Angel Time (Songs of the Seraphim Series #1)

( 222 )

Overview

It’s the present day.  Toby O’Dare—aka Lucky the Fox—is a contract killer of underground fame on assignment to kill once again.  He’s a soulless soul, a dead man walking.  His nightmarish world of lone and lethal missions is disrupted when a mysterious stranger, a seraph, offers him a chance to save rather than destroy lives. O’Dare, who long ago dreamt of being a priest, seizes his chance. Now he is carried back through the ages to thirteenth-century England, to dark realms where accusations of ...

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Angel Time (Songs of the Seraphim Series #1)

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Overview

It’s the present day.  Toby O’Dare—aka Lucky the Fox—is a contract killer of underground fame on assignment to kill once again.  He’s a soulless soul, a dead man walking.  His nightmarish world of lone and lethal missions is disrupted when a mysterious stranger, a seraph, offers him a chance to save rather than destroy lives. O’Dare, who long ago dreamt of being a priest, seizes his chance. Now he is carried back through the ages to thirteenth-century England, to dark realms where accusations of ritual murder have been made against Jews, where children suddenly die or disappear.  In this primitive setting, O’Dare begins his perilous quest for salvation, a journey of danger and flight, loyalty and betrayal, selflessness and love.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
Before his life jumped the tracks, Toby O'Dare wanted to become a priest. Instead, he drifted into the world of contract killing. Now, after years of solitary stalking and slaughter, O'Dare is ripe for an offer to go to the good side. The proposal comes from an angel, a seraphim named Malchiah who tells Toby that he can receive redemption from his sins. To achieve that near miracle, he must rematerialize in 13th-century England and become the protector of a Jewish couple accused of murdering their own daughter. The first volume of Anne Rice's Songs of the Seraphim series demonstrates the narrative range of this mega-popular author.
Publishers Weekly
Full of provocative moral reflections, this kickoff to bestseller Rice's new Songs of the Seraphim religious romance series centers on hired assassin Toby O'Dare, a one-time aspirant to the priesthood until personal tragedy unmoored his life. Guardian angel Malchiah visits Toby, who's just consummated his latest kill, and offers him redemption for his sins. After accepting the offer, Toby is whisked away to 13th-century England, where, in the guise of a Dominican friar, he becomes the protector of a Jewish couple accused wrongly by the gentile populace of having murdered their young daughter for her conversion to Christianity. Two eloquently told if clunkily joined digressions give the backstory on Toby and on the persecution of the Jews in medieval Europe. Readers will revel in Rice's colorful recreation of the historical past and in her moving depiction of characters struggling to reconcile matters of the heart with their personal sense of faith. 250,000 first printing. (Oct.)
Library Journal
In Rice's latest, an assassin meets an angel who puts him to work for God. Although "Lucky the Fox" has always justified his contract killing by letting himself believe he was really working for the proverbial "good guys," the seraph takes Lucky back to the 1200s and gives him the task of preventing a pogrom against Jews accused of ritually murdering Christian children. Readers of Rice's "Vampire Chronicles" and "Mayfair Witch" sagas develop a deep connection with protagonists Lestat and Rowan Mayfair, but it is hard to relate to Lucky. However, the novel is more fluid and action-oriented than Rice's recent trilogy about Jesus. At the heart of this odd mix of metaphysical thriller and historical novel is one man's rediscovery of his religious beliefs. VERDICT While smoothly written and full of Rice's noted descriptive detail, this title may disappoint fans of her wildly popular series about vampires and witches, while Christian readers who know Rice only as a paranormal writer will probably avoid it unless they have read her Jesus novels. Finding the proper audience may prove to be the hardest battle for this intriguing book. [See Prepub Alert, LJ 6/1/09; with a 250,000-copy first printing.]—Amanda Scott, Cambridge Springs P.L., PA
Kirkus Reviews
Time travel, ultraviolence and medieval madness-divine intervention rendered fantastically by Rice (Called Out of Darkness, 2008, etc.). A "man paralyzed by dissonance," Toby O'Dare is also a helluva hit man; he plays lute, reads Aquinas and shoves poisoned syringes in the necks of his tricks. A Beverly Hills penthouse serves as his crash pad, but he's otherwise nomadic, dodging Interpol for his faceless boss, the Right Man. RM insists that "the Good Guys" bankroll Toby's missions, but O'Dare thinks murder is murder and gluts on guilt. With two marvelous reimaginings of the Gospels and a spiritual autobiography recently extending her range, Rice revisits the shadows of her vampire classics; now, however, with her return to Catholicism, her sinners vie for redemption. O'Dare's desperate for it. His childhood dream of becoming a Dominican was dashed by trauma downright demonic; he rebelled against God when his drunken mother drowned his siblings and killed herself. His apostasy is of the tortuous, Graham Greene-ish variety; he can't stop praying to the God he left. Deliverance comes as a mysterious stranger. Right after dispatching a billionaire banker at a pricey hotel, Toby freaks at an interloper: Malchiah, it turns out, a seraph disguised as a swell. The angel's charge? Beam Toby back to 13th-century England, amok with anti-Semitic persecution. "Natural Time" becomes "Angel Time," and in this transcendental zone O'Dare is transformed into a Dominican friar bidden by Malchiah to save his soul through expiation. He must use all his cunning to rescue Meir and Fluria from a mob convinced that this harmless Jewish couple have poisoned their daughter for daring enter a cathedral on Christmasnight. Having become an Agent of Good, O'Dare, proving that God works in mysterious ways, descends into a world of faith perverted in order both to restore order and reclaim his own lost innocence. Emerging repentant "for every evil thing I'd ever done," he returns transfigured to the present time. Angelically inspiring. Devilishly clever. First printing of 250,000
From the Publisher

