Wondering if this dystopian, homo-erotic, science fiction story is a good fit for you? Read the official Volo Press review of Angel’s Feather by Alina Popescu and find out!
Volo Press Rating System
0 – Couldn’t finish it. Wouldn’t recommend it to anyone in its current state.
1 – Poor work. Brutal to get through, but did manage to finish. Painful experience. May be an acceptable read for die-hard fans of the genre AND the author.
2 – Sub-par work. Hard to get through. May be an okay read for fans of the genre or the author.
3 – Solid work. Multiple, minor issues / one or two major issues. Recommended for most people who need something to read on a road trip or bed rest.
4 – Strong work. Satisfying to read. A few grammatical or logistical errors, but nothing too distracting. Recommended for anyone.
5 – A fantastic read. Highly recommended to everyone.
6 – Virtually perfect. My life is incomplete if I don’t have a copy in my home. Will no-doubt read multiple times throughout my life. YOU MUST BUY THIS BOOK!
Overall Impression of ‘Angel’s Feather’ (Alina Popescu)
Angel’s Feather is about a human male, Adam, who falls in love with a ‘Flyer’–angel-like beings with wings who monitor humans to make sure that they don’t try to escape from Earth. At this point in the (hopefully distant) future, humans have depleted Earth of most of it’s This Flyer is named Michael
If you enjoy fan fiction involving same-sex romantic couples, and aren’t normally bothered by character inconsistencies and grammar problems, you will probably enjoy Angel’s Feather.
There were multiple things that bothered me about the writing, including grammatical issues and what appeared to be a lack of fluency in English. Recognizing that that could be an issue, I lifted the rating a little.
“…had me staring at Michael, mouth gapping.” (Gaping)
“I latched on that spark of hope…” (Latch on to a piece of something, not a spark)
“…but that small ounce of trust…” (What’s a large ounce?)
And it wouldn’t have been quite as distracting if these all hadn’t happened within the first 15% of the book. The rest of the work continued on with similar issues.
Main Character: Adam
Lover / Overseer: Michael
For me, the characters were more convenient than realistic. I try to be a little more forgiving since I am a licensed psychotherapist (and I know that my analysis of human behavior can be a little more intense), but even so, I can’t think of a single character that behaved in a away that seemed consistent.
For example, Michael was presented as cold because of his disappointment with humans breaking the rules and being executed for it. Yet, within minutes of appearing in the book, he hugs Adam and licks bodily fluid off of him (calm down, just tears ^_^).
Questions that arose from that single scene included:
- If Michael has simply been assigned to do a job, why does he even care if a human lives or dies? It’s like a soldier assigned to assassinate someone being concerned about whether or not they have prostate cancer or a cold. If it helps him do his job to be emotionally distant, he’d probably remain that way or just resign or ask to be reassigned if he couldn’t (this is possible because he does get reassigned later in the book). Maybe if Michael had fallen in love with a human before that he’d had to kill or if he was half human himself this might have made more sense.
- If they’ve had no physical contact in the years since
Michael killed Adam’s father[collapse]
- If Flyers are supposed to be “emotionless” and cold, wouldn’t this unusual behavior have gotten a rise out of the crowd that was surrounding Michael and Adam at the time? It seems like there would have been some shock, outrage, confusion, maybe even fear from the other people of the village who were witnessing this, but they seemed to act like it didn’t even happen.
Adam, the main character, behaved in ways that seemed erratic as well. One minute, he empathizes with Michael, and the next he’s angry at him, and then he’s letting him hold him? All in the same few seconds? And even after this intimate, yet public, scene, Adam labels Michael “as untouchable as the fake angels in our religious books.” Why? You were LITERALLY just in his arms?!
I’ve seen this pattern before in my own and other people’s writing. It seemed as thought the characters did whatever the author wanted them to do to complete a particular scene that the author had in mind. This often results in characters seeming unstable mentally and emotionally, since they are swayed by the wind of creativity in the writer’s mind instead of their own motivations or the circumstances taking place in their world.
For Adam, empathizing with beings who were essentially his jailers seemed too happenstance. He was perfectly set up to feel resentment and anger towards his father and his uncle. Honestly, he could have felt that towards the Flyers, like everyone else, and it would have fit in seamlessly. But I have to have a stronger understanding of Adam’s psyche in order to be able to validate his feelings of empathy towards beings who kill people like him.
