Monday, June 20, 2011

In the Arms of Stone Angels

Review Time! I'm really excited to review this one because I haven't seen all that many reviews for this book! In the Arms of Stone Angels written by Jordan Dane is a 2011 YA Debut! The US cover is different ( this one is prettier :P)! A big thank-you to Harlequin Teen for the review copy!

(Goodreads) Two years ago Brenna did the unthinkable. She witnessed the aftermath of a murder and accused her only true friend — the first boy she ever loved — of being a killer.

Now sixteen, Brenna returns to Oklahoma only to discover that Isaac ‘White Bird’ Henry isn’t in juvie. The half-breed outcast is in a mental hospital, frozen in time, locked in his mind at the worst moment of his life. When Brenna touches him, she’s pulled into his hellish vision quest, seeing terrifying demons and illusions she doesn’t understand.

Feeling isolated and alone, Brenna’s up against the whole town: targeted by bullying former classmates, a bigoted small town sheriff and a tribe who refuses to help one of their own.

But when Brenna realises she’s as trapped by the past as White Bird is, this time she won’t turn her back on him. She’s the only one who can free them both. Even if she has to expose her secret — a ‘gift’ she’s kept hidden her whole life

The Short Story? - A psychological thriller with a paranormal twist. Refreshingly original, eerily beautiful and emotionally raw. In the Arms of Stone Angels is a remarkable debut that will stay with you long after the last page. A tear-jerker, a mystery and a murder that tore two friends -two lovers- apart. Pretty Little Liars but more about emotions and less about designer clothes!

The Long Story? - It wasn't what I thought it would be. Honestly I was thinking more paranormal romance but I really loved how it turned out to be. It's nicer the way it is, more original and less clich├ęd. I've never actually read a psychological thriller before but I really enjoyed this one. In the Arms of Stone Angels is a novel I would recommend to everyone and anyone. It's doesn't get enough attention.

The plot was brilliant. It's a rather slow paced novel but it fits with the novel, it was easier to keep up with what was going on and believe me, there was alot going on. It's a murder mystery and basically Brenna is trying to find out what really happened two years ago. It's unpredictable and exciting, lots of suspense and heart pounding moments. However the murder mystery is really only half of the plot, the other half is an emotional journey Brenna takes to find herself and what's important to her. I wouldn't actually say it's a paranormal because the only thing paranormal about it is Brenna ability to see ghosts and the American Indian aspects of it. It's a novel for contemporary lovers looking for something new.

The characterisation is well thought out and Dane has managed to create some diversity in her characters cast. Our love interest and the 'heart' of the novel is a boy called 'White Bird' or Isaac Henry and he's American Indian. The latter part of the novel is heavily based around American Indian culture and it's all very different because authors are using characters with different background more often as minor characters but to make a main character not 'white' it's quite admirable and respectful. Our protagonist Brenna is someone I grew to really like. She's strong and capable but she's trapped under all this guilt that she can't move on, as the novel progresses we see slight changes in her personality and she's really grows to be someone confident and mature. Fantastic characterisation.

Last but not least, I would like to talk about Dane's writing. One of the best written YA novels I have read. Deeply moving, almost lyrical words stringed together, creating a unique and beautiful narrative voice. Easy to read and comfortable sentence structure Dane has one of the most beautiful YA voices I have read yet.

One of the best debuts I have read this year, beautiful, captivating, moving and breathtaking. In the Arms of Stone Angels is a novel about overcoming guilt, finding who you are and learning how to love again. This one’s a keeper.

Rating – 5/5

Badass Bookie xx


  1. A keeper you say? Must have then. Thanks for the review! I'm always looking out for good paranormal books that would appeal to me and this one does. I prefer this cover over the US. I still don't know how you get these review copies, but I suppose I'll buy a copy of this (and Saving June!!!) sometime soon.

  2. Okay I only kind of wanted to read this one, but now I'm definitely going to have to read it! I didn't realize it was a thriller either, that has me very excited. I'm like you and thought it was more paranormal. Also is that the Aussie cover? Its gorgeous, so much prettier then the US cover. Thanks for the great review!

  3. Wow this sounds fantastic and different. Thanks for the introduction.

  4. Nice review -- and I hadn't heard of this book. I'm requesting it through another library so I can take a look. :)

  5. I felt exactly the same way about this book! Going into it I was expecting a paranormal romance and what I got was completely different, but I adored it regardless. It's actually outside my usually zone, but I thought it was brillant. I was on the edge of my seat the whole time and I'll definitely be reading more for Ms. Dane!