Guest Review: Black Wings by Christina Henry

Posted December 10, 2010 by Book Binge Guest Blogger in Reviews | 0 Comments

Publisher: Ace, Jove, PenguinGenres: Urban Fantasy

Black WingsMary‘s review of Black Wings by Christina Henry

As an Agent of Death, Madeline Black is responsible for escorting the souls of the dearly departed to the afterlife. It’s a 24/7 job with a lousy benefits package.

Maddy’s position may come with magical powers and an impressive wingspan, but it doesn’t pay the bills. And then there are her infuriating boss, tenant woes, and a cranky, popcorn-loving gargoyle to contend with.

Things start looking up, though, when tall, dark, and handsome Gabriel Angeloscuro agrees to rent the empty apartment in Maddy’s building. It’s probably just a coincidence that as soon as he moves in demons appear on the front lawn. But when an unholy monster is unleashed upon the streets of Chicago, Maddy discovers powers she never knew she possessed. Powers linked to a family legacy of tarnished halos.

Powers that place her directly between the light of Heaven and the fires of Hell…

I love it when a book makes me giggle—and BLACK WINGS made me laugh within the first couple of pages. There’s a wry sense of humor running through the entire story which tempers the darkness found in this urban fantasy. Death as a bureaucracy filled with red tape and nit-picking middle managers? What’s not to love?

Maddy, as an Agent of Death, is a rather unwilling member of that bureaucracy, having gained her position through the unexpected death of her mother. She’s a pretty typical urban fantasy heroine—feisty, independent, strong, and smart. Oh, and she’s single. Very single. So when hottie Gabriel turns up at her door, lust is in the air. Unfortunately for her, he’s there for a different reason—to protect her. Seems she’s the daughter of not only an Agent of Death but a fallen angel. And her demon half-brother wants her dead by any means possible.

This story is fast-paced and at times gory as Maddy and Gabriel slash their way through piles of demons. As more and more characters were introduced, I felt like a cast list or a family tree might have been helpful. Though the backstory of how the Agents came to be and Maddy’s family connections was a little overwhelming at times, it didn’t take away from the enjoyment of the story itself.

The chemistry between Maddy and Gabriel is palpable and very sexy but it’s all tease. Because they are both supernatural in their own ways, they dare not have sex for fear of reproducing (which would be bad. Very, very bad.). Plus, Maddy’s long-lost daddy would literally kill Gabriel. So, it’s a touch here, a glance there, and anticipation of the glimpse of bare skin. And then a third joins their number (sorry, I can’t tell you about him without spoilers, and I really hate those.), which ratchets up the tension.

The first of in a series, BLACK WINGS sets up an interesting love triangle (I know whose team I’m on!) and creates a diverse world filled with demons, angels, and agents of death.

Rating: 4.0/5.0 

This book is available from Ace. You can buy it here or here in e-format.

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