In theory, this is a really cool plot. The idea of having made contact with a myriad of non-human life forms and trying to get off of a planet we abused irreparably is strong. I also like the idea of a charge falling in love with someone who has been told to monitor him, especially with the history between them. And, of course, man-on-man action gets me through my day, so that helped a lot. Even though there was only a single sex scene in the whole book! Boooo! ^_^
All that was missing for me was the solid execution of the details of a plot like this one. It’s like having all the puzzle pieces sitting on a table near each other, but never clicking them together to make the final, smooth, whole picture.
Have you read Angel’s Feather by Alina Popescu, yet?
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Love sci-fi, romance, AND fantasy? Angel’s Feather by Alina Popescu could be just what you need to satisfy all three of those cravings for you in a single series opening. And with a 4.4-star rating after 24 reviews, you’re likely to thoroughly enjoy the experience along the way!
How far would you go for the one you love? How much of yourself would you sacrifice?
Trapped on a decaying Earth and cut off from the rest of the Universe, humans are no longer allowed to leave their planet. Break this one law and you die: a penalty enforced by flyers, aliens who look like angels of long-lost religions. Michael, the flyers’ leader, is the Punisher who carries out every public execution.
Adam, a young human with near-perfect memory, is committed to rebuilding Earth and a true believer in the flyers’ dominion. While Adam’s support for flyers isn’t a secret, his deep love for Michael is. Not even Michael knows, for his kind never take human lovers, and to Adam, they are too far above him to reach.
In his broken and unwelcoming world, Adam’s love can only lead to pain, loss, and disaster. Yet there is no force in the huge expanse of stars and galaxies that can stop Adam from following Michael to the end of existence. Not even Adam’s own beliefs.
Review Quotes: 4.4 average so far
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐: “…a story full of unpredictable twists.”
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐: “I’m a bit of a sucker for self sacrifice stories and I really enjoyed this one.”
⭐⭐⭐⭐: “…by the end the only thing I wanted to know was when Flyer Chronicles #2 is coming out.”
⭐⭐⭐⭐: “It kept me interested from the beginning to the end. Can’t wait for the next one.”
⭐⭐⭐ : “This needed more world building for me.”
⭐⭐⭐ : “Good book.”
⭐⭐: “The world building was poor, the main character unlikable and psychotic (which could have been interesting if the reader were not supposed to like him and identify with him).”
Grab this bestseller that, to date, is still holding on strong to a 4.9-star rating after over 1,200 reviews!
Based on the true story of a forgotten hero, Beneath a Scarlet Sky is the triumphant, epic tale of one young man’s incredible courage and resilience during one of history’s darkest hours.
Pino Lella wants nothing to do with the war or the Nazis. He’s a normal Italian teenager—obsessed with music, food, and girls—but his days of innocence are numbered. When his family home in Milan is destroyed by Allied bombs, Pino joins an underground railroad helping Jews escape over the Alps, and falls for Anna, a beautiful widow six years his senior.
In an attempt to protect him, Pino’s parents force him to enlist as a German soldier—a move they think will keep him out of combat. But after Pino is injured, he is recruited at the tender age of eighteen to become the personal driver for Adolf Hitler’s left hand in Italy, General Hans Leyers, one of the Third Reich’s most mysterious and powerful commanders.
Now, with the opportunity to spy for the Allies inside the German High Command, Pino endures the horrors of the war and the Nazi occupation by fighting in secret, his courage bolstered by his love for Anna and for the life he dreams they will one day share.
Fans of All the Light We Cannot See, The Nightingale, and Unbroken will enjoy this riveting saga of history, suspense, and love.
Get your copy now from Amazon.com!
It looks like a butterfly, hummingbird, or even a puppy. But it can read a book to you when you’re tired, find your car keys, drop off a letter, help you find a lost sock, or even bring you a glass of water when you’re thirsty. It’s called a Prone, it comes in whatever shape you want it to, and we all need them in our lives.
Just imagine, your own personal drone that hovers right over your shoulder helping you avoid some of the more tedious tasks that we have to deal with on a daily basis. Your Prone could do your laundry, wash your car, make you a sandwich, summarize a lengthy email, or even grab aspirin for you when it senses that you have a headache.
From the Masterminds at Microsoft
Prones have been in use for the past ten years. Microsoft has only handed them out to people who could afford to pay for the prototypes. This means people like ultra-sexy lifestyle-blogging goddess Erika Wogo or her master, Khaled Wogo. Only a a few dozen have been operating worldwide. Microsoft hopes to be able to bring Prones to the masses soon. Wogo says of her own dove-shaped Prone, “It is like having the most versatile and tireless assistant in the world.”
