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11:15: The Making of a Halfling (FREE ebook)

11:15: The Making of a Halfling (FREE ebook)

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11:15: The Making of a Halfling (FREE ebook)

évaluations:
3.5/5 (58 évaluations)
Longueur:
33 pages
22 minutes
Éditeur:
Sortie:
Sep 24, 2013
ISBN:
9780310723462
Format:
Livre

Description

Mace and Raven are given a mission to stop a catastrophic event. With his halfling abilities still untapped, Vine is allowed to join the mission, but only as a spectator. The clock is ticking and the tragedy is proving difficult to stop. Will Vine be able to sit back and watch, or will the power of heaven unleash just in time?

Éditeur:
Sortie:
Sep 24, 2013
ISBN:
9780310723462
Format:
Livre

À propos de l'auteur

Heather Burch, the author of the popular Halflings series, spent the last seven years in Southern Florida but recently returned to her hometown in the Ozark Mountains. Her books have garnered praise from USA Today, Romantic Times, and Booklist magazine. When not working on her latest novel, she can be found hiking in the hills or planning a trip to the beach with her husband, John, who is her hero in every way.

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11:15 - Heather Burch

11:55

The Making

of a Halfling

Heather Burch

Contents

Cover

Title Page

The Making of a Halfling

Copyright

About the Publisher

Share Your Thoughts

The Making of a Halfling

Thwack!

Mace felt the shock of the punch as if it’d been planted on his own jaw. He winced as Vine’s head snapped to the side. Strands of the boy’s long white-blond hair shielded his face, but Mace could still see fine beads of blood splattered across one cheek.

With each blow a vice squeezed Mace’s chest. Watching Raven take out his anger at the world on the smallest and by far most vulnerable of their brotherhood, pretending it was only training … well, Mace was done with that. Especially since Raven knew how powerful his Halfling strength was — and that Vine wouldn’t have those powers that came with a half angel heritage until the age of accountability. That meant another Halfling needed to end this unfair fight. Mace forced all his rage into a tightly fisted hand as he strode across the garage floor.

Raven’s smug smile of satisfaction filled Mace’s vision as he charged onto the training mat. But in the heartbeat before unleashing his fury on Raven, Mace felt massive hands close on his shoulders and pull him back. Will. The angel kept a firm grasp, one even Mace’s own Halfling strength couldn’t break. For one of the first times Mace could recall, he

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58 évaluations / 23 Avis
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  • (4/5)
    Halflings took me by surprise by how intensely romantic it was and how hooked I became on the characters. It was that intensity more so than the plot that kept me reading. The halflings (half angel, half human) were never explained to my satisfaction. The attempts at explanation were often awkward, confusing, and unconvincing. For example, when Nikki asked Mace how old he was, he said it was difficult to explain in human terms. Apparently, it was also difficult for the writer to explain because it made no sense. I was willing to overlook it because I was drawn to the plight of the flawed and sympathetic characters, but I hope the next book explains things better. Also, though I liked Nikki (the main character), she was inconsistently drawn. One minute she's strong enough to defeat a hell-hound (something that apparently no other human had ever done) and the next minute she's fainting...again. One thing I did appreciate was that although this was definitely Christian fiction, it wasn't preachy. I would've liked for the supernatural elements to have been better developed and explained, but I have hope that the next book will answer some of my questions. Despite the inconsistencies and occasionally unconvincing plot elements, I thoroughly enjoyed the read. It kept my attention throughout, and I'm intrigued enough to want to read the next in the series.

    Please note: In compliance with FTC guidelines, I was provided a review copy by the publisher through NetGalley.
  • (3/5)
    For the most part, I try to be a fairly open-minded reader of fictions. While I obviously prefer certain genres to others, I do read most of them occasionally. The main exception to that is christian fiction. I just can't deal with most of it, although I have tried.

    Believe it or not, I actually have a minor in theology, so it's not that I'm not willing to consider other belief systems or that I'm categorically opposed to the possibility of god. I'm an agnostic, so, basically, who the heck knows.

    Anyway, all that lead in was just to explain that, despite my fairly open mind, constant biblical references and the sugar-sweetness that I've found in the Christian books I've tried up to this point have turned my stomach. Thankfully, Halflings did not fit that mold. I honestly never thought that I would be requesting anything from Zondervan. Even less did I expect that I might enjoy said title. The reason I requested Halflings, even though I feared that I would hate it, is that the author, Heather Burch, is part of the Apocalypsies, a group of really awesome debuting authors who have yet to disappoint me.

    The religious stuff is definitely in Halflings no doubt, but Burch doesn't beat you over the head with it too much, thank goodness. The story opens with a bible quote, but she did not feel it necessary to open every chapter that way, as so many do. Nikki begins reading the Bible and is converted from her faith in science to faith in a higher power. And, of course, the major players are the forces of heaven and of hell. All of this is done in a light enough way, though, that believer and non-believer can enjoy the tale.

    Just because it's Christian does not mean their cannot be some serious love triangle up in here. Of course, Mace is the obvious favorite from the beginning. Personally, I think he's kind of blah. So far, I just don't see too much interesting in him. Raven is the quintessential bad boy with the possibility for more, which I generally do not much care for, but he's just so much more interesting than Mace. Plus, Raven totally encourages Nikki's strength (she's a black belt in karate) and wants to help her protect herself. He's a feminist, woo!

