Haze by Paula Weston
|Haze by Paula Weston|
|Reviewer: Loralei Haylock|
|Summary: A book that didn't quite live up to the first instalment, but remains an enjoyable read with enough about it to leave me wanting the next in the series. Some great character driven conflict with a sprinkling of demon fights and gore.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 400||Date: October 2013|
|External links: Author's website|
Gaby Winter's life used to be pretty ordinary. Apart the horrific nightmares she sometimes had about a guy and a nightclub and the death of her brother, Jude, things were going okay. Until the mysterious Rafa showed up and told her she was actually one of the Rephaim - a child of a fallen angel - and that she lived a whole other life that she can't remember, where she and Jude were warriors against demons, but on two opposite sides. The other Rephaim thought she was dead. And now they think there's a chance Jude might be alive somewhere too.
Gaby desperately wants to find him, but something's holding her back. According to Rafa, Gaby and Jude didn't speak for some time shortly before they disappeared. If they don't find him, Gaby has to deal with losing her brother all over again. And if they do... there's a chance Jude won't be who she remembers him to be.
After Weston's hypnotic first instalment in this series, I've been looking forwards to getting my hands on the sequel. While Haze didn't quite capture the same 'unputdownable' quality as its predecessor, it certainly wasn't a disappointment.
The 'who can I trust' politics continue, with Gaby facing a choice between the Sanctuary and the Outcasts. Not fond of the Sanctuary's tactics, but equally not fond of the Outcast leader Mya, Gaby would rather just return to Pan Beach and her job at the library. But clues to her brother's whereabouts and what exactly happened a year ago to cause her memory loss are dangled in front of her, drawing her into choices she doesn't want to make.
Rafa remains an interesting potential suitor. His hot/cold attitude as he battles with the knowledge of Gaby's previous life and the life she lives now is a convincing source of conflict in their relationship, and the kisses stolen against his better nature were intense and romantic. It's the sort of 'will they/won't they' relationship I can really get behind - one with a real problem keeping them from just being together.
The plot is interesting, but I did feel that the 'what happened to Jude' thing was dragged out a little bit too long for the sake of keeping the page count up. While on the one hand, I empathised with Gaby's fear about rekindling the relationship with her brother, and it was an interesting predicament for the character to be in, I just didn't feel it needed quite as much exploration as it got.
The other problem I had was the climax rather revolved around a group of thugs who witnessed some demons in the first book, and how they were going to be attacked by demons. Frankly, I didn't care if the whole lot of them got eaten - they were minor characters and not terribly pleasant - so hinging a major battle around saving them just didn't quite sit right for me.
But overall, there's enough going on here to maintain interest. The characters are still great, Gaby's internal conflict enough to power plenty of the novel on its own. A little bit of unnecessary padding slowed the pace somewhat, but with events left on a bit of a killer cliffhanger, I'm certainly invested enough to be looking out for the next book.
My thanks to the publishers for sending a copy.
Fans of paranormal romances may enjoy the Wolves of Mercy Falls: Forever by Maggie Stiefvater series.
You can read more book reviews or buy Haze by Paula Weston at Amazon.co.uk.
You can read more book reviews or buy Haze by Paula Weston at Amazon.com.
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