Broken Wingsby Shannon Dittemore
Giant angels with metal wings and visible song. A blind demon restored from the pit of darkness. And a girl who has never felt more broken.
Brielle sees the world as it really is: a place where the Celestial exists side by side with human reality. But in the aftermath of a supernatural showdown, her life begins to crumble.
Her boyfriend, Jake,/p>/p>/b>
Giant angels with metal wings and visible song. A blind demon restored from the pit of darkness. And a girl who has never felt more broken.
Brielle sees the world as it really is: a place where the Celestial exists side by side with human reality. But in the aftermath of a supernatural showdown, her life begins to crumble.
Her boyfriend, Jake, is keeping something from her—something important. Her overprotective father has started drinking again. And he’s dating a much younger woman who makes Brielle’s skin crawl. Haunting nightmares invade Brielle’s sleep, and flashes of Celestial vision keep her off kilter.
What she doesn’t know is that she’s been targeted. The Prince of Darkness himself has heard of the boy with healing in his hands and of the girl who sees through the Terrestrial Veil.
Brielle has no choice. She knows evil forces are converging and will soon rain their terror down on the town of Stratus. She must master the weapons she’s been given. She must fight.
But can she fly with broken wings?
Read an Excerpt
By SHANNON DITTEMORE
Thomas NelsonCopyright © 2013 Shannon Dittemore
All right reserved.
Hell is loud.
Talons scratch at the stone floor and clack against the pillars circling the chamber as the great hall fills. Hisses and snarls sound all around, but the noise doesn't unsettle the Cherub.
She's been here before.
Carved into the earth, deep against its core—in a realm undetectable by human technology—lies the stronghold of Satan. A massive structure formed out of darkness, molded and hardened into stone, Abaddon sits at the very center of the Prince's domain.
Pearla's velvety black skin goes unnoticed as she slides behind a chunky pillar, pressing against the outer wall.
But the cherubic spy isn't deceived by the darkness that surrounds her. This place was created for the Prince, given to him by the Creator. And while the light of the Celestial won't permeate these walls, even here the Father cannot be escaped. Unlike the demonic crowd scratching and biting at one another, this created one experiences peace.
Her celestial feet are silent against the icy floor, her wings folded tight against her back. She keeps her white eyes pinched tight. Nothing draws attention like shards of light piercing the darkness.
And darkness is everywhere.
Pearla slinks from pillar to pillar, feeling the rough rock with her hands, searching for a familiar crevice. When at last she reaches it, she slides inside, deep into the rock wall. Facing away from the chamber, she opens her eyes just wide enough to guide her climb. She's nimble and fast, scaling the wall with precision. Pearla locates a crag high above the pillars circling the room, high above the crowd of demons pushing and shoving and jockeying for position, and wedges herself far into the wall. The silky black wings—characteristic of cherubic spies—whisper against rock as she unfurls them and covers herself. Her gaze penetrates her wings and she watches.
And she waits.
The circular hall is ringed by rows and rows of demons. She's seen some of their grotesque faces before. As members of the Prince's guard they rarely leave Abaddon without the Prince; if they do, they do so in small numbers. His guard is made up of the most loyal, the most trusted demons. But there are others here: fallen angels with smaller, less important roles in the devil's stronghold. With so many in attendance, Pearla wonders if the Prince himself will preside over this assembly, a task he normally delegates.
Rumors lend credence to this idea—reports that indicate the entire Palatine legion is on the move. Sources insist they've returned to Abaddon to receive new orders. But it defies logic. Why return thousands and thousands of the Prince's best warriors to their fortress when a small council would suffice? But the rumors persist, and as the commander of the Creator's forces, Michael is giving them due consideration. If they're true, a movement like this indicates an attack of ambitious proportion.
With a victory in Uganda imminent, the legion of light will be ready to move. And there's no Warrior better suited for a war against the Palatine than Michael, the Commander himself.
Pearla closes her eyes against the chaos below and imagines herself back in the Throne Room of the Father. Magnificent in its beauty with everything in good order. The Father glowing bright, a river of gold flowing from His throne. The Thrones—wisest of the angels—wrapped head to toe in feathers of white, hovering about the Father, singing His praises, echoing one another back and forth. Pearla fights to control her lips as memories of the Creator's goodness well up in her soul.
Worthy! Worthy! No one else is worthy! she thinks.
And then another sound, a terrifying sound, pulls her back to hell. It's the sound of bondage. Of slavery. She wills herself to remain steady as the hiss and spit of fiery chains against the cold, moist floor draws excitement from the Fallen crowded about.
A lone demon is led into the hall by a small band. They prod and poke at him like a wayward cow. When they reach the center of the room, they latch his chains to the floor. With little ceremony they leave him to stand alone before a pathetic replica of the Father's throne.
The Prince's seat of power is not without grandeur, but where the Father's throne is constructed of the purest gold and gemstones, here an extravagant dais has been carved out of rock. Behind it, a slab rises high with strange symbols and designs cut into the stone. Chief among them is a dragon, his teeth menacing, his scales polished to a shine. His tail wraps around the platform, and clutched in his serpentine coils are thousands of brightly jeweled stars. The image, a symbol of the great dragon's rebellion, has always disturbed Pearla.
And with the prisoner chained before the throne, it seems Pearla was right.
Lucifer himself is expected.
The room is full of people, but I don't see them. Not clearly. They're a blur of summer colors and shadowed faces as my legs push me across the stage. My arms bow and curve, matching my inhales and exhales. Flutes, clarinets, and instruments I can't even name trill from the speakers, the music telling a story. The dance sharing a journey.
