Saturday, March 19, 2011

Book Review: Halo

Book 1 in an apparently planned trilogy
AUTHOR: Alexandra Adornetto
CATEGORY: Young adult
GENRE: angels, romance, drama
PREMISE: a angel comes to earth on a mission and falls in love.
MY REVIEW: Warning, this review will probably be long and contain a)ranting, and maybe b)spoilers. If you don't mind this, read on. First off I wish to apologize to The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake and The Dark Divine authors because I said your books were the most disappointing of 2010. I totally take that back, THIS was not only disappointing, it was the worst book of 2010 (to my knowledge). Your books were awesome compared with this. So I apologize. My only defense is that I hadn't read this book at the time I made that list.
Now again, I try to be fair to books I heavily dislike and so I'm going to say the two (yes, only two) things I liked about this book. One is the GORGEOUS cover. Isn't it pretty? Kudos cover artist. Second, I did sort of like the beginning where the angels were trying to adjust to human life and being human. That was all right and made me think for a milisecond that this book may actually turn out all right. Boy was I wrong.
First off I'll talk about my main issue. This is what I call an agenda book. The author is obviously very christian and religious and it's clear she's using this book to express those views. Okay, fine. I have no problem with that. What I had a problem with was how it basically felt like she was judging everyone who didn't behave in a way the main character (aka Mary Sue aka herself) thought appropriate. For instance MC goes to a friend's house. Friend is having a wild party. She is suitably horrifed because OMG, friend lied! Oh and there's drinking, how horrible! Teenagers acting like teenagers! For shame! Then of course she drinks a punch that tastes funky, but still drinks it and what do you know after one cup she's drunk and of course love interest takes her home and she is humiliated even though it really wasn't that big of a deal, none of her friends even comment on it the next day (and all she did was act drowsy so she had no real reason to be so humiliated unlike a dormmate I had once who threw up in the hallway my freshman year of college). The book was just full of unsubtle moments like this where the author was basically using her character to say "THIS is how teenagers should behave!" I won't even go into the troubling religious aspects that are basically shoved in the readers face. you DO know not all your readers will be Christian, right? Oh, and I loved how there was practically no one in this book who practiced a different religion, no bisexuals/homosexuals/transgender etc., or different races either. Oh wait, no I didn't love that.
About halfway through I realized this was making my opinion biased so I tried to mostly base my rating on the story aspects of the book like writing, characters, and plot. Unfortunately that didn't help the author either because it was a very poorly written book. Prose were average ranging to bad and there were definite grammer mistakes and again we have a Meyer fan because random theosaurus words would be thrown in along with vivid flowery descriptions. Characters...UGH. All of them were two dimensional, including the only one I sort of liked (Molly). Bethany was pretty much a Mary Sue and not an intelligent one at that and I'd go as far as to say she's almost worse then Bella Swan. Xavier was more boring then Edward Cullen (yes, really), and don't get me started on Ivy and Gabriel and the frankly insulting portrayel of US teenagers in this book (author: most US teens know where the Middle East is cause oh yeah, we're fighting a WAR over there you know).
Then there's the plot. IT MADE NO SENSE. Or at least it tried to make sense but failed because the little things got in the way. For instance how exactly did these angels expect to help a town change when they pretty much refused to interact with people? Really? Call me crazy but that seems counterproductive to me and frankly I would not want any of these judgemental angels on my side. Then there's Bethany and her knowledge gap. Okay, I could understand at first that she wouldn't know much (except if she was watching over people for 17 years wouldn't she gain SOME knowledge?) but I would think after a month that if Bethany can figure out where the Middle East is then she can remember that there are 28 days in February. Plus, if she has this knowledge gap how is she acing all her classes? For that matter, how does she even know how to write if she apparently has such a large gap? Just lots of things like this that bugged that heck out of me and made it hard for me to take this book seriously at all. Not that I took it seriously to begin with.
Frankly, this book is bad. Now, I don't deny there is a market for this book (sadly). Tweens who adore Twilight and don't think too hard throughout it and don't mind being preached at will probably be okay with the book. For everyone else, this book is a waste of your time. Oh, and this is my last angel book I think. This genre just isn't for me I've decided. I'll be reading Hush Hush 2 and Fallen 2 as well as Angelfire but for the most part, I'm done with angels unless I find a book that looks really interesting in the future.
WHO SHOULD READ: younger Twihards who don't mind being preached at
MY RATING: One out of Five feathers

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