“Thrilling. . . . [Readers] will feel divinely entertained.” —People

“Veers delightfully into vintage Rice.” —Elle
 
“Intriguing. . . . A richly enveloping atmosphere.” —The Times Picayune
 
“Rice brings an energy and sincerity to her story.” —USA Today

“A masterpiece that both invites and provokes.” —L.A. Examiner

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780307745392
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 8/9/2011
  • Series: Songs of the Seraphim Series , #1
  • Pages: 352
  • Sales rank: 974,454
  • Product dimensions: 7.78 (w) x 5.32 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Anne Rice

Anne Rice is the author of thirty books.  She lives in Rancho Mirage, California.
 
www.annerice.com

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    1. Also Known As:
      A. N. Roquelaure, Anne Rampling
    2. Hometown:
      Palm Desert, California
    1. Date of Birth:
      October 4, 1941
    2. Place of Birth:
      New Orleans, Louisiana
    1. Education:
      B.A., San Francisco State University, 1964; M.A., 1971
    2. Website:

Read an Excerpt

SHADES OF DESPAIR

There were omens from the beginning.

First off, I didn't want to do a job at the Mission Inn. Anywhere in the country, I would have been willing, but not the Mission Inn. And in the bridal suite, that very room, my room. Bad luck and beyond, I thought to myself.

Of course my boss, The Right Man, had no way of knowing when he gave me this assignment that the Mission Inn was where I went when I didn't want to be Lucky the Fox, when I didn't want to be his assassin.

The Mission Inn was part of that very small world in which I wore no disguise. I was simply me when I went there, six foot four, short blond hair, gray eyes—a person who looked like so many other people that he didn't look like any special person at all. I didn't even bother to wear braces to disguise my voice when I went there. I didn't even bother with the de rigueur sunglasses that shielded my identity in every other place, except the apartment and neighborhood where I lived.

I was just who I am when I went there, though who I am was nobody except the man who wore all those elaborate disguises when he did what he was told to do by The Right Man.

So the Mission Inn was mine, cipher that I was, and so was the bridal suite, called the Amistad Suite, under the dome. And now I was being told to systematically pollute it. Not for anyone else but myself, of course. I would never have done anything to harm the Mission Inn.

A giant confection and confabulation of a building in Riverside, California, it was where I often took refuge, an extravagant and engulfing place sprawling over two city blocks, and where I could pretend, for a day or two or three, that I wasn't wanted by the FBI, Interpol, or The Right Man, a place where I could lose myself and my conscience. Europe had long ago become unsafe for me, due to the increased security at every checkpoint, and the fact that the law enforcement agencies that dreamed of trapping me had decided I was behind every single unsolved murder they had on the books.

If I wanted the atmosphere I'd loved so much in Siena or Assisi, or Vienna or Prague and all the other places I could no longer visit, I sought out the Mission Inn. It couldn't be all those places, no. Yet it gave me a unique haven and sent me back out into my sterile world a renewed spirit.

