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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Decent Start to a Promising Series
Thank you, oh thank you Literary Gods! I was terrified that BLOOD AND FEATHERS by Lou Morgan would turn out to Twilight with angels standing in for vampires. Why read on with the threat of a sparkly-vampire guillotine hanging over my head? Well in case you hadn't noticed I have become a big fan of Solaris Books. So far this is a publisher that has done little to steer me...
Published on July 31, 2012 by Nickolas X. P. Sharps

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great.. after the first half..
I'll say first that this was an alright read, somewhere between a 3 and 3.5 rating, and mostly because the beginning of this story was so convoluted and confusing I felt lost. I have a few issues with this book, mostly they are all in the first 1/3 of the book so I guess I'll just go down the line..

First, Alice was not a very strong lead character and seemed...
Published on August 30, 2012 by JlWelch


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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Decent Start to a Promising Series, July 31, 2012
This review is from: Blood and Feathers (Paperback)
Thank you, oh thank you Literary Gods! I was terrified that BLOOD AND FEATHERS by Lou Morgan would turn out to Twilight with angels standing in for vampires. Why read on with the threat of a sparkly-vampire guillotine hanging over my head? Well in case you hadn't noticed I have become a big fan of Solaris Books. So far this is a publisher that has done little to steer me wrong. Oh and there is a quote by EBR favorite, Sarah Pinborough that goes a little like this...

"Dark, enticing and so sharp the pages could cut you, Blood and Feathers is a must-read for any fan of the genre."

High praise indeed, and the more cynical I become with my reading, the more I have come to rely on author blurbs. So what is BLOOD AND FEATHERS about?

Alice is a pawn in a conflict that has been waging since the Lucifer broke faith with the heavenly host. Under the tutelage of a hard drinking, hard fighting Earthbound angel by the name of Mallory, Alice must gain control over her blossoming powers and choose a side before the balance is forever tipped in the wrong direction.

So Lou Morgan actually manages to pull a sort of Anti-Twilight. Instead of making vampires seem really lame, Morgan takes angels and makes them dangerous and more than a little frightening. I'll stop with the Twilight comparisons there though, the two books have nothing important in common. What you need to know is that BLOOD AND FEATHERS is not paranormal romance. This is urban fantasy, colored in plenty of shades of blood-spattered moral gray. Morgan's angels are vengeful, ferocious, and downright psychotic. It's not their job to save the souls of humans. They are soldiers in an unending war against the brothers who have betrayed them.

This is a portrayal of angels that appeals to me. And if you think about it, it makes a sick sort of sense. After all, if Lucifer fell from grace and took a third of the angels with him then that obviously means that angels are far from perfect (at least in this story). So even the "good" guys have their flaws, and after thousands of years of fighting a losing battle they have become desperate as well. This is where Alice comes in.

Alice is a plucky young woman and that's good because she will need all that spunk to survive what she's got coming. She has an attitude and a sarcastic mouth to match but once you learn more of her history you can start to see why. Alice has not had an easy life and a lot of the blame could be placed on the Angels and the Fallen. Alice endures hardship and horrors that would have most grown men crying in the fetal position, and she keeps on going.

Mallory the Earthbound angel is the other main character. A hard drinking, hard fighting angel. Who could have expected? So at first Mallory strikes me as a bit of a cliche, but after a while the drinking is explained and it makes every bit of sense. Mallory has a legitimate excuse to be bitter about his station in life, and still he copes.

The Fallen could use more characterization. As is, the real bad guys sometimes appear to be the angels. Motivation aside the angels can be every bit as callous and sociopathic as their enemies. This ambiguity is a big bonus but I would still like to see more villainy from the Fallen in future entries. Much of the time I found myself mentally siding with the Fallen and were it not for the mind-control of Lucifer that is probably where I would stand.

There are some really creepy and powerful moments, not to mention a huge cataclysmic battle that takes place in the very bowels of Hell. I'm not sure why Lucifer risks losing dominion over Hell just to turn Alice rather than simply having her killed. That was really the only major question I had regarding the plot. I understand why Alice was so important to the angels but I feel like the threat she poses to the Fallen outweighs any utility she may offer. Other than that BLOOD AND FEATHERS is a solid debut novel, and promises a beginning to what will surely be an interesting series.

