Review Detail

Young Adult Fiction 3450
Excellent, but a little disappointing
Overall rating 
 
3.0
Plot 
 
3.0
Characters 
 
3.0
Writing Style 
 
3.0
Taken on its own merit, Rebel Angels is a very good book. The paranormal aspect is extremely compelling and unique, Libba Bray’s prose is lush and atmospheric, the characters, while hard to understand and not easy to like, are interesting at the very least. Where my problems came in was that, as far as series continuity goes, this book didn’t work well with its prequel. It was really like embarking on an entirely different adventure, unrelated from the events in A Great and Terrible Beauty.

For example, the character of Kartik saw a nearly 180-degree shift from who Bray presented in the first book. Instead of being withdrawn, mysterious, and slightly rude to Gemma, the Kartik in Rebel Angels was suave, childishly eager to please, humorous, and apparently besotted. Say what? But then, when it suited the author’s purposes, Kartik would revert back to his other self. In this book he was a complete yo-yo character, and I felt that he was just this shallow name on paper that had no point. This novel is strong enough without a romantic interest, so Kartik’s little thing with Gemma felt like a badly done add-on.

Other than the Kartik issue, my problem with this book was characterization in general. Outwardly, Gemma and the gang are complex, intricate character. But really, on closer observation I feel like they have no substance. Their actions are entertaining and engrossing, but I don’t feel that these people are real. I could never meet Gemma in real life, and Ann and Felicity wouldn’t work out, either. Honestly, if you took the Mean Girls crew and put them in Victorian England with some magic, you’d have the characters in this book.

I didn’t hate the characters, though. I just wanted more from them. There’s a difference.

But boy, oh boy was the magic really awesome in Rebel Angels. Probably my biggest complaint from A Great and Terrible Beauty was that the realms played so teensy of a role. The concept was so amazing, but Bray hardly explored it. In this book, at least half was spent inside the realms, and it was fabulous. This series is such a standout compared to all other piece of paranormal fiction; I have seriously never read (or heard of) anything like this. I love the raw, unconstrained magic—it’s just so cool, seriously.

And though I’m not wholly impressed with characters, I do love that Gemma and Company are dealing with things besides just magic. Libba Bray isn’t afraid to bring up important issues like child abuse and self-harm outside of a realistic fiction novel. It added another facet to this piece.

Altogether, I thought Rebel Angels was better all around than A Great and Terrible Beauty. In fact it was so good and so different that it didn’t really fit with the pre-existing trend. So it looks like Libba Bray outclassed herself too much here, almost.
Report this review Was this review helpful to you? 0 0

Comments

Already have an account? or Create an account
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

Secondhand Dogs
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
A heartwarming—and heart-tugging—middle grade novel about love, loyalty, and what...
High School Musical: The Musical: The Series: The Road Trip
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Join everyone's favorite Wildcats from the Disney+ smash hit original...
I'll Meet You in Your Dreams
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
A heartwarming text honoring the ever-evolving relationship of a parent...
Colors of Habitats
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
The brand-new sequel to a well-reviewed bestseller that has been...
Noble Thief (Fantasy and Fairytales Book 6)
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
A prince of two kingdoms. A woman fighting against the...
10 Truths and a Dare
 
3.7
 
0.0 (0)
It's Senior Party Week, that magical in-between time after classes...
All These Bodies
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Sixteen bloodless bodies. Two teenagers. One impossible explanation. ...
The Beautiful Ones
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
They are the Beautiful Ones, Loisail’s most notable socialites, and...
I Am the Shark
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
What makes the great white shark (one of) the greatest...
Made in Korea
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
Frankly in Love meets Shark Tank in this feel-good romantic...
Take Me Home Tonight
 
3.0
 
0.0 (0)
Ferris Bueller’s Day Off meets Nick and Nora’s Infinite...
The People We Choose
 
3.3
 
5.0 (1)
When 17-year-old Calliope meets her new neighbor Max, their...
Hurricane Summer
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
In this sweeping debut, Asha Bromfield takes readers to...
Slingshot
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
An exciting debut contemporary young adult novel perfect for...
The Keeper of Night
 
0.0
 
5.0 (1)
Death is her destiny. Half...
The Girls are Never Gone
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Conjuring meets Sadie when seventeen-year-old podcaster Dare takes an...