Getting back to the stage was not an easy path, and my mind is full of the circumstances and the players that brought me here. I rise to my toes and I think of Ali, my closest friend. I think of the life that was taken from her. I think of her boyfriend, Marco, and the case built against him: smoke and mirrors to hide what really happened.
But truth is stronger than lies, and as the music slows, my black skirt whispers against my knees and I remember the first time I saw the Celestial. Light and life everywhere, and on every surface colors that never stop moving.
I think of the first time I saw Canaan, not as Jake's guardian only, but as the angel he really is—his outer wings spread wide, Jake wrapped tightly in his inner wings and pressed safely against his chest.
The music changes, dropping into a minor key, and my movements become more ghost-like. I think of the fear that nearly destroyed me six months ago, of the doubt that ate away at truth and hope.
I think of Jake.
The music is all but silent now. My body moves slowly, deliberately, but my heart trips over itself at the thought of his fiery, hazel eyes, his healing touch.
It's only right that my first performance is here, in Stratus, with him in the audience. With my dad and Canaan looking on, with Miss Macy cheering my feat from the wings. With Kaylee chattering away to Mr. Burns, telling him which pictures to snap.
The song builds, thundering drums that urge my legs faster and faster. The music crescendos and I spin, again and again. My hair pulls free of its knot, wild and free, like an angel in flight.
This choreography is my story. I let it swallow me, stretch me.
Cymbals crash like waves against rock—my doubt against the Father's will—and I drop low, bending to it, letting my fingers brush the floor, allowing myself a moment shrouded in the darkness of my curled torso before I rise once again to my toes. Light streams through the windows, turning everything around me a vibrant gold.
And then it's over. The music, the dance, my trip down memory lane. All of it. I drop into a bow, and the room erupts with applause.
When I rise I see the place clearly. The newly painted basketball court, the groupings of people here and there, standing, clapping, toasting me with plastic cups of red punch. Dad swipes at his eyes with gigantic paws, his ruddy face flushed. Jake stands near the back, whistling, cheering, a tiny orange tutu over his jeans.
Where did he get that?
Hilarity joins exhilaration, and I laugh. And laugh.
Kaylee, friend extraordinaire, skips up the stairs and wraps her arms around me.
"You were amazing," she says. "I can't believe you almost gave that up!" She stumbles toward the microphone at the front of the stage, pulling me with her. "Wasn't she fabulous?" she asks the audience. The crowd claps harder, and I smile as the tears fall.
The gathering here is humble—just my friends and neighbors—and the Stratus Community Center is not nearly so grand as the theatres I toured last summer.
But I did it. Really and truly.
It's impossible not to think of Ali now. Not to remember her childlike laugh or the way she pushed and pulled me, made me believe I could conquer the world.
She'd be proud of me.
The tears are thick now, drenching my face, running down my leotard, so I wave my thanks to the crowd and duck into the wings. Miss Macy grabs me before I get too far. She pulls me into her arms and presses her cheek against mine. She's crying too.
"You are grace personified, sweetness. I know that wasn't easy, but ..." Her voice catches and she pushes me away. "Oh, go. Kiss that boyfriend of yours and get back up here before our little fairies fly away."
I glance at the youngest of our students, lining up backstage. Their mamas are busy corralling them, smearing sparkles on their cheeks, securing tiny wings to their backs. An ache passes through me—the same ache I always get when I realize I never had such moments with my own mother.
What would she have thought of my performance today?
I pull Miss Macy in for another hug and then make my way down the stairs. Kaylee's still speaking into the microphone. She thanks everyone for coming to Stratus Community Center's Grand Reopening, tells them her Aunt Delia's slaved over the pies in the back and to help themselves.
I weave through the crowd, looking for Dad, looking for Jake. I accept pats on the back and words of kindness. From the stage the crowd looked small, but on the floor with their familiar faces and words of congratulation ringing in my ears, I'm impressed by the turnout. When I agreed to open the celebration for Kaylee, I had no idea she'd rallied so many to the cause. Canaan towers over the crowd at the back of the auditorium, so I angle toward his silver hair. The crowd is dense enough that I don't see Jake until I'm right in front of him.
He spins in a circle, showing off his tutu. "You like?" he asks, that boyish scratch in his voice endearing.
He has no idea how much I like. "Does this mean you're ready for that dance lesson?"
"Does this mean I'm ready? You're the one who's been hiding all the tutus."
I haven't. Not at all, but there's something of the truth to his words. Sharing ballet with Jake would be like admitting I'm ready to move on. That I'm ready to let dance be more to me than my big break in the big city. And that's a hard thing to let go of. At least it used to be.
I flick the orange tulle at his waist. "Apparently I didn't hide them well enough."
"Canaan got me this one."
"Garage sale," Canaan says, diving into a slice of cherry pie. "I honestly didn't think he'd put it on. Had I known ..." Canaan winks at me.
"You have to admit, omniscience would have been helpful here."
Jake feigns offense. "What are you saying? That I'm not tutu material?"
"Don't be sad," I tell him. "You're good at so many other things."
"I blame you for these two left feet."
"Yes. You said if I got a tutu you'd teach me to dance."
"So. Teach." He scoops me into his arms and spins me full circle. "Am I doing it right?"
"Not even a little bit." I laugh.
We bump into a slew of people. I try to pull away and apologize, but they're kind and clap for us. Spurred on by their support, Jake prances me around the food table, around the easels set up promoting the various programs, refusing to stop until we reach center court. He dips me, all dramatic and ridiculous, but I play along, snapping up hard and fast, our faces just inches apart.
More clapping. More whistles.
