Google+ Reading Teen: Audiobook Review: Angel Burn by L.A. Weatherly

Friday, June 17, 2011

Audiobook Review: Angel Burn by L.A. Weatherly

Reading level: Young Adult
Publisher: Candlewick on Brilliance Audio; MP3 Una edition (May 24, 2011)
Buy the book:  Audiobook, Hardcover

Willow knows she’s different from other girls, and not just because she loves tinkering with cars. Willow has a gift. She can look into the future and know people’s dreams and hopes, their sorrows and regrets, just by touching them. She has no idea where this power comes from. But the assassin, Alex, does. Gorgeous, mysterious Alex knows more about Willow than Willow herself does. He knows that her powers link to dark and dangerous forces and that he’s one of the few humans left who can fight them. When Alex finds himself falling in love with his sworn enemy, he discovers that nothing is as it seems, least of all good and evil. In the first book in an action-packed romantic trilogy, L. A. Weatherly sends readers on a thrill ride of a road trip  —  and depicts the human race at the brink of a future as catastrophic as it is deceptively beautiful.
The Audio:

I got both the hardcover and the audio of this book at BookExpo America a couple of weeks ago, and decided to dive right into the audio.  The reader is Cassandra Campbell and I thought she did a really great job bringing this story to life.  Often I don't care for women readers, especially when they do male voices, they just sound wrong, but Cassandra did a great job with all the voices, even Alex's.  The only one I had a tiny annoyance about was, unfortunately, Willow's.  During the narration, or when Willow was thinking something, Cassandra's normal voice was perfect, but when Willow spoke, I just thought she came off a little too young, and kind of whiny.  I wish she would have just used her normal voice for Willow, instead of trying to make her sound younger.  Overall, however, I really enjoyed listening to this book and am glad I chose that route.  If you're going to read this one, I would definitely recommend the audio!

The Story:

I haven't read anything about this book, so I was surprised to find out that in the world that L.A. Weatherly created in Angel Burn, angels are not good.  In fact, they're horrible.  They have come to earth not to help humanity, though humans believe they have, but to feed off of people, slowly draining them of their health and mental capabilities, until they are only shells of their former selves.  I had a really hard time with this.  I just couldn't think of Angels as being bad.  In fact, I'm not sure what it was that made these creatures "angels" other than the fact that they had wings, and people thought they were beautiful.  They actually seemed more like aliens to me, and this whole book seemed more sci-fi than paranormal.

This isn't to say that I didn't like the book, I actually liked it a lot.  But then again, I like it's no surprise.  I thought the story was fantastic.  It was really original, at least as far as what I've read, and it captivated me to the point of me carrying my ipod around the house while I did housework, listening to it whenever I could. The narration was different than any book that I've read.  Parts of it were told by Willow's point of view, and were told in first person, then other parts were told from Alex's point of view and were told in third person.  I found this kind of strange, but also kind of interesting.  I like it when authors mix things up and try new ways of writing (not saying this hasn't been done before, I've just never read it).

One of the things I loved most about the book was.....wait, you're going to be really surprised....THE ROMANCE!!  I bet you didn't see that coming.  Ok, yes, I'm a sucker for the romance, and this one was awesome!  Even though Willow and Alex were attracted to each other from the beginning, their romance was slow-going.  They spent serious time getting over their prejudices and getting to know each other.  So the tension was pretty intense, and that's my favorite!!  When they finally did get together, they were so sweet!!  SO SWEET!  In fact, there were moments when I thought the cheesy-factor might be a little overboard.  They talked a LOT.  I don't think I've ever read a book where the characters talked so much about all their feelings and how much they loved each other.  But, still, they were cute, and I really liked Willow and Alex.

My one complaint (other than the profanity, which is always a complaint for me) would be the serious cliff-hanger.  I don't feel like too much actually HAPPENED in this book.  It seemed mostly like a set-up for more to come, and this one focused almost entirely on Willow and Max and their growing relationship.  That's not to say there wasn't an individual story arc in Angel Burn, there was, and there was some resolution, but there was a lot more left unfinished than there was finished.  Which means, basically, that if you're going to read this one, be ready to commit to another series. 

Overall, I think this was an enjoyable, and original read, and I'm looking forward to seeing where it goes in the future.  I think that if the next book is released in audio format, I will be listening to it as well.  FYI:  This book was previously released in the UK as Angel.


  • Sexual Content:  Mild/Moderate
  • Profanity:  Moderate/Heavy
  • Violence:  Moderate
  • Other Notables:  Some underage drinking (minor)
For more details, check out Angel Burn on Parental Book Reviews.