Recommended Age: 14+
Language: Nothing too explicit but it is certainly there.
Violence: Plenty to be found, but it's not all that gory.
Sex: None - to my utter surprise.

Nick Sharps
Elitist Book Reviews
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great.. after the first half.., August 30, 2012
This review is from: Blood and Feathers (Paperback)
I'll say first that this was an alright read, somewhere between a 3 and 3.5 rating, and mostly because the beginning of this story was so convoluted and confusing I felt lost. I have a few issues with this book, mostly they are all in the first 1/3 of the book so I guess I'll just go down the line..

First, Alice was not a very strong lead character and seemed very wishy washy. Alice never questioned or reacted to any of the events that were u folding all around her. She never questioned, never had any intense reaction. Most normal people who are faced with angels, devils and death would either freak out in some way. She never seemed like a believable character to me which made things difficult from the start. Even towards the end where she's supposed to be some super weapon, she seemed more like a whiny little girl, lost and confused. You can't force your characters to accept things just to move on with the story..

The beginning was very vague for me. Where is this taking place? When is this taking place? I didn't understand what had happened to Alice's Mom/Family (yes you find out in the end, but it's like stumbling in the dark). I didn't, still kinda don't understand, where the mother and children fit into anything in the first chapter. I honestly thought that that was Alice's family because there is no transition or explanation between the first chapter and the next when we meet Alice. Is this the future? Same time? What the hell is going on?

This might be a small gripe but I found that most of the characters had little to no description. The author did very little to tell you what this characters looked like, so I mostly made it up myself, which is find, I have a healthy imagination, I just found it strange.

The conversations in the book often times didn't make any since to me. The characters, mostly the angels, would be having a conversation or giving an explanation and I only felt more confused like listening to only half a conversation. The author didn't do a very good job of explains things. Maybe you want you angels to seem vague or whatever but it left your readers confused also, not a good thing.

I also didn't get the whole references to Alice in Wonderland thing. It was just that, references. I don't get what the author was trying to do there. In no way is this book like Alice in Wonderland. At all. Going into hell is like going down the rabbit hole? I don't know if she intentionally wanted the references to Alice in Wonderland, but that story path was lost on me.

I did like the whole unique take on the whole battle between heaven and hell thing. This story is weird and I kinda like that about it. Blood and Feathers sort of reminds me of the Prophecy series (with Christopher Walkin), although a very poorly done one. The interpretation of angels in this book are unique, flawed, dangerous, sociopathic soldiers. These angels are not fluffy angels here to protect mankind, they are there to keep hell from spilling out. They fight for a purpose, and they fall, wither it be for love, belief or reason.

I guess I can say that overall, I did like this book. I had to struggle through the first maybe half and nothing seemed to make any sense until the end when everything went down. But I still like it for the weird, unique take that it was. I will most likely read the next book, solely because I am intrigued, but I just hope she does a better job of it than this one.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Very original with action, humor and soul!, September 6, 2014
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This review is from: Blood and Feathers (Paperback)
There are so many paranormal books out there these days but I found Blood and Feathers to be a very original, refreshing read! The story dives right in with Alice arriving home from work to find her father and two strange men Mallory and Gwyn in her living room. Her father is murdered in front of her eyes and the men turn out to be angels come to rescue her from the Fallen. Unknown to her she is a half breed angel with extraordinary fire powers. Both sides want her as a weapon in the never ending war between the Archangel Michael and Lucifer. Okay so stories about Michael and Lucifer are not new but the author introduces some very original and likable characters such as the booze swigging earthbound angel (they've had their wings clipped for punishment and must served their allotted time on earth) Mallory who has a likeness for guns and Vin another earthbound with a great sense of humor who likes to hang out in Hong Kong. Alice, Mallory and Vin become fast friends and there is a lot of amusing banter between them.

We learn that not all angels or indeed archangels are nice and they are just as greedy and power crazed as anyone else is capable of being. Ms. Morgan gives a great description of hell and there are some surprises along the way. The book concludes with the angels breaching the gates of hell and a huge battle, which is very well written. This is not a romance story but there is plenty of action, humor and soul to this book. I could not put it down. Now I'm off to read the next one in the series Blood and Feathers Rebellion.
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3.0 out of 5 stars An alcoholic Earthbound angel and one girl with a whole lot of ‘tude., October 25, 2013
This review is from: Blood and Feathers (Paperback)
A 3.5 stars really...