A Watchful Eye and a Helping Hand
Prones come with an easily embedded microchip that goes under the skin behind your ear. This microchip allows the Prone to keep track of various aspects of your physical health, including vitals like blood pressure and respiration. When a Prone senses high stress levels, it can assess the current context to make decisions based on whether you’re excited, angry, or actually in mortal danger.
And beyond being a great companion for the laziest among us, there are several speculative applications that could mean saving lives once Prones become as common as smartphones. An elderly person fails when they’re home alone, a Prone can call for medical assistance. A blind person can navigate around their city without having to rely on an animal that others are allergic to, must be fed, must have water, needs a space to sleep in, can get sick, will die, and must be trained. Children and teenagers traveling around their neighborhoods or the world alone will always have a Prone to be able to ward off potential kidnappers who could hold them for ransom, exploit them, sexually assault then, and even kill them. How many rapes could be eliminated because the Prone senses non-pleasurable stress and physically intervenes or calls for help as needed? This could include intervening if it seems that sexual intercourse is about to occur if a person’s blood alcohol level is above a certain limit. The droves of people who die each year from accidents, murders, and suicides could all have a greater chance at survival because a Prone would be around to get them the help they need quickly.
Learn More About Prones and Pre-Order Yours
In case you haven’t realized it yet, Prones only exist (right now, anyway) in the science fiction realm of Show Her, the latest psychological thriller from T. L. Curtis. If you want to learn more about how Prones work and hear more about what they can do, click on your favorite site link below to instantly download the book:
It’s brought some to tears and made others nauseous. You’ve been warned. This is the opening chapter of ‘Show Her’. If you want to order it now for delivery after April 1st, just go to volo-press.com/show-her or order at the end of this post. Thanks!
Everyone knows you can’t force a man to come back if he doesn’t want to. But coercion, enticement, and allure can work wonders.
Of course, none of this was Erika’s intent. She was an eleven-year-old girl still silently reeling over the departure of her father for a younger, prettier version of her vessel—the woman who gave birth to, and raised, her and her younger sister, Elena.
About two days after the packed bags, begging, and arguing, Erika was sitting on the front porch with her sister. She attempted play, pushed to feign joy, but she couldn’t get Elena out of her funk. But Erika was old enough to understand that once he was gone, he was gone. There was nothing else to be done. So why wallow? Why fret? Why not get on with things?
Erika was using the mobile television to play one of her favorite movies about a man fighting to find his kidnapped son. Erika laid back on the black silk, goose down quilt, on top of a day bed, her sister beside her. A drone the size of a dollar bill projected the film onto the ceiling. Erika commanded the drone to turn up the volume as the sound of their vessel in the kitchen chopping shallots became increasingly distracting.
Erika giggled and squeezed her sister as the puppy that opened the movie came on screen. Erika made sure Elena noticed her being okay, laughing, enjoying spending time with them. Erika wanted her happiness to be contagious. Somehow, then, it would be real.
She felt Elena’s sniffling slow and her whining calm. Elena’s face inched away from Erika’s hairless armpit and towards the ceiling as the boy found the puppy and decided to bring it home in an attempt to keep it as his own. The meek laughter that sounded from her sister when the boy had to stop at some park sprinklers to try to get some of the puppy urine off of his shirt comforted Erika.
Erika could feel the tension in her sister’s body easing away as the film went on, only to return with a vengeance when the boy finally got home and confronted his father about the puppy.
Even though the father was kind, thoughtful, honest, and pleasant in his interaction with his son, her sister couldn’t stand to be reminded of what they’d lost. She began crying again. Erika felt her frustration rising and left her in the day bed to rot in her sadness.
“You big baby!” She yelled at the melancholy strain surrounding the house.
Erika went back into the house and upstairs, passing pictures of herself and her sister at even younger ages. An eight-foot-tall portrait of her father was painted directly onto the slate wall at the top of the stairs, dominating the hallway. Erika paused to glare at the portrait with clenched fists. Her father was by all accounts a handsome man. Hair always freshly twisted, neat. His face, in the portrait, carried a light that only creative license could inject. In person, her father rarely smiled or laughed. Not that he seemed depressed or particularly sad, simply…uninterested. The portrait showed him in a tailored midnight blue suit, the color complementing his café au lait skin. His hazel eyes were not (maybe could not be) painted to show the intense judgment and power that emanated from the real things.
Erika blinked her stinging eyes and walked to the master bedroom. Before her stood a piece, ten feet long, molded into a semi-circle, glistening in the light of the crystal and white gold chandelier in the center of the room, and adorned with five mirrored panels. This was her vessel’s personal makeover studio. Erika had snuck peeks at her vessel making her face throughout her early childhood and the transformations she witnessed seemed nothing short of magic. Years fell away, fatigue disappeared, anger softened into angelic peacefulness.
