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Eternal by Cynthia Leitich Smith
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A twist on the boy meets girl story: Guardian angel watches over teenage girl and falls in love. Girl is marked for death according to the laws of Heaven. Guardian angel makes big, big mistake in saving girl from her appointed death and loses his wings as punishment. Meanwhile, because of guardian angelÛªs screw-up, girl is captured and made into vampire. Fast forward a year. Girl is a vicious, blood-sucking fiend, the daughter of the vampire king, and ex-angel is sent to their estate to save her soul and earn back his wings. Bloody hijinks ensue.

I haven‰Ûªt read Tantalize, the first book set in this alternate world, so I can‰Ûªt compare the two, but Smith‰Ûªs marriage of dark humor and true horror is sometimes jarring but always compelling (and sometimes very funny, though you may cringe at the same time). Heaven appears to be a stuffy bureaucratic organization (a memo from the angel Gabriel to another angel, including a request to fill out forms, is very amusing), while the vampire world is reminiscent of excruciatingly polite high-society on the surface, with goth decadence and callus displays of cruelty underneath. That alone make this book worth reading, but Zachary and Miranda, the boy and girl in question, are also intriguing characters throughout. In a triumph of characterization, Miranda remains sympathetic despite her descent into monster-hood. The ending to the love story (because it does become one, though a twisted one) is moving and hopeful in a way you don‰Ûªt expect, as well.
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  Crowinator | Sep 23, 2013 |
Second in a series. I found parts of it interesting and parts much less so, though I did like it considerably more than the first book. [Aug. 2011] ( )
  maureene87 | Apr 4, 2013 |
I can't say the story ever felt like it came together for me. The characters felt flat and the plot and romance never felt realistic (as much as a romance between an angel and vampire can be realistic). The writing dragged and I really had to push myself to finish the novel. I expected more because, though Tantalize isn't a huge favorite of mine, it was a good title. Eternal fell short. ( )
  Kewpie83 | Apr 3, 2013 |
My first time through Eternal I was really disappointed, since I'd really enjoyed Tantalize. Now, though, coming in with somewhat lowered expectations I was, largely, pleasantly surprised. This is not to say that I now think this is the best book ever, but I did think it was an interesting read.

Actually, there definitely was quite a lot frustrating about this book and pretty much all of it can be summed up in one word: Miranda. I hate just about everything about her. After she's turned into a vampire princess against her will, she just rolls with it. She happily eats people and calls the creepy, power-mad vampire who turned her Father, because that helps him fulfill his delusion. Miranda is entirely vapid, conceited and selfish.

Smith tries to set her up as an object of pity by showing her friend Lucy's devotion to her, by showing Zachary's love for her, and by suggesting she had a rough home life. The only one of these that's working for me is Lucy. Miranda's fate doesn't sadden me, but her best friend's does, desperately hoping that her friend has not died because of her desire to flirt. Zachary I actually find to be a somewhat interesting character, but his love for her is both creepy (what with the whole guardian angel, watching her grow from a child to a teen, watching her sleep thing) and ridiculous (she sucks [punned!], so why love her?). And, as for her rough home life, her parents got a divorce. Not to say that that is not painful, but her mother still loves her, and her dad, though distant, buys her awesome presents (now who's selfish? haha).

If you like Maggie Stiefvater's books, you may want to give Cynthia Leitich Smith a try. They have a lot of commonalities, I feel. Both have really clever ideas for paranormal YA romances and both write incredibly obnoxious female main characters. With both books I've read so far, I feel like the stories would have been so much more interesting had they focused on the male characters more.
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  A_Reader_of_Fictions | Apr 1, 2013 |
Miranda gets abducted by the reigning King of the Vampires and is turned into an “Eternal” and becomes his “Princess”. Miranda’s Guardian Angel, Zachary, is kind of the reason Miranda gets abducted. And for his error…Zachary is earth-bound. With the help of another Guardian Angel, Zachary finds Miranda and becomes her Personal Assistant. Together Zachary and Miranda discover that they are not beyond redemption.

I have to say going in that this book confused me because it had NOTHING to do with the previous book and there were NO references to the previous book either. I thought that was kind of strange for a series. By the time I finished Eternal, I could see where the author was probably going to go with the third book.

I was surprised by how easily Miranda gave up on her human connections for her new vampire life. Her human life was “normal” but she felt it was boring. She seemed rather shallow and obnoxious for most of the book and only seemed to think about her humanity once Zachary was on the scene and pretty much forced her to.

Zachary was lacking depth as well. I get it that a guardian angel’s charge is their whole reason for being…but I guess I expected more from him.

These are not “kinder, gentler” vampires of “twilight”…these vampires are bloody and will suck you dry, with a definite good versus evil theme. If those are the kind of vampires you prefer than this is the series for you. Personally, I liked the first book much more than this one and have started the third and thankfully we are back with Quincie and Sanguini’s. The series, thus far, is becoming predictable, but it’s still enjoyable. ( )
  novelgoddess | Jan 29, 2012 |
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Book description
At last, Miranda is the life of the party: all she had to do was die. Elevated and adopted by none other than the reigning King of the Mantle of Dracul, Miranda goes from high-school theater wannabe to glamorous royal fiend overnight. Meanwhile, her reckless and adoring guardian angel, Zachary, demoted to human guise as the princess's personal assistant, has his work cut out for him trying to save his girl's soul and plan the Master's fast-approaching Death Day gala. In alternating points of view, Miranda and Zachary navigate a cut-throat eternal aristocracy as they play out a dangerous and darkly hilarious love story for the ages.
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When Miranda's guardian angel Zachary recklessly saves her from falling into an open grave and dying, the result is that she turns into a vampire and he is left to try to reinstate his reputation by finally doing the right thing.

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