Publication Date: March 20, 2012
Publisher: Dial Books for Young Readers
ARC 435 pgs
Helen's life is unexpectedly changed when her parents are murdered. After losing everything she is forced to go to strangers for help. Helen has more in common with these strangers, Griffin and Darius than she first thought. Helen soon realizes that she is different. She is actually the descendant of Angels and she has a job to do. But Helen is far from safe, someone wants her dead. Helen will have to use all the strength and knowledge she possess in order to stay alive as well as figure out who is hunting her. Will she be able to find out who is trying to kill her before it's too late?
I'm not certain when A Temptation of Angels takes place but I liked the ambiguity. It allowed me to focus on the characters and the story, letting my imagination take care of the time. The novel is set in London, so I kept trying to imagine the characters with accents which worked some of the time.At other times I was to caught up in the novel to think about things like accents. I liked the concept of the Keepers a group responsible for keeping the world turning. Then there is the Dictata whose job it is to maintain the balance between good and evil. Throw in some demons and you have the makings for a really intriguing book.
Helen Cartwright is the type of character I love reading about. She may be innocent but she has an inner strength that she draws on to get her through difficult times. She has a strong desire to be independent, a girl capable of standing on her own. She believes she can do anything the boys can do, and sets out to prove it which she does. I loved watching her develop and realize that she was a strong young women able to handle herself in extreme situations. She may have been afraid but she never let her fear stop her from doing what she needed to do.
We don't get a lot of background on the other characters. We mainly get to know them through their actions as well as their interactions with Helen. Griffin and Darius are strong and reliable, but while Griffin is easy going and patient, Darius can be condescending and stand-offish. What I found to be interesting was that we are able to see other sides to the boys which allowed me to see that there was more to them than meets the eye. I enjoyed learning about both Griffin and Darius and I thought each one helped Helen in their own way. We also meet Galizur and his daughter, Anna who both help the Keepers with their responsibilities. Galizur came off as a mad inventor type while his daughter seemed to be the one keeping things in order. Then there is Raum, a childhood friend of Helen's that causes her great distress. Of course there is a bad guy but I don't want to spoil all of the fun, you must read A Temptation of Angels to find out who he is and what he is after.
I really enjoyed reading A Temptation of Angels, though it did take me awhile to get drawn into the book. The pacing in the beginning was a little slow, for me, but once I got into the story I was hooked and I couldn't put the book down. Even though I would have liked to see more information on the Dictata as well as the Blackgaurd, I did feel as though the book wrapped up nicely leaving me feeling satisfied with the story I just read.
I really like this cover. It's mysterious, compelling, and immediately made me want to see what this book was all about. It just screams: I'm pretty read me.