It wasn't the only place where I wasn't anybody at all, but it was the best place, and the place to which I went the most.

The Mission Inn was not far from where I "lived," if one could call it that. And I went there on impulse generally, and at any time that they could give me my suite. I liked the other rooms all right, especially the Inn keeper's Suite, but I was patient in waiting for the Amistad. And sometimes they called me on one of the many special cell phones I carried, to let me know the suite could be mine.

Sometimes I stayed as long as a week in the Mission Inn. I'd bring my lute with me, and maybe play it a little. And I always had a stack of books to read, almost always history, books on medieval times or the Dark Ages, or the Renaissance, or Ancient Rome. I'd read for hours in the Amistad, feeling uncommonly safe and secure.

There were special places I went from the Inn.

Often, undisguised, I drove over to nearby Costa Mesa to hear the Pacific Symphony. I liked it, the contrast, moving from the stucco arches and rusted bells of the Inn to the immense Plexiglas miracle of the Segerstrom Concert Hall, with the pretty Cafe Rouge on the first floor.

Behind those high clear undulating windows, the restaurant appeared to float in space. I felt, when I dined in it, that I was indeed floating in space, and in time, detached from all things ugly and evil, and sweetly alone.

I had just recently heard Stravinsky's Rite of Spring in that concert hall. Loved it. Loved the pounding madness of it. It had brought back a memory of the very first time I'd ever heard it, ten years before—on the night when I'd met The Right Man. It had made me think of my own life, and all that had happened since then, as I'd drifted through the world waiting for those cell phone calls that always meant somebody was marked, and I had to get him.

I never killed women, but that's not to say that I hadn't before I became The Right Man's vassal or serf, or knight, depending on how one chose to view it. He called me his knight. I thought of it in far more sinister terms, and nothing during these ten years had ever accustomed me to my function.

Often I even drove from the Mission Inn to the Mission of San Juan Capistrano, south and closer to the coast, another secret place, where I felt unknown and sometimes even happy.

Now the Mission of San Juan Capistrano is a real mission. The Mission Inn is not. The Mission Inn is a tribute to the architecture and heritage of the Missions. But San Juan Capistrano is the real thing.

At Capistrano, I roamed the immense square garden, the open cloisters, and visited the narrow dim Serra Chapel—the oldest consecrated Catholic chapel in the state of California.

I loved the chapel. I loved that it was the only known sanctuary on the whole coast in which Blessed Junípero Serra, the great Franciscan, had actually said Mass. He might have said Mass in many another Mission chapel. In fact surely he had. But this was the only one about which everyone was certain.

There had been times in the past when I'd driven north to visit the Mission at Carmel, and look into the little cell there that they'd re-created and ascribed to Junípero Serra, and meditated on the simplicity of it: the chair, the narrow bed, the cross on the wall. All a saint needed.

And then there was San Juan Bautista, too, with its refectory and museum—and all the other Missions that had been so painstakingly restored.

I'd wanted to be a priest for a while when I was a boy, a Dominican, in fact, and the Dominicans and the Franciscans of the California missions were mixed in my mind because they were both mendicant orders. I respected them equally, and there was a part of me that belonged to that old dream.

I still read history books about the Franciscans and the Dominicans. I had an old biography of Thomas Aquinas saved from my school days, full of old notes. Reading history always soothed me. Reading history let me sink into ages safely gone by. Same with the Missions. They were islands not of our time.

It was the Serra Chapel in San Juan Capistrano that I visited most often.

I went there not to remember the devotion I'd known as a boy. That was gone forever. Fact was, I simply wanted the blueprint of the paths that I'd traveled in those early years. Maybe I just wanted to walk the sacred ground, walk through places of pilgrimage and sanctity because I couldn't actually think about them too much.

I liked the beamed ceiling of the Serra Chapel, and its darkly painted walls. I felt calm in the quality of gloom inside it, the glimmer of the gold retablo at the far end of it—the golden framework that was behind the altar and fitted with statues and saints.

I loved the red sanctuary light burning to the left of the tabernacle. Sometimes I knelt right up there before the altar on one of the prie-dieux obviously intended for a bride and a groom.

Of course the golden retablo, or reredos, as it's often called, hadn't been there in the days of the early Franciscans. It had come later, during the restoration, but the chapel itself seemed to me to be very real. The Blessed Sacrament was in it. And the
Blessed Sacrament, no matter what I believed, meant "real."