    I love when trying a book I wouldn't usually give a chance pays off! I definitely plan to read the next book in the series.
  • (5/5)
    This story contained extremely strong characters, and was very inspirational along with being a page-turner! I enjoyed the story so much, I cannot wait for the next! This is a great story for teens and adults, and is unlike anything I have read before. I really enjoyed reading this, and the Author has a wonderful style.
  • (3/5)
    Halflings gets off to fast start. Our main character, Nikki Youngblood, is painting in the woods when she is attacked by enormous, otherworldly creatures called hellhounds. Even though her death seems imminent, Nikki bravely faces the monsters until three gorgeous boys come to her rescue. The boys Mace, Raven and Vine are Halflings: the product of fallen angels and humans and are outcasts in both Heaven and on Earth.Nikki is an interesting character. She portrayed as a tough, no-nonsense girl, one who has a black belt in karate, drives a motorbike and prefers boyfriend jeans and vintage tees to dresses and make-up. I had a hard time identifying with Nikki mainly because I think the character rejects anything feminine. For the record, I think it’s possible to rock at karate and be into bikes while still being girly. In contrast, Nikki’s best friend, the one who is very girly encourages her to be more feminine, is portrayed as being shallow and boy crazy. I understand and appreciate the message that the author is sending to teen girls but this tomboy character is becoming a bit of a stereotype in YA these days.While the author tells us that Nikki is a fighter, she does little fighting but gets rescued a lot by the Halflings. There isn’t a huge love triangle here, Nikki is more involved with one boy than with the other and insta-love is involved. I liked the boys. Mace, considered the good one, is more idealistic and while Raven is supposed to be bad, he just seemed jaded and snarky to me.I didn’t find the angel mythology in Halflings offensive, especially after recently reading two angel books that I did not like at all (Embrace and Fallen). While the mythology had some holes in it, I just went with it and hope those holes will be filled in with the next book in the series.The romance is Halflings is sweet and the action is exciting. Halflings will undoubtedly appeal to younger teens (its intended audience) who will especially like the three swoon-worthy boys, forbidden love, the quasi love-triangle and paranormal romance. I seriously doubt they will have the issues I did. Parents can also breathe easy as this is an angel book with no questionable content and even has a solid message about putting the greater good above serving yourself.Despite my issues with Halflings, I do recommend it to teens who love paranormal romance. The ending leaves a lot of questions and a huge opening for the second book in the series, Guardian, which comes out in October.
  • (3/5)
    Yet another angel-themed book to face my scrutiny, and I am happy to report that Halflings makes the cut and earns my stamp of approval. There are a few hiccups and unanswered questions, but overall I found the story captivating enough to want to keep reading and finally have enough curiosity to pounce on the sequel. It also helps that these Halfling boys oozed with such hotness and tough-but-vulnerable personalities that I would do anything to spend more time with them. What can I say? I cannot resist a well-crafted male specimen who has hope to be redeemed from the Dark Side. Halflings has the same action-packing suspense as Angelfire and an interesting angel re-invention like Angel Burn, and I am totally looking forward to seeing how Nikki and company fare in GUARDIAN.
  • (4/5)
    Before I start, please note that I read an ARC of this book and some of the issues may have been resolved prior to the book going to print.Now, I usually address the author’s style in a separate part of the review, but as I have so much to say about the style in Halflings, I’m going to address it in my main review instead.First things first, this book has a serious case of purple prose-ism. This is not necessarily a bad thing most of the time. I can appreciate the lengths that authors go to in order to come up with some of these metaphors and similes. Sometimes it’s even nice to delve into a flowery style. And then there are times when the flowery goes a bit too far and it becomes sickly sweet rather than just sweet.Here’s an example:“Stands of hair pressed against her head where her [motorbike] helmet held them in place, trapped like butterflies under glass.”Personally, when I have helmet hair, it’s an absolute mess of sticky sweaty strands. Granted, my helmet hair usually comes from a horse riding helmet and the way I ride makes you work up a sweat that you wouldn’t necessarily get from riding a motorbike. That said, whenever I go out on the motorbike, my hair is a far cry from such imagery when I free it from the confines of the helmet.Here’s another example:“Two high cheek-bones rested above a mouth that looked capable of pleasing any girl’s lips, but also able to draw into a tight line of defence when necessary.”I get what the author’s trying to do with that imagery, but it just really doesn’t work for me. A tight line of defence? With his lips?One last example:“Krissy rolled her contact lenses.”I’m sorry, what now? When I read that I actually had to blink and read it again. I couldn’t believe my eyes. Is it just me or does that sentence sound really wrong? I get an image of Krissy rolling her contact lenses but not her eyes. Believe you me, that image is scary.Moving on, much of the story is written in the first person but occasionally it slips into the first person. Usually this is associated with sliding into the current PoV character’s thoughts (this is almost exclusively Nikki, Mace or Raven) but occasionally it didn’t work properly. These are mostly towards the start of the story and unfortunately I don’t have any written down to quote.The story is narrated in the past tense, but occasionally the PoV character will intervene with something in the present tense. This doesn’t always work, though. There was one particular sentence that came before I had my notebook with me (so probably in the first chapter) where Nikki starts her thought in the past tense but completes it in the present tense. This didn’t work for me.There were also sentences like this one: “She nodded, and the