I recieved this book from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Release date: UK March 14 2013/ US June 25 2013
Summary: For as long as Ebony can remember, she’s been sheltered. Confined to her home in a secluded valley, home-schooled by her protective parents, and limited to a small circle of close friends. It’s as if she’s being hidden. But something is changing in Ebony. Something that can’t be concealed. She’s growing more beautiful by the day, she’s freakishly strong, and then there’s the fact that she’s glowing.
On one fateful night, Ebony meets Jordan and she’s intensely drawn to him. It’s as if something explodes inside of her–something that can be seen from the heavens. Ebony still doesn’t know that she’s a stolen angel, but now that the heavens have found her, they want her back. <Goodreads>
It pains me to write this review, I had such high hopes for this book. My YA obsessions seem to be of a cyclical nature, vampires, angels, and dystopia. After the wonderful Indigo Spell sated my appetite for vampire fiction, I was ready to immerse myself in some angel stories, deciding to forgo Finale by Becca Fitzpatrick and Rapture by Lauren Kate, instead I eagerly decided to try out Hidden as I had heard amazing things about Curley’s previous books and the premise sounded amazing. A stolen Guardian Angel and her charge, love, adventure, mystery…the classic good versus evil plot. Brilliant!
Hidden starts off with a bang, literally as our hero Jordan is swept off his feet by awkward but beautiful Ebony with violet eyes who doesn’t seem to know her own strength. As a tragedy befalls Jordan, an instant connection between him and Ebony changes the course of their destinies, entwining them together forever.
The first third of this book kept me riveted as we slowly begin to learn the origins of Ebony’s mysterious abilities, her shady past and the danger she is facing as she races to learn more. Her story laces in with Jordan’s as he fights for his life and is visited near death by two angels Nathaneal and Isaac who explain that life is more complicated than he first thought and the things that go bump in the night are very real. Jordan agrees to help them find a stolen Angel called Ebrielle whose light shone brightly alerting the angels that she was nearby in exchange for a second chance at life.
Here’s where it all starts to fall apart as the plot becomes so simplistic that I couldn’t help but eye-roll at the glaringly obvious clues we are given whilst the characters seem mind numbingly blind to them. Ebrielle, a beautiful angel with sapphire eyes…no surely that couldn’t be Ebony, shockingly beautiful with violet eyes. The time it took Jordan to come to this conclusion beggared belief.
Ebony’s parents disappearance is another plot filled with holes as it’s dealt with in such a blasé nature and so matter of factly I couldn’t help but wonder if the characters were capable of emotion at all.
At times the melodrama was overwhelming which baffled me when serious issues regarding Ebony’s past and future are brushed aside and laughed at by the other angels and this frustrated me so much because this could have been an AMAZING book if there a little more gravitas was bestowed upon it and it wasn’t overly simplified. It seemed at times more like a soap opera which given its Australian setting is probably fitting.
I held out hope that it may pick up in pacing and tension towards the end and compel me to want to read the sequel but the final chapter in which the cliff-hanger is revealed was so childishly handled by the characters with no real reaction.
The love story is the classic insta-love connection and while at the start it seemed like we were in for a juicy love triangle, the lack of chemistry between the characters halted that and the simpering glances and declarations were cloying rather than compelling.
I hate to be harsh but it’s because I wanted this book to be epic, I really thought it had the potential to be.
It has a promising start but seriously struggles towards the end.