Blood and Feathers has an interesting version of the whole angels and demons shtick. Normally I stay away from fiction that contains any biblical themes because I usually find them preachy. But Blood and Feathers appealed to me what with it’s description containing an angel with a drinking problem. So I thought, *shrug* it might not thump at me too much.

I was thankfully correct, even though it was about angels and demons and their eternal war, I didn’t feel like it was about religion at all. So kudos and score one for Lou. Mallory was the saving grace of Blood and Feathers for me. He and another angel Vin gave me enough chuckles.

“He doesn’t mean to be such a wanker – he just doesn’t understand.” – pg 23

The heroine, Alice is a woman in her twenties who has just recently found out she is half angel. I have to say, based on her behavior and attitude though that she read more like a prepubescent teen. I had heard from others who had read this that this read a lot like young adult because of her behavior. Note, I consider this an an adult, YA crossover book as there are no sexy times or any romantic elements.

Alice, lets just say I had issue with her. She was so blasted whiny. These were Mallory’s words not mine – directed right at Alice!
“Stop whining.” – pg 69

Thankfully as in most books when the character is whiny they tend to improve upon that as their character grows. With Alice that just took quite a long while for me. It was extremely difficult to like her, and when I’m not fond of a character, I find it hard for me to care what happens to them. My feeling regarding Alice can be summed up thus: So yeah, Go to Hell, what the flip do I care?

On the other hand, Mallory – oh Mallory, the alcoholic angel, I liked. He was warm, yet cold, funny but direct. I found myself wishing he were the central character instead of this indulgent girl Alice. He has a past that is just aching to be known. He has the depth of character and personality that I found was lacking in Alice. Thankfully there were also other supporting characters that I enjoyed as well.

Blood and Feathers was also told from alternating perspectives of well pretty much every character. But mostly it’s from Alice and Mallory’s perspective. I don’t always like it when things are done that way. Here I didn’t mind it because it got me the heck away from Alice. And sometimes offered me another good chuckle:
You might even call it a miracle – if you believed in that sort of thing which, naturally, he didn’t. Balberith believed in order, in lists and – on occasion – in the Dewey Decimal System. – pg 175

Angel and Demon fiction lovers would likely enjoy this one though unfortunately, I think one major part about the ending was a bit obvious. Thankfully a few other things I didn’t have figured out.
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4.0 out of 5 stars define what's supposed to be normal, June 23, 2013
This review is from: Blood and Feathers (Paperback)
Reviewed by Janessa, Age 15 for Citybook Review
Alice is unaware that she is half Angel and is being hunted by the Fallen angels while the Angels want to send her to hell, but it's not what you think. Losing her mom when she was only six and just witnessed her father's death, her only hope seems to be a drunken disgraced Angel, Mallory, who has been tasked with watching over Alice, and Gwyn, an Angel whose wings have been clipped, has been tasked with watching over Mallory, and she's not even sure who to trust anymore. While Alice doesn't go through the looking glass, she will have to face the war between heaven and hell.
"Hey, define what's supposed to be normal. You've got wings and I just torched a guy. Again."
This was a good book, but I felt Alice was a really weak character and easily pushed around. For someone who is the saving grace of humanity, you'd think the author, Lou Morgan, would have made Alice more independent and confidant, especially in a Young Adult book where she has lost both of her parents and the world depends on her to save it. Still, it was really good, and I would read more by this author.
*This book was provided in exchange for an honest review*
*You can view the original review at City Book Review
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4.0 out of 5 stars A Fresh Take, October 24, 2012
This review is from: Blood and Feathers (Paperback)
This book is everything I wanted it to be and more. Sharp, fast-paced, intricate, and just a little heartbreaking while still incredibly funny. Angels seem to be the new area that the urban fantasy genre is really into exploring, but I think so far this is my favorite take on the subject.

