Archangel’s Heart (Guild Hunter Series) by Nalini Singh
Released: November 1, 2016
Reviewed by Sheena
One of the most vicious archangels in the world has disappeared. No one knows if Lijuan is dead or has chosen to Sleep the long sleep of an immortal. But with her lands falling into chaos under a rising tide of vampiric bloodlust, a mysterious and ancient order of angels known as the Luminata calls the entire Cadre together to discuss the fate of her territory.
Accompanying her archangelic lover Raphael to the Luminata compound, guild hunter-turned-angel Elena senses that all is not as it seems. Secrets echo from within the stone walls of the compound, and the deeper Elena goes, the uglier the darkness. But neither Raphael nor Elena is ready for the brutal truths hidden within—truths that will change everything Elena thinks she knows about who she is…
Nothing will ever be the same again.
Favorite Quote: “Stay safe, Archangel. Or I’ll hunt you down.” As always, he smiled, kissed her. “I would not dare be hurt. Watch over my city, hbeebti.”
Archangel’s Heart is the ninth entry in the trans-formative, ever evolving Guild Hunter paranormal romance series. It is a pivotal novel in a series that started as a nascent story of archangels, vampires and the humans that make up their world and has grown to be a most riveting tale of love, strength loyalty and family- all sacred bonds that are forged and tested under a theme of danger and brutality that is so bone chillingly other, that their survival is not only miraculous, it is utterly enthralling.
Simply. Magnificent. Nine novels later and Guild Hunter still feels fresh and mysterious. Singh deftly avoids the pitfall and trappings of mid series slumps or rehashing plot devices. This series is not your average write-by-numbers-just-insert-alpha hero -and-heroine-here- with recycled plot devices. Guild Hunter is an epic saga, ever twisting, ever twining all the while leading you on one of the most unique literary journeys in the genre.
Can anybody tell me just how Nalini Singh came to be so brilliant? Nope. Probably not. Her creative mastermind eludes us all as any literary deity worth her eight in words should. This time, her genius leads us away from the iconic series home-base of New York City, and into a distant land where unexpected discovery and peril awaits them at every turn. Far away from the safety of Raphael’s New York territory, the Cadre has been summoned to meet to discuss rogue Archangel Lijuan and her abandoned territory once and for all…And when the Cadre meets, lives hang in the balance and no one is safe or immune from the effects of the cascade that taints world, a precarious series of phenomenon that not even an Archangel can out run.
“If there is to be a battle among the Cadre, Guild Hunter, I would rather you not be anywhere in the vicinity. Remember Beijing.”
The city no longer existed. The smoke was long gone but the crater remained a brutal scar on the landscape- and some said that there were parts of it that were hot to the touch to this day. Elena wasn’t sure whether to believe those reports or not, because most people stayed far, far away from the evidence of what could happen when archangel’s fought one another.
Archangel’s Heart is Elena and Raphael’s return to center stage as they find themselves traveling to Lumia, the Luminata compound that overlooks a city that unlocks the key to Elena’s past, a history so shadowy a dangerous, to even speak of her ancestors is to invite trouble and death swiftly to your door. So MUCH transpires. There is the awesome banter and calculated dialogue between the archangel’s, that I always enjoy. It was such a treat to see Raphael in his element- it is easy to forget that he is indeed a very dangerous being. He is so often seen through Elena’s loving and protective eyes that it is an exciting jolt to the system to be reminded as I was that Raphael is exactly who he is. The dynamic between the other archangels was my second favorite part of this novel and overall “space” were are in with the series thus far. Raphael’s loyal seven, primarily Aodhan and Illium were also stand outs, their unspoken turmoil coming to a head. All I can say is more! I thirst for more scenes, more time with these fascinating characters- each one brilliantly crafted and oozing life.
“I’m no longer a broken doll who needs to be protected from those who might play roughly with me.”
Beyond getting more page time with my new favorite, newly awakened ancient archangel (I’m winking at you Alexander, you silver winged, silver fox of a sexy, hunk of a-ahem!) beyond my mortal fangirling and ogling of mature and…seasoned immortal fresh meat (did I mention that Alexander is mourning his son and is by definition, emotionally damaged and friggin RIPE for my scarred–hero-syndrome??!!)- Wellll he is and I am all over him like a vampire on fresh blood. In any case….beyond the Cadre politics. Archangel’s Heart is all heart. The declarations and affirmations traded between Raphael and Elena – swoon. Elena’s past is unpacked so precisely and with such care, such (buzz word) heart that it is easy to see how the title fit ever so perfectly. Unlocking clues to her past and healing a part of Elena that has long caused her suffering – thus allowing her to regain a piece of the peace she lost long ago, when vicious inhumanity stole her childhood within the walls of her own home.
Elena learned that, sometimes to fight a nightmare, you had to become an even more dangerous nightmare.
This novel is a must read. It is a world you relish becoming lost in, arriving at the end, just as stimulated and excited as you began. Nalini Singh has the rare, magical writing that leaves you equal parts satiated and satisfied, while longing for what’s to come. I always feel good after a guild Hunter book. Battle weary (because her angelic fight sequences are unmatched and I am not at all convinced that I wasn’t fighting side by side with my favorite Archangel, his consort and their angelic, vampire and human allies)- but goood. Happy and fulfilled. And isn’t that what a good novel does for you? Not to mention Raphael and Elena make love like champions. After all, he IS an archangel- is he not? *wink*
Raphael raised an eyebrow. I am an archangel.
Elena is one lucky hbeebti.