Outcast by Adrienne Kress
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Thank you, Diversion Books, for gifting me an ARC. No money or favours were exchanged to alter this review.
So, I went into this with pretty low expectations. I don't know why, but I did. Maybe because of the cover, which isn't really my style. Maybe because this was 'just another angel book' (in my opinion). Well, I was wrong. Because I loved this. Loved loved loved this. Oh yeah, and I shall explain why too.
So, there's this little town in which every year, angels come down from the sky and take people. Almost everyone in this town thinks, especially thanks to Pastor Warren, that this is a blessing and it's great and special and wow. Not Riley. Her best friend/boyfriend Chris was taken, and the next year she shoots an angel in the face.
Yup. That makes for a pretty strong start, doesn't it? So, she shoots this angel thing, but instead of dying it transforms into a very naked boy. Unsure what to do, she ties him up and tries to question him, but there's a little problem: he thinks it's 1956.
I'll start of with the only thing I didn't love: the writing. Now, it wasn't bad. Not at all. But I felt like it was a Diesel. It needed to warm up first. In the beginning of the book the prose is a bit scraped together, sometimes even a bit stream-of-consciousness like. However, later on it got it's act together and became steady and enjoyable.
The characters were great. Riley isn't a Mary Sue; she's not the ooh-I'm-little-miss-perfect-but-I-don't-realise-it character. Or the character that's basically perfect except she's CLUMSY. Woo (Bella Swan, anyone?). Nope, she's a real person, flawed too, but she realises her mistakes and tries to better them. Yes! I loved her since the first page, since she shot an angel and kept loving her until the book ended.
The other characters were real persons too. And I LOVED LOVED LOVED how Riley and "mean cheerleadergirl" Lacy actually became good friends. Yes!! I can't really explain how happy I am about that. Yes, yes, yes! Mean girls with depth!
And the plot. Oh, the plot. It's so refreshing to read a book again that has an actual plot, and a good one at that. Yeah! So much win. And I loved how the little things were there too, how they actually had to do with the plot, and how it wasn't predictable. Refreshing, good, and I want more. There was a little hint that I immediately picked up on, but stupid me with low expectations thought: "Oh, this must be an usual ARC mistake. *snort*" It wasn't. I should have seen that coming and I didn't. What have you done to me? What have you done to me??
Then there's the romance. Once again I say, well done. I absolutely loathe insta-love and that wasn't present. It was slow-burning and not too fast and realistic. Bravo, Adrienne Kress!
And THAT ENDING. Oh shit. I'm not someone who cries over books (my emotions all stay in my head while reading), but if I was, I definitely would have. Kick-ass and so sad and NOOOOOOOOO WHY??? WHY???? I repeat, what have you done to me?
Would I recommend this? Hell yes. Put this on your to-read list. Now.
Shiiiiiiiit! That was intense!