tips of her hair danced over his skin. She’s making it momentarily difficult to concentrate.” which seem to be caught between the last two points. Is the second part of the sentence supposed to be general 3rd person commentary on events, or Mace’s 1st person thoughts? I’m tempted to say the former because if it had been Mace’s thoughts I don’t think he’d have used the adverb ‘momentarily’. Whatever the case, though, things like this jarred me from my reading zone.Finally, in the very last chapter (no spoilers, promise) there’s one bit that must have just been overlooked during the editing process but it made me laugh aloud so I thought I’d share it. Nikki is looking out at her family home and she describes it as being “off in the distance on a faraway hill”. She decides she wants to visit her house but doesn’t have a car so she’ll walk there, and this is what follows: “it wasn’t far, maybe four streets away.” For me, four streets away is not a “faraway” hill. This could be because where I grew up a “faraway hill” could be as much as two départements away or in another country (Switzerland or Italy).I’ve spent quite a bit of time pointing out these issues with the narrative, but I want to reassure everyone that though these problems are there, they are few and far between and only crop up occasionally.Another thing that didn’t quite work for me was events surrounding the dog. I don’t want to delve into them because that would be going full speed into spoiler territory, but I was impacted by what happened because the dog had not received enough attention prior to this.Before I get to the good stuff, I have one last negative comment and that is that in the first half of the book I didn’t have a good grasp on how much time was passing between events. There was one point where Nikki’s parents say they’re going away to a convention, and I hadn’t realised the day had even changed when they ring up to find out if she’s ok home alone. Again, this is a minor thing but it meant that I had to keep reassessing what I knew of the story thus far.Now, onto the good stuff!The mythology behind this story completely drew me in. Obviously, with it being angels, there’s a huge link with Christianity and sometimes the messages got a little heavy for me as a non-Christian reader, but for the most part I really enjoyed this take on angelic offspring. We’ve only seen the tip of the iceberg so far and I expect we’ll find out a lot more in the sequels. I’m especially interested in why the male halflings in the book are blonde-haired and blue-eyed but the females we met were all brunettes with ‘gold- coloured’ eyes. Why this particular difference? I don’t know but I’d sure like to find out!It’s interesting to note that Nikki is a brunette with amber eyes, which makes me wonder… but then there are other secrets behind her identity which have to be revealed. I’m not entirely sure just what she is yet. There’s certainly something about her, but just what is a tantalising secret that I hope will be addressed more in the next book.This particular book is mostly devoted to setting up the relationships between the characters. When it opens, the reader is plunged straight into the action with a hellhound chase. There are various other action scenes throughout the story but the majority of time is spent on building Nikki’s relationship with Mace and Raven. This means that things can be on the slow side in places but I was never bored.We have the typical YA love triangle here with the good guy and the bad boy. In this particular case, right now I prefer Raven because he has more depth to him than Mace. Mace is a bit too good… a bit too much the safe option. Raven is more balanced and he has both good and bad sides (well, his “bad” is mostly just shallow, but that’s not the point). I particularly enjoyed Raven’s interactions with Nikki in the second half of the book. There’s a whole play on Nikki being both a redeemer and the means of the boys’ destruction, which adds a very different side to the YA love triangle. Usually the two boys pull away from the girl because they feel they’d be bad for her, but in this case they have to resist her because she could potentially lead to their downfall. I’m not sure how this will be got around in future books (though I have a fair idea) but I’m certainly looking forward to finding out.The story, though rounded, is essentially a very long prologue to the second book. I hope that there will be more life-or-death situations in that one and that some plot points will start to be resolved. The intrigue raised in this book is certainly just that, intriguing, but it’s not a book that could hold its own as a standalone. This is not necessarily a bad thing as Kelley Armstrong’s YA books are much the same and they’re some of my favourite YA paranormals.With all that said, I will definitely be reading the sequel to find out what will happen next.
  • (4/5)
    Review:Halflings by Heather Burch 4 STARSHalflings is a start to a new series of books. Halflings have human mothers and fallen angels for fathers or both parents are Halflings.They really don't belong anywhere. Neither heaven or earth. They are taken by from thier parents and raised in groups of three Halflings with thier caregiver.Raven,Mace and Vine live with caregiver Will and they had just moved to a new place.Nikki Youngblood is out drawing in the woods when 4 big dogs or wolves she not sure but they are scary and chasing her. When Mace rescues her. They don't know why the 4 hellhounds were sent to kill her. They are just to protect her but not be seen by her.After the second time they rescue her she figures out who or almost what they are anjd tracks them down in thier house.Raven,Mace & Vine are all big goodlooking teens and are now in Nikki's school. Thier have wings and can fly,fast ,strong.Halflings are not supposed to love humans because it falls into Lucifer plan.Mace is really falling for Nikki she likes him but also likes Raven even though they are opposites of each other.It deals a lot about choices we all make lead us to one side of the war or the other. We all have to choose for ourselves.It will be interesting where the next book in the series takes them.I was given this ebook to read in exchange of honest review from Netgalley.02/01/2012 PUB Zondervan
  • (4/5)
