Author: Heather Burch
Series: Halflings #1
Published: February 1 2012 by Zondervan Publishing
Length: 228 pages
Warnings: Angels, demons, romance 13+
Other info: This is Heather’s debut novel. There is an ebook prequel, 11:15, The Making of a Halfling, and the sequel Guardian should come in September.
Summary : After being inexplicably targeted by an evil intent on harming her at any cost, seventeen-year-old Nikki finds herself under the watchful guardianship of three mysterious young men who call themselves halflings. Sworn to defend her, misfits Mace, Raven, and Vine battle to keep Nikki safe while hiding their deepest secret—and the wings that come with. A growing attraction between Nikki and two of her protectors presents a whole other danger. While she risks a broken heart, Mace and Raven could lose everything, including their souls. As the mysteries behind the boys’ powers, as well as her role in a scientist’s dark plan, unfold, Nikki is faced with choices that will affect the future of an entire race of heavenly beings, as well as the precarious equilibrium of the earthly world.
Review: This gets off to a very quick start. We meet Nikki, who is being attacked by wolves. Or something. Then we get to a group of boys, Mace, Raven and Vine, who are actually Halflings- beings with one human and one angelic parent. Nikki is being drawn into a world that she didn’t know existed, where she has a bigger role than she thought.
It’s a very quick read. The chasing at the beginning definitely drew me in, and was a fast start for something that could be great to come. The idea of Halflings is also quickly introduced. So far, so good.
The beginning-middle bit, I found to generally be quite slow. I didn’t really understand why all these things were happening, what the point to them were, and how it fit in with the start. It picks up again when we meet Damon, who turns out to have a bigger part later on in the book.
There’s a bit in the middle that I didn’t really like. Why? It was a Twilight-style confrontational scene “I know what you are”. I don’t think it was really that necessary, it was a slight rip-off, and we could have learnt more about the angel-lore in Halflings in another way.
The angel-lore itself was quite good. it’s not too different from what we get in other novels, but it was still interesting. The romance, well, most of it was in the middle, so I turned off for that.
The ending definitely picks up. A lot. I won’t say what happens, because that might spoil it, but if you get past the slow middle section, you’ll enjoy it.
Nikki is a strong character at times, and at others, slightly annoying. We get a good sense of her character without seeing too much of her, and when she wasn’t being all Bella-Swan-ny, I quite liked her.
The action scenes were definitely the best thing about Halflings. Not only was something actually happening, they were well written and interesting.
I’ve read 11:15, which would get 3/5 too, and would like to read Guardian, but I’m not overly wild about it.
Overall: Strength 3 tea of a somewhat confusing and boring book, but with enough good parts to keep me interested and give it this rating.