End of Days by Thomas E. Sniegoski

February 21, 2013 Reviews 2

Victory is fleeting, but Defeat is eternal.

The war between Heaven and Hell rages on Aaron, half angel and half human, commands the Fallen in their quest to protect humanity. But evil forces gain strength at every turn. And lurking somewhere in the shadows is Archangel Gabriel’s instrument with the power to call down the End of Days…

Aaron draws confidence from the girl he loves as he struggles to make peace with his legacy as Lucifer’s son. These are desperate times, and Aaron knows the Fallen will need to forge new, unlikely alliances to survive.

With the fate of the world hanging in the balance, Aaron will stop at nothing to defend civilization—and the girl who holds his heart. Even if it means facing Hell’s darkest demons.

End of Days continues the adventures of Aaron and his fellow Nephilim – Verchiel and his host of the Powers has been defeated, but a bigger threat looms on the horizon as remnants of the Powers, previously in hiding, come forth. Eager to succeed where their leader failed.

I ended up really liking this book, even though at first look I thought I wouldn’t. The book begins with a short confrontation between Aaron and Jeremy, one of the new Nephilim in the ranks. Jeremy is a hot-head and struggles with the angelic being inside him, and as usual, Aaron’s only reaction is violence. I’ve said this before and I’ll no doubt say it again – with Aaron there is no talking or trying to understand, one either does what he tells you to, or he lets his angelic side whip your butt. It’s tiresome, to be honest. To offset Aaron, there is Vilma, who has finally embraced her angelic side and brought under her control. She’s Aaron’s source of strength, but Aaron is increasingly unsettled by Vilma’s self-sufficiency. She doesn’t need him to protect her any more, and I think Aaron has to try really hard not to mind.

On the other side, Jeremy is all too awed by Vilma’s battle prowess, and as someone who wasn’t loved a lot in life, he takes a shine to her. The weird attraction Vilma has for Jeremy wasn’t necessary to the plot, in my opinion, and only served to muddy the waters further. I feel like the ‘love-triangle’ was inserted because everyone does them now, and I was frustrated with it. In addition, these moments took away from the few instances where we got to see Aaron and Vilma interact alone – we’re left with no clue how they are doing on a personal level and, despite them telling one another repeatedly that they love each other, I felt a huge disconnect from them as a couple.

The new battle fought for the survival of Earth is gripping, and I was emotionally invested in the Nehpilim’s fight against the Powers. I also liked the inclusion of Dusty, the naive yet surprisingly brave human who has been chosen to care for the Horn of Gabriel, the instrument of our destruction. Needless to say, he’s beset by every evil imaginable, who want to possess the instrument, and struggles to survive. I feel like the new Nephilim – the students, per say – were indistinguishable and rather bland. I did, however, like that the author showed us battles from their points of view so we got a feel for their characters, but over all, I would have preferred to get to know them better.

Another thing I struggled with is Aaron’s lack of guilt, misery, or any kind of negative emotion regarding the fate of his family. I would have thought he would struggle with it, maybe even become depressed, but he has seemingly bounced back and doesn’t have to worry about those pesky emotions getting in the way.

Thomas Sniegoski has yet again written an engaging, impressive novel with End of Days, and it has set up the next book, Forsaken, well. I really like this series, despite finding Aaron a little too eager for violence for my tastes, and encourage those who want to try a unique kind of angel book to try it out. Book 4 of the series, Forsaken, was published in January 2013, and Book 5, Armageddon, is expected in August 2013 from Simon Pulse.

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