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Review: Angel Kin by Tricia Skinner

Review: Angel Kin by Tricia Skinner
Angel Kin by Tricia Skinner
Series: Angel Assassins #1
Published by Entangled
Published on: April 28, 2014
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 183
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
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While channeling Robin Hood's "steal from the rich and give to the poor" attitude at a local politician's house, ex-con Katie Logan witnesses a forced suicide. Dirty or not, supernatural or not, he didn't deserve to die, especially not by his own hand. But with her record, stepping forward as a witness isn't an option. On the run from the police and the murderer, she turns to The Bound Ones for help.

When a beautiful woman comes to The Bound Ones, half-angel assassin Cain is immediately drawn to her. But when she fingers him as the killer, he can come to only one conclusion. The twin he thought was dead is very much alive…and trying to send him a message. Unfortunately, that message is: "You're next."

It's a race against time as Cain fights to save the woman he's falling in love with before his brother Abel destroys them both.

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The opening scene in Tricia Skinner’s new ANGEL ASSASSIN series is as disturbing as it is good, in that oh my god I NEED to know more kind of way. Katie’s race to stay alive starts on page one, and doesn’t let up until the epilogue, and even then it’s clear that she’s still not entirely safe. ANGEL KIN is a near seamless blend of world-building, character development, and plot threads with its unique celestial mythology, cornucopia of supernaturals, and gripping story. This book was a borderline 5-star read for me, but the change in pacing towards the end caused me to have to reel back my enthusiasm a notch, and give it a solid 4 instead.

My interest for angel novels within the paranormal genre has slowly waned over the years because it’s been my experience that there’s no grey area when it comes to these supes. They usually fall into one of two categories: overly religious and preachy, or straight-up badass with a dash of celestial on the side. The cover and blurb lead me to expect the latter, and much to my relief, that’s exactly what ANGEL KIN delivers! Skinner’s lore is detailed and original without being over-the-top complicated, and I loved learning about the differences between The Renegades and The Bound—not to mention all of the other fascinating supernaturals that live in the ANGEL ASSASSIN universe. There’s even a vampire gang called the Black Fangs!

I enjoyed the group dynamics within The Bound Ones; each member’s personality is vastly different, and they have distinctive abilities to match. My only complaint in this department was that I wish we’d seen more of Tanis, Jarrid, Kas and Nesty. However, after taking a peek at the author’s work-in-progress page, I think it’s safe to assume that each installment will revolve around one of Cain’s crew. Yes, patience is not my strong suit. I liked how well fleshed-out Cain was, and I enjoyed Katie’s character as well—she’s a strong heroine in her own right, and I also appreciated the romantic elements that she brought to this story.

The evil twin brother plot line wasn’t groundbreaking, but it is almost always a recipe for success in Urban Fantasy. I liked the way Skinner developed the relationship between Cain and Abel by incorporating elements both from their pasts and present, and the final battle was indeed epic thanks to a centuries long build-up. The pacing does take a bit of a hit towards the end of this book though because of the need to tie-up loose ends, and to lay the groundwork for ANGEL LOVER, which somewhat diminished the climax in my opinion. But overall, I really enjoyed this author’s sharp writing style, geeky sense of humour, and amusing pop culture references.

ANGEL KIN is a quick read, and a wonderful glimpse at what’s to come from Tricia Skinner.

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Owner, designer and main blogger behind Rabid Reads. Avid book reader, snowboard bunny, video gamer and Supernatural fan. I love all things paranormal, werewolves especially. Oh, and I’m Canadian, eh!

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  1. YEAH! I have this on my to buy list and I am heading that way now 🙂

  2. I think this is one angel book I could read as well. I really dislike the preachy ones and I love action so I definitely think I will keep my eye on this one.

  3. I definitely like my angels to be of the badass variety Carmel, no preach or overly religious ones for me Carmel. So glad to hear that’s what we get in this book! Even with the pacing issue toward the end, this book sounds fantastic and I’m adding it to my list for sure. I haven’t read a good angel book lately and I’m in the mood for one!

    • I’d read more angel paranormal if they were all like this one. I hope you enjoy it!

  4. Geeky sense of humor sounds good to me

    • This one should appeal to your inner nerd. 😀

  5. Thank you for the honest feedback. I see a recurring theme–more on the brothers!– that I’ll have to address in future books. 🙂

  6. Sweeeeeet! I was too swamped with other reviews to fit this one in but I was quite interested. Like you I’ve been growing wary of angels as a supernatural so a fresh mythology sounds like just the ticket. Great review Carmel! 😀

    • Fresh mythology is always good, especially whenever angels are involved.

  7. I’m also wary whenever I see book with elements of religion in them but I’m glad for you this one went the “straight-up badass” route 😛 By the way, I’ve read plenty of angel books, and I’ve read plenty of assassin books. But can’t say I’ve seen them together all that often!

    • EXACTLY! One of the reasons why I just couldn’t resist Angel Kin.

  8. Angel books are hit or miss with me too, but this is one I would certainly like to read. I like the unique sounds of it. I will be checking it out!

  9. I don’t have much luck with books about angels, but if you say that this is a good one – I am adding it.
    Great review.

    • Hehe You’re an easy sell. Hopefully I don’t steer you wrong. 😉

  10. Woohoo! I’m going to pick up this one. I love angel books – well, the badass angels anyway. And Angel Kin sounds like my kinda read! 🙂 Fantastic review, Carmel!

