Title: Traitor Angels
Author: Anne Blankman
Date Started: August 2
Date Finished: August 3
Format: Hardcover from local library
Six years have passed since England’s King Charles II returned from exile to reclaim the throne, ushering in a new era of stability for his subjects.
Except for Elizabeth Milton. The daughter of notorious poet John Milton, Elizabeth has never known her place in this shifting world—except by her father’s side. By day she helps transcribe his latest masterpiece, the epic poem Paradise Lost, and by night she learns languages and sword fighting. Although she does not dare object, she suspects that he’s training her for a mission whose purpose she cannot fathom.
Until one night the reason becomes clear: the king’s men arrive at her family’s country home to arrest her father. Determined to save him, Elizabeth follows his one cryptic clue and journeys to Oxford, accompanied by her father’s mysterious young houseguest, Antonio Vivani, a darkly handsome Italian scientist who surprises her at every turn. Funny, brilliant, and passionate, Antonio seems just as determined to protect her father as she is—but can she trust him with her heart?
When the two discover that Milton has planted an explosive secret in the half-finished Paradise Lost—a secret the king and his aristocratic supporters are desperate to conceal—Elizabeth is faced with a devastating choice: cling to the shelter of her old life or risk cracking the code, unleashing a secret that could save her father…and tear apart the very fabric of society.
So Traitor Angels took me a while to get into. Like a long while. Usually I give books 100 pages to catch my interest and if they don’t, I give up on them. With this one I got past the 100 page marker and kept on reading, even though my attention from this book kept getting pulled away by something else. However, once I started paying attention again and really got into the groove of the tale, the story picked up. It kind of reminded me of a National Treasure movie, only set in England during the 1600s and the clues were from John Milton’s work Paradise Lost. One clue lead to another that lead to another, etc. until the ‘treasure’ was found. But it wasn’t really, because the duo of Elizabeth and Antonio weren’t looking for the treasure for fame or fortune or just to say they did, they were looking for it to save Elizabeth’s father from the Hangman’s Noose. A little bit admirable, even if their relationship was downright annoying.
Robert, on the other hand, was a little bit more entertaining. When he turns out to be the king’s illegitimate son, I was already suspicious of him. And yet he fell into easy friendship with Elizabeth and Antonio, so he couldn’t be the bad guy, right? Ha. Yeah, you can tell I wasn’t really paying attention to the events in this book or else I would have been able to see his betrayal coming. Oh well.
Final Rating: 2 out of 5 stars. Maybe if I was in a better frame of mind when reading this book, I would have enjoyed myself more. But as it was, I was distracted and the characters and story didn’t really draw me in and captivate me like they should have.
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