Friday, October 8, 2010
Halo by Alexandra Adornetto
Halo hits all the right buttons for today’s modern tween girl: the main characters are supernatural (angels); there’s a romance; cute and enigmatic boy characters; a spunky yet conflicted girl protagonist.
Halo tells the story of three angels who have been sent to earth to set things right. Apparently evil is overtaking us, and enough is enough for the Guy upstairs. One of the angels is 17-year-old Beth, who is more susceptible to her new human form than her two older and wiser siblings. She succumbs to the temptations of human emotion and falls in love with a human boy. This sets up a conflict, since she finds herself too busy dating to pay attention to the more charitable pursuits she has been put on earth to fulfill. The whole thing comes to a climax when a sexy male devil character sets his sights on her.
Kinda like Twilight
Whereas Twilight, the hugely popular teen-girl-fantasy novel against which all others must now be measured, had vampires, Halo has angels. Twilight is set in a quiet, nondescript town in the U.S.; so is Halo. Both have strong female lead characters. Both books feature gentle (yet strong) male love interests. In both books, the female lead characters must battle supernatural forces. And in both books the main character is quickly swept off her feet by a boy with whom she falls irrevocably in love, a love she puts beyond all else – including common sense and her responsibilities.
If your teen or tween girl liked Twilight, I’m going to bet that she’ll enjoy Halo.
It’s a gentle love story, an easy read, with just enough action to keep the pages turning. And it's clean. Angel-clean.
However, I would have liked the book to have been edited a bit more carefully. Not only are there occasional grammatical errors, but some of the dialogue is stilted, especially when the kids are tryin’ to talk hip-like. That’s the writer’s fault but also the editor’s, who should have pointed it out and asked for rewrites.
I once had an editor who talked about an author who “worries every word.” Halo feels like it was written a bit hastily, without the words having been sufficiently “worried” by this young author (Alexandra Adornetto is 19.)
But it doesn’t really matter, because the kids are reading the book in droves and loving it, with or without clunky dialogue.
Adornetto is already working on the second book in what will be a trilogy: Hades, due out next year. The third book will be entitled Heaven.
She is also working on a website for young aspiring authors which will offer writing tips. Now, that is something to really look forward to, and something that will undoubtedly help to get kids writing. Good for her.
Here's the video trailer for Halo.
And here's a nice video interview (1:30) with author Alexandra Adornetto.
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