Review: A Temptation of Angels

A Temptation of Angels by Michelle Zink will be released in the U.S. on March 20, 2012 in hardcover and eBook formats. It is currently available to pre-order online in both formats at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

Published by Dial Books for Young Readers, an imprint of the Penguin Group, the print edition is 448 pages.

Goodreads description:

Even angels make mistakes in this page-turning epic romance…

When her parents are murdered before her eyes, sixteen-year-old Helen Cartwright finds herself launched into an underground London where a mysterious organization called the Dictata controls the balance of good and evil. Helen learns that she is one of three remaining angelic descendants charged with protecting the world’s past, present, and future. Unbeknownst to her, she has been trained her whole life to accept this responsibility. Now, as she finds herself torn between the angelic brothers protecting her and the devastatingly handsome childhood friend who wants to destroy her, she must prepare to be brave, to be hunted, and above all to be strong, because temptation will be hard to resist, even for an angel.

Michelle Zink masterfully weaves historical fantasy with paranormal romance to create a gripping tale of love and betrayal.


In an instant and without warning, everything Helen Cartwright ever knew and everyone she ever loved was taken away.

Forced to flee her home in the dead of night, leaving nearly all of her worldly possessions behind, in order to find sanctuary in the home of strangers was only just the beginning.

The world she thought she knew wasn’t as it seemed. There was another world, a secret and dangerous world, that she was a part of. One where she had enemies. One where she had abilities. And one where she was being hunted.

With time running out, Helen must quickly come to grips with her new reality, recover from her shocking losses and master the skills she’d need in order to stay safe. To stay hidden. And most of all to stay alive.

Because her survival meant much more than just her life. It meant the protection of the world’s past, its present and its future.


A Temptation of Angels is a gorgeous, intricately detailed, beautifully told and incredibly alluring story set in a secret and deadly world with intriguing characters, a mystery to be unraveled and the ever-present threat of danger.

This story of the descendants of angels who are entrusted as the world’s protectors will ensnare readers from its opening pages. The introduction to Helen Cartwright and her last moments of ignorance of the world she is an important part of is suspenseful and heartbreaking and will entice readers to discover what the rest of the book has in store for her.

And that is a world that is both exciting and dangerous. A world where she is being pursued by an unknown enemy. A world where demons can travel through the light and where she must quickly master the weapons that will defeat them. A world where she is forced to put her trust in two strangers and someone from her past who isn’t worthy of that trust.

And a world where her survival, and that of the other protectors, is absolutely crucial.

Michelle Zink has created a story that has such a wonderful cadence to it, making it just so easy to get caught up in the adventure and the mystery and to fall in love with it and her characters. Characters who are incredibly likable, honorable and fearless. Or evil, vile and ruthless. Or who fall somewhere in between and are hoping to find forgiveness and redemption.

A Temptation of Angels is a story that will transport readers to a London of the past. To a hidden world where evil is on the verge of winning out over good. Where the protectors of the world’s past, present and future are at the brink of extinction. And where one girl has to choose whether to give in without a fight or accept who she is and what she’s capable of and prepare for a battle that could cost her everything.

Reviewer gives this book…

On a personal note:

What an amazing and beautifully written story this was. But I didn’t expect anything less from the author. It was so wonderfully descriptive and rich that I could almost taste the words. And I was instantly captivated.

This story was so utterly enchanting from start to finish that I did devour it in just one sitting. And I found that I became so deeply entrenched in the story that the world just built itself right around me and I was transported back in time to the London where Helen, Griffin and Darius were fighting for their survival.

The book was so incredibly detailed that it felt as if I was there with Helen, seeing what she did, feeling what she felt, hearing what she heard and even smelling what she smelled. And let me tell you that was not always an ideal situation to be in.

From the smoke and fire to the filth beneath the streets of London to the weight of the sickle in her hand to the slice of the blade across her skin, it was as if I were experiencing what Helen did. I was right there, in the moment, with the story and the characters. Which made it incredibly tough to pull away once the book had ended.

Helen was a pretty incredible heroine. She wasn’t perfect, but she was brave and smart and independent. And she was more than ready to jump into the action rather than stand back and let someone else be her protector. She may have been stubborn and a little bit reckless, but she wasn’t foolish. She thought about her choices, she just didn’t always choose the safest route.

And I loved Helen’s parents. From the little bits and pieces revealed about who they were and what they did for Helen, I thought they were so amazing. To me they were the heroes in this story. They gave Helen the tools to fight for herself, to be brave when she needed to be brave and to carry on even when she might otherwise have been on the brink of despair.

And then of course there’s Griffin. Totally swoon-worthy Griffin. He, too, was incredibly brave and strong and smart. He was kind but he was definitely not a pushover. He was tough but not too tough. And he was willing to keep an open mind even if it tore him up inside and broke his heart a little.

I think I loved every single thing about this book – from the characters to the story to the world to the writing. But – yes there’s a but – I definitely want to know more. More about the Keepers. More about the Alliance. More about the Syndicate. More about the Dictata. More about what Enlightenment is. And definitely more about all things Griffin.

While I’m not too sure I want there to be more story about the other boy, he is a mystery. And I wouldn’t mind finding out more about his past even if I don’t want him to be a part of Helen’s future.

A Temptation of Angels was very different than what I anticipated from the description. However, it was very much in keeping with the author’s writing style, so I wasn’t surprised.

While the description seemed to imply a breakneck pace and a torturous love triangle, this book had neither and was all the better because of it. The pace was unhurried but not slow. It was actually perfectly paced to allow me to become lost in the world. And the love story was definitely not a firm and fast triangle. Though I will say no more about that so as not to spoil anything.

I am keeping all my fingers crossed that there will be a sequel or perhaps that this amazing story will become a trilogy. I think there’s much to learn about the past, the present and the future of these characters, their abilities and their world.


There were so many amazing passages in this book, and an incredible one that is my absolute favorite though it’s much too spoiler-y to include here. But I think this one is just perfect and it made my heart beat just a little faster:

His eyes locked on hers, an ocean of silence moving between them. She had an almost uncontrollable desire to reach up, entwining her fingers in the hair at the back of his neck. To run her palms against the hard expanse of his bare chest.


Sneak Peeks and Meet the Characters

To check out a SNEAK PEEK of A Temptation of Angels on Michelle Zink’s blog, click here.

To check out an EXCERPT from A Temptation of Angels, click here.

If you’d like to meet HELEN CARTWRIGHT, click here.

If you’d like to meet GRIFFIN CHANNING, click here.

If you’d like to meet DARIUS CHANNING, click here.

If you’d like to meet ANNA, click here.

To check out an excerpt of Helen and Griffin training with the sickle, click here.


Book trailer for A Temptation of Angels:

This review is based on an ARC I received from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion.

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