Latest Member Reviews

Secondhand Dogs
 
5.0
"Gus is the pack leader at Miss Lottie's house, and has kept the peace well with excitable Roo, loyal and..."
High School Musical: The Musical: The Series: The Road Trip
 
4.0
"HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL: THE MUSICAL: THE SERIES: THE ROAD TRIP is a fun book that compliments the show by diving..."
The Promised Prince
 
4.3
"When Renna goes swimming in a pond, she never expects to meet a boy named Trev in the most unladylike..."
I'll Meet You in Your Dreams
 
5.0
"I'LL MEET YOU IN YOUR DREAMS is a gorgeously illustrated picture book about parental love that spans space and time...."
Colors of Habitats
 
4.0
"COLORS OF HABITATS is a beautifully illustrated oversized book of inspiration for artists. The book walks through different habitats from..."
10 Truths and a Dare
 
3.7
"10 TRUTHS AND A DARE is a book about family and owning up to your mistakes. Olivia is about to..."
The Beautiful Ones
 
4.0
"It's the start of Grand Season and Nina's chance to join the Beautiful Ones, Loisail's notable socialites, hasn't gone well...."
A Song of Wraiths and Ruin (A Song of Wraiths and Ruin #1)
 
5.0
"This was... one of the best books I've read in a long time. It was one of my absolute favorite..."
Yes No Maybe So
 
5.0
"I should start by saying I don't normally read books involving politics because I read to escape real life. That..."
I Am the Shark
 
4.7
"I AM THE SHARK is a fun and educational picture book about self-confidence. A great white shark is introducing the..."
The Bachmann Family Secret
 
3.0
"This book had some good ideas, especially a young man coming to terms with his sexuality, but it felt somewhat..."
Made in Korea
 
4.7
"MADE IN KOREA is a sweet romantic-comedy about competition, family, and reaching for your dreams. Valerie runs a very successful..."
The Keeper of Night
 
5.0
"HOW I GOT MY HUSBAND BACK WITH THE HELP OF DR.IFADE CONTACT ON WHATS_APP NUMBER +1(551)333-5249. OR HIS EMAIL ..."
Perfectly Parvin
 
5.0
"PERFECTLY PARVIN is a laugh-out-loud, charming YA contemporary fiction read. Parvin is about to begin her freshman year of high..."
Thirty Talks Weird Love
 
5.0
"******PLEASE READ***** URGENT EFFECTIVE LOVE SPELL TO GET YOUR EX BACK FAST AND TO SAVE YOUR..."
Photos Framed: A Fresh Look at the World's Most Memorable Photographs
 
5.0
"******PLEASE READ***** URGENT EFFECTIVE LOVE SPELL TO GET YOUR EX BACK FAST AND TO SAVE YOUR..."
Book Nerd
 
N/A
"******PLEASE READ***** URGENT EFFECTIVE LOVE SPELL TO GET YOUR EX BACK FAST AND TO SAVE YOUR..."
The Love Song of Ivy K. Harlowe
 
3.0
"THE LOVE SONG OF IVY K. HARLOWE is a new adult read about love, pining, and friendship. Andie is 19..."
The People We Choose
 
5.0
"******PLEASE READ***** URGENT EFFECTIVE LOVE SPELL TO GET YOUR EX BACK FAST AND TO SAVE YOUR..."
The Missing: The True Story of My Family in World War II
 
5.0
"My Name Ollis Bator from Tx USA. After 12years of marriage, me and my husband have been into one quarrel..."