Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Review: "Haze" by Paula Weston

"But what if we can’t find Jude?" He leans closer. His breath is warm on my ear. "We will." "How can you be so sure?" I want to believe him so badly, but this is Rafa. The guy who’s all action and no plan. His smile is tired, knowing. An echo of a shared past I don’t remember. "Because I’m not smart enough to give up, and you don’t know how to." Gaby Winters’ nightmares have stopped but she still can’t remember her old life. Still can’t quite believe she is one of the Rephaim—the wingless half-angels who can shift from place to place, country to country, in the blink of an eye. That she was once the Rephaim’s best fighter. That demons exist. That Rafa has stayed. But most of all, she can’t quite believe that her twin brother, Jude, might be alive. And Gaby can’t explain the hesitancy that sidetracks the search for him, infuriates Rafa, and sends them, again, into the darkest danger.

My thanks to Netgalley and Tundra Books for allowing me to read and review an ARC of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.

This series is seriously so cool!  I thought I was kind of over the whole angel thing.  I loved the Mortal Instruments series when I first read it (hey, I'm not ashamed!) until the fourth book, where it got pretty old.  I read "Hush, Hush", and thought it bit, hard.  I read "Fallen" and thought it was boring and stupid.  So why do I love these "Rephaim" that Paula Weston has created?  I'm not sure exactly - it could be the Australian setting, or the characters (okay, Rafa is just, yum!  Love him!!!) or possibly the world building involved.  Maybe it's the writing!  I love how it's been a year or more since I read "Shadows", and Weston is able to keep me in the loop, fill me in and remind me of the history of these characters, and not make me feel like she's dumping a whole load of crap on my head.  I've read a couple of other sequels lately where I felt totally lost, and it made the reading experience confusing and much less enjoyable than it could have been, so I really appreciate Weston's ability to  segue from one book to the next with ease.  

I'm not sure I got to know Gaby any better in "Haze" than I did in "Shadows", and that is one area I felt was lacking.  Gaby still can't remember anything from before the accident, except the memories of her and Jude that were planted, which aren't even "real" memories.  Although we do see her progress a bit in her fighting and shifting abilities, I would have liked to see more growth overall, if that makes sense.  Like maybe if she remembered something about her former life.  I don't know.  I am, however, enjoying how her relationship with Rafa is progressing -  there's still quite the mystery between them, and Rafa is definitely NOT spilling the beans.  I want to know so badly how things end up between these two!  

I feel like this series is building steadily, and while it's true that not a ton happened here plot-wise, I don't feel like "Haze" suffered from that sophomore slump that many second books in a series are afflicted by.  There was still a lot of action, a bit more romance, and some intriguing character interactions and developments.  I am sitting on the edge of my seat waiting to see what happens next!

My rating: 4 stars 

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