    • Thanks! It’s on sale too, so now’s the perfect time to snatch this one up.

  11. Hmmm…. I hadn’t heard of this one yet but it actually sounds like something I would enjoy. I’m not always big on angel books either but you make it sound like this might be an angel book I’d be on board with.

    • Skinner’s angels aren’t your typical boy scouts. That’s for sure! 😀

  12. Great review Carmel!
    I loved reading this book too. Now I have a new author to keep an eye out on.
    I did have some of the same feelings as you did. My experience with Angel’s are the same as yours in that there’s no grey area when it comes to them. Either they fall into overly religious and preachy, or straight-up badass with a dash of celestial on the side. I also wanted more of the other brother’s, but I figured each would get their own book in time. I can’t wait for the next book. I really do not like to wait, but what can I do?
    If you get a chance check out the prequel Angel Bait. I found it at my library online. It has some discrepancies in names, but that’s due to a different publisher. I had a great time reading it and getting more explanation on Heaven, The Bound Ones, & Renegades.

    • Waiting sucks, but it’s to be expected. I haven’t been able to find Angel Bait anywhere, but I think Entangled is picking it up, so soon hopefully.

      • Angel Bait is out of print, which is sad, but last I herd from the author is that she hopes to get it published with Entangled. I hope it happens. It’s a great story and adds to the series.
        I was excited to see my library had the older copy.

  13. The unique blend of the supernaturals sounds like it would be a great read. I also like it when the worldbuilding and character development is so balanced.

    • This is indeed a well-rounded read. You should give it a whirl!

  14. I’m starting this book this week so I briefly skimmed your review but am so glad you enjoyed it! I’m sure I will too if it has your seal of approval 🙂

    • I will keep an eye on your GoodReads feed for updates!

  15. I just finished Angel Kin last night (and still have to write my review for later this week), but I really enjoyed it. Seems like we’ve found another set of brothers to love 🙂

    • There’s always room for more brothers, especially smexy ones. Hehe

  16. Love the play on Cain and Abel names and I’m always looking for a new UF series to devour. I’m off to snatch this one up while it’s on sale. 🙂

    • The author actually explains why the characters are named Cain & Abel in the book, and it’s kinda funny. 😀

  17. Oh I love the sound of this from the intense opening to the wonderful blend of genres and complex characters. Ooo and it’s book one! Adding to my list Carmel 🙂

  18. Ooohhh I want this one! Sounds right up my alley.

  19. I haven’t read an angel book in quite awhile because I’ve been so burned out on them. This sounds good though because it seems more UF than anything else.

    • You’re right; I’d shelve it as Urban Fantasy too.

  20. I wish I had time to read this. i love the premise & that Cain’s the good guy & Abel’s the bad dude.

  21. Oh my friend reviewed it today and she really liked it. I confess it made me curious. So I’m glad to see you enjoyed it as well. I’m always a little anxious when it’s about angels because I don’t have a lot of books I really love.

    • Yes, I read her review. It’s always good to compare notes.

  22. My angel book interest has waned too. It’s hard to find a good one nowadays. But an angel assassin!!!! Hell yes. I can’t believe I passed this one up. Bad, Jennifer, bad. It sounds amazing.

    • I rigorously screen my angel reads, but this one got a pass, so… Go buy a copy; you know you want to. 😀

  23. I definitely prefer the “straight-up badass with a dash of celestial on the side” when I pick up an angel book (which is rare these days — too many!). This sounds like a good start for new series.

    • It seems like a lot of my readers are of a similar opinion. Now I know why you guys follow me. 😉

  24. now I am curious about the opening. The characters sound like fun and this is an angel paranormal? how did I miss this? o.o

    • The first chapter might be available on Amazon. You should read it, then you won’t be able to resist!

  25. Nice review Carmel, glad you enjoyed it so much. I recently read another Cain and Abel spin, and to my own surprise enjoyed it.

    • Thanks xaurianx! You’ve been rather quiet lately; I hope everything is ok.

  26. The evil twin brother may not be the most original but can def be fun to read about

  27. Oh wow! It’s been a while since I’ve read a good angel book, this sounds like one I’d enjoy! I like how the Prolugue sucked you right in and left you wanting more! Awesome review!

    Naomi @ Nomi’s Paranormal Palace

    • I’m sure that Cain & Abel will be more than happy to make your acquaintance!

  28. I’m always up for a good quick read, even if some of the elements aren’t groundbreaking but then again, it doesn’t always have to be. 🙂 Great review Carmel!

    • Exactly! Why fix something that’s not broken, right?

  29. This is the second great review I have seen today! I love a good angel book and this one sounds like it has a bit of a fresh perspective 🙂
    Great review Carmel!

    Chanzie @ Mean Who You Are.

    • Well, I guess that makes your decision whether or not to read this one way easier! 😉

  30. How come I always miss such amazing books at NG? What am I looking at? This sounds really great and I love how it all starts. I need to read it someday. Great review, Carmel 🙂

    • I troll NetGalley daily which probably isn’t a good thing for my TBR pile, but still…

  31. Thanks for your review, Carmel! I’m kind of on the fence with this book – love the premise and the cover, but angels in paranormal romance as a rule don’t work for me.