Lailah by Nikki Kelly
Series: The Styclar Saga #1
Published by Feiwel & Friends
Published on: October 7 2014
Genres: Urban Fantasy, Young Adult
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The girl knows she’s different. She doesn’t age. She has no family. She has visions of a past life, but no clear clues as to what she is, or where she comes from. But there is a face in her dreams – a light that breaks through the darkness. She knows his name is Gabriel.
On her way home from work, the girl encounters an injured stranger whose name is Jonah. Soon, she will understand that Jonah belongs to a generation of Vampires that serve even darker forces. Jonah and the few like him, are fighting with help from an unlikely Allie – a rogue Angel, named Gabriel.
In the crossfire between good and evil, love and hate, and life and death, the girl learns her name: Lailah. But when the lines between black and white begin to blur, where in the spectrum will she find her place? And with whom?
Gabriel and Jonah both want to protect her. But Lailah will have to fight her own battle to find out who she truly is.
Anytime a Big Bad vamp bites through a pregnant angel’s stomach, and infects the baby with its venom in the first few pages of a book, it’s a pretty clear indicator of what you’re in for. If that sounds awesome to you, then hey, you might love this book.
BUT . . . if you’re like me, and think that’s just about as cornball as it can get . . . you are not wrong.
Francesca doesn’t know what she is. She only knows that she cannot die. But if she’s injured badly enough, she can appear to be dead while her body shuts down to repair itself. When this happens, she wakes up with incomplete memories from her prior life that come to her in fits and starts, and sometimes while she sleeps. She has no idea how old she is, but she knows she’s much older than her seventeen year old appearance.
The only thing she’s sure about is the man whose face she’s been seeing in her dreams throughout all her lives. The man who radiates light, the man whose beauty makes her heart ache, the man with a golden halo of blond curly hair . . . Gabriel. *rolls eyes*
But while Gabriel is the man of her dreams (HA), Jonah is the injured vamp in her backyard. And even though her last life ended when she came face-to-face with the darker nature of vampires (the more recent the past life, the more vivid the memories), Francesca has a “hunch” that Jonah is different, so despite knowing that he’s been tortured, starved, and is grievously injured, she ignores his warnings to keep her distance, lest he drink her down, and cuts her own wrist, forcing him to drink.<——TSTL female alert.
The only reason she survives this idiocy is b/c Jonah’s captors show up, distracting him from her blood, and then—OMG!—freshly fed, he somehow manages to take out ALL the bad guys.
Hmmm . . . I wonder if there’s something different about Francesca’s blood?
But while Jonah is busy with the vamps, Francesca hears/sees a silver bullet racing straight towards Jonah’s heart, so she jumps in front of it, getting hit in the shoulder, and passes out.
When she comes to, none other then Gabriel himself is leaning over her. And not only is her dream man there—in the flesh—but would you believe that he’s also the angelic leader of the motley band of good(ish) vamps that Jonah belongs to?
And what a cruel twist of fate. After spending countless lives alone, she had just found Jonah, with whom she shared an instant connection. Jonah, who bares a remarkable resemblance to Damon Salvatore, both in appearance and temperament.
But then there’s Gabriel. Gabriel who she’s longed for in all of her lives . . . it’s just SO confusing. What’s a girl to do?<——W-A-F-F-L-E.
So the plot’s ridiculous. How about the writing?
He wasted no time scooping me up off the bark and thrusting my body against his. He clung to me, allowing no space between us, pushing his hand into my soaking hair. Eventually I removed my face from his chest and stared up into his eyes; they were enlarged with worry and brimming over with sadness.
He didn’t hug or embrace her, he thrust her body against his. She didn’t look up, she removed . . . her face . . . from his chest. *headdesk* His eyes weren’t wide, they were . . . enlarged.
Then there was the single page in which Francesca was, “utterly perplexed,” “bewildered,” and “completely dumbfounded,” in quick succession.
I also have this peeve about people using the word “literally” for emphasis: I literally walked out, he literally ignored her, she literally just got here, etc. STAHP. It’s bad enough when I have endure its overuse by my sister, but in a book? NO.
And let’s not forget about all the random and bizarre, yet technically correct, words that can be found on nearly every page. Like when the monster vamp slices off a lock of Francesca’s hair, and instead of smelling it, or lifting it to his nose, he raised it to his “orifices.”
*sing songs* Someone literally needs to have their thesaurus confiscated.
And that’s all I got. There were moments that were relatively painless, but overall . . . Lailah by Nikki Kelly was not for me. I’d recommend it to anyone who likes the sound of a Fallen + Twilight + Vampire Diaries mashup + a surplus of adverbs, and a questionable use of adjectives.