"Has anyone ever told you how hot you are?" Jake says, his words nearly inaudible in the chaos.
I'm breathless and heady and trying far too hard to come up with a new response to Jake's favorite question. Before anything remotely intelligent occurs to me, I feel a hand on my elbow.
"Elle, could you come over here for a minute?"
It's Dad. And he doesn't seem nearly as amused as the rest of the room.
Jake loosens his grip and nods at my father. "Mr. Matthews."
"Kid," Dad says, his lips a tight line. He takes my hand, pulling me from Jake. I do my best to cast Jake an apologetic look, but Dad places a hand on my back and leads me away.
"Everything okay, Dad?"
He squirms, twisting his neck against the top button of the dress shirt I bought him for Father's Day. He's already shed the new tie. "Everything's great, baby. I just wanted you to myself for a second. I'm so proud of you, little girl. You know that? Most people wouldn't have been able to do what you did up there today. Not after ..."
"No, Elle. I'm serious. You were ... heck, kid, you were ..." His eyes glaze over. "You remind me so much of your mom."
The thought makes my throat tight. He's been talking about Mom a lot lately. A lot.
"I wish I remembered her."
He sniffs. "Come on. There's someone I want you to meet."
The woman Dad steers me toward is dressed in a designer pencil skirt and a starched white blouse. A red belt cinches everything together over an impossibly small waist. She's older than I am, by a decade probably, but she's got that racially ambiguous beauty thing going for her, all olive skin and caramel eyes.
Standing here in our community center she looks far too ... expensive. Her black heels alone retail for seven hundred and fifty dollars. I know that because my ankles were featured in the ad campaign for them last summer. They place her a good three inches taller than I am, which bothers me for some reason. The euphoric state I've been reveling in fades as we step closer. My toes squirm in my ballet slippers.
My repulsion surprises me.
Am I intimidated by her?
I don't think so. I've done the model thing dozens of times, been surrounded by hundreds of gorgeous women. I know what intimidation is, and this feels different. Maybe it's the haughty look on her face, or the way her eyes keep flitting to my father.
I scratch at my empty wrist, wishing with everything in me that I could see this woman with celestial eyes.
"Sorry, Keith. No beer," she says, handing Dad a glass of punch.
"Of course there isn't," he says, yanking at his collar. The sloppy motion pulls my attention off the woman and back to Dad. I'm irritated that he wasn't kinder to Jake, but I have to admit that he looks rather dashing in his suit—or would if he'd stop trying to crawl out of it. "Baby, this is Olivia Holt."
Ah, Olivia. The Olivia.
"Liv is fine," she says.
"I'm Brielle," I say, extending my hand to the stranger. Her grip is cold, clammy. A startling contrast to the collected demeanor she exudes. "How did you two meet?"
"Just met her. Turns out Liv here is the one who saved the day. Swooped in at the witching hour."
Somehow that's not too hard to believe. I release her hand and resist the urge to wipe mine on my tights. "I've heard about you, of course. Kaylee's convinced you hung the moon."
"I'm impressed with your friend Kaylee," Olivia says. "She's done a noteworthy job here."
Olivia Holt's not wrong. With the Peace Corps taking forever to get back to Kaylee on her application, she decided she needed a project to take her mind off the wait. The Stratus Community Center was nothing but a rental hall before Kaylee petitioned the city council and gained permission to organize programs and seek out volunteers. And she did it all while juggling graduation and final exams and everything else that comes with the last semester of high school.
But there was little money, and the center was falling apart.
Enter Olivia Holt and the Ingenui Foundation.
"Kay's awesome," I say.
Olivia turns her attention back to Dad, closing me out of the circle. I bristle at the snub, but I'm more intrigued by the fact that Dad hardly notices. Olivia asks about his job and the state of the economy here in Stratus. He tells her things are rough, wiping his mouth with the sleeve of his suit jacket. Classy.
"The foundation could lift some of the strain, Keith. We have resources," she says, placing a freshly manicured hand on Dad's bicep.
Is she flirting? With my dad?
My head spins at the thought, and I lose track of the conversation. Dad's dated here and there, but always women I knew. Always women from town and never anything serious.
"Brielle's getting ready to head off to college, right, baby? Dance scholarship."
My stomach clenches. I avoid his gaze and smile as sweetly as I can at Olivia.
"Oh, congratulations. I do envy you." Her eyes drift off. "College was one of the happier times in my life."
There's a break in the crowd, and I catch sight of Miss Macy. Talk about saving the day. She winks at me and tilts her chin toward the stage.
"Excuse me. I've got a little thing to do."
"Don't let me keep you," Olivia says, waving my dismissal. "Your dad and I can figure out how to pass the time. I'm sure of it."
Excerpted from Broken Wings by SHANNON DITTEMORE Copyright © 2013 by Shannon Dittemore. Excerpted by permission of Thomas Nelson. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Meet the Author
Shannon Dittemore has an overactive imagination and a passion for truth. Her lifelong journey to combine the two is responsible for a stint at Portland Bible College, performances with local theater companies, and a focus on youth and young adult ministry. The daughter of one preacher and the wife of another, she spends her days imagining things unseen and chasing her two children around their home in Northern California.