  1. You should see the UK cover, it's so bad. She looks like she's possessed, I'm not even joking. But man, I thought Angel's cover was bad, when I saw the UK cover for the second book, Angel Fire, I almost had a heart attack! Maybe you shouldn't see them, might scar you for life o_O

    Onto the book (small spoilers):
    I loved the fact that angels weren't good but evil beings sucking the life out of people. That was a great take on it, and I liked both characters and their romance. But towards the end I just got sick of it, the constant 'I love you's just made me roll my eyes the ending itself was enough to lose me. Not only did nothing happen they just went on the run!
    I started the book with a girl who was awesome and a storyline that was different, but by the end I felt like I was reading some crap romance book where the teenagers fail their plan and decide to go for a ride.

  2. OMG, you seriously just cracked me up, "some crap romance book where the teenagers fail their plan and decide to go for a ride"

    I think that if I was actually reading it, it might have bugged me more, but I think I can put up with more when I'm listening to the audio. Obviously it still bugged me a little, like I said, it got pretty cheesy, but overall, I think I'll like the whole story.

  3. I read it with a mate and she had the same reaction as me, liked it but the romance eventually killed it. "I love you so much I will die for you" ... "No I love you more!" "No I will die for you" "No let me!"
    So bad it bugged you even though you were hearing it! :D

  4. I don't like Cassandra Campbell so I might actually read this one. Thanks for the review!

    Mickey @

  5. I love books about angels, I still have Unearthly to read by Cynthia which I've heard great things about, my TBR pile is seriously getting out of control with your great reviews :)

  6. I loved Angel Burn! Well Angel to me in the UK! I love the fact the angels were different and as you said it did feel more like a scifi but I love scifi anyway! I loved willow and Alex's relationship! My fave part was the scenes in the cabin between them :) Angel was actuali my 1st ever review I did a few months back :)

  7. I have seen this book mentioned a lot lately, and it has definitely been a big request item at my library. I am surprised though that the angels are bad--that is an original twist to the angel story. I have been a burnt out with the angel story lately, so maybe picking up this one with its unique take on angels might be the way to go. I might find the change in narration a bit distracting--I'm admittedly not much of a 3rd person narration fan. Thanks for the review!

  8. This has been on my TBR list forever. I'm gonna have to get to it soon. :)

  9. I read this book hard copy. I really did enjoy the beginning. It felt different and fresh. But then the middle happened. It really just got to cheesy and lovey for me. I thought the book was having an identity crisis! It did not need the canyon of romance in the middle. That's really the only reason I didn't enjoy this one.

    deadtossedwaves at gmail dot com

  10. I, too, love angel themed books. The whole forbidden love between them and mortals, and then the mythology behind angels is what I enjoy. I agree, angels are usually precieved as good and nice beings. So, it's weird to see that plot done differently. However, that fact doesn't discourage me from wanting to read the book. Lately, any mention of books about angels go on my wish list.

  11. The young love story between Alex and Willow is one that every girl has dreamt of. Falling head over heels, doing everything in their power including risking their life for that person. The struggle for Willow finding where she fits in and realizing that why she always felt "different" is a great representation of the teenage girl's struggle to fit in during high school. For myself this book intrigued my religious ideas.....could there be religious undertones mixed in with this love story of two young people struggling in a world that is so different from them.

    1. I love the way you worded that. I think you're right, and even those of us out of high school long for that romance!! I wonder about the religious undertones as well. It would be interesting to know where the author got the idea for this series!

  12. I loveloveloved this book! No, seriously. I adore Alex and Willow. They're both awesome characters. Though the romance got a little cheesy towards the end, but overall I loved the book.

    Have you read the second book Angel Fire? If not, you should! It's as great as Angel Burn! The romance was perfect and not AT ALL cheesy. Swears.

    1. I haven't read it. I keep debating, because I liked this one, but not enough to just run out and grab the next one, plus they didn't send it to me for review, so....haha

      Maybe I'll check my library!

    2. The author is going to do a giveaway on twitter once she reaches 2k followers. You could win either Angel Burn or Fire copies! No need to buy or go to the library, haha.

      FYI this is what the author wrote: "Start brushing up on Angel [Burn]/Angel Fire trivia! Will ask 5 quiz questions, each for signed copy + 5 random giveaway."

    3. Oooh thanks! I'll have to make sure I'm following her! :D

    4. You're welcome! :D I hope you win a copy!

      Her twitter handle: @LA_Weatherly. :)


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