book review & Nook Color giveaway: Angel Eyes

 Title: Angel Eyes

Author: Shannon Dittemore

Publisher: Thomas Nelson

Complimentary copy from LitFuse Publicity Group

Rating: B+

To Read what others have to say about Shannon’s debut novel, visit the Litfuse blog tour for Angel Eyes, by clicking here.

What happens, Jake, if I choose not to believe any of this?” “I don’t know. But after what you’ve seen, is that possible?”

The essence of Shannon Dittemore’s debut fantasy novel, Angel Eyes, can be summed up in one word: choices. Throughout the novel, Gabrielle Matthews encounters a series of circumstances that challenge her perceptions of truth and deception, of good and evil, of God and the celestial world, of reality and perception. Opening herself to consider the deeper forces operating around her, Brielle begins wrestle with what to do in situations when exposed to truths that challenge her own; of how to respond when perceptions forming a safe world are challenged; and whether to give in when reality crumbles revealing something larger than her scope once believed possible.

Angel Eyes is an enjoyable read for teens and adults alike. It is clear from the cliff-hanger ending there is more to come in the life and adventures of Brielle Matthews and Jake Shield. Shannon Dittemore is an author to keep on your radar. Here are a  few of my thoughts on why I’d recommend this read.

Protagonist Transformation. In Brielle, we find a character worth rallying around. At the beginning of the novel, Brielle is in a state of shock. She is numb to the world after a traumatic event shatters all she knows to be real, true, and solid in her life. Passably functioning each day is a chore. Brielle is paralyzed by fear, grief, and guilt. New kid in town, Jake Shield, takes note of her loneliness and fear, offering his friendship. Through his kindness and humour (*not to mention a really cool super power of healing*), Brielle opens up, becomes vulnerable, and learns to trust again. In so doing she is able to begin the healing process. By novels end, a subtle transformation has occurred in that Brielle gains inner-strength and confidence.

Varied Points of View. It’s not easy to pull off multiple points of view in a way that truly develops a story. I’ve read too many MPV’s that left me confused, frustrated, or feeling as if the book lacked an overall substance. Not so with Angel Eyes! I applaud Dittemore for her ability to lure the reader into such dramatically diverse perspectives. Each distinctive voice adding multiple layers to the story, and a fresh perspective which kept the story moving along nicely.

Descriptive language. Dittemore’s innate ability to use uniquely descriptive means to describe ordinary mundane actions enabled the scene to portray a heavier mood, revealing glimpses of the emotional depth swirling just beneath the surface of the characters. One of my favorite passages:

“Slugger hasn’t had time to warm up, and white smoke monsters climb from my nose and mouth. I wrap my scarf around my face, leaving the tiniest slit possible for my eyes. I glance at myself in the rearview. I’m a cable-knit ninja. A cashmere wrapped mummy. But I’ve killed the smoke monsters—another small victory.”

In addition, I found Dittemore’s use of language beautiful in many places and haunting in others. The depiction of the world as seen in the celestial is vivid, sharp and stunning. The imagery used to describe the presence of fear as seen in the celestial realm–thick, clingy, heavy, like tar–is haunting; an image that stayed with me long after I finished reading.

Touches on Human Trafficking. Modern day slavery is an insidious evil that currently ensnares more than 28 million people in its tentacles around the world. I was thrilled to see the author not only incorporate elements of trafficking into the storyline, but also provide resources on how readers can get involved and learn more.

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Win a Nook Color! @ShanDitty’s “Angel Eyes” Giveaway & Facebook Party {6/26} Enter today & RSVP. http://ow.ly/bthUg @NelsonFiction @Litfuse

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Celebrate with Shannon by entering her “Angel Eyes” Giveaway and connecting with her during the Author Chat Party on 6/26!

One winner will receive:

  •  A Brand new Nook Color
  • A Copy of Angel Eyes by Shannon Dittemore

Enter today. But hurry, the giveaway ends at noon on June 25th. Winner will be announced at the “Angel Eyes” Author Chat Facebook Party on 6/26. Shannon will be hosting a book chat, testing your trivia skills and giving away some great prizes!

About the book:Angel Eyes| Shannon DittemoreOnce you’ve seen, you can’t unsee. Everything changes when you’ve looked at the world through . . .Angel EyesBrielle went to the city to chase her dreams and found tragedy instead. She’s come home to shabby little Stratus, Oregon, to live with her grief and her guilt . . . and the incredible, numbing cold she can’t seem to shake.

Jake’s the new guy at school. The boy next door with burning hands and an unbelievable gift that targets him for corruption.

Something more than fate has brought them together. An evil bigger than both of them lurks in the shadows nearby, hiding in plain sight. Two angels stand guard, unsure what’s going to happen. And a beauty brighter than Jake or Brielle has ever seen is calling them to join the battle in a realm where all human choices start.

A realm that only angels and demons-and Brielle-can perceive.

About Shannon:


Shannon is a wife and mother. A sister. A daughter. A friend. She was raised in Northern California by her parents-pastors of their local church and constant figures of inspiration.

As a youth, Shannon traveled with an award-winning performing arts team, excelling on stage and in the classroom. As a young adult, she attended Portland Bible College, continued acting, and worked with an outreach team targeting inner-city kids in the Portland-Metropolitan area.

It was in Portland that she met her husband, Matt. They were married in 2002. Soon after, they took the reins of the youth ministry at Living Way Community Church in Roseville, California where they continue to serve in that capacity. In October of 2004, their son Justus was born, followed by their daughter Jazlyn, born in 2008. Find out more at www.shannondittemore.com.

A complimentary copy of Angel Eyes was provide by the publisher, Thomas Nelson, via Litfuse Publicity Group in exchange for an honest review.

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2 comments

  1. Shannon,

    Thank you so much for stopping by! Angel Eyes is an enjoyable read—filled with all the essential ingredients of a good fantasy story: action, emotional depth, supernatural happenings, conflict and wonderful writing. You had me at “I’m a cable-knit ninja.” 🙂 I’m looking forward to seeing how it all unfolds through the series.

    ~Su

  2. Susan! Thank you so very much for taking the time to read and review Angel Eyes. Your review is so thoughtful and well written. I love that! Thank you for being part of my launch and for sharing your thoughts with others. God bless, friend.

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