Thursday, March 1, 2012

Review: Illuminate

Need to Know Info:

Title: Illuminate
Author: Aimee Agresti 
Format: Hardcover, 531 pages
Publisher: Harcourt Children's Books
Release Date: March 6th, 2012

E-ARC received for Review from Publisher through NetGalley

Carrie's Review:
I’m going to be honest and tell you right off the bat this review is probably not going to be very helpful. It will most likely just be lots of gushing and urging you to read this book. Sometimes I don’t want to write a review I just simply want to tell you to pick it up and read it!

When I picked up Illuminate to read I hadn’t read many angel books before. I know angel books tend to be hit or miss with most people and there are plenty of them out there in the marketplace right now. The premise sounded good so I was intrigued enough to give it a go. I am so glad I did! I felt the concept of this book was fresh, new and interesting.

Please don’t let the size of this book intimidate you or question reading it. It is totally worth it! Aimee has a keen sense of detail and she puts a lot of it in the story. I think this is a positive thing. It helped me grasp the setting, characters and story so there was no question where I was or who these people were. As someone who lived in Chicago for a few months it was fun to be transported back there. I also learned some Chicago history I was unaware of before. I love delving into a story and being able to learn new things as well.

I really liked the character of Haven a lot. I think because I share very similar interests (photography and art) with her it was hard not to. Plus I always appreciate young characters that are smart and motivated. There is nothing wrong with wanting to be a good girl and doing the right thing.

I enjoyed the way the plot was laid out and how the mystery was unraveled. Besides the mystery there was of course a little bit of romance. I’m not going to spoil anything for you in that dept but I will say there is no insta-love in this book which was a big positive for me.

There are characters you will love, characters you will love to hate and the classic good versus evil theme. There is mystery, action and romance. There is a well resolved ending but a glimpse of future possibilities. This book really has it all. Aimee Agresti is truly an author to watch.

I highly recommend Illuminate to fans of YA paranormal and paranormal romance books.


Side note: As I mentioned before, I love learning new things. As an art lover when a painting is mentioned that I’m not familiar with I have to take the opportunity to learn more about it. While reading Illuminate I was introduced to a painting entitled La Jeune Martyre (The Young Martyr) by Paul Delaroche. I found the portrait hauntingly beautiful and wanted to share the image with you.


  1. Illuminate sounds fantastic! I've really been wanting to read this one for a long time. I'm pretty new to the angel mythology too, having JUST read books like Unearthly and Embrace about a week ago, LOL. So, I'm really excited to read some more and get to know the mythology better.

    Also, that painting is absolutely gorgeous.

    What's Your Story?

  2. Beautiful cover! I don't know though. You know me and angel books . . .

  3. I've been seeing this on a lot of TBR piles this month. After your rave review, I think I'll have to check it out! I haven't ever read an angel book.

  4. There's been so many paranormal books lately that I wasn't sure about this one. Only about half of the girls who borrowed my ARC have finished it. I'll have to take another look.

  5. I'm so glad to hear you loved Illuminate!! I've been anticipating this one for a while now!!

    The Young Martyr is a gorgeous painting--so haunting. I used to have this hanging in my bedroom.

  6. My thoughts on this book went up today. I don't think I *loved* it as much as you did, but I did like it. Great review, though. Your love for the book really comes through, Carrie! And I love that you attached the painting. ;)

    (I DID love me some Lucian, I won't lie. I'd read an entire book of JUST HIM.)



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