Friday, October 28, 2011

Review: Exile

Author: Rebecca Lim
Release Date: Already out, buy a copy!
Publisher: HarperCollins
Add it: Goodreads
Mercy′s search continues ...

All Mercy knows is that she is an angel, exiled from heaven for a crime she can′t remember committing. So when she ′wakes′ inside the body and life of eighteen-year-old Lela Neill, Mercy has only limited recall of her past life. Her strongest memories are of Ryan, the mortal boy who′d begun to fall for her - and she for him.

Lela′s life is divided between caring for her terminally ill mother and her work as a waitress at the Green Lantern, a busy city cafe frequented by suits, cab drivers, strippers, backpackers and the homeless, and Mercy quickly falls into the rhythm of this new life.

But when Mercy′s beloved, Luc, reappears in her dreams, she begins to awaken to glimpses of her true nature and her true feelings for Ryan. How can she know that her attempts to contact Ryan will have explosive consequences?

Meanwhile, ′the Eight′ - responsible for her banishment - hover near, determined to keep Mercy and Luc apart, forever ...
Exile picks up exactly where the first book ended. Ripped away from Carmen Zappacosta's body, Mercy is once again thrust into an unknown life. She finds herself in a completely different season, time zone, continent.... an entire ocean away from the human boy she came to grow feelings for, Ryan Daley. Welcome to Melbourne, Australia. And our host body for the novel? Lela Neill. Lela works at The Green Lantern, a cafe which attracts a colourful and varied collection of customers - from suit-wearing computer geeks to local strippers. It's here where most of the novel is set as Mercy slides into Lela's daily life, serving customer's coffee and advice, all the while caring for her terminally ill mother. The angel of death looms closer every day, but is Lela's mother the only soul he's come to reap?

The tone of Mercy and Exile vary dramatically and while I thoroughly enjoyed the mystery and suspense of the kidnapping in the first book, I especially enjoyed the relationships formed in this novel. The secondary characters all grew on me, from the ever-quite and mysterious muslim chef, Sulamain, to Justine, the emotionally troubled stripper with a dangerously abusive boyfriend. I love seeing the ways in which Mercy helps mend tattered lives and broken bonds in each new body she resides in. Even while she's on a mission to find Ryan, not to mention uncover answers to her own existence, she still tries to find ways to help the person she's soul-jacking. To be there for Lela's dying mother, to offer Justine sanctuary and to be a beacon of hope and forgiveness to a man reeling over the edge.

But she doesn't see what's right under her nose and an unsuspecting danger is growing larger, one in which she inadvertently fuels. I had my suspicions early on, but wasn't entirely sure how it would turn out. While I was right, Lim still managed to keep me gripping the edge of my seat as the climax played out, fearing the worst, hoping for the best, and preparing myself for an unexpected twist.

I must also mention Luc. Luc and Mercy were once a force to be reckoned with, crazy in love. Until Mercy's unforgiving exile, which she still can't remember. Ever since, the Eight have kept them apart, hiding Mercy in body after body, so now dreams are the only way Luc can connect with her. And he's been doing so ever since she fell from grace. He's hunting though, desperately trying to find her. But he also begins to show a cruel and callous side, one Mercy has never seen in him before. Both Luc and the Eight warn her against the other. Who can she really trust?

Memories are slowly beginning to grow stronger, new abilities rise to the surface and mysterious heavenly beings appear, each another clue to her origins, teasing us with answers to the riddle that is Mercy. Exile is stunning novel and you can't help but become invested in both Mercy and Lela's lives. There is yet another cliffhanger ending, but they're fitting cliffhangers... they suit the type of story that Lim is crafting. But of course, they have me pulling my hair out until I flip open the next book! There is an addictive quality to Lim's writing. Her words flow so easily, so gorgeously and she constantly leaves you wanting to know more. This is a brilliant and well-crafted series that is fast becoming a favourite!

4/5 Golden Apples!

3 comments:

  1. Great review. Even though Mercy remains my ultimate fav book in the series, but its sequel definitely follows close behind. Just wanted more Ryan! :)

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  2. I really liked Mercy! I can't wait to get my hands on Exile! I am curious though...will Ryan or anyone else from the first book be in the second, or do we see entirely new characters? Just curious!

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  3. Thanks, Erin! Each successor in the series seems to be the favourite for me haha. But definitely more Ryan, please!

    Lindsi - You do see Ryan, although you totally want more of him! He's the only human character we see from Mercy. The rest are all newly introduced, both human and celestial. And of course, Luc reappears ;)

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