How can I explain this?

I always knelt in the semidarkness for a very long time, and I'd always light a candle before I left, though for whom or what I couldn't have said. Maybe I whispered, "This is in memory of you, Jacob, and you, Emily." But it wasn't a prayer. I didn't believe in prayer any more than I believed in actual memory. I craved rituals and monuments, and maps of meaning. I craved history in book and building and paint—and I believed in danger, and I believed in killing people whenever and wherever I was instructed to do it by my boss, whom in my heart of hearts I called simply The Right Man.

Last time I'd been to the Mission—scarcely a month ago— I'd spent an unusually long time walking about the enormous garden.

Never have I seen so many kinds of flowers in one place. There were modern roses, exquisitely shaped, and older ones, open like camellias, there were trumpet flower vines, and morning glory, lantana, and the biggest bushes of blue plum - bago that I'd ever seen in my life. There were sunflowers and orange trees, and daisies, and you could walk right through the heart of this on any of the many broad and comfortable newly paved paths.

I'd taken my time in the enclosing cloisters, loving the ancient and uneven stone floors. I'd enjoyed looking out at the world from under the arches. Round arches had always filled me with a sense of peace. Round arches defined the Mission, and round arches defined the Mission Inn.

It gave me special pleasure at Capistrano that the layout of the Mission was an ancient monastic design to be found in monasteries all over the world, and that Thomas Aquinas, my saintly hero when I was a boy, had probably spent many an hour roaming just such a square with its arches and its neatly laid out paths, and its inevitable flowers.

Throughout history monks had laid out this plan again and again as if the very bricks and mortar could somehow stave off an evil world, and keep them and the books they wrote safe forever.

I stood for a long time in the hulking shell of the great ruined church of Capistrano.

An earthquake in 1812 had destroyed it, and what remained was a high gaping and roofless sanctuary of empty niches and daunting size. I'd stared at the random chunks of brick and cement wall scattered here and there, as if they had some meaning for me, some meaning, like the music of The Rite of Spring, something to do with my own wretched wreck of a life.

I was a man shaken by an earthquake, a man paralyzed by dissonance. I knew that much. I thought about that all the time, though I tried to detach it from any continuity. I tried to accept what seemed my fate. But if you don't believe in fate, well, that is not easy.

On my most recent visit, I'd been talking to God in the Serra Chapel, and telling Him how much I hated Him that He didn't exist.
I'd told Him how vicious it was, the illusion that He existed, how unfair it was to do that to mortal men, and especially to children, and how I detested Him for it.

I know, I know, this doesn't make sense. I did a lot of things that didn't make sense. Being an assassin and nothing else didn't make sense. And that was probably why I was circling these same places more and more often, free of my many disguises.

I knew I read history books all the time as though I believed a God had acted in history more than once to save us from ourselves, but I didn't believe this at all, and my mind was full of random facts about many an age and many a famous personage. Why would a killer do that?

One can't be a killer every moment of one's life. Some humanity is going to show itself now and then, some hunger for normality, no matter what you do. And so I had my history books, and the visits to these few places that took me to the times of which I read with such numb enthusiasm, filling my mind with narrative so that it wouldn't be empty and turn in on itself.

And I had to shake my fist at God for the meaninglessness of it all. And to me, it felt good. He didn't really exist, but I could have Him that way, in anger, and I'd liked those moments of conversation with the illusions that had once meant so much, and now only inspired rage.

Maybe when you're brought up Catholic, you hold to rituals all your life. You live in a theater of the mind because you can't get out of it. You're gripped all your life by a span of two thousand years because you grew up being conscious of belonging to that span.

Most Americans think the world was created the day they were born, but Catholics take it back to Bethlehem and beyond, and so do Jews, even the most secular of them, remembering the Exodus, and the promises to Abraham before that. Never ever did I look at the nighttime stars or the sands of a beach without thinking of God's promises to Abraham about his progeny, and no matter what else I did or didn't believe, Abraham was the father of the tribe to which I still belonged through no fault or virtue of my own.

I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore.

So that's how we go on acting dramas in our theater of the mind even when we don't believe anymore in the audience or the director or the play.

I'd laughed thinking about that, as I'd meditated in the Serra Chapel, laughed out loud like a crazy man as I knelt there, murmuring in the sweet and delicious gloom and shaking my head.

