Official Stuff –
Author – Martha Brockenbrough
Pages – 304
Publisher – Arthur A. Levine Books
There is a great legend of the guardian angel who traveled across time and space for the human girl he loved, slaying those who would threaten her with a gleaming sword made of heavenly light.
This is not that story.
Jerome Hancock is Heidi Devine’s guardian angel. Sort of. He’s more of an angel trainee, in heaven’s soul-rehabilitation program for wayward teens. And he’s just about to get kicked out for having too many absences and for violating too many of the Ten Commandments for the Dead.
Heidi, meanwhile, is a high school junior who dreams of being an artist, but has been drafted onto her basketball team because she’s taller than many a grown man. For as long as she can remember, she’s heard a voice in her head – one that sings Lynyrd Skynyrd, offers up bad advice, and yet is company during those hours she feels most alone.
When the unthinkable happens, these two lost souls must figure out where they went wrong and whether they can make things right before Heidi’s time is up and her soul is lost forever.
Rating – 3 Stars
*I received an ARC of this novel through the Arcycling blog*
Hmm. So…this book wasn’t terrible. It was okay. It was actually kind of cute but a little childish. It was meh.
Jerome was a troublemaker when he was alive. Not exactly malicious but kind of dumb and easily influenced by his older cousin Mike. Then when he was seventeen, his cousin shot him in the head with an arrow, killing him. Because he had been a troublemaker during his life, after death he was placed in a rehab/angel training thing. If he wants to go into Heaven, he has to pass through the training.
He is placed with Heidi when she is a baby. He is supposed to be her guardian angel, but he doesn’t do a very good job if it. For most of Heidi’s life, she believes she is crazy, hearing voices.
Heidi is a pretty typical sixteen year old girl; self-conscious, a little shy. She’s a talented artist but her family doesn’t give her much support. Instead they make her play basketball because she’s freakishly tall and they want her to get a scholarship.
After a series of very embarrassing events at school, Heidi is walking her dog around a frozen pond, feeling sorry for herself. Jerome is not following her as he should be and she falls through the ice, and instead of saving her, he accidently pulls her soul out of her body. Now it’s a race to get her soul back into her body before it disappears forever.
As I said, the book wasn’t terrible. But it was written a bit on the younger side of the YA genre. More for middle school age. Which is fine, I think someone younger than me would probably enjoy this book.
It was also a tad weird. Jerome was a teenager when he died, he’s been with Heidi since her birth and when they are both souls he was thinking about how much he wanted to kiss her. I found that a teeny bit creepy.
The bits of Heaven and the “Guidebook” to the rehab were funny. But the writing was immature and the “love story” felt really forced. Just because the two main characters are of the opposite sex, doesn’t mean they need to fall in love. People can be just friends. Not really a book for me, but maybe a younger audience.