Monday, October 25, 2010

Book Review: HALO by Alexandra Adornetto. Author Interview and Book Giveaway to Come!

Title: HALO
Author: Alexandra Adornetto
Publisher: Feiwel and Friends/McMillan
Format: ARC
Price: $16.99 Pages: 484
Release Date: August 31, 2010

Halo was definitely one of my favorite books of the summer! It’s a young adult novel written by a young adult, seventeen to be exact and by the looks of things, she has quite a career ahead of her. Alexandra Adornetto wrote her first book at the age of thirteen. She is an Australian native and Halo is her US debut.
The striking cover was enticing and I couldn't wait to see what treasures lay within those pages. The cover art is rather amazing. It literally appears to glow; a flash of sunlight on the page looks so realistic, I looked at the book from all angles and still can’t figure out how that was done.
Halo is the story of three angels that are sent to the Earth. Their assignment is to bring good to the world. They take human form and live as a family of siblings in a sleepy little beach town. Gabriel, the elder, is a warrior angel. He’s not new to the game. He’s centuries old and knows his way around the Earth. Ivy the older “sister” is a healer. She too has been on a number of earthly missions and is well familiar with the pitfalls and problems in the world. The youngest, Bethany, is not sure what her special gifts are yet. She’s brand new, only seventeen and coming to the Earth is a first for her. She’s vulnerable, na├»ve and perhaps worse of all, curious.
When she meets Xavier on a stroll with her family, she’s warned to keep her distance from humans.  When she meets him again upon entering school for the first time, that’s not so easy to do. Bethany’s not sure she even wants to. Xavier is extremely good-looking and that’s just the beginning. He’s a really nice boy—and he’s been hurt. How can she not feel for him? The feelings become mutual and before long, romance is in the air.
That is definitely not part of her mission. Bethany’s losing sight of what she is and why she’s here, but it has not been lost on the Agents of Darkness. She’s targeted—and so are those she cares about. The war has just begun.
Adornetto may be a young author, but she has a keen command of the written word and the ability to evoke vivid imagery. Perhaps, this is the result of having two English teachers for parents. Adornetto is very descriptive, particularly when it comes to location and surroundings. I enjoyed it and relished the opportunity to indulge my imagination and picture the lush surroundings she described. Others may be tempted to skim the description to get to the action, of which there was plenty.
Halo seems to be getting mixed reviews around the blogosphere. I'm not going to hold back. I loved it. Xavier seems like the fantasy boyfriend girls dream about and I had no problem living the fantasy as I read the book! I thought he and Bethany made a lovely couple and their exploits together were incredibly sweet and delicious.

What surprised me about many of the reviews is how many people seemed taken aback by the religious flavor of the book. People! The book is about angels. They're religious entities. I know a lot of angel flavored books use the angel as a prop to propel the story and pretty much ignore the spiritual connotations of the creature, but I applaud Adornetto for exploring the religious/spiritual aspects of angels; afterall, ultimately, angels are tied to the spirit/religious world and are not simply a handy prop to propel the newfangled romance focus so common these days.

It seems the mere mention of God or any related material gets some folks hackles up. I think people need to take it easy. There's a whole lot of worse things this young lady could be writing about. Believe me, spend enough time in any local high school or junior high for that matter as I have and you'll know what I'm talking about. Some of the stuff the kids are getting themselves into is down right scary--and it's not a book, it's real!
Halo is the first book of a trilogy. The next installment is Hades, due in the Fall of 2011. I am definitely looking forward to it. Stay tuned because I’ll be posting my interview with Alexandra and giving away a hardcover copy of the book! If you win it, you can make up your mind for yourself.


  1. It's a beautiful cover, and sounds a very intriguing storyline. Thanks for the introduction.

  2. Thanks for stopping in Sheila. I recommend it most highly!

  3. Love the cover.. This one has intriqued me since I first saw it on the blogs!

  4. The cover is totally awesome and the story as well. You just want to sink into and lose yourself for a while.

  5. It's a beautiful cover -- probably won't read it for a while, as I'm kind of burned out on angels/paranormal romance at the moment (but I like Alexandra, I read the novel she wrote when she was thirteen when I was fourteen and thought it was good). It was nice reading your review, though, because it provided a nice flip side. The majority of what I've read about Halo has been negative so far, so this has given me the motivation to maybe check it out later on.

  6. Thanks for stopping in Vee. Glad to know I was helpful.

  7. The cover is absolutely beautiful and your review makes me want to read it. Would love to win a copy.

    Cindy W



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