As she grew older—as was her vessel’s duty—Erika got lessons from her on how to dress, speak, and craft her face to entice, seduce, and maintain the attention of a potential master. Erika was fascinated about the fact that she could create happiness and tranquility with dusts, creams, and stains.
She stepped up to the center of the bow of koa wood trimmed with ebony, allowed her eyes to glide over the various boxes, baskets, cups, and trays of oils, powders, fragrances, conditioners, and paints.
In her peripheral vision she saw a sparkle. Looking up at the last mirror on the right, she saw her father’s watch hanging on the corner of the frame. With hands and digits made entirely of black diamonds, the watch had been his most prized possession. This was the utmost confirmation that he would never return. If he had left something so important to him behind for so long, he meant to stay away.
Erika pulled on one of the crystal knobs on the top drawer and withdrew some of the brushes and pencils. She used cleanser pads to clear her skin, allowing it to dry before she got to work changing her face. When she finished, she pulled a short, pleated, black skirt and long-sleeved, gunmetal blouse from the closet and put them on.
She was surprised that she had developed enough at eleven that the skirt stayed up and the blouse didn’t hang off of her, but hugged her swelling chest. She pressed a button below the center mirror and it moved forward and tilted down so that she could see her entire body and not just her head and torso.
This was the first time she saw herself in her own styling. The first time she realized that, as she grew older, finding someone willing to purchase her was going to be the least of her worries. The thickness of her thighs and flare of her hips told the story of a body that would draw masters for miles. She would have her pick. A tiny, mournful smile touched her lips as she observed herself. Erika, the grown up.
After a few more seconds of twisting, turning, and modeling for herself in the mirror, she had worked up some laughter. Heartfelt laughter, not the kind she used to try to coax her sister and her vessel into being happy again. She released her notions of a lady’s proper behavior and let the mirth tumble freely, raucously from her throat. Short of breath, she finally walked back up to the dresser and used the control panel to put the center mirror back in place.
As she reached for makeup remover, she felt a presence behind her and realized that her father had entered the room. He must have snuck in through the rear door since her sister wasn’t trailing him and her vessel had not screamed curses.
For a moment, Erika was overwhelmed with happiness. She thought her hopes had been realized and that he had seen the error of his ways and returned to the family. He had come to make peace.
But the way he was looking at her in the mirror disturbed her more than usual. His normally cold demeanor was mixed with something electric. Dangerous even. He looked at Erika from head to toe from behind and at her reflection in the mirror.
“Those are your vessel’s things you have on.” His voice was deep and monotone, as though he were bored. Erika now knew, based on his body language and the words he chose to speak at that moment, that he was preparing to discipline her for using her vessel’s things without permission. Tears burned her sinuses again as she realized he had probably only come back for the watch.
“I’m sorry, Daddy. I didn’t mean any harm. Please don’t hit me. I’m taking it off.” Erika tried her best to hold back her tears as she reached for the makeup remover, hoping to move quickly enough that he would let her go without punishment. But he was faster.
Erika’s father took two quick, long strides and was by her side, grabbing her wrist. He force her hand down onto the dresser and signaled for her to put her other hand on the dresser as well. Crying had always made her beatings worse—her father noting that she was trying to manipulate him and therefore deserved more punishment—but she couldn’t hold the tears back any more, especially as he grabbed the watch off of the mirror and put it on his wrist.
Erika understood that this may be one of the last times she ever saw her father as he goes on to live a new life with his cuter, more youthful, childless purchase. She hated that this was how she was going to spend this time—being hit, feeling sorry, having made her father angry. Erika felt worthless and ashamed.
Erika’s father stood behind her and pulled down her skirt and panties and then she heard him taking off his belt. She made fists with her hands, but kept them on the dresser, per protocol. She braced herself for the lashes to come, letting her tears flow freely, but silently.
The first lash came like a wave of anguish that spread across her skin. The pain only intensified strike after strike, as though the belt were sprouting spikes and flames the longer it was wielded.
Finally, after Erika was certain she wouldn’t be able to sit for the rest of the day, and her father was breathless behind her, the hits here, just like she hoped for. He’s here…he’s here…he’s here…
Erika could see her father in the mirror when she looked up and he was smiling, lost in an ecstasy that didn’t match her experience at all. This was the most expressive she had ever seen his face. His moaning and gasping was like a beautiful, new language he was speaking to her. In the midst of her violation, she was shown a power that she didn’t realize that she had.
She kept her eyes on the reflection of his in the mirror until he finished with her.
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