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Brielle Matthews has learned seeing the handiwork of God's creation can be a bit overwhelming. BROKEN WINGS, the second in the Angel Eyes trilogy by Shannon Dittemore, returns Brielle to the role of heroine. (See my review of ANGEL EYES here) Picking up six months after ANGEL EYES, Brielle, Kaylee and Jake have just graduated high school. Stratus is celebrating the opening of a new community center, spearheaded by Kaylee and funded by Olivia Hart's foundation. Brielle knows something isn't right about Olivia--Canaan's halo burns hot whenever she comes near, but Brielle's even more unsettled by her father's behavior. Seems Olivia brings out the alcoholic in her dad. Coupled with her Celestial vision--Brielle observes Angels and Demons within the human realm--she is being haunted by dreams of her mother's demise. Learning that her mother's coffin was buried empty is a shock of the first order. Could she still be alive? And why are Angels circling her home? Meanwhile, Brielle is affected by the tar-like fear rolling off everyone she meets. It is only in worship and prayer that she sees the fear disintegrate. So why is Jake--the most devout person Brielle knows--sweating fear? Jake's love for Brielle shines through his steadfast gaze, yet she is stunned by his fear. They are meant for each other--God himself gave Jake an engagement ring for her--so, what is he hiding? In the Celestial realm, Damien has met with Lucifer and revealed his knowledge of Jake and Brielle's gifts. He is able to garner Lucifer's interest and secure instructions to collect them in two week's time. Damien uses Olivia to not only capture Jake and Brielle, but also Canaan's halo. See, Lucifer is planning a battle, and Stratus has become Ground Zero. Despite the bond between Jake and Brielle, doubt remains. Jake's risky mission to discover his parentage separates them at the absolute WORST time. And, when he doesn't return, Brielle's fledgling faith is put to the test. Again, Shannon Dittemore has spun a beautifully crafted story of love, faith, doubt and keeping our demons at bay. For those who enjoy paranormal fiction, BROKEN WINGS is a fantastic tale. Contemporary themes and realistic emotional content keep this story grounded firmly in the Terrestrial, with eyes to the skies and hope for a safe resolution.
Super excited to dive right back into this series, I’m anxious to see what happens next. Plot. I really liked how this plot weaved between whats happening in the world and whats happening in the spirit world. The author did a great job in creating tension on both world and leading the plots so that the match perfectly together. Faith. One thing about faith-based books that tend to lead me astray is the fact that the character is always perfect. Not with this story. Cause in real life no one is perfect. Even a christian. So to see these characters having flaws and making mistakes, more importantly learning from them. I like that in times of need and confusion they face problems together. Love. Their love has grown complicated. Their are many factors holding them apart. Still, I believe that this is just a test for them. I’m hoping and crossing my fingers that everything will work out in the next book. An endearing tale that delivers a great story, Broken Wings is nicely polished. Combing faith with an epic fantasy, Broken Wings is genuinely compelling.
Shannon Dittemore in her new book "Broken Wings" Book Two in the Angel Eyes Trilogy published by Thomas Nelson takes us into the life of Brielle and her fight against spiritual forces. From the back cover: Giant angels with metal wings and visible song. A blind demon restored from the pit of darkness. And a girl who has never felt more broken. Brielle sees the world as it really is: a place where the Celestial exists side by side with human reality. But in the aftermath of a supernatural showdown, her life begins to crumble. Her boyfriend, Jake, is keeping something from her--something important. Her overprotective father has started drinking again. And he's dating a much younger woman who makes Brielle's skin crawl. Haunting nightmares invade Brielle's sleep, and flashes of Celestial vision keep her off kilter. What she doesn't know is that she's been targeted. The Prince of Darkness himself has heard of the boy with healing in his hands and of the girl who sees through the Terrestrial Veil. Brielle has no choice. She knows evil forces are converging and will soon rain their terror down on the town of Stratus. She must master the weapons she's been given. She must fight. But can she fly with broken wings? "Broken Wings" picks up where "Angel Eyes", book one in this series, left off. Brielle and Jake are now the targets of demons to stop them from using the gifts God gave them. The battle between angels and demons intensifies with humanity in the middle of it all. In the book of Judges Samson said his strength came from his long hair. Brielle and Jake say their power lies in their gifts. All are incorrect-Samson's strength and Brielle's power all come from the same source: God. Once you line up with that thinking then you can use your gifts for the purpose God intended and others will get to see Him also. "Broken Wings" is a wonderful, interesting story with power and depth that will keep you flipping pages. I am most definitely looking forward to the next book in the series. Disclosure of Material Connection: In conjunction with the CSFF Blog Tour, I received a free copy of this book from the publisher for this review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
Sabres. "I look more carefully at the angels before us. They're larger than any I've seen before, and brighter. I count them on approach - a dozen - and then I watch them, trying to understand their movements. Light curls around them, tendrils of incense rising into the sky. "What are they doing?" Jake asks. "They're worshiping," I say awestruck. Is there a rhyme or reason to where they've positioned themselves? Some of them kneel, some of them stand staggered across the rock, but the one thing they all seem to have in common is their wings. They're metallic. Not just in color, but in their very construction, it seems. I have an inexplicable need to reach out and touch them, to run my fingers over a single feather. "They're huge," Jake says. "How tall are they, Canaan?" "Eight, nine feet." There's no mistaking the amusement in his voice. We're close now, so close that I can see that touching a Sabre's wing may be the fastest way to lose an arm. I set to examining the nearest one. He's gigantic, like Jake said. And his eyes are pure white, trademark white. Like Canaan's. Like Helene's. He has the celestial gaze of one who'd lay down his life for another. His skin, too, is white, so white it looks almost silver. His muscled arms and chest make Canaan look trim. But as much as I can find things to admire about his physique, it's his wings that so separate him from any other angel I've seen. Their beauty is staggering, their design inexplicable. Where I expect to see rows and rows of snowy white feathers, one blade lies on top of another - thousands of them - sharp and glistening silver. I can't help but compare each and every one of them to the dagger that pierced my chest this past December. To the instrument of death that bled me dry on a rooftop. Yet these blades are pristine, polished, organic even. The Sabre adjusts them and they ripple, a trilling tune making its way to my ears. His kinsmen do the same, and the skies fill with music. Loud, warlike, with a tremor of delicate strings woven through it. It's unlike anything I've ever heard. My throat tightens with