Reviewed by: Amanda
Rating (out of 5): 5 stars
Note: While this review is spoiler free, it does assume you’ve read the other books in the series.
Within the opening pages of Archangel’s Legion, I realized just how much I’d missed Raphael and Elena.
Angels and birds falling from the skies. Vampires contracting a fatal disease when they’re supposed to be impervious to illness. Raphael being haunted by an icy power that threatens to overtake his so recently revived soul. Someone has it out for the Archangel of New York, and if Elena and Raphael don’t figure it out soon, there may not be a city left to save.
In the midst of the chaos, Ellie’s long-held doubts and fears of intimacy resurface, testing the bonds of their relationship, strengthening it at times and tearing it oh-so-slightly at others.
Did I mention I loved this book? No? Let me say it now: I LOVED THIS BOOK.
I have to admit, after being disappointed with Archangel’s Storm and learning Nalini Singh was returning to Raphael and Elena instead of focusing on one of the other Seven *cough cough Venom cough cough*, I had my doubts. They were assuaged before I’d finished the first chapter.
Elena’s nightmares haven’t disappeared, nor have her habits. In a lot of ways, she’s still the same woman she’s always been—headstrong, fiercely protective of those she claims as family, unafraid to butt heads with the man she calls consort, and I loved seeing that despite the growth she’s shown over the course of the series, who she is hasn’t changed. She has her moments, though, when she takes two steps back, away from Raphael and everything he represents, because she fears her heart can’t handle it. But her Archangel won’t allow her to shut down and close him out. He’ll provoke her into a sparring match that leaves them both limp and sweaty, or kiss her until she’s begging for more, but let her retreat? Not an option.
And she does the same for him, which proves necessary more than once over the course of the story. Raphael’s struggling as well, to deal with his Awakened mother and what it will mean not only for him, but for the balance of power within the Cadre, and after the Falling, as they called the incident where hundreds of angels plummeted to the ground, he has to figure out how to shore up his defenses within New York. The Cascade is still in full force, with reports of the other archangels’ burgeoning powers rolling in. Lijuan’s grip on her sanity is slipping even more, while Caliane’s seems to be holding steady. Alliances and friendships amongst the Cadre are being formed. Dealing with the ups and downs of his sometimes turbulent relationship with Ellie isn’t something he exactly has time for. It’s a mark of how important it is to him that he makes time for it.
Despite the action of Archangel’s Legion (and there’s plenty), at its heart the story is still about Ellie and her Archangel. When the battle lands on their doorstep, they fit together like puzzle pieces, charging into the fight with the absolute certainty the other will be there to hold them up and allow them to bring the sword down one last time. The ending makes me wonder just what’s being cooked up for the next book.
Also, when do we get Venom’s story? Hmmm?
Sexual content: Graphic sex