Featured Review: Traitor Angels by Anne Blankman
About This Book:
Six years have passed since England’s King Charles II returned from exile to reclaim the throne, ushering in a new era of stability for his subjects.
Except for Elizabeth Milton. The daughter of notorious poet John Milton, Elizabeth has never known her place in this shifting world—except by her father’s side. By day she helps transcribe his latest masterpiece, the epic poem Paradise Lost, and by night she learns languages and sword fighting. Although she does not dare object, she suspects that he’s training her for a mission whose purpose she cannot fathom.
Until one night the reason becomes clear: the king’s men arrive at her family’s country home to arrest her father. Determined to save him, Elizabeth follows his one cryptic clue and journeys to Oxford, accompanied by her father’s mysterious young houseguest, Antonio Vivani, a darkly handsome Italian scientist who surprises her at every turn. Funny, brilliant, and passionate, Antonio seems just as determined to protect her father as she is—but can she trust him with her heart?
When the two discover that Milton has planted an explosive secret in the half-finished Paradise Lost—a secret the king and his aristocratic supporters are desperate to conceal—Elizabeth is faced with a devastating choice: cling to the shelter of her old life or risk cracking the code, unleashing a secret that could save her father…and tear apart the very fabric of society.
*Review contributed by Joanne Mumley, Staff Reviewer*
It Deserves a Book Hug
Full disclaimer: I am a huge fan of Milton and Paradise Lost ever since college. So this was a big pull for me with this novel.
Anne Blankman wows once again. I fell in love with her debut duology Prisoner of Night and Fog and Traitor Angels does not disappoint. When it comes to historical fiction Blankman weaves together historical facts, fiction, and plot twists to near perfection. As a reader, I can tell how much love she puts into her storylines. Her world building feels like you are being placed right inside a postcard. Vivid imagery and description put you right inside the action. Even though it is set in 1666, the world feels as fresh and as real as if I just stepped outside my front door.
Being a big fan of Milton, I love how Blackman added in secret messages, clues and codes. Turning what many might assume is just another boring British poem (which it definitely is not) into something so much more. It is a great way to get new young readers into British Lit. It mixes poetry with incredible historical details, religion and science, intrigue, romance, and of course a twisting and turning mystery adventure plot.
I have been incredibly lucky with a historical/literary reading streak. Traitor Angels is up at the top of my list after reading other fantastic YA book on Charlotte Bronte- these two books make a great pair especially if you have time to read at the beach!. The scavenger hunt feeling had me trying to figure out the puzzle too.
Both well-research, imaginative, and obviously written with love, I recommend this book to fans of historical fiction and mystery readers. After reading Traitor Angels I just wanted to give it a hug. I know it might be too soon- but when is the next Anne Blankman book coming?
Interesting facts about British Lit (Paradise Lost)
*You can find this review HERE!*