"Angelology" was a book that first came to my attention nearly a year ago when it was reviewed by Swapna @ S. Krishna's Books , when she said the book was "one of the best in recent memory". Which if you know Swapna, and the hundreds of books she reviews each year, you know these are BIG words. I've always been a fan of Anne Rice, with all her complicated little creatures that she creates, and this didn't sound so terribly different. When I saw that my library had this one on audio, I grabbed it.
Synopsis: When Evangeline was just a young girl, her mother was killed under suspicious circumstances, and her father brought her to the St. Rose Convent to be raised under their protective care. Now, at 23, she has taken her vows and is happy with her simple, secluded existence with God.
Her life, however, suddenly becomes complicated when a young man comes to the Convent asking questions about an ancient artifact on behalf of his wealthy employer. Evangeline is compelled to help the man in his quest, and not only learns about the history of angels that exist among us on earth, but begins to connect the dots in her own past.
Trussoni builds a world that rivals those of Anne Rice, starting with the genesis of man and the fallen angels, the survival of the angelic species beyond the Great Flood, and their rise to power and fortune. These are not chubby little cherubs, but seductive yet deadly creatures that will stop at nothing to control humans and rule the earth. When their race is threatened by disease, a war begins over the one ancient item, more ancient than anything else on earth, that could save them from extinction.
My thoughts: I was immediately captivated by the legend created by Trussoni built on the foundations of Catholic church history, the Bible, and other religious texts. This web she weaved is far from fanciful. It is complex and thorough, and you can't help wanting to believe it all to be true. It was all explained in such a way that made complete sense, even to a good church-going girl like me. There was action, intrigue, mysteries, ancient texts, and suppressed accounts of harrowing explorations.
About 2/3 of the way through the story, however, it lost some of its gravitas and academia, and became a little Da Vinci Code-ish. Chasing clues, evading murderous angels, and racing against time. I think I inwardly groaned at this injection of Hollywood. It was just a little too much.
In the end, however, Trussoni does pull things together, throws in a juicy unexpected twist, and resists the temptation to wrap things up with a happily ever after. There is all kinds of potential for a sequel, although I'm not certain I want one.
A few words about the audio production: The narrator for this audiobook was Susan Denaker, a new voice for me. The was not the most expressive narrator, but she was an absolute master with accents, and lent the story authenticity. She seems to have been around the block as a narrator, with books of all genres.
4 out of 5 stars