April wraps up the 3-month virtual book blog tour of Amy Lignor's Until Next Time: The Angel Chronicles, Book 1. My love of fictional novels containing angels began with Frank Peretti's This Present Darkness and it hasn't stopped. I was excited to see how Ms. Lignor's book would compare to Mr. Peretti's ... Now you know why I chose to participate in this tour. Are you ready to see what it's about?!
Amy Lignor began her career at Grey House Publishing in northwest Connecticut where she was the Editor-in-Chief of numerous educational and business directories.
Now she is a published author of several works of fiction. The Billy the Kid historical The Heart of a Legend; the thriller, Mind Made; and the adventure novel, Tallent & Lowery 13.
She is also the owner of The Write Companion, a company that offers help and support to writers through a full range of editorial services from proofreading and copy editing to ghostwriting and research. As the daughter of a research librarian, she is also an active book reviewer.
Currently, she lives with her daughter, mother and a rambunctious German Shepherd named Reuben, in the beautiful state of New Mexico.
ASIN #: B0071LLL2M
File Size: 404 KB
Page Count: 221
Copyright: January 24, 2012
Publisher: Tribute Books
How does a girl choose between the one who steals her heart and the one who owns her soul?
Matt and Emily were created for a specific job. Raised and trained as the ultimate angel/warrior team, they are sent down to save, defend, judge and forgive, depending on the 'life' they've been assigned. What they don't realize is that the power of human emotions, such as love, anger, passion and fear can take over even the best of souls, causing them to make mistakes and follow paths that lead to confusion and heartache.
When the reason for their training is finally revealed, the angel/warrior team find themselves thrust into a world they know nothing about. Matt takes over the life of Daniel, a young man with a great deal of baggage. Emily becomes Liz, a girl living in a remote village who relies on nothing more than her own strength to survive. A violent storm erupts one night, and framed in the window of Liz's establishment is a frightening face. Let in by the soul of a Good Samaritan, the two visitors bring with them a past full of secrets that could literally change an angel's path and a warrior's plans.
From murder to redemption, this angel/warrior team must find a way to keep the faith they have in each other in a world that's ripping them apart.
When I was first approached about joining this tour, I looked at the cover first and was immediately drawn to the darkness of it. The lady on the front could be a stone angel that graces cemeteries, except for her human face and hair.
The title intrigued me ... Until Next Time ... Did that mean until the next life? Next relationship? Next situation? With a title so open to interpretation, I eagerly read the book summary and decided to give it a shot.
In Heaven, there are pairs of souls that are together for all eternity. They are the other's opposite. One thinks with and is ruled by their heart, while the other has a warrior mentality. Once the pair has been trained in their chosen fields, they are called to join with a shell on earth to fulfill that shell's life journey. Once they join with their shell, they forget everything they knew about Heaven ... including each other. However, being soul mates, they "recognize" each other when they meet on earth.
The souls are able to leave the shells periodically and return to Heaven to discuss their findings with their teachers. Their teachers are allowed to give them guidance, but cannot tell them what choices to make as that would potentially alter any information they can gain from the souls' earthly life experiences. Basically, the teachers are trying to gain knowledge on why humans act as they do. Perhaps if they can understand that, they can know better on how to help.
Emily - A soul in Heaven whose teacher is Mark. She has chosen the path of the angels and is ruled by her heart and feelings.
Matt - A soul in Heaven whose teacher is Gabriel. He has chosen the path of the warrior and is ruled by his warrior's heart. Matt and Emily are soul mates.
Liz - An orphaned girl in Ireland who is running the local pub, which is the gathering spot for all the locals. Liz is withdrawn, even though she's sociable with the locals. She suffers from nightmares that she barely remembers when she wakes up. During her nightmares, bruises and cuts appear on her body. She keeps these disturbing occurrences to herself and worries that people will find out.
Faith - A runaway girl who Liz agreed to help out. They become fast friends and both work the pub owned by Liz. Faith is flirtatious and teasing, which can cause her some trouble with the drunken patrons. Faith is also the only person to know and help Liz during her nightmares ... which is kind of hard to hide when two people live together.
Daniel - A local Irish boy who has a hatred for all women thanks to his mother's treatment of his father. His hatred abandons him when it comes to Liz. He is drawn to her and feels an instant connection to her. He falls in love with her and is determined to be there for her no matter what.
Jason - One of two strangers that shows up at Liz's pub one dark and stormy night. He is traveling Ireland with his best friend visiting cities and towns he wouldn't have seen otherwise. He has a deep, dark secret that he wants to keep hidden from everyone.
Charles - Jason's best friend who is traveling with him across the great land of Ireland. They have dreams of going to America one day. He is with Jason when they come across Liz's pub. He's as boisterous and flirtatious as Faith. As he gets to know Faith, they fall in love and Charles' romantic, gentlemanly side begins to show. Charles, too, has a secret he's hiding and doesn't wish to reveal to anyone at all, including Faith.
When I first began reading this book, I thought it was mostly based on Christian ideals with the mention of angels, Heaven and God.
Then Saint Francis is introduced. For those that aren't aware, Saint Francis is known as the patron saint of animals and is honored among Catholics.
Reincarnation was the next religious element that came to my mind. The title, Until Next Time, signifies the next assignment, or next life, that certain souls meet each other in. This introduced an additional religion that reincarnation is a central tenet of: Hinduism. The Buddhist concept of rebirth is also often referred to as reincarnation.
With all of these religious elements one would think that the story would become confusing and lose a reader. That is not true. The author deftly combines and intermingles these religious aspects to create a thought-provoking yet highly engrossing story. This introductory book into a new series is one that has caught my attention and has me eagerly awaiting for the sequel.