emotion, and I gasp again and again." In the second book in the Angel Eyes Trilogy, author Shannon Dittemore pulls back the celestial veil once more to reveal the spiritual realm in her novel Broken Wings. Brielle has been given a unique gift and it's just that gift that has her the target of the darkness in spiritual realm. Now the Palatine, a demonic army is on the move and is now looking to find Brielle and Jake, two humans who have been gifted with divine powers. They now have to do whatever they can to stay one step ahead of the enemy and one they can't risk telling anyone about. After all, how many people do you know that have the ability to see angels and demons when they remain invisible to everyone else? The author picks up just where we left off in the debut novel Angel Eyes, and Brielle is just coming to terms with the fact she is now the wanted by the demonic army. She has been given a unique gift of being one of God's redeemed and thus her supernatural gift that before she was only able to use when holding an angelic halo. Now her vision is being honed in a remarkable way and she soon learns that prayers and scripture memorization have more power than she ever imagined. Will she be able to save those she loves while she learns something about her past that my break more than her spirit? I received Broken Wings by Shannon Dittemore compliments of Thomas Nelson Publishers and Christian Science Fiction and Fantasy Book Tours for my honest review. I have not received any monetary compensation for a favorable review. I simply live for books like these since reading my first "Darkness" book from Frank Peretti! Shannon takes that a step further endowing her characters with a sense of frailty even though that have spiritual gifts that most of us would die to have. They fail to realize that the real power doesn't come from their gifts but from the God who created them and until they apply those same spiritual principles that are available to all of us, they remain weak despite their talents. I rate this one another 5 out of 5 stars and can't wait to pick up Dark Halo that comes on in late 2013. I would highly recommend that you read, Angel Eyes before picking this one up or you will be completely lost at the concepts discussed that make this book so incredible to inhale.
I first read this book about two months ago, so why has it taken me this long to write about it? That’s a blog in itself. What I can say is God has perfect timing. I wanted to reread the first book (Angel Eyes) before I started to write this review. And if you haven’t read it yet you are clearly sleep. So I read Angel Eyes again and then I reread Broken Wings. And I must say I was so blown away. Besides the bible there are few books (one, two) that make me relish in God’s love and His glory. After reading these books I just wanted to praise and worship my Heavenly Father. There was even a point where I cried in the shower after just a moment of reflection. I’ve been going through a lot these last few months but I finally felt a release from those burdens, it was awesome. See I told you it was a blog in itself :-) So, Broken Wings continues to tell the story of Brielle, aka elle, the girl with the gift of sight and Her boyfriend jake, the boy with the healing hands. SPOILER ALERT!! If you have not read the first book stop reading this review and go read the books… Then come back . Please ;-) At the end of AE the demon Damien was sent to the pit after being defeated by the angel Cannan, in BE not only is he freed from the pit but the prince of darkness himself has restored his sight. He sends Damien on a mission to capture and Brielle so he can corrupt their spiritual gifts. Just another reminder that the devil comes to steal,kill and destroy. Brielle and Jake are adjusting to being boyfriend/girlfriend learning how to live with gifts they were given. And on top of that Jake is keeping a secret that could change both of their futures. There is so much in this book, I felt my everday life was getting in the way of my reading. So I will “explain” in hashtags. #angels #demons #war #emptygraves #hell #fires #missingring #disappeared As usual you get no spoilers from me, but I can say I loved the book!!!
Jake and Brielle's story continues in this second installment of the Angel Eyes Trilogy. "Once you’ve seen, you can’t unsee. Everything changes when you’ve looked at the world through . . .ANGEL EYES." That is the first line of the synopsis of book one, Angel Eyes, and I think it describes Brielle better than any words I could write, because that is exactly what Brielle can do. It is her gift. She is able to see into the celestial realm with her own eyes, into the realm of angels and demons. At first she was only able to do this with the special halo that Jake gave her, but now, it is happening without it, and it is happening a lot more frequently. Jake is special also, he has the gift of healing hands, hands that have been used to save Brielle's life. Jake also lives with his Shield, which some of us would refer to as our "guardian angel," but the Shield's assignment entails much more. Canaan, Jake's Shield, is an angel that can also take on human form. He has raised Jake since he was a small child. Brielle also has a Shield, and her name is Helen. Helen doesn't live with Brielle and only was assigned to her after she met Jake and discovered her gift, but she would do anything to protect her. Jake and Brielle thought the threat from the demon Damien was over when he was sentenced to the pit at the end of book one, but is very far from that. In fact, not only is Damien still after them with the approval of Lucifer himself, there is also a great battle going on in the heavenlies that is taking place over the city of Stratus itself. With the presence of magnificent beings called Sabres, who have metallic knife-like wings and posses song as their fiercest weapon, things begin to really heat up in Stratus. Brielle's mother's grave is desecrated revealing a secret that her father and others have kept from her for years. Her dad has started drinking again, and that is getting out of hand, and to top it all of Jake, who she never thought would lie to her, has been keeping the truth about what was in a sacred chest from her, though he did it only to protect her. When Jake receives a clue about his family and who they might really be, Brielle encourages him to check it out. While he is gone, everything in the celestial world crescendos as evil beings called the Palatines arrive over Stratus, and Damien reveals himself to Brielle in a last ditch effort to capture both her and Jake. With a little Angelic help, Jake manages to get back to Stratus, to Brielle, but Damien is persistent and won't let up. Meanwhile, the Sabres are battling on the side of heaven, while the Palatines are battling on the side of hell, and right in the middle of this battle are two teenagers, Jake and Brielle. One side is trying to protect them, while the other is trying to abduct them. What they don't realize, is that these two teens have more power than all of these supernatural beings combined. It is the power and song of the redeemed, and only humans are capable of possessing it. When Brielle is loses everything she loves, it is up to her to use it, but will she be strong enough, or will she give into doubt and the fear that threaten to consume her? I really enjoyed this book. It has a lot of emphasis on God and Church, but this is the core message of the book, so that is expected. Jake and Brielle continue to pursue their faith in God, and also try to figure out their instructions from the throne room about what they need to do next. I really love Jake, he is so swoon-worthy and he