Author: Nalini Singh
Release Date: November 1, 2016
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Series: Guild Hunter #9
Elena and Raphael are back again as the focus of another Guild Hunter book. This time the pair is called away from New York for a meeting with the Cadre. When they arrive, Elena is shocked to hear that she resembles someone who used to live in the area. Thinking there may be a connection to her mother’s past laying in the city, Elena investigates with the help of fellow angel Aodhan.
I mentioned in my review of “Archangel’s Legion” that Raphael and Elena’s books are usually game changers in the Guild Hunter series. Well… I was wrong. “Archangel’s Heart” was a filler book. We do have some fairly big revelations about Elena’s family, but I wasn’t on board with the direction of that storyline.
The biggest issue with “Archangel’s Heart” is that Singh likes to fix everything for her main characters, making their lives as perfect as possible. This becomes a problem when she’s frequently returning to the same characters, like she is with Elena and Raphael. Their lives and relationships are all peaches and cream with new things always popping-up to make it all even easier. So, even though there are battles going on around them, the stakes are never raised. There’s very little threat to these two as Raphael continues to gain powers, their relationship is constantly reaffirmed as unbreakable, and Elena’s family issues are being fixed. Everything seems to be coming too easy for them and it makes for some pretty dull reading.
This lack of conflict was my main issue here. The only thing really moving the plot along is the mystery of Elena’s connection to the village. There’s no real threat happening, so the story lacks any kind of urgency. This combined with the fact that the mystery is pretty easy to figure out made “Archangel’s Heart” my least favorite installment in the series.
A couple of upsides to the story is that we didn’t have Raphael and Elena interacting as much as they did in “Archangel’s Legion”. I was on-board with this since those two are pretty dull as a couple and Raphael doesn’t have much personality. The other positive was getting to see a little more of Aodhan who had always been on the fringes. Based on the events in this one, I’ll be surprised if we don’t see him with his own book very soon. Mostly though, I’m just hoping that Singh takes a long break from revisiting Elena and Raphael again.
In all honesty, you could skip “Archangel’s Legion” and “Archangel’s Heart” in the series. You only really need to read them if you’re interested in seeing more of Raphael and Elena. The other books, outside of the first three, work well as standalones.
ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
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