I think Steve was giggling maniacally to himself as he added this book to my review stack. He probably took one look at the cover and assumed it would be bad. Go ahead, take a look at it again. You might make that assumption, as well. And would you be wrong?
OK, who am I kidding… yeah, Steve’s unerring taste runs true, even without having read it. Unfortunately I did have to read it.
The title character is Angela, who was pulled from the Hudson River after a plane crash–with her and the baby she saves as the only survivors. For her heroism she becomes known as the Angel of the Hudson. But she suffers from amnesia and only after the airline works through the manifest are they able to discover her name. An important question the doctors never ask her is when her amnesia began, and that answer is: before the plane wrecked. Yeah, it’s important later on. Kind of.
Then she begins hearing things and she thinks she’s going crazy. There are voices in her head, and they match the behavior and personalities of the people around her. No, wait, it’s just the men. Why is it just the men? I don’t know. No, wait again, it’s all men, except one: Dante (get it? Angel… Dante?). Dante is the ambitious reporter for a 24-hour online news agency who happens to be in the right place at the right time when the plane goes down and involves himself in Angela’s story.
At this point you should be wishing that the plane crashed and everyone died, end of story. Alas.
Morrow takes her sweet time unraveling Angela’s mystery. Who she is. Where she gets her magic-like abilities–which are a strange and unexplainable assortment. Why she has these abilities. Why an ability works one time and not another. It never makes sense. And then and BAM in the last two pages there’s an explanation for her abilities… but then they’re twisted on their head mere paragraphs later. I really don’t know how to explain this to you.
As for the plot–well, it moved forward. In a drunken, crazed sort of way, with Angela and Dante eventually teaming up to figure out what happened to her and why she can do the things she can. A problem will crop up, only to have it resolved by the end of the chapter. Characters come and go. It was impossible to tell where this story was headed. I mean, it’s supposed to be a thriller, so I suspected something exciting to happen by the end.
They kind of “solve” the mystery. Convenient information appears and they use their convenient resources and new-found colleagues who conveniently believe them so they can help conveniently find what Angela and Dante need to know. There’s some shooting and blood and stuff in the last chapter. Angela and Dante get together in the epilogue. But it was really hard to care from all the brain-squeezing I endured.
ANGEL is the book you should read with your writer's group so you'll know everything not to do.
I know I’m not supposed to include spoilers, but you aren’t going to read it anyway. So I’m telling you that we never find out who Angela is or where she comes from or why she even exists. Why was she was on the plane in the first place? WHY?!? I just don’t know.
Thanks, Steve. I’ll never get those hours back.
- Recommended Age: 3000+, seriously, just... don't
- Language: A couple handfuls of unnecessarily harsh profanity
- Violence: Explosions, bloodied lips, kneed crotches--all for the sake of making it feel like a thriller
- Sex: Angela is one randy creature. The book drips with sex. And when I say dripping I mean like an annoying bathroom faucet when you're trying to sleep.
I’m not linking it. Don’t you even think about it.