loves Brielle so much, to the point he wouldn't hesitate giving his life for her. I liked Brielle to. She has been through so much, yet she perseveres. We get to see more of Marco in this book, and are also introduced to a new character, Olivia, who Brielle is not crazy about, but is an intricate part of the puzzle they are trying to solve. Shannon Dittemore has done an excellent job with her world building, creating a celestial world that rivals even the best of high fantasy fiction novels. Personally, I found it all fascinating. The romance between Jake and Brielle is sweet and adds a lot to the story also. The one quote that touched me the most in the entire novel causing me to look at Brielle in a whole new way, occurred when she was at her lowest moment. She had lost everything, none of her questions were being answered, and she was totally broken. Yet she says, and I quote, ".....then I stand as the tendrils of sound and light surround me. I breathe in and let the music take me. I let myself dance. I may not have the confidence to sing my redemption song, but I can wield it anyway. My arms and legs can fight even when I don't have the courage to move my mouth. The orchard doesn't provide the easiest dance floor, but my heart doesn't care.........Even though everything I love has been taken.....I'm broken, but here in the red orchard, surrounded by the sweet smell of worship, I raise my hands above my head, and I believe." I found that statement absolutely beautiful. I really enjoyed this book, if you have a problem with religiously based books, then this may not be for you. Personally, I don't. I believe in God, in heaven, and in hell, and I like to think that there is more to heaven that just sitting on a cloud playing a harp for eternity. Shannon Dittemore really gives you something to think about, and I would pick her heaven over the retirement cloud in the sky any day. I recently read an interview by Miranda Kelly, the author of Catching Jordan, Stealing Parker, and Things I Can't Forget, books which also contain a lot about faith and God. She was talking about her upcoming release and said, "Things I Can't Forget is all about learning to have your own beliefs, but learning to respect the beliefs of others as well." That sentence says a mouthful and very profound. It is a nugget of wisdom I think everyone good glean from. I know I did, and I ended up really enjoying Broken Wings, and I am really looking forward to seeing how the series concludes in the next book, Dark Halo.
This trilogy has definitely made it to my favorites! This is closer to how I imagine angels and demons to be then most of the angel related books I have read, and for me that makes it more believable and enjoyable. The ARC of Broken Wings by Shannon Dittemore was provided to me by the publisher for review. The opinions are my own.
This is the beautifully written, action packed sequel to ANGEL EYES. Told from multiple POV's, it's a powerful and tangible story of holding onto faith in the midst of brokenness and defeat. One of the reasons I tend to steer away from Christian fiction (and I am one) is because the stories come across too sugary or too "good" and that's not how life is. However, I really appreciate that Shannon Dittemore doesn't shy away from depicting the darker side of faith, that belief in God isn't a guarantee of a pain-free life and, yes, it can be really hard to hold onto faith when your questions and prayers seem to go unanswered. The characters and relationships in this story are complicated yet relateable and my heart broke for both Jake and Brielle. I'm not usually a fan of cliffhangers because it means I have to play the waiting game but I am really looking forward to how this story ends! :)
I thought the first book was awesome but it just keeps getting better! I so cant wait till the last book comes out in aug. Romance ,heartache , the good the bad and the ugly!" This trilogy should truely be a movie. It makes you really ponder....
I have not read the first book in this series - but I certainly wish I had! Although I do believe I was able to read book 2 without book 1, I am sure I would have felt so much more "complete". Having said that - I will definitely read book 3 and am looking forward to it. Brielle now lives in a world where she knows that humans are not the primary characters. She can see so much more from the supernatural. Satan is now after her since she can see through the celestial veil. This is a YA Fantasy and I love YA books. They seem to allow for so much more flexibility and imagination and this book definitely did not disappoint. Brielle is a strong character who has struggles and successes. This book reminds me of many mythological type books that I have read. The mix between humans and supernatural beings are so intriguing and this book is no exception. The third book in this series should bring it all to a nice conclusion - but in the meantime, book 2 concludes with me wanting so much more. The struggles are familiar - good versus evil - with a Christian element and a different spin. I give this book 4 stars and look forward to book 3! I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
'Broken Wings' is the exciting second installment in the Angel Eyes trilogy that continues as Brielle continues to deal with the fact that there are actually such things as Celestial beings, that they live right beside humans in the world, and the scariest truth - she can see it all. On top of this reality and after her showdown of supernatural proportions, Brielle's life is starting to suck even worse. Things at home have gone from bad to worse with her father and his new girlfriend and things between her and Jake have definitely been better. Little does Brielle know - she's been targeted by Satan himself after hearing about her ability to see through the Celestial veil and about the mysterious boy who can heal with his hands. Satan gives the demon Damien brand new eyes and sets him loose on the world, right about the same time that Brielle learns the truth behind her mother's death. Can she trust anything or anyone she has ever known? Brielle knows that a bigger battle is coming and she must learn to fight with all the weapons she has. The only question is - will she be able to? This was a fantastic second book in a wonderful YA fantasy trilogy. The writing continued to flow effortlessly between the first and second book and even just throughout the second book itself. Brielle is such a great lead character - she's broken and flawed - she knows this - but she never gives up. She always does what needs to be done - what must be done - and she gives everything she has for what she believes is right. The other characters in the series seem almost as background characters to highlight the depth of Brielle's character. The action and adventure in the book were astounding and I continued to root for Brielle in all of her struggles and obstacles. I really loved learning about the Celestial life that seems to almost co-mingle with human reality. I find that aspect of the novels to be really intriguing and it adds a great layer to the mix. The writing itself has a great pace - not too slow and not so fast that it feels like things are rushed either. The descriptions and details are vivid and I can easily picture what's happening in my mind. The story was a great blend of action, fantasy, adventure and a touch of romance along with some religious aspects thrown in (but they weren't "preachy" at all). This was a great second installment and will have readers eagerly awaiting the third and final book in the trilogy to be released. Disclosure: I received a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.