What had maddened me on that last visit was that it was just past ten years to the day that I'd been working for The Right Man.

The Right Man had remembered the anniversary, talking about anniversaries for the first time ever and presenting me with a huge monetary gift that had already been wired to the bank account in Switzerland through which I most often received my money.

He'd said to me over the phone the evening before, "If I knew anything about you, Lucky, I'd give you something more than cold cash. All I know is you like to play the lute, and when you were a kid you played it all the time. They told me that, about your playing. If you hadn't loved the lute so much, maybe we never would have met. Realize how long it's been since I've seen you? And I always hope you're going to drop in, and bring your precious lute with you. When you do that, I'll get you to play for me, Lucky. Hell, Lucky, I don't even know where you really live."

Now that was something he brought up all the time, that he didn't know where I lived, because I think he feared, in his heart of hearts, that I didn't trust him, that my work had slowly eroded the love for him which I felt.

But I did trust him. And I did love him. I didn't love anyone in the world but him. I just didn't want anyone to know where I lived.

No place I lived was home, and I changed where I lived often. Nothing traveled with me from home to home, except my lute, and all my books. And of course my few clothes.

In this age of cell phones and the Internet, it was so easy to be untraceable. And so easy to be reached by an intimate voice in a perfect teletronic silence.

"Look, you can reach me anytime, day or night," I'd reminded him. "Doesn't matter where I live. Doesn't matter to me, so why should it matter to you? And someday, maybe I'll send you a recording of me playing the lute. You'll be surprised. I'm still good at it."

He'd chuckled. Okay with him, as long as I always answered the phone.

"Have I ever let you down?" I'd asked.

"No, and I'll never let you down either," he'd replied. "Just wish I could see you more often. Hell, you could be in Paris right now, or Amsterdam."

"I'm not," I'd answered. "You know that. The checkpoints are too hot. I'm in the States as I've been since Nine-Eleven. I'm closer than you think, and I'll come see you one of these days, just not right now, and maybe I'll take you to dinner. We'll sit in a restaurant like human beings. But these days, I'm not up to the meeting. I like being alone."

There had been no assignment on that anniversary, so I was able to stay in the Mission Inn, and I'd driven over to San Juan Capistrano the following morning.

From the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 222 )
Rating Distribution

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(60)

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(13)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 223 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 7, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Anne Rice returns with a thought-provoking, fast-paced story and deeply conflicted characters.

    Anne Rice has crafted both an entertaining and educational story with Angel Time, the story of Toby O'Dare, a hitman for the government who is visited by Malchiah, an angel. For a decade, Toby has used his talents to take life, and Malchiah asks him to turn his back on that life and to give himself to God. Toby is reluctant to follow Malchiah until the angel shows him the evolution of his life from a young, talented musician obsessed with learning to play the lute who cares for his younger siblings into the cold-blooded killer he has become.

    Upon submitting to Malchiah's request, Toby is hurdled back in time to medieval England where he is tasked with saving a Jewish couple who have been accused of murdering their daughter after she dared enter a Christian church to view a Christmas pageant. The historical account of the deep conflict between the Christians and the Jews is accurate, and Ms. Rice cites the resources she used in what was obviously painstakingly detailed research. Perhaps the most amazing accomplishment of this entire novel is the objective, non-judging portrayal of both the Christians and the Jews, allowing the reader to determine for himself or herself which opinion is just.

    Having been a long-time fan of Ms. Rice's darker fiction involving vampires and witches, I have hesitated in picking up her newer works which are more strongly based in her rediscovered faith. However, her storytelling and interweaving of fact with fiction remains unchanged, and her stories are as engaging and as thought-provoking as ever. Deeply rooted in religious and spiritual fact, Angel Time is not only a fast-paced thriller that travels through medieval time through to the present. Its characters, like all of Ms. Rice's characters, are complex, emotional, and analytical beings. This novel is highly recommended.

    25 out of 25 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 21, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    The first The Songs of the Seraphim saga is an exhilarating redemption thriller

    Excellent contract killer Toby "Lucky the Fox" O'Dare works for the Right Man who insists his chosen victims are the bad guys while their side is funded by the good guys. Toby has come a long way from a family tragedy that changed his life; when his mom murdered his siblings and herself, he quit God because he believed God deserted him. He no longer continued his studies for the priesthood, but remorse is setting in.