    I wasn’t sure what to think before I started reading Halflings. It turned out to be a very captivating read. I opened it up and couldn’t leave the computer before I finished it. In 288 pages I was able to get to know the main characters’ motivations and weaknesses. Nikki is apparently special to the supernatural world. Beyond her role as a Seer, which she performed sparingly, the reason she’s being targeted is unknown. I have a few speculations as to what might be so special about Miss Nikki Youngblood, and Halflings is the kind of story that reveals information little by little so that, as the series goes on, speculations will be confirmed or disaffirmed. The conclusion of the story doesn’t end with a complete resolution, where everything is solved and there’s no hope for a sequel, but shows the direction the story is taking.The Lost Boys were extremely interesting and I loved reading from their points of view. I was rooting for Raven throughout the story, because he really put the ‘lost’ in Lost Boys. I enjoyed how all the characters were flawed and dealt with their unique internal conflicts.The introduction of some characters like Glimmer and Winter weren’t fully expounded upon. The way the story seems to go, they may not really be needed. They didn’t make much contribution in Halflings. Hopefully in the next book they’ll really make an impact.Halflings is an enjoyable debut for this YA series of mystery and the supernatural.
  • (3/5)
    This is a trend that is both amusing and interesting to me: angels come to earth and go to high school as part of their “mission” and invariably fall for a hot human. What’s going on the zeitgeist?Traditionally, young adult literature is said to offer a window through which teens can examine their lives and the rarified world they inhabit. Modern-day issues are discussed in contemporary language, and whether invoking fantasy or a “problem,” usually young love or “coming of age” is woven into the story. If there is a moral, or message, the goal is for it to be subtle, and not browbeaten into the reader. Angels struggling to keep focused on their heavenly mission while being tempted by humanity is the perfect way, it seems to me, to accomplish both browbeating and subtlety all at the same time. Halflings does a particularly nice job of that, because this is a story about angels who are not totally divine or irreparably fallen; rather, they are in between.“Halflings” or “lost boys” (although there are a few females) are half fallen angel and half human. They cannot be admitted to heaven, but they can stay out of hell by fighting on the side of good. When not on a mission from God, they hang out in “the midplane,” which is an intermediary supernatural realm. Small groups of Halflings are assigned to a caretaker, who receives communications from Heaven about their missions. Will is the caretaker of the three “lost boys” who are the novel’s main protagonists: Raven, Mace, and Vine. Their mission is to protect Nicole (“Nikki”) Youngblood, a beautiful and exceptional 17-year-old girl, and so the guys enroll in her high school. For some reason that none of them can yet figure out, Nikki is the focus of an attack from the Underworld. As the boys struggle to save Nikki from external demons, they also struggle with their own internal ones: Mace and Raven both fall for Nikki, and falling for a human is considered to be a sin. Moreover, they must also battle their own heritage, coming from falling angels and having seeds of rebellion and darkness planted in their souls. They can choose to give in to the dark side, or they can choose to conduct themselves with nobility and honor. And what about Nikki? She too, is caught in the middle: she is attracted to both the “angelic” Mace and the “bad boy” Raven. But she knows that if she is not strong and if she gives in to either boy by having a relationship with him, she will damn him for all eternity. Furthermore, she has to figure out if she wants to participate actively in the difficult mission of the angels or take an easier road: (As Will says of humans, harking back to Doubting Thomas: “They’re at a huge disadvantage, not being born with eyes to see the spiritual battle. Yet they still must choose a side. And it’s their faith alone that equips them to make that choice.”) And finally, there’s the little matter of being chased by demons and hellhounds and having her life in danger, when she doesn’t even know why….Evaluation: This is a nicely done series that combines spiritual concerns with “hotness” and with danger, ensuring a broad appeal. Given the premise, I thought it would be silly, but it’s really not at all, and has a poignancy pervading it over the sad fate of the “lost boys.” It also has a more religious message than most books of this ilk. (I have to say, though, that I really don't like the girl on the cover, who reminds me too much of Bella from "The Twilight Series.")
  • (4/5)
    This is a fun book.We get to know Nikki, Nicole Youngblood, but we also get to know Mace & Raven, two of the halfling angels, or "lost boys". They are so different from each other, and we get peaks inside their thoughts and hopes and motivations, right along with Nikki's, so the questions raised are richly complicated. Delightful.There's plenty of interesting supporting characters, too. The angel in charge, Will, is close to what I'd imagine an angel in the real world, huge and intimidating and slightly mysterious with a big heart. There are some smokin' hot halfling girls, which add a lot of fun tension. I think Zero is my favorite supporting character, he's tall & wiry & likes to eat TV dinners stuffed in his freezer. He's such a tech-type that if someone didn't restock his supply, he wouldn't eat, being so absorbed in his computer. He's so testy, I love him. Krissy, Nikki's best friend, has potential, but fades out of the story early on. I wouldn't be surprised if she returns with more. Damon... now here's a slick snake I loved to hate right from first appearance!!!The background is interesting. I don't want to give too much away, but this story takes the idea that fallen angels hooking up with females is not good, but rather dangerously bad... and the children of those relationships, the Halflings, are working hard to revert the "bad" on their heavenly assignments, called Journeys, where they help someone in groups of three. Some of the conflict in this story arises from natural rules they can't change. :-) Who doesn't wanna break a rule?!What frustrated me most about this story is the emotional highs & lows. I felt tossed around with the drama. Since the highs and lows don't change the story or