up more titles from her backlist.

I think "Alpha: Origins" was very much not what I was expecting but all in all it wasn't a bad story. It's very quick, with a lot of violence and unexpected relationships between all of the characters, yet I'm intrigued. They've created a very different take on 'angels' and 'monsters' and I hope more comes out in this series because even though I'm not completely hooked yet I can see how I could be.

The Meljean Brook addition, "Ascension", was fine but I don't consider it spectacular. It seemed to go by the fastest so I didn't feel quite as attached to the world and its characters.  I consider it another unique concept and take on angels, but I think a final verdict will have to wait until after I've read more.

Overall Feeling - Thumbs Up (though I wish this was a mass market and not trade - boo $15!)

Series - Various