    He has just completed his latest kill when guardian angel Malchiah coming out of the shadows offers Toby a chance for redemption. Toby accepts the deal, but finds himself in the thirteenth century in England; masquerading as a Dominican friar. He is immediately caught up in a vendetta against all Jews; as a couple Meir and Fluria is accused of killing their daughter for her converting to Christianity. His assignment is to prevent a religious massacre.

    The first The Songs of the Seraphim saga is an exhilarating redemption thriller starring a fascinating protagonist who goes from one extreme to another. His "past" in "Angel Time" (our recent past and present in "Natural Time") and that of the Jewish couple and their daughter's "Natural Time" add depth though it is somewhat disjointed (as time flows differently between NT and AT) to understanding Toby's life and medieval life for Jews inside a Christian world. Using real persona and events in thirteenth century England, Anne Rice provides a deep save the soul story. Fans will enjoy Toby's attempts to redeem his soul although he understands he can never make up for violating the Commandment Thou Shall Not Kill, but he has begun his soul survivor salvation mission in the past and hopefully with a call to New Orleans.

    6 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 16, 2010

    Angel Time Expresses Rice's New Mission

    Angel Time is a simple story of moral conversion and prophetic call to dedicate one's life to a mission of mercy. Experience teaches that a personal, heart and soul moral conversion is not a quick process and the main character's 180 degree turn around is unrealistic in my opinion...as is his sudden fall from grace into the pit of crime and murder. Anne Rice has the capability to write with in-depth psychological insight into the human persaon, but this book is too short and does not allow for the complexity her plot, characters,and Christian moral themes that this new series is potentially capable of offering to readers.

    5 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 17, 2009

    Wondrous and Inspiring

    This is an inspiring story. I admire Anne Rice's beautiful use of language. She is brilliant at conveying a sense of place. I thrill at her reverence and passion for architecture, art, literature, and history. I enjoy her exploration of the depths of devotion, forgiveness, love, courage, and loyality. She is a friend to those who feel lost, and to those who have lost someone. Wouldn't you love to go back in time the way her character's so often do? I liked this book a lot. I will give copies to friends over the Holidays.

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 13, 2010

    Her books haven't been as exciting to read as they've been in the past.

    I've read all of her her novel including those under her alias "Roquelaure". I must say, the last 3 novels she's written, including this one have been disappointing. They start of really slow and all throughout just "wordy". I usually cannot put her book down once I get started, but this last book, I'm lucky if I can stay awake for more than 20 minutes before I put it down. I think I'll cheat and read the last 30 pages to get to the end of the story.
    I bought this book along with 4 others. Since, I'm a big fan of hers, I started with Angel time.... Well, I've finished the other four, yet I'm still on page 22 with her book... sorry folks, but this is a "yawner".

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 7, 2010

    Great new character in Toby O'Dare---and that's about it

    Anne has created in Toby O'Dare a character so full of emotion, heartache, and passion that I have not seen since Tonio Treschi in "a cry to heaven." I felt for him, prayed for him, and his sadness touched me in a way that had me rooting for something great to come out of his heart wrenching story. Unfortunately, after being romanced by Anne via Toby and his amazing background and falling for this character, the romance went sour due to a very boring, predictable, and one dimensional trek through the past that kept me wondering "how does Toby fit into this." It just did not make sense. In all honesty, there are two stories in this book that have nothing to do with each other. One, the story of Toby O'Dare, and two the story of Fluria and Meir; and figuring out why these two stories are grouped in the same book is still a mystery to me. I appreciate the premise of the book but as far as the specific reasons Toby was taken to this time by the angel Malchiah remains a mystery to me. For the "lost soul" that Toby was, I did not believe this event that he was chosen to "change" (or did he) regarding Fluria and Meir was enough to make him restore his faith. Anne could have done much better with creating a scenario as equally passionate and interesting as Toby himself that would bring him back to his faith. Quite frankly I could have cared less about Fluria, Meir and their kids and their story. I respect Anne for her choosing to "write for the Lord" but in doing so she doesn't have to bore us. I really was hoping that Anne, with this book, was setting the groundwork to do for angels what she did with vampires but frankly she fell way short. The first 123 pages with Toby are classic Anne Rice- sexy, thrilling, powerful, emotional; and then it was gone. When Toby goes back in time his passion, emotion, and all interesting aspects of his character were left in the present and he ended up playing second seat to a very boring and predictable plot line. The last two lines in the book I really found to be a cheap attempt to set up the next book, again nothing in the book had anything to make me think or care that this would happen. My only hope is that the next book in this series will deal completely with Toby and his life and not some cheesy "touched by an angel" long lost episode that this book turned out to be.
    Love you Anne, please don't disappoint anymore.