the characters, I felt yanked back and forth. There's a lot of inflicting emotional pain going around for reasons not resolved within this book. Which.... Grrrrrrrr... (Made me growl in irritation.)Hmm... so what exactly IS resolved in this book?! I'm so glad you asked!!! *ahem* Not so much!! There are lots of questions raised, which Heather Burch has committed to resolving: Why Nikki?! (Or is she just in the crossfire?!) Can a halfling hook up with a human?! I mean, I know what the rules say, but are there hidden loopholes?! (And if so... which one would Nikki fall for?!?!) Can a Halfling redeem him-or-herself over time... for real?! How much time?! And what is going on with smooth, rich, soooo helpful Damon?! He's hiding a mystery, I'm sure of it. Plus... what about that HUGE question asked near the end?! I will remain in complete denial until I get my hands on Guardian in October. Period.My Rating: 3.5 - Worth the Time to Read. This book might be worth a higher rating, but within these covers, it isn't for me. I need more resolution, for starters, plus purpose behind the drama.Cover Commentary: This is one of those covers that improves in hard copy. I like the mysterious forest with the girl - she looks like she could take on danger. I've always thought the wings behind her head a little odd. I think they're meant as a sign of protection, always hovering? The cool part about the cover in my hand is that the trees are glossy, making the mysterious leap out more AND there's some glossy red blood or gashes up from the bottom adding to the premonition of danger.
  • (3/5)
    This book has alot of potential. I do like how Nikki is being pursued romantically by two guys. The author made those two guys great as a potential match. The changing viewpoints shows how the character actually thinks and what others think of them is also nice. The pace is average. I do seem to be frustrated that the anticipation of who the villain is never seems to get answered. Still hasn't. Guess I have to read the second book to find out...
  • (4/5)
    So, as I began this book I knew what I was looking for, though the book is predictable, there were a few incidents that caught me off guard.First off, the plot is good. I like how easy it flowed. Nothing is confusing but pretty paid out how it is. You know what to expect and how to handle it. Now, I don't usually compare books to other books, but this book definitely felt like Twilight. It had the misfits, a strong family, and a girl discovering who she is. This book pretty much is a feel good book. I loved reading about each character. All the characters had a unique pull to them. My heart really went out to Raven. He took my breathe away so many times. (I always fall for the bad boy! LOL)Now, Ms. Burch pulled one over me with the love interest! I was so surprised to see it change directions so quickly. I mean I really thought how I knew for sure who she fall for and BAM! New boy. It was good change. Nothing I expected but so good at the same time.Halflings has charming characters that make a beautiful story. With lots of action, fighting and scenes to make you melt, Halflings charming tale.
  • (4/5)
    Halflings. Half human... half angel.That's all I needed to know!It starts off quick with lots of action and you instantly get sucked right in, running through the forest and trying to catch your breath while trying to figure out what is going on, right along with Nikki Youngblood.Nikki was definitely not who I expected her to be! From the synopsis, I got the impression of 'damsel in distress', but she is quite the opposite - this girl is super smart, gutsy, stubborn and forthright.Meet the "Lost Boys"... Mace. Oh, sweet Mace!The leader. The rule follower. The one with the biggest heart.And then Raven. Raven.The confused 'bad boy' - but instantly you can tell that it is all just a front and you will grow a soft spot for this tough guy...And lastly, but certainly not the least in one bit, Vine.Vine is the youngest of the three 'brothers' - innocent, sweet, and probably the strongest.Halflings reminded me of Peter Pan's story - the angels refer to themselves as 'lost boys' and Mace definitely played the Peter Pan lead-role, while Nikki was a lot like Wendy; and "Captain Hook" and his minions are everywhere!This book is fast paced, the story is laid out well, the writing is good and easy to follow...but I can't help but feel that the book was a bit short! It ended too quick for me - it left me hanging and wanting to know more about ALL the characters, which is good! It ends a good spot where you know that the story will pick up where it exactly left off and storm ahead with more action, love... and lots of angel wings!
  • (5/5)
    First and foremost, I really loved the cover..:)Another angel book, which I may say is very different from others I’ve read… but I enjoyed nonetheless..I loved the boys, they’re brothers, halflings, but each of them is totally different…. I don’t even know which one Nikki should really be, I loved Mace, his kindness and sweetness, but I also loved Raven, his mysterious and dangerous feel…(sigh- really engage in their love triangle..)As for me the good is book, it’s a good prequel for the next book which I’m sure would really be great… Halflings talks about the theme of the book, it’s a good preparation for a big story..this isn’t boring at all but quite enlightening, I loved how Ms. Burch made her own version of Nephilims, not much action on the book, just enough to keep you reading..What I loved most about the book, is it’s Christian sub-theme, there are a lot of phrases which I memorized and locked in my heart..there are times I cried with the characters…….“If you choose anger as your path, you will not hear the quiet voice. When heaven whispers, I hear. But I see through a dark glass. To utter the images and echoes that before my eyes would only muddy your path. Clarity is in faith. And despite your guise, faith is an attainable for you as the next breath”…-Will..”you know, sometimes I get sick of living for the day ahead. Sometimes I just want to live for right now”…-Raven“As do all”,…. “There is no crime in that. To feel that way is human. To act upon it is sin”…-WillI totally loved the book, and I admit the end would keep readers hanging, but I guess, I’m not that satisfied with the book, Nikki had finally chosen whom to trust, but it lacks action there, maybe I was just expecting some action at that part, wherein the halflings and that man( not yet revealed what he is) would fight over for Nikki… well, maybe this was due to the fact that it was written in Nikki’s viewpoint, which was pure inner turmoil…there we read about the halflings that had come for her and Damon urging her to take his hand… other than this, I really enjoyed and loved the book, maybe the prologue of the next book would show this in a more-action packed prose…All in all, a must-have book, pack with wings(:D), romance, an interesting story, and to-love-for characters… Recommended to everyone..:)!
