World After (Angelfall #2)
Author: Susan Eee
An ARC was provided in exchange for an honest review.
In this sequel to the bestselling fantasy thriller, Angelfall, the survivors of the angel apocalypse begin to scrape back together what's left of the modern world.
When a group of people capture Penryn's sister Paige, thinking she's a monster, the situation ends in a massacre. Paige disappears. Humans are terrified. Mom is heartbroken.
Penryn drives through the streets of San Francisco looking for Paige. Why are the streets so empty? Where is everybody? Her search leads her into the heart of the angels' secret plans where she catches a glimpse of their motivations, and learns the horrifying extent to which the angels are willing to go.
Meanwhile, Raffe hunts for his wings. Without them, he can't rejoin the angels, can't take his rightful place as one of their leaders. When faced with recapturing his wings or helping Penryn survive, which will he choose?
Although I only just read Angelfall by Susan Ee this past summer, I was still desperately counting down the days until the release of World After. The ending of Angelfall was a tortuous one! However, after now finishing World After, I can't say I consider it to be as good as Angelfall. I went into it with fairly high expectations and found myself disappointed that I didn't feel that same sense of satisfaction from World After as I did with Angelfall.
In some ways, World After had this feeling of being a repeat of the first novel: Penryn, Paige and her mother are now together again. Paige disappears. Penryn and crazy mommy journey to find her. Penryn finds Raffe. Raffe helps Penryn find Paige. ...Sound familiar? Obviously World After has some new discoveries that keep the story moving forward, but I can't ignore the fact that I felt senses of deja vu here and there while reading.
I have a deep love for Penryn's character! I was so glad to see that despite the fact Raffe wasn't in the picture, she didn't just start ignoring her sister and mother's needs. She's a hero in so many ways, one of which being how she puts others above herself. In addition to her selflessness, Penryn's also got an addictive sense of humour and isn't afraid to fight with the big boys....or in World After's case....scorpions and powerful angels.
Sticking to the pattern, World After does not fail in delivering that dosage of absolute creepiness to the story-line through Penryn's sister, Paige, and her mother. As you may remember from the first novel, Paige had been experimented on, and when rescued, was found with stitches all over her body (including her mouth) and had a certain brokenness to her. Even though Paige is completely loyal to her sister and mother, she is unable to face what she imagines is the disgust her family feels towards her when they look at her appearance and come to the discovery of her new appetite. I'm not going to lie, creepy children always tend to freak me out a bit, but Paige still manages to make me love her--flesh eating diet and all. Penryn's mother is also another character that provides that creepy entertainment that has made this series so unique. It's definitely clear Penryn's mother is a little psychotic...however what makes her more scary is her theatrics and disguised intelligence. She's one of those characters where one minute your wondering (AKA having nightmares) over what Penryn's mother could possibly be up to, and the next you feel like she's the most kick-ass, protective mama ever! She's definitely an unpredictable personality that I always seem to enjoy and get a few laughs from.
At the end of Angelfall, we had to go through the agonizing, heartbreaking experience of Raffe thinking Penryn was dead. I don't know about you guys, but those last few pages were hard to read. Although we as the reader knew Penyrn wasn't dead (just paralyzed), Raffe didn't, and having to see him face the fact that Penyrn was"dead" was heartbreaking. One of the things I was most looking forward to seeing was Raffe opening himself up with Penryn once he discovered she was alive but, alas, that was a negative on that hope. I'm going to be completely honest, experiencing more than half of World After without Raffe in the picture sucked....but what sucked even more was the fact that even when Penryn and Raffe were reunited, there was so much hesitation! I think I'm mostly disappointed because I wanted to see some growth in their relationship and it just didn't happen. This was unfortunate to me because their chemistry is just so natural and their fun banter provides that comedic edge I loved so much about Angelfall. Hopefully, we'll see MUCH more of Penryn and Raffe together in the third novel because they make a pretty bad ass couple and fighting duo.
Overall, I enjoyed World After and getting a chance to see these characters I've grown to love again, however I find myself not feeling that same thrill as I did with Angelfall. Now, this may be just a simple case of middle-book-syndrome but I just craved more from certain aspects about it. Nonetheless, I am still a huge fan and am really excited to see what's next for Penryn and the gang (hopefully more creepiness and some good, steamy and intense Penryn & Raffe scenes). Are you excited to read World After? Who's your favourite character in this series? Be sure to let me know your thoughts in the comments below! Keep Reading!
Your Y.A. Bookworm,