Rather than giving readers another heroine who sits idly by while her dashing hero saves the day, Courtney Allison Moulton breaks the mold and brings to life a fierce warrior who can hold her own against hell and high water. The fantasy world Moulton creates is full of imagination: past lives, celestial hierarchies, ghastly monsters and ancient creatures too horrible to fathom. I hope readers will see more of Ellie's long past and immense power in future novels -- the handful of glimpses are just enough to whet the appetite and leave readers wanting more. Though the writing occasionally lacks polish, Moulton writes with a fresh and funny voice that is full of laugh-out-loud quips to lighten the darkness of Ellie's world. The sharp and snarky banter between Will and Ellie is the highlight of the novel, and will capture readers' hearts from the start. Their relationship jumps off the page, born of a centuries-long bond of blood and battle.
Though an immortal warrior, Ellie is a realistic and relatable blend of fearlessness and vulnerability: the creatures she faces are truly frightening, but she charges into the fray without a backward glance. Angelfire hurtles forward, plunging straight into battle scenes so utterly visceral that readers can't help but be swallowed up. Yet, this story is equal parts brutal action and sweet romance. Will is an alluring mystery; both battle-hardened and heart-meltingly gentle. Though his cryptic comments can frustrate both Ellie and the reader, when his internal struggle is finally revealed it is impossible not to feel his plight. The tension and longing and impossibility build to a crescendo that will keep readers enthralled, while the tantalizingly delayed gratification packs a steamy punch (in the strictly YA sense). This fun, fast-paced read combines all the necessary ingredients to bring readers running back for more.
This novel hits shelves today! Click here to purchase Angelfire by Courtney Allison Moulton.
Disclosure: I received an advance galley of this novel through NetGalley. This did not affect my review in any way.
This novel is part of the 2011 Debut Author Challenge.