3.5 stars Did I enjoy this book: I did enjoy this book. I read it almost every free chance I had. But, like the first book - Angel Eyes - some parts were slow. We pick up a few months after Angel Eyes ends. Jake and Brielle are still together. They are close but Jake is hiding something big from Brielle. This is starting to put a wall between the two. Brielle's father isn't liking the relationship at all. He plays a bigger role in this book, but not in a good way. I feel bad for Brielle's father in a way, but not always. He's dealing with a lot and the secret he kept for so many years has finally come to light. I really like Brielle's friend, Kaylee. She is a genuine person who wants to help others. She may not be a "church-goer" but she has a good heart. She is also very understanding and accepting of all the things that Brielle is going through and the things that Brielle is reluctant to share with Kaylee. Kaylee accepts that she doesn't quite understand the power of prayer and Christianity as a whole but she's willing to hear about it and begin to accept it for herself. There was not as much grab-your-attention action in this book. The action that was in the book occurred mainly at the end. I found myself confused at times while reading this book because we find out a lot of information that I'm assuming lays the groundwork for the final book, Dark Halo. At other times, I wanted to be there with Brielle. I wanted to hear the Sabres' songs. I wanted to see the Celestial light. I wanted to fly with Helene. I wanted to see what worship looked like. I agree with author Robert G. Pielke, who said in his guest post for the blog yesterday, that "a trilogy is kind of like a self-contained play with a beginning, a middle, and an end." Broken Wings is a definite "middle" and I can't wait to find out what happens in the "end," Dark Halo. August can't get here soon enough! Would I recommend it: I would recommend this book. Definitely read Angel Eyes first. Will I read it again: I will not but I will definitely read book 3, Dark Halo.
Broken Wings is the sequel to Angel Eyes. Shannon Dittemore is a talented, beautiful writer, and she's given me as a reader an amazing story of faith, brokenness, and love with Brielle and Jake as they choose a life surrendered to God. Dittemore didn't hold back from breaking my heart for Brielle and Jake for what they have to face and loose in Broken Wings. Brielle discovers that her father hasn’t been telling her the truth surrounding her mother’s death, and the mystery of what happened that day. The Prince of Darkness also wants Brielle and Jake, and has sent Damien after them because of their heavenly gifts that God gave them. Brielle has fallen in love with Jake, but her trust in him will be damage. She starts to doubt God’s promise that Jake will be the one to stand by her side. With everything she’s facing, including her father’s drinking, it becomes Brielle’s time of brokenness. Brielle's learning what it really means to trust God by faith and not by sight. There are two more characters that I came to enjoy in this series: Kaylee and Marco. I hope in Dark Halo these two will get together. I love Kaylee's cockiness and Marco's broodiness. I feel these two are prefect for each other, especially after Marco lost Ali. I would love to see him happy again. I fell in love with Brielle and Jake's amazing story of their fight for good against evil, their love for God, and their commitment of love for each other. I highly recommend Broken Wings as a must read for all who loves when good conquers evil. My Favorite Swoon Quotes: He's gorgeous-- that soft hair, those eyes both dark and light, a tall muscled build--but sometimes I want to punch him. "I'm not worried about it," Jake says, squeezing my side. "So what do you think? We tell him?" His hand's on my hip now, and really, what I'm thinking about has nothing to do with Marco. But another glance in Jake's eyes and I can tell he has no idea what his touch is doing to me. My heart bangs in my chest at his closeness, at the heat between us, at the promise of a future together. I think it's trying to break through-my heart-trying to be closer to the man in front of me. Close just doesn't seem close enough anymore.
4.5/5 Stars. I really, really loved the first book in this series Angel Eyes and was more than delighted to be a part of this blog tour. The visualization that you get whilst reading this book/series through the descriptions is stunning, I love the Angels that have been created here and the whole storyline makes this series one of my favourites in the paranormal genre featuring Angels. And while this has been released as Christian Fiction which I'm not a particular fan of, this series whilst having God and religion throughout the books it doesn't take away from the storyline but adds to it instead, it helps that Shannon wrote it the way she did which makes it more enjoyable for those whom aren't religious in any sense. With some extremely likeable characters, (yes Jake and Canaan, I'm talking about you) and our lead heroine Brielle , this book surpassed the debut novel which I didn't expect and because of that it just gave us so much more to anticipate with the third novel Dark Halo (which I love the title of). I highly recommend everyone pick this book up, but for those of you who haven't read Angel Eyes definitely start with that one first.