  • (5/5)
    I received an ecopy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for my honest opinion.From Goodreads: "After being inexplicably targeted by an evil intent on harming her at any cost, seventeen-year-old Nikki finds herself under the watchful guardianship of three mysterious young men who call themselves halflings. Sworn to defend her, misfits Mace, Raven, and Vine battle to keep Nikki safe while hiding their deepest secret—and the wings that come with."This book starts with a bang, drawing the reader in immediately. I've read some really mixed reviews about this one, especially the writing at the beginning, and while it might take a bit of getting into while you try to figure out what exactly is going on, it is definitely action packed! I highly suggest for anyone having trouble with the first 40 pages or so, don't give up! Keep reading, and I really think you will be glad you did. The writing evokes awesome imagery, allowing you to picture easily what is happening. Nikki is a very strong character. She's not a girly-girl waiting to be rescued, which I loved. She has a black belt in karate, is more comfortable in jeans and a t-shirt than a dress, and rides a motorcycle. At one point, the book states: "(Nikki was) most of all angry at herself and the pathetic way she responded to Mace. Helpless little victim just wasn't her style." I love a good kick ass heroine who doesn't want to rely on a boy to save her! The three "boys" or Halflings who are sent to keep her safe are Mace, Raven and Vine. They call themselves "The Lost Boys", since they don't belong in Heaven and they don't belong on earth. They are Halflings, the result of the union between a fallen angel and a human female, usually not a happy union either. They are sent on journeys, where they help humans, and try not to give in to temptation, as this is their only hope for a happy future. Mace is the good guy, the one who is determined to stay the path. Vine is the youngest and newest Halfling, who is curious about everything human and loves candy! Raven is the toughest one to know. He's been at it the longest and is wavering between staying good and giving in to the dark side. There is so much happening here, with the interactions between Nikki and Mace, Nikki and Raven, Mace and Raven, and all the other stuff going on around them, that this is a very easy book to read. It has a good angel story in it that's different from all the other angel books out there. It's just a very unique story, and one I highly recommend to all fans of angel and fantasy books :D
  • (5/5)
    Evil targets 17 year old Nikki beginning with an attach from the Hounds of Hell, but some strange great looking guys save her life out of the blue. Nikki discovers that the young men who saved her are her guardians, but not guardian angels. Suddenly, a new, old friend appears in her parent’s life, then insinuates himself in hers. The story races from the beginning, as Nikki discovers secrets in her life and taking the reader on a wild ride that doesn’t stop at the end of the book…it only pauses. I cannot wait for the next book in Burch’s series to continue the wild ride. A Christian answer for the Twilight phenomena, though Halflings is Young Adult, it will appeal to anyone who enjoys paranormal novels with a romantic element. Received Galley from NetGalley.com
  • (1/5)
    After being inexplicably targeted by an evil intent on harming her at any cost, seventeen-year-old Nikki finds herself under the watchful guardianship of three mysterious young men who call themselves Halflings. Sworn to defend her, misfits Mace, Raven, and Vine battle to keep Nikki safe while hiding their deepest secret-and the wings that come with it.A growing attraction between Nikki and two of her protectors presents a whole other danger. While she risks a broken heart, Mace and Raven could lose everything, including their souls. As the mysteries behind the boys' powers, as well as her role in a scientist's dark plan, unfold, Nikki is faced with choices that will affect the future of an entire race of heavenly beings, as well as the precarious equilibrium of the earthly world (summary courtesy publisher via NetGalley).This book left me scratching my head, for a variety of reasons. Not one single question put forth in this book was answered at the end. Usually when a book gives you some type of mystery or question to be explored and answered, even if sequels are planned, the author will give you some answers. I knew about as much when I finished the book as I did when I started it. Too many things were left unexplored and unanswered. Another thing I had a difficult time with was the occasional slip from third person to first person. The first couple of times it happened, I assumed it was because I was reading an ARC and it was simply a mistake. But it kept happening. I finally realized about half way through the book that those occasional slips were actually the characters thinking to themselves. To me, it just looked like an editing mistake. Quotations marks or a simple “she thought” would have fixed that problem. Sometimes, the story line was a bit difficult to follow because time didn’t flow consistently throughout the story. It would jump forward and back in time, leaving me stumped as to what exactly was happening. A lot of this could have been solved with editing. I also found it difficult to connect with any of the characters. The boys and their personalities were built solely on their looks. Every time any of them appeared in the story, the reader heard about “muscles under shirts, muscles flexing, and muscles rippling” or their hair and how it flowed around them. The one character I felt had the most potential to be interesting was never given any other characterization other than a description of what his long, blond hair was doing while he fought, or walked, or ran. Oh, and he liked candy. After about ten chapters, I was beyond tired of