Friday, April 29, 2011

Penitence by Jennifer Laurens

Seeing good and evil spirits is a gift Zoe guards with her life.

Despite her guardian angel's disappearance, Zoe forces herself to accept that she still has a purpose-but how does she carry the weight of her brother's drug abuse, the hardship of living with an autistic sister, and a best friend who's obsessed with a guy who only wants Zoe?

She's never felt more alone.

When a mysterious spirit appears, Zoe thinks she has a new guardian angel. Instead, her brother's addiction worsens, her parents are on the brink of separation, and her best friend tries to kill her. The spirit she thinks is her new guardian isn't there to protect her: he's out to destroy her family and seize Zoe's soul. . . for Hell.

Will Matthias' return mean that he is Zoe's guardian angel again? Or is their love the reason the jaws of Hell now gape open?

Jennifer Laurens pulled me right back into Zoe's world, my emotions consumed me as I delved deeper and deeper into the story. Danger and darkness surround Zoe making this a definite page-turner. The book begins right after the terrible car accident, and Zoe is thrust back into her life; torn from Matthias and Paradise. At first she is angry but quickly comes to accept that it simply wasn't her time to pass on, and she savors being back with her family. For weeks she knows nothing of Matthias and his whereabouts, and suddenly Weston, a boy that almost committed a terrible act against her, has come into her life asking forgiveness. Weston is determined to be a part of Zoe's life, and lays himself completely bare to her; a love he has never experienced before. But Brittany, Zoe's best friend, once dated Weston and becomes insanely jealous of their developing relationship which leaves her exposed to the dark spirits manipulating her and some of the other students. Things with Weston become more complicated when Matthias returns as Abria's Guardian Angel, but now he must keep his distance from Zoe and seeing her with Weston sparks his jealous nature. A terrible tragedy at a party exposes Zoe's ability to see spirits to Weston, and although he has no doubt she is telling the truth, he struggles with the idea of another guy in her life better able to protect her.

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