Author: Becca Fitzpatrick
Publication: Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing (October 13, 2009)
Product Description: For Nora Grey, romance was not part of the plan. She's never been particularly attracted to the boys at her school, no matter how much her best friend, Vee, pushes them at her. Not until Patch came along.
With his easy smile and eyes that seem to see inside her, Nora is drawn to him against her better judgment.
But after a series of terrifying encounters, Nora's not sure who to trust. Patch seems to be everywhere she is, and to know more about her than her closest friends. She can't decide whether she should fall into his arms or run and hide. And when she tries to seek some answers, she finds herself near a truth that is way more unsettling than anything Patch makes her feel.
For Nora is right in the middle of an ancient battle between the immortal and those that have fallen - and, when it comes to choosing sides, the wrong choice will cost her life.
My Thoughts: I have picked this book up and put it down again numerous times since it arrived in my HS Media Center. I have read lots of glowing reviews of this title but I have so many other good books on my TBR pile that this one just didn't make it to the top of the pile. Finally, Thursday, after reading yet another glowing review, I picked this book up again. The Prologue almost stopped me but I convinced myself to give it 50 pages. I ended up reading 200 pages on Thursday (and still not knowing where the prologue fit in) and finished to book on Friday.
I found it to be a quick and interesting read. There was some cute dialogue especially between Nora and her best friend Vee. I loved the description of the basketball coach who teaches biology as a side activity between games. The tense scenes were adequately scary. I could feel Nora's confusion (which mirrored my own) as she tried to figure out what was going on with the strange happenings. I thought Nora's relationship with her friend Vee was well-done. Some of Vee's choices did concern me though.
My problems with this one surfaced after a night's sleep. I know that it is necessary to "kill the parents" in most YA books. After all, part of responsible parenting is to prevent children from having dangerous adventures! Ms. Fitzpatrick does this both literally in the case of the father killed in an act of random violence and figuratively by having the mother take a job that requires lots of travelling and overnight absences in order to support the family. The father was an accountant who didn't believe in life insurance? Hmmm? Another problem I had was with the school psychologist that Nora was seeing. Changing from one to another mid-year is rather unusual. But I'll accept it because we are told that angels and fallen angels can fog people's minds.
Still another problem had to do with the depiction of the angels and fallen angels. Patch seems to have fallen for a rather petty reason. I tend to think of angels as being above human emotions. Yet these angels act from lust, revenge, and jealousy.
The romance aspect also concerns me. Why did Patch fall in love with Nora? She seems like a pretty average 16-year-old to me. Yet Patch hears that she is slated for death, begins following her around (in a stalkerish way), and is immediately attracted. He describes her as intelligent, attractive and vulnerable. I felt that Nora's growing attraction to Patch was more realistic as she grew from antagonism to attraction. I do not quite see the attraction myself. But then, I am not attracted to the dangerous and enigmatic.
All in all, this book was a pleasurable couple of days reading. I don't think that it worked completely for me but I can see that there were parts that would be very attractive to readers. I will be reading other books by Becca Fitzpatrick because I like her writing style. But I won't be recommending this book as "one of the best books I have read". I will be passing it along to readers who like a little "scary" with their romance.
Challenges: 2010 YA Book Challenge