ANGELFIRE by Courtney Allison Moulton
Series: Angelfire #1
HarperCollins: Katherine Tegen Books
Released: February 15, 2011
Source: Star Book Tours
Page Count: 453
Rating: Loved it!
When seventeen-year-old Ellie starts seeing reapers - monstrous creatures who devour humans and send their souls to Hell - she finds herself on the front lines of a supernatural war between archangels and the Fallen and faced with the possible destruction of her soul.
A mysterious boy named Will reveals she is the reincarnation of an ancient warrior, the only one capable of wielding swords of angelfire to fight the reapers, and he is an immortal sworn to protect her in battle. Now that Ellie's powers have been awakened, a powerful reaper called Bastian has come forward to challenge her. He has employed a fierce assassin to eliminate her - an assassin who has already killed her once.
While balancing her dwindling social life and reaper-hunting duties, she and Will discover Bastian is searching for a dormant creature believed to be a true soul reaper. Bastian plans to use this weapon to ignite the End of Days and to destroy Ellie's soul, ending her rebirth cycle forever. Now, she must face an army of Bastian's most frightening reapers, prevent the soul reaper from consuming her soul, and uncover the secrets of her past lives - including truths that may be too frightening to remember.
Ellie is just your average high school student with everyday problems. That is, except for the nightmares. She dreams of ugly beasts stalking the night and of hunts and fighting, blood and death. It's no wonder her grades have been slipping. Just before her seventeenth birthday, Ellie notices a boy hanging around outside school, then later on at the ice cream shop. He seems so familiar, but she can't place him. When she sees Will outside her house, she worries that he might be stalking her. But then he awakens her powers just before a reaper attack, and her entire life is changed. Between the memory flashes of past lives, training to discover her latent skills, and trying to fight reapers without totaling her brand new Audi (named Marshmallow), Ellie has a lot on her hands and doesn't quite know how to balance it all with her rapidly diminishing social life. Her social life will be nonexistent, though, if she can't get it together enough to win the battle against her enemies. If she can't, the Enshi won't just kill her - it will destroy her soul so she can never be reincarnated again. And if that happens, she will be responsible for bringing on the Apocalypse.
I have been waiting for this book for almost a year now! I was beyond ecstatic when I was given the opportunity to read an advance copy. The first thing I noticed was the setting. Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, is only a few minutes away from where I grew up, and I went to school there for nine years. Every description, especially the trips to Somerset Mall, made me feel like I was home again. I always love to read books that are set locally, particularly when the author gets it right like Moulton did. Anyway, the next best thing about this book is the main character. On the surface, Ellie seems like your typical rich snob who doesn't appreciate everything she has. I'm sure her friends see her (and themselves) that way. But once her powers are awakened, a new side emerges. Ellie is a kick-ass heroine who appreciates but doesn't exactly need the help of her male love interest. After reading one too many books with weak female characters, Angelfire is a breath of fresh air. Will, for his part, is not overly domineering, another definite change of pace from typical young adult novels these days. Will pushes Ellie to be the best she can be - Will is anxious to support Ellie in her battles rather than fighting them for her. Angelfire is a great book for girls to read. Ellie is a great role model - for younger girls especially, and Will is just the kind of guy that a girl should be looking for - loving, respectful, supportive, and a dash of intrigue. I really can't recommend this book more without sounding like a paid advertisement, so I will step off my soapbox now. (But seriously, go out and buy Angelfire as soon as it comes out! You won't be disappointed!)