(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Thomas Nelson publishers and Netgalley.) This is book 2 in the ‘Angel Eyes’ series, and kicks off not long after the end of book 1. After the show down at the end of book 1, Brielle is still living with the halo protecting her and warding off nightmares, and Jake is also doing his best to protect her. They now attend church regularly, much to Brielle’s father’s disappointment, and Brielle continues to see ‘the celestial’ when she wears the halo on her head, and can also see people’s fears as black goo surrounding them. There are problems in store for Brielle from both of her parents though, (yes, even her dead mother), along with the introduction of her father’s new girlfriend Olivia, and there’s also issues surrounding the exposure of the halo to two of Brielle’s friends. The threat of Damien is still unending though, even after the events at the end of book 1, and Brielle and Jake are constantly waiting for him to reappear and make his next move. How will Brielle’s powers evolve? What is going on with her mother? And when will Damien be back? Parts of this book I liked and other parts I didn’t. Some parts were good, and the story seemed to be progressing, other parts were just slow and dragged. The religious parts were okay to an extent, but were very OTT in other places, and some of the bits with the ‘cherubic spy’ very just confusing. I also had some problems remembering what happened in the first instalment, and there wasn’t much of a recap, especially as the story went straight in to demons and hell and stuff. In my opinion there is a lot more religion in this book than the first. The first 10% and the last 10% of the book are especially heavy on this, with scenes from the point of view of a ‘cherubic spy’. Both Brielle and Jake are now big church-goers, and there’s quite a lot of discussion about praying and reading the bible and stuff. Jake even goes so far as to tell Brielle that ‘scripture is like acid to fear’, and that by using the halo and praying, she can rid people of their fear. While I try to be fairly open to religious ideas and beliefs, occasionally I do find myself rolling my eyes at such things. I probably just don’t understand the terminology, but what exactly is Jake telling Brielle to do? Is she supposed to just quote the bible or something to destroy the black goo that is how she sees people’s fear? One of the very few funny moments in this book though was when Brielle told her friend Kay that her current plan for getting them out of the demonic situation they were in was to pray, and Kay replied “That’s it. That’s all? I’m going to text and you’re going to pray?”, “No offence, Elle, but that’s a crappy plan.” I’m glad somebody had the guts to say it! Brielle has more parental problems in this book, even her dead mother is causing problems, and her father’s drinking is becoming a real issue too, not to mention his new girlfriend (who the halo dislikes). The fact that her father also has a problem with Jake doesn’t help either. Whether this is purely a dad vs. boyfriend sort of thing, or a dad vs. god sort of thing as Brielle suggest I‘m not sure. Either way, this animosity doesn’t help Brielle and Jakes relationship. This book is told from some different viewpoints; Brielle (first person), Jake (third person), Pearla (a cherubic spy?)(third person), which is a little different to what I expected. This method of storytelling worked, but I think some people might find this a little difficult to grasp, especially as I know some people don’t like switching perspectives, or changes from first to third person. The ending of this book leaves us with a bit of a cliff-hanger, and loads of stuff to be resolved in the final instalment. Right now, I want to know what happens to Brielle and Jake, but I’m not desperately waiting for the next book either. Overall; this is a YA paranormal novel, which has a firm basis in Christianity. If you like Christian YA books, I’m pretty sure that you will love this, if you’re not a big fan of books with religion, I’d say it’s probably best to steer clear of this series. If like me, you’ve read the first book and liked it, then it’s probably worth reading this one to continue the series, but this book really will not be for everyone. If you were put off by the religion in the first book, then don’t expect this one to be better. 6.75 out of 10.
Initially I had a hard time getting into this book. However I restarted it and found it to be a very good book. I would have understood it better I believe if I would have read the first book in the series. The story is about Brielle, a young girl with special powers. She is trying to understand the sudden changes in her life. She is being sought after by a demon. Initially I had a hard time keeping up because of the way the story switches between characters, and because I had not read the first book in the series. The story was full of twists and turns which I enjoyed, it was not predictable. I found that the characters worked well together. For a fiction book I was surprised that it has affected my faith. The descriptions of worship and the way the character sees it has totally crept into my life, and I find that in church I remember this, and think about the scent of adoration. I would recommend this book to others, but I would say that you might enjoy reading the whole series instead of just this book. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
Review by Jill Williamson Brielle and Jake are growing closer, but her father doesn’t like it—doesn’t seem to like Jake at all. Brielle is certain it’s because of Jake’s faith, but there seems to be something more that her father isn’t saying. And then her dad starts dating Olivia. Brielle doesn't approve. It’s just a feelings she has. But feelings aren't enough to convince her dad of anything, so all she can do is stand by and watch… and pick up the pieces if things go bad. Meanwhile, Jake still doesn't know why the ring has vanished from the wooden chest. He hasn't told Brielle that it’s missing, either, and she can tell that he’s keeping something from her. And unbeknownst to Brielle or Jake, Damien in hunting them both, hoping to take the boy who heals and the girl who sees to his master. The Sabres are coming. And Brielle learns more about the reoccurring nightmare she’s been having, and it’s leading Jake and her closer to something big. I couldn't put it down! This is a fantastical story of Biblical proportions and yet Dittemore make it feel so real. Brielle learns that faith isn't a quick fix. That tough times still come. And the ending… Gah! You’ll be desperate for book three once you close this one. This is one of my favorite new series. Dittemore has accomplished a rare feat with Broken Wings: she’s written a sequel that’s as good as/better than book one. Beautiful, romantic, and fascinating. I couldn't stop reading this enthralling page-turner. I’ll be the first one in line for book three.