hearing the boys being described. I know what they look like, move on! The main character Nikki, was really hard to figure out. Sometimes she seemed confident and put-together, other times she seemed wishy-washy. Other times, she came across as a petulant brat. Burch seemed to put action before characterization, which was disappointing. A little bit of character-building could have gone a long way toward making this a better book. Unfortunately, I had a bigger issue with this book than some unanswered questions, editing issues and lack of character development. Let’s just say that I have read this book before. Only that time, its title was Twilight. Maybe this book should have been called Twilight 2.0—The Angel Version. I thought maybe I was just imagining things, but then I decided to jot down the similarities I found between the two. It was definitely not my imagination. Similarities to Twilight (*may contain spoilers*):•Paranormal boy(s)•Girl that needs protecting•Boy breaks the rules to see the girl.•They are “inexplicably drawn to each other.”•The boys are gorgeous, often referred to as “Greek Gods.”•The boys move with unnatural speed,•One of the boys can “pick up a thought or two.”•Almost a direct quote from Twilight (and one of the most famous): “…there was a tiny part and she wasn’t sure how powerful that part was…”•The boys can drive really fast because their reflexes are better than a humans.•The girl feels “a gaping, empty hole” in her chest after a break-up, clutches her chest to keep the pain in.•The boys have fantastic hearing, can hear things others can’t.•The boys move faster than the eye can see, they even say “You can’t outrun us.”•One of the boys struggles to achieve goodness despite what he is.•Girl loves both boys.Do you see what I mean? I’m sure it’s flattering to Stephenie Meyer that so many authors copy her, but we as readers want to see something new. Halflings is definitely not that something new. I tried to enjoy Halflings, I really did. I tried to ignore the fact that it was really just a blatant rip-off of one of my favorite books. Unfortunately, I couldn’t overlook it. Writing a book that follows a formula (Paranormal Hot Guy + Girl Who Needs Protection = Bestseller) is not entertaining or original. As readers, we’ve been there and done that. We want originality, not a re-worked version of a previous bestseller. Sadly, Burch doesn’t give us that originality. I wish she had.
  • (3/5)
    Halflingsby Heather Burchpublished by Zondervanavailable 2/1/12The idea behind this book is very promising. Three half god/half man Halflings who are sent to this 'realm' to protect humans from 'the enemy'. The book has a fascinating beginning with main character Nikki, a 17 year old girl, running for her life from 4 hell hounds. Yes, 4 hellhounds. The halflings jump in at just the right time to save her. I think there is far more to this teenage girl than meets the eye. Why would four hellhounds chase after a teenage girl?The character of Nikki was ok. I wouldn't consider her to be one of the more memorable female characters from today's YA books.The halfling boys, now they are another story. The interaction between Mace, Raven and Vine is just too entertaining for words. They act like real brothers. They annoy each other constantly, but you know they will watch each others backs, no matter what. Throughout this book, I kept expecting Sam and Dean Winchester of TV's Supernatural to jump into the room and save the day. It didn't happen.Like a tv show, there really wasn't much resolved in this book. Hopefully book two will be able to answer many of my questions. I give this book 3/5 stars and recommend it to all lovers of angel stories.
  • (4/5)
    3.5 - 4 STARSIt's not often I come across an angel book that I really enjoy, but HALFLINGS by Heather Burch has made the cut to being one of my favorites! I enjoyed the story-line greatly because there was always something going on. Plenty of action and SO much drama! There is also a love triangle and although those can be tiresome and played-out, Heather did well in putting in her own twist that got me pining for both guys. It will have you pulling your hair out, spazzing on whom to team up with. Raven and Mace are definitely swoon worthy and can give any girl a hard time in making a choice. As for their brother Vine, he is just the cutest thing to mellow the two out and balance all the madness. I was glued to the pages! The characters are extremely well thought of and can easily get you attached; Oh my gosh! I tear jerked so much on more than one occasion.The only set back that bothered me is that at some points it would bounce from one story to the next, which gave pause and I had to recall what was going on to get back on track. I also wanted the story to go further into detail who Vessler is and get a grasp as to know if he's really a dangerous person, or a pond to someone who is more maniacal. Also, the significance of Dr. Richmond was a little flat. The role of Seer for Nikki was a bit lacking and unclear. She barely used her powers in the story and it doesn't explain how she acquired it, or how it makes her a huge importance for the enemy to want her so badly. I just wished there was a little more back play added. The ending killed me. I really didn't like it. It left you empty and upset because it was in a way cheezy and anti-climatic. Although I hate cliffhangers at times, I was really hoping for one here. One that would have me standing on the edge craving for more. With all my negatives the positives still outweigh the dislikes. I am looking forward to meeting back up with Nikki, Mace, Raven, and Vine in Guardian (Halflings #2). Halflings by Heather Burch is a great addition to the Angel genre! I enjoyed this 2012 Debut and I think you will too!
  • (4/5)
