Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Released: October 14th, 2010
Grade rating: B+/A-
Nora should have know her life was far from perfect. Despite starting a relationship with her guardian angel, Patch (who, title aside, can be described anything but angelic), and surviving an attempt on her life, things are not looking up. Patch is starting to pull away and Nora can't figure out if it's for her best interest or if his interest has shifted to her arch-enemy Marcie Millar. Not to mention that Nora is haunted by images of her father and she becomes obsessed with finding out what really happened to him that night he left for Portland and never came home. Relying too heavily on the fact that she has a guardian angel puts Nora at risk again and again. But can she really count on Patch or is he hiding secrets darker than she can even imagine?Review:
By now you've all probably guessed that I'm a huge fan of Becca Fitzpatrick's Hush, Hush series. I knew I'd love it as soon as I saw the amazing cover last year, and since reading it have been impatiently waiting for Crescendo to hit shelves. I love everything about this series: the characters (Hello, Patch!), the writing and the inclusion of fallen angels. Angels are fascinating in every form, and Hush, Hush was one of the first YA books to feature them in all their winged glory. So, Crescendo: does it live up to expectations?
While Hush, Hush was very much about Patch and Nora's relationship and how they dealt with their human/angel connection, Crescendo is a step up from that. Everything we know to be right is questioned in this book, including romantic entanglements, friendships and family. Crescendo is darker and more mature, but still manages to maintain that air of mystery first introduced in Hush, Hush.
We all know Nora's father died in seemingly normal circumstances, but Crescendo brings that to the forefront and makes you wonder: what if it wasn't normal? What if it could have been prevented? And just what was Mr. Grey mixed up in? It's a great way to continue Nora's story, and resolves an important plot thread at the same time. Fitzpatrick is clever not to reveal too much too soon, and instead keeps you guessing until the end.
If I had a couple of complaints about Crescendo, it would be that Patch isn't as present as I would have liked, and the introduction of Nora's apparent personality transplant. In Hush, Hush, she was smart, focused and, okay, hopelessly in love with Patch. I mean, who wouldn't be, right? In Crescendo, she seems different: occasionally irritating, blind to what's happening in front of her and quick to make stupid decisions. I know we all do ridiculous things, but on a couple of occasions I wanted to dive inside the story myself to impart some words of obvious wisdom. Still, when thinking back to my own teen years, perhaps I would have done the same.
Now, Patch. Ahh, beautiful Patch. Where was he?! He has stuff going on that is too spoilery to mention here, which means he's absent for a large chunk of the story, leaving the narrative to fall completely to Nora. She can totally carry it by herself, but more Patch would have been nice. To me, their relationship is the anchor in this series, and I missed it. Of course, the scenes Patch is in is when he steals the show - if I could choose a guardian angel, I'd want it to be him. *sigh*
Crescendo is an enthralling sequel, with revelations that hit you like a gale force wind. In addition to an inability to put it down, you're also left with one of the most evil cliffhangers I've ever come across. Luckily there's going to be a third book, Tempest, next year, and for me it can't come soon enough. This series is still the best of the angel bunch, and I love it almost as much as I love my vampire fiction (i.e. a LOT). Now begins the countdown for Tempest... who's with me?!