The angels are probably the most accurate portrayal I've seen-soldiers. Nothing more, nothing less. Maybe God has an opinion about your soul, but the angels don't. Not even the fallen ones. And yet at the same time they're not these deceptively evil entities. Ambitious? Sure. Foolish? Sometimes. Proud? Definitely. But not evil. I think that's the mistake these types of books tend to make. This book not only avoided that, it completely crushed those expectations I had as a reader.

The heroine is definitely someone worth cheering for. For once it isn't the "with great power comes great responsibility and a whole lot of control over something you just realized you had" nonsense. In fact for most of the book she has no control over the power she discovers she has. The entire function of the angels is to push her into accepting this power before she is ready for it, and then throwing her into (literally) the depths of hell and expecting her to be a hero.

So naturally she's sarcastic and bitter throughout the whole book. But as her back story unfurls you find someone so broken and vulnerable, that by the end of the book I found MYSELF proud of the choices she's made with all she's fighting against both internally and externally. It's not often that you find a heroine in a book that you feel made choices you wouldn't have been strong enough to make, and when I do find them I can't help but love them.

This book is also refreshing because it's urban fantasy without the over-sexed element. It's gritty, brilliantly thought out, and without a doubt written for adults without having to throw in as much sex as possible. Definitely at the top of my list of trilogies I'm excited about the next installment.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Book Whales: Excellent Read! The world building is phenomenal, September 28, 2012
This review is from: Blood and Feathers (Paperback)
I want to read this book because of the cover and blurb. It was creepy in good way and I love angels. I have this gut feeling that the book would be kick-ass, which it is. Blood and Feathers did not disappoint me. It was action packed and infused with shocking revelations that will blow your mind.

The story started in a gruesome way. Yep, Alice was with her father when 2 angels came to visit. Her father was killed right then and there by an invisible force (Neck was snapped). Then the 2 angels claimed that they're there to protect her. There's a war coming. The fallen wants her, and the angels need her. -Confusing much?- What do they want from her? Who can she trust? What do they know about her past? The angels want to send her to hell? You have to read this book to find out.

The world building is phenomenal. I love how the author described everything pretty well. It was creepy, haunting and terrifying. My favorite part is the descent to hell. Yes, you heard me. Not everyone enjoys going down to visit hell, but I did. Lou's vision of hell is superb! It was very detailed and downright scary. As a curious reader, you would really feel like you were with Alice. I also enjoyed the war scenes. It was very cinematic and action packed. Blood and Feathers is a page turner, there were loads of unanswered questions, leaving you thirsty for answers. Lou did a great job in keeping the readers behind the dark.

The characters are well developed. I connected to them easily and they are the kind of characters that you won't really forget. Alice is the main character here. She doesn't know anything about her mother and there is something about her that makes her so special. I love Alice as a character. She's smart and brave. I always like a strong lead character and her vulnerability made me like her more. As for the angels, Mallory is my favorite character. There is something about him that draws me in. He's alluring and mysterious. It's not always that you see a disgraced angel drunk and drool worthy at the same time. His dedication to protect Alice awes me. Gwyn is an interesting character. His boastfulness and close-mindedness gave spice to the story. There are many interesting characters from this book. Big characters like Michael, Raphael and Lucifer himself. You have to buy this book now!! -Peace-

As for the love angle, there was none. I `am the type of reader who needs romance in any type of book. But I hardly notice it because the story kept me preoccupied. I really hope book two will change that
.
Overall, this book is an excellent read. I recommend this to supernatural and action lovers. One of my favorite reads this year. I' am now a HUGE fan of Lou Morgan! Rebellion will be out this 2013 and I can't wait to read it.

I give this 5 Angelic Whales.
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5.0 out of 5 stars holy freaking hell!, September 13, 2012
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This review is from: Blood and Feathers (Paperback)
holy freaking hell! what a stunning debut! what a triumphant book! creepy; quick; clever; funny; sharp and hot as a glowing sword! a word-built world filled with characters i cared about. characters i worried about. characters i loved and hated for their good-ness and bad-ness and everything-in-between-ness. a full and convincing world. can't wait to revisit those characters and that world in the next book. and the next book. red and black. whatever drips off her marvelous pen!
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Blood and Feathers
Blood and Feathers by Lou Morgan (Paperback - July 31, 2012)
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