Publisher: Harcourt Children’s Books
Release date: March 6, 2012
Summary: Haven and two of her peers have been offered a rare opportunity: an internship at a five-star hotel! Room and board is included, and they’ll get school credit. Haven thinks it sounds too good to be true, and she’s right. The people who run the hotel are actually in the business of buying and selling souls for the devil, and their next big target is Haven.
My thoughts: Illuminate was a pleasant surprise! If you think you’re through with angel books, think again! Illuminate brings something entirely new to the table. Aimee Agresti takes her sweet time when writing this essay, but when it finally begins in earnest, it’s impossible to put the book down. Her mythology is fresh, and it’s actually more about demons than angels. The way they’re portrayed is wonderfully different; I loved Agresti’s striking mixture of evil and beauty!
The whole awesome-internship scenario is a bit unbelievable at first, but as the glamorous surface slowly fades away, you’ll find yourself completely sucked in. In fact, it’s the darkness in Illuminate that makes it so compelling. The horror aspect is played nicely: just as Haven has grotesque nightmares, I was unable to get images of certain scenes out of my head! The fact that Illuminate has stayed with me is testimony to its success.
Illuminate isn’t all chase scenes and dripping faces, though: Haven and her friends, Lance and Dante, cheer the story up tremendously. Their banter back and forth is fun, and Dante, especially, is king of sass. Though Haven is a great heroine, I found myself drawn toward Lance because of his quiet yet intent personality. It was especially nice to see him blossom as the story went along.
Illuminate is a perfect (albeit lengthy) read for someone looking for excitement. The mythology is intriguing, the characters are solid, and the romance is sweet. I found myself pleasantly surprised by Aimee Agresti’s debut, and am looking forward to reading more from her.
If you’re looking for a book to put you right on the edge of your seat, it is a perfect choice.
It will win over the hearts of all readers with its creative concept, lovable characters, and thrilling storyline.
For people who love: angels and demons, horror, thrillers.