Book Review: Archangel’s Legion by Nalini Singh

Posted January 6, 2014 by Kathy Davie in Book Reviews / 2 Comments

Book Review: Archangel’s Legion by Nalini SinghArchangel's Legion by Nalini Singh
Genres: Paranormal, Romance
Published by Jove on October 29, 2013
Pages: 374
Format: Paperback
Source: the library


Angels are falling from the sky in New York, struck down by a vicious, unknown force.

Vampires are dying impossibly of disease.

Guild hunter Elena Deveraux and the Archangel Raphael must discover the source of the wave of death before it engulfs their city and their people, leaving New York a ruin and Raphael’s Tower under siege by enemy archangels.

Yet even as they fight desperately to save the city, an even darker force is stirring, its chill eyes trained on New York…and on Raphael. Rivers of crimson and nightmares given flesh, the world will never again be the same.

Also by this author: Archangel's Shadows, Archangel’s Enigma, Shards of Hope, “Fairy Balloons”, "An Unexpected Guest”, Allegiance of Honor, "The Song of the Wolf", Silver Silence, Archangel’s Heart, Archangel’s Viper, Ocean Light, "Elena's School of Horror", Cherish Hard, "Ain’t No Party Like A Bear Party", Archangel's Prophecy, "One Night At The Refuge", "Secret Things", Rebel Hard, Rock Hard, Wolf Rain, "Clean and Dirty", "Wolf School", "Naya’s Most Important Visitors", "Grocery Shopping", "A Gift for Kit", "Movie Night", "Kaleb and Sahara’s Meeting with Sascha and Lucas", "Housewarming at the Orchard", "Christmas in the Kitchen", "Stalking Hawke", "Romancing Drew", "Sunday Morning", "Rowan", "Baubles & Ben", Wild Embrace, Love Hard, Rock Addiction, "Music Awards", Rock Courtship , "Rock Courtship Memo"s, Rock Redemption, "Sunshine", Rock Wedding, "With This Memo", A Madness of Sunshine, "Beary Tiny Ghosts", Alpha Night, "A Wedding Breakfast", "Poker Night", "Knives and Sheaths", "Seedlings", "Star Kissed", "A Walk on the Cliffs", "Wild Cat Blues", Slave to Sensation, Caressed by Ice, Visions of Heat

Sixth in the Guild Hunter paranormal romance series and revolving around the world-ruling and terrifying archangels. The couple focus brings us back to Elena Devereaux and the Archangel Raphael who rules New York City and territory encompassing Atlanta.

My Take
Wow, this is disaster upon disaster for the angels and for Elena personally. It’s bad enough that angels are dying, but Elena learns some horrible truths about her family. Truths that shed light on Jeffrey’s actions.

I always enjoy learning whatever bits of backstory an author chooses to reveal as it provides such an opportunity for filling in motivations while wringing away at my heart. And what happened to Elena’s mother, Jeffrey’s mother, and Raphael’s encounter with his insane mother those thousands of years ago does twist away at my emotions. Reaching adulthood usually brings experience, a combination that changes one’s perspective about the past, changes how we interpret and better understand the choices our parents made. A perspective that Elena is coming to with the revelations in Archangel’s Legion.

I feel twisted on several of Singh’s choices in this: there’s the oh-so-contrived confrontation Elena has with Raphael that felt so false, the lame worries Elena has about Raphael’s “weakness”, then we slip into the halfway zone of that “blemish” which has the potential for being more terrifying than Singh uses, and then we slip into the voices. Yes, Singh touches lightly on this, but she does it so well and ties it into Raphael’s past in such a way that I was on tenterhooks for more than half of the story!

Ooh, watch yer manners! Seems the archangels have very careful guidelines on what is allowed or not. A requirement to keep down the bloodbaths.

The distinction Raphael makes between the female archangels who want him and Elena is so sweet and incisive.

Lijuan is sure a piece of work. She regrets that Raphael never respected her as he ought…awwww… Just goes to show that no one is immune, no matter how powerful, from being a nut job!

A good story, even if it feels as if it’s missing something—I suspect it’s the number of teasers Singh slipped in, and one I want to read again, already!

The Story
It’s a plague of events from dying birds to falling angels, a flood of blood, a viral pox—and one that seems to affect Raphael. It’s too much, too dangerous for too many, and Elena is terrified for her love, her city, and their people.

The Characters
Elena Devereaux is getting used to those wings. A former Guild Hunter, she went angel in Angels’ Blood, 1. Jeffrey is Elena’s jerk of a father; Marguerite is her dead mother, horribly tortured by Slater Patalis, a vampire. Beth is her only surviving full sister; Harrison is/was Beth’s jerk of a husband. Gwendolyn is Jeffrey’s second wife. Amethyst and Eve are Elena’s half-sisters, and Eve is hunter-born. We learn the truth about Elizabeth Parker, Jeffrey’s mother.