    3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 20, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Angel Time-a must read

    This story is so believable-angels and time travel. I loved it! Anne Rice has devoted her writing to God and in this writing lets us know that redemption is for everyone. I wanted it to go on and on; I can only hope that the second in the series will be as good as the first. Kudos to Ms. Rice for being inspired to pen "Anel Time".

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 4, 2009

    I love Anne Rice

    I love Anne Rice. Her books are so descriptive and well thought out but his book was boring. I coouldn't read it. I kept putting it down to read other books.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 12, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Almost quit reading it.

    I have to admit that this was the first book I have read from Anne Rice. If this kind of writing style is they way her other books are written then I am glad this is the first book I have read from her.
    To move the story along and fill in details she has one character "lecture" another character about all the important things the reader should know. Some of the "lectures" seemed to drag on and on.
    The story is unbelievable in many regards.

    3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 20, 2010

    Very disappointing!

    This was my first Anne Rice read and I was very disappointed. I am very familiar with the main locations in the book and was really looking forward to a great story surrounding both "missions". The first part of the book was intriguing, but once the mystery ended, I struggled to get through the book. This will probably also be my last Rice book.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 6, 2010

    Is it just me...

    Or was this just kind of a so-so book? Interesting concept and initially interesting main character, but please -- I saw the ending coming about the time Toby landed in 13th century England. WAY too predictable and the characters were totally one-dimensional. Not to mention the language was clunky and melodramatic. And while I understand the main character was hugely conflicted and scarred, if I want "Twighlight" type angst, then that's what I'll read. (OK, probably not...)

    Anyhow, as a big AR fan from the vampire era, I felt like this was unworthy of her talents. Kudos to her for following her own beliefs, but at least try to make the next story more engaging.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 21, 2009

    Currently waiting on the next Anne Rice Novel.

    Maybe not as riveting as previous works, but I felt this story was a great beginning to a series of novels to come.... hopefully!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 12, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    A True Anne Rice Novel

    I've always been fascinated with Anne's older novels about the supernatural (vampires, witches, etc.) but I never found myself wanting to read her newer books about Christ, but I gave Angel Time a try and I'm very pleased with her ability to write a book about angels and not make it overly religious.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 16, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Hard to Finish

    The concept is pretty good and there are some great segments where she lets us know about the characters history, but overall it is really hard to keep going.
    I generally read about 1000 pages a week and I am struggling to finish this 237.

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 11, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    In the heightened style of the Jesus trilogy, Anne takes it up a notch and delivers several new heroes. A maturing from the Jesus trilogy to where she seems to be going is not unlike the rivoting Vampiare books in suspense fully, delivers quality!

    Be on your toes, Anne holds no bars with her quantum leaping imagination~ She stays pure to the foundations we have grown to love about her. Anne is a messenger of the light side now. I am proud of her.
    Have no boundaries, and you will continue to enjoy Annie's masterful tales being woven in your sitting room each night.
    Cheers to you, Anne!!!

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 22, 2012

    Aunt anne, love your nease

    Aunt anne, please dont be hurt abiut what all the poeple say bad things about youe book... i love your book! Yours truly, alia.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 12, 2012

    Reconciliation.

    This book is a nice way of showing how people can be reconciled and find hope again in the midst of pain and devistation. The use of the narative thread of hope in the gift of music was a constant source of hope and comfort.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 7, 2011

    Boring

    Glad this was short, not too sweet. Disappointing for a usually very engrossing writer.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 3, 2010

    I read this entire book in three days!!!

    Anne Rice has done it again! it seems she can spin a great story out of just about any topic and angel time does not miss. do not be fooled by the title as some are.....this is not a religious story and does not preach. I have read every book she has put out and this was actually my fastest read. I honestly could not put it down. the only time i was disappointed was when it was over. now i have too wait for the next installment.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 8, 2014

    Very nice

    I found this book to be beath taking and a page turner. This is no like Rice's other subjects - however just as appealing.

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