Series: The Rephaim #3
Also in this series: Burn
on 25th June 2014
Gaby thought her life couldn't get more complicated. She's almost used to the idea that she's not the teenage backpacker she thought she was. She can just about cope with being one of the Rephaim—a 139-year-old half-angel—whose memories have been stolen. She's even coming to grips with the fact that Jude, the brother she's mourned for a year, didn't die at all. But now Rafa—sexy, infuriating Rafa—is being held, and hurt, by Gatekeeper demons. And Gaby has to get the bitterly divided Rephaim to work together, or Rafa has no chance at all. It's a race against time—and history. And it may already be too late.
*Whilst this review contains no spoilers for Shimmer (the third book in the Rephaim series) there are references to events which occurred in the first two novels (Shadows, Haze)*
If there is one Aussie author I feel needs more international recognition – it’s Paula Weston. After finishing Shimmer, I can’t suppress the urge to tell everyone I know just how great a series the Rephaim books are.
Gaby has had an eventful few weeks. For the past year she has tried to make a life for herself in Pandanus Beach. She has a best friend, Maggie, a job she enjoys and she is trying to come to terms with her grief after her twin brother died in a car accident. But Gaby’s memories were altered and she’s not the mere backpacker she thought she was. She is offspring of a fallen angel and very handy with a sharp blade. Now that Rafa has been imprisoned by evil, Gaby has to try to reconcile the two groups of Rephaim to rescue him.
One of the things I love most about this series is Gaby. She’s dealing with so much and yet manages to keep it all together. I admire how true she is to herself – both to Gabe who she was for over a century but also the Gaby she has been for a year. She’s fiercely loyal to those who have earned her trust and I admire her level-headedness. Her relationships are interesting to read because Gaby only knows half the story. The Rephaim all know her as Gabe and are just getting to know her as Gaby.
And then there’s Rafa. I adore how Gaby’s relationship with Rafa has evolved since Shadows. It seems so weird considering the very short time frame this series has spanned so far (less than two weeks!) but the attraction and chemistry between these two is amazing. This book has the potential to be very depressing – and not just in the woe he’s gone kind of way. More the heroine pining for her lost partner – but I should not have been worried. The author handled their separation brilliantly. Rafa may have been absent but he was not forgotten nor did Gaby go overboard with hysterics. His absence was felt and was a driving force behind the action in the plot.
The supporting cast in this series are so much fun to read about. They’re all complex characters in their own right and are people I want to know more about. The dynamics between the half-angels and their relationship with Gaby and Jude are so interesting read. I loved Gaby getting to connect with Micah whilst at the same time seeing a bit of who she used to be besides her warrior self. Having Gaby at the Sanctuary and having proof of her life as Gabe is beautifully complicated things and I loved seeing it unfold.
Plot wise – a lot happens and yet nothing at all. Because this book is almost happening in real-time it feels very action packed with decisions being made, action being taken and arguments being had all the time. But at the same time because Shimmer covers such a short time (just a few days) in the whole scheme of things not much happens. Personally – I liked the pace. It kept me interested and felt realistic with regards to the speed of the rest of the series.
I’m not usually into angel books. I’m not sure if it is because I feel like I’ve read them before or because their heavenly origins often conflict with my own beliefs. The Rephaim series has changed that for me. This series is one of my favourite urban fantasy reads and without a doubt – my all time favourite angel series. Shimmer is the perfect mix of action, supernatural intrigue and romance with characters I care about and love to read. I can not wait for Burn, the fourth and final book in this series, but I know that Paula Weston will not let us down because so far this series has been incredible.
Thanks to Text Publishing for a copy for review.