    Poor Nikki! Someone has it in for her…BAD! She’s chased by hellhounds, some dude in an SUV tries to run her off the road! Thank God, literally, that there are some Halfling Angels around to protect her. Mace, Raven, and Vine are halflings. They and their guardian, a full angel, have been sent to keep Nikki alive. They don’t know why she is special, they just know she is a target for some evil beings.This was a fun read. A bit confusing in the beginning because it wasn’t clear who was who in terms of the halflings, but things were clarified rather quickly. Great mythology to the Halflings! Talk about “the sins of the father” being visited on the sons! Poor Halflings have to pay the price for the fact that their fathers fooled around with mortal women...talk about a sucky situation! Doing their duty is how they attempt to attone for their father’s misdeeds.Mace is the guy who is trying to be positive and do good. Raven, on the other hand, sees life as the glass being half-empty and is pissed. Poor Vine is the newbie who is trying to learn the ropes and navigate the constant tension between Mace and Raven. That tension only escalates when they enroll in Nikki’s school and start competing for her attention…but falling in love with a human is forbidden and will land you in Hell for an eternity.I loved that there was so much more to both Mace and Raven then what first appeared. I fell for both of them at the art gallery when they revealed their different perspectives on a particular piece of art…I saw a depth to them that is usually reserved for the main character. Meanwhile Vine provided the occasional nugget of insight and a whole lot of comedic relief.Nikki, meanwhile, is no shrinking violet…she is my kind of chick. She can handle herself in most situations. Rides a motorcycle, competitive Karate, artist, and is a good kid! So why is something evil after her?Really well written with lots of small conflicts leading up to a really big cliffhanger. Lots of twists and turns and characters getting introduced throughout the story…and you aren’t quite sure if they are good or bad. A great deal to look forward to in the next installment.
  • (3/5)
    What struck me most was the wonderful creative writing of Burch. Her fluidity takes you on a third person journey and from beginning to end the action is intense. What lets this book down (in my eyes) is the forced attempt at a love triangle which digresses from the main story itself. Furthered with so many unanswered questions I reached the end with a feeling cheated by the Author. Synopsis:After being inexplicably targeted by an evil intent on harming her at any cost, seventeen-year-old Nikki finds herself under the watchful guardianship of three mysterious young men who call themselves halflings. Sworn to defend her, misfits Mace, Raven, and Vine battle to keep Nikki safe while hiding their deepest secret—and the wings that come with.A growing attraction between Nikki and two of her protectors presents a whole other danger. While she risks a broken heart, Mace and Raven could lose everything, including their souls. As the mysteries behind the boys’ powers, as well as her role in a scientist’s dark plan, unfold, Nikki is faced with choices that will affect the future of an entire race of heavenly beings, as well as the precarious equilibrium of the earthly world.Review:The Halflings concept is a new twist on the Angels genre. I've read so many Angel based books now so for me this was original. However the background of the Halflings was a little bit too vague. Yes, we understand that they've been on lots of journeys protecting people, however you still get a sense that all 3 halflings are very naive. Especially with their emotions. The story was left incomplete. I don't mind cliffhangers but you get the impression that not even half of the questions raised in this book were answered. For instance, first and foremost we should have found out exactly why Nikki Youngblood is being targetted. And who is Vessler? And what's the story with Richmond (yes we know he worked for Omega but why are the bad guys after him?)I got the impression that the author hadn't finished writing the book and as I read the last page I was amazed that a book had been published with no meaning behind it, I felt empty.Nikki initially reminded me of Rose Hathaway from the Vampire Academy series. She's tough, very tough. But her character didn't come over as solid enough as she led Mace on and then quickly flicked over to Raven. The love triangle annoyed me immensely and unless it has a major part of the story line I couldn't shake the feeling that this was forced into Halflings intentionally just for extra filler. Overall there's a lot of writing and its great. I have to commend Burch for that. But the story in the writing is stretched and flawed. I will be interested when book 2 comes out but I won't be rushing to buy it.
  • (4/5)
    Thank you Netgalley and Zondervan publishers for allowing me to review this book. I haven't read any angel books before this one, and I can't say I'm disappointed, this was a great book. It was fast paced, I could not put it down. I read it within one day. Nikki Youngblood is having a seriously bad day, she is chased by strange dog like creatures, and then nearly run over by a SUV, until three incredibly gorgeous guys, Halflings, half fallen angels, half humans, are sent to protect her from the forces of evil. Nikki is a tough character, she comes off somewhat of a tomboy to me, she likes motorcycles, and has a black belt in karate, she don't care much for fashion, or boys, unlike her boy crazed best friend, Krissy.The ending was one of those cliffhangers, I'm looking forward to the second book.
  • (3/5)
    Seventeen-year-old Nikki Halfblood is running for her life from a pack of strange wolves when she is rescued by a mysterious stranger with beautiful blue eyes. She soon learns that she has been targeted by the forces of evil, and her mysterious rescuer is a boy named Mace, one of three "halflings" - supernatural beings on a mission that includes keeping Nikki safe. Heather Burch's Halflings, like many of the supernatural YA romances released lately, revolves around a main character who is strong, self-assured, and a little out of place in her own world. Nikki Halfblood is refreshingly happy and well adjusted. When the story begins, Nikki is not recovering form some terrible tragedy, she lives with her incredibly cool parents (they sell antique weapons and bought her a motorcycle), she has close friends and no real enemies. The love triangle that forms between Nikki, good-guy Mace, and bad boy Raven (another halfling) is surprisingly unpredictable. Where Halflings falters is in the creation of a solid mythology for the series. The first book in a series is charged with laying the mythological foundation, this book keeps its cards a little to close to the vest. While there is clearly something special about Nikki, the book ends on a shocking and abrupt cliffhanger, before anything about Nikki is revealed. The effect is such that the book felt unfinished. Regardless, it will interesting to see where Nikki's story goes next.