|Airel (The Airel Saga #1)
by Aaron Patterson & Chris White
Published by StoneHouse Ink
Publish Date: May 1, 2011
My Source: review copy from the author
All Airel ever wanted was to be normal, to disappear into the crowd. But bloodlines can produce surprises, like an incredible ability to heal. Then there’s Michael Alexander, the new guy in school, who is impossibly gorgeous…and captivated by her. Somewhere in the back of her mind, she can hear the sound of pages turning, and another, older story being written. It is the story of an ancient family, of great warriors, of the Sword of Light, and the struggle against an evil so terrible, so far-reaching, that it threatens everything. Airel knew change would be an inevitable part of life. But can she hold on when murder and darkness begin to close in and take away everything she loves? Will she have what it takes when the truth is finally revealed? -(summary excerpt from Goodreads.com)
by Aaron Patterson & Chris White
My Thoughts: I have fallen fast and hard in love with Airel by Aaron Patterson & Chris White. I finished it a good long time ago but have been thinking on it for ages. I always come up to the same conclusion: I love it and that is all. But I want to be able to give you guys some good reasons why you might love it too, and after thinking and thinking and thinking – here’s what I’ve got…
Why I love Airel & why you should read it ASAP:
1. The Setting: Multiple places, mutiple times, multiple genres, multiple points-of-view. You guys, I love a story that is a little bit complex, and what we have here is really two stories in one that moves along almost parallel until they combine into one bigger, even better story toward the end of the book.
- Boise, Idaho, present day. This story line is almost like a contemporary coming-of-age story with some paranormal mixed in. This is the story of Airel and Michael Alexander.
- Arabia, 1250 B.C. This story is absolute fantasy, complete with the Sword of Light (more on that later). This is the story of Kreios.
*Do not let all of this “multiple” anything throw you off, scare you, push you away, or confuse you. It might seem by appearances that this would be a rough transition, but it is actually SEAMLESS and FLAWLESS in execution, which is amazing since it is done at the hands of two authors. I’m amazed.
2. The Characters. Three main characters:
- Airel & Michael. Their story takes place initially in the Boise, Idaho setting. Airel is a regular gal – smart, pretty – who begins to notice some changes in herself. She suddenly goes from “pretty” to “beautiful” with flawless skin and pefect hair, and she has crazy bouts of vomiting at random times. Not only that, but she starts to notice that she heals super fast when the opportunity presents itself. Add to all of this the fact that she’s hearing voices in her head and the fact that she’s being stalked by a killer – and suddenly Airel is a little confused at what exactly is going on in her life. Lucky for her, she meets Michael Alexander right about the time all of these changes start happening. He’s the perfect way to take her mind off of all of the weirdness. He’s just moved to town and is incredibly handsome in an insanely this-can’t-be-real, perfect way. Michael is the absolute epitome of the mysterious guy, and, as luck would have it, Airel and Michael take a liking to each other and have this instant, uncanny connection. They also both get kidnapped by the crazy stalker killer that has been chasing Airel, which throws the story into a whole new level.
- Kreios. A warrior/fallen angel from long-ago-Arabia that lost his beloved wife during childbirth. In order to protect his new daughter from the evil grip of the Seer, he will do anything – anything – even if it means breaking some pretty big rules. He’s enlisted some of his must trusted friends, family, and allies and I loved these characters. Loved them. This group of people, especially Kreios, is well-thought, well-written, and well-developed. Kreios is a solid character that I connected with deeply, and I found that I flew through the other scenes so I could hurry to the scenes that contained Kreios and his awesome Sword of Light.
3. Romance & Love.
- Romance. There is an insta-love relationship that develops between Airel and Michael Alexander. No love triangle. It is a little bit cheesy and almost unbelievable, but it is there nonetheless. However, it is necessary to the development of the story so I beg you to give it a chance and just chuckle your way through the cheesy parts.
- Love. The love that Kreios had for his newborn daughter – the lengths that he would go to protect her – were amazing and had me from the very beginning. If nothing else speaks to you in this book, it will be the love a father has for his child.
4. Good vs. Evil. You guys! I love a regular ole’ good vs. evil story like whoa. And this is it. It is! Angels vs. Demons, Airel and Michael vs. the stalker-killer guy, Good and evil, all over the place. And the Sword of Light to ensure that GOOD always prevails. There are battle scenes, y’all, and this Sword is amazing. And Kreios and his men…just…wow.
I’ve always been one to love the stories of good and evil and free will and who-will-choose-which-side… Some of the scenes had me on the edge of my seat, turning the pages fast, biting my nails. I was making theories about things on my own, forming my own opinions to see if I would be right. Loved it.
5. Betrayal. Like being kicked in the gut! It had me reeling, making faces, nearly crying. But I’m thinking I’ll be reading more about this in the next book. I’m crossing my fingers that I’ll be reading more about this in the next book…hint, hint fellas…
6. Sword of Light. Okay, I know I’ve talked about it already, but it deserves its own number. I love swords, and I wholeheartedly admit this is both dorky and unladylike. But this isn’t an ordinary sword. It has tons of power and the one who holds it does too. So some of the struggle and battling is over who gets to be the keeper of the all-powerful Sword. And you guys, I found my heart speeding up every time it was included on the page. I’m not joking. Loved the Sword of Light.
Aaron Patterson and Chris White have impressed me so much with Airel because not only have they created a story that I have loved, but they’ve been able to weave together two seemingly independent plot lines and combine them together and create one that is bigger and more powerful for an ending that just WOW’d me. If that wasn’t enough, they were able to write together – as two men – and create a young, female voice for Airel and make her believable. How amazing is that? Two dudes writing a believable gal?
Airel and Michael – in my opinion – had the lesser of the story lines in the beginning, but by the end – I was very and invested into them because I’m hoping their story has not ended. Airel started out a regular teenage girl and developed well into this smart and sophisticated person…and I’m gonna stop there before I tell you the entire story. I’m just impressed with her growth and development through the book. As far as Michael goes, I need to know what is up with this guy and it is pretty apparent that I will find out with the next book, because it is titled Michael. His mystery and perfection started out being one that I rolled my eyes at a little bit – but as I read I truly became more and more intrigued because there is actually a reason for all of it. Now, with the ending of Airel like it was, I’m honestly having a fit for Michael’s book. I’m having suspicions that all of the readers that didn’t really connect with Michael in Airel could potentially do so and soon, and it is really exciting to find out if I’m right or not…
Friends, I’m just thrilled to have the opportunity to read such a beautiful book. The cover is beautiful, the story is amazing and deep and thrilling, and I loved it. I found such a talented team of writers in Aaron and Chris, and I’m impatient to see what they’ll come up with next. (Please hurry, guys!)
Airel will appeal to fans of:
Contemporary/Coming-of-Age, Paranormal, Fantasy Genres
Battles of Good vs. Evil
Multiple Settings (time & place)
Fallen Angels/Warriors (yay Swords!)
Romance – Insta-Love with No Love Triangle
Stories with Strong Familial Ties
Plot-Driven AND Character-Driven Stories
Airel by Aaron Patterson & Chris White
is currently available for purchase.
**I received a review copy from the authors in exchange for an honest opinion and review. I received no compensation for my thoughts. Thank you SO MUCH Aaron, Chris, and StoneHouse Ink!