Review: Angel Kin by Tricia Skinner
Series: Angel Assassins #1
Author: Tricia Skinner
Published on: April 28, 2014
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Format: 183 pages, eARC
Provided by: NetGalley Amazon Kobo GoodReads
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.
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.