Monday, February 6, 2012

Book Review: Halflings by Heather Burch


Halflings (Halflings, #1)
by Heather Burch 

Genre: Paranormal/Angels
Reading Grade: Young Adult
Publication Date: January 31, 2012
Source: NetGalley (ebook)
Age Rating: 13+

After being inexplicably targeted by an evil intent on harming her at any cost, seventeen-year-old Nikki finds herself under the watchful guardianship of three mysterious young men who call themselves Halflings. Sworn to defend her, misfits Mace, Raven, and Vine battle to keep Nikki safe while hiding their deepest secret—and the wings that come with it. A growing attraction between Nikki and two of her protectors presents a whole other danger. While she risks a broken heart, Mace and Raven could lose everything, including their souls. As the mysteries behind the boys' powers, as well as her role in a scientist's dark plan, unfold, Nikki is faced with choices that will affect the future of an entire race of heavenly beings, as well as the precarious equilibrium of the earthly world. 
 
My Review

Halflings is an interesting take on angels and fallen angels, although I admit I haven't read much literature dealing with this subject matter. But, I did feel that a few of the characters held my interest. Nikki is at least not a typical teenage protagonist of the YA paranormal genre. She rides motorcycles and knows karate, but still lives a fairly normal life in Missouri.

She meets three teenage boys called Halflings, which means they are half human and half fallen angel. The attractive boys, Mace, Raven and Vine, go around and pretend to be brothers, but they were all born to different Halfling parents and had to be raised away from them for their own protection. A Guardian Angel named Will, a fully fledged angel, is their caretaker. Together, they spend their lives helping out humans in need and discover pieces of their missions through Will, who seems to be able to receive divine revelation.

Nikki and Mace are instantly drawn to each other, and experience “insta-love,” which I frown upon, but it doesn't necessarily ruin the story. Although, Nikki also finds herself intrigued by Raven, who is partial to his fallen angel side, as he has a delicious bad-boy streak. I was really interested in him at first, all snarky and wanting only human minions, but he cooled off toward the end as he became more interested in Nikki. Ah, so close. Almost had a really sexy anti-hero—nearly anti-villain. Still, he's a great character.

What's so shocking is that, low and behold, a true villain materializes in a character that really doesn't appear in the story much, in the form of an attractive older man that Nikki is constantly being thrust at. He has a weird connection to her parents, and even they are quite the mystery in and of themselves. I really found this villain character intriguing, but the story suddenly ends before I can discover what his deal is, and why he is so interested in having Nikki all to himself. Why is he so rich, and what connection does he have to the plot to destroy the world?

At the very end, Nikki suddenly feels wrong about being with him before he gets his clutches on her, so she runs back to the Halflings, and then it's all over. Most abrupt ending ever. I'd be far happier if the reason WHY this guy is so dangerous had been revealed, so that her running to the Halflings would make sense to me. Sure, the Halflings are like her guardian angels, but I really want to know why this mysterious guy she barely knows is so dangerous. Hopefully, it will get explained in the next book.

My score: 3.5 out of 5 stars. (I like it.)


*I received this from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

12 comments:

  1. LOL Cathy. I don't know what book will live up to your anti hero expectations ;P I know none of my boys ever will. I don't know what to think of this book. I don't know if I can deal with another hot angel book. Not that I don't love angels. But three hot halflings as well as a fully fledged angel? Sigh. Guess I'll just have to read it!

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    1. @Lan: LOL! You're so right about my super high anti-hero/villain expectations. I have been completely ruined by my favorite manga in that regard--that's the reason why. It's a pretty good book, worth checking out at the library, or something.

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  2. Nice review! This isn't the first review for this book I've read today, but I do prefer yours. I heard there's Christian tones underneath it, so I'm hesitant on reading this book. Definitely going to get the library to order it, though!

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    1. @Ashelynn: Thanks! yeah, I suppose there are Christian undertones in it, but it's not preachy at all. I should have mentioned that in my review, since that causes people to be put off. Go for the library loan, if you can. Lucky you can get your library to order what you want!

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  3. I actually only saw this one for the first time last week. It was just released, right?

    It actually sounds very different. You review seems a lot different than what I got from just reading the summary. It has me interested.

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    1. @Mindy: Yes, this book just came out at the very end of January. It's a pretty interesting book that you might like.

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  4. I'm curious about this one, but I am very picky about angel books. The only one I've really loved was Unearthly. Angelfire was decent too. Does this stand out from other angel books?

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    1. @Alison: I can't really say if it's so much better than other angel books because I haven't read very many. I've read Fallen, but I really felt like it isn't much better than that. I haven't read Unearthly, although I plan to, nor Angelfire. Still, Halflings is a nice read.

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  5. Why did I assume Halflings was about fairies? I like that despite this being another "angel book", this story has a cool twist, w/the Halflings being 1/2 human, 1/2 Fallen. Makes it just different enough to make me care.
    I feel sorry for any book trying to snag your love for anti-heroes after the Iron Druid Chronicles! (sorry, I can't remember that guy's name!)
    Abrupt endings make me crazy! I know that authors like to have a hook to draw you in to book two, but I want answers, not frustration!
    Great review! I would definitely read Halflings.

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    1. @Andrea: Well, I guess one could assume it's about fairies, but it's not at all. It does have some originality going for it that I liked, so you won't dislike this book, I don't think.

      I think I hated the ending so much, I'm going to have to read book 2 just to see where in the world this one is going. Plus, I really was intrigued by the true villain character. I want to know what he's up to.

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  6. Hi Cathy,

    Thanks for posting a review for Halflings!

    I wanted to invite you to The Halflings Network: a place where fans can talk about the book, chat with author Heather Burch, enter giveaways, and get updates on the next book in the series. We also have a free illustrated eBook prequel that I think you'd really enjoy. Feel free to check it out at Halflings.ning.com.

    Thanks again for your great review, we really appreciate it!

    Grant
    Zondervan

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    Replies
    1. @Grant: You're welcome and thanks for the info.

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