Raphael is the terrifying Archangel who rules New York and a huge area around the city. The one who fell in love with a Hunter and is learning how to laugh. Montgomery is Raphael and Elena’s butler. Sivya is an angel in charge of the kitchens.

Raphael’s people
The Seven include Jason, Raphael’s spymaster who is married to Princess Mahiya (Archangel’s Storm, 5); Dimitri, a vampire and Raphael’s second, is with Honor, helping her through her transition (Archangel’s Blade, 4); and, Venom. Naasir is more than simply a vampire, and Isabel is his partner. Aodhan is new to New York, taking Dimitri’s place in charge of Tower operations, and appears to be fractured light. Illium is the blue-winged angel who carries Lightning; the Hummingbird is his mother. Nimra is a power within the territory (“Angel’s Wolf“, 4.5). Izak is described as a big, goofy puppy, only he won’t be following Elena around any time soon. Keir is an angel healer from Refuge. Nazarach, Andreas, and Augustus are Raphael’s angelic commanders. Janvier is a vampire trusted by Guild Hunters, especially Ashwini. Azar is an advance angel scout.

Caliane is an Ancient who went insane and tried to kill her son, Raphael, before she went into Sleep and took the people of Amanat with her. She doesn’t approve of her son’s consort (Archangel’s Consort, 3). Nadiel was Raphael’s father. Kahla is the fated victim.

Guild Hunters
Sara, the head of the Guild Hunters, is Elena’s best friend, and a human married to Deacon, a former Slayer, now a weapons crafter; they have a little girl, Zoe. Slayer is the name of their dog. Darrell Vance is a possible rogue Guild Hunter; Mrs. Flaherty is his worried grandmother. Honey Smith is the woman Vance is involved with, we think. The Slayer is a usually anonymous hunter who hunts down Guild Hunters gone bad. Ransom Winterwolf and Demarco are more Guild Hunters. Vivek Kapur is the handicapped computer tech in the wheelchair, immured under Guild HQ.

Elijah is the Archangel of South America with a new power, and Raphael seeks an alliance. Hannah is his consort. Michaela is an archangel who is with child by Dahariel. Riker is Michaela’s pet vampire with a desire to taste Elena almost as deep as Michaela’s hate for her. Lijuan is the Archangel of China, a.k.a., the Archangel of Death, who has gone mad, a nightmare born of the rot at the core of her soul, raising an army of the dead. Xi is her second. Titus has gained power over the earth. Astaad dominates the sea and usually indulges his concubines. Mele is one of them, a scholar with an interest in vampiric soldiers and ancient languages, while Favashi can control the winds. Charisemnon is a pedophile in league with Lijuan. Nehan is a ruling Archangel being challenged by her twin, Nivriti. Tasha is a childhood friend with her own designs on Raphael. Avi and Jelena were Tasha’s parents, whom Caliane left in charge of watching over Raphael before she went into the Sleep. Jessamy is an angel historian who teaches at the Refuge and is married to Galen, Raphael’s weaponsmaster (Angels’ Flight: “Angels’ Dance”, 4.75).

Blood-for-Less is a new company with a unique twist on supplying blood. It’s owner, Marcia Blue, is a terrified vampire. Sidney Geisman chose to become a vampire and now is disaffected.

The Primary leads the Legion, a repository of power.

The angels are the makers of vampires and there’s a bureaucracy set up to test humans who want to be turned along with a contract of 100 years service to the angel turning them. A very severe contract. The Angel Enclave is where Raphael and Elena have a house outside the city on the opposite side of the Hudson from Manhattan. The Refuge feels as though it’s on the other side of the world from New York and is a place where the angels’ children are schooled, cared for, and taught. The Cascade is a confluence of time and critical events that have led to a power surge amongst the Cadre, the archangels. And it’s not over.

The Cover
The cover is purples from the deep lilac of the night sky, city, and buildings forming the backdrop for the ready Elena standing with her legs apart in her over-the-knee boots, her mini crossbow pointed downward, and her wings spread, the tips tinged in a gorgeous red-violet.

The title is prophetic and a lifesaver with this Archangel’s Legion.

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2 responses to “Book Review: Archangel’s Legion by Nalini Singh

    • ladystorm

      Hey, Lexxie! You’re welcome on the review. Raphael and Elena do take it up a notch…if that encourages you to pull the book out from under that TBR! Kathy

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