Illuminate - Aimee Agresti To begin talking about such an amazing story, I must tell you 1 thing that helped tip it's awesomeness over the edge. The Gorgeous Cover!

Now you may be thinking " Covers with girls in dresses are overdone, let's be rid of them!" Or maybe that's just what I think off and on. But here is what really made this one work for me. SHE ACTUALLY WEARS A RED DRESS IN THE STORY! Of course I won't tell you when or why, but lets just say the description matches up well, and makes me want the dress and love the cover even more. Not only does the dress tie into the story, but also the little shadow of a wing on the cover as well! Sigh.. I love it when covers tie into stories.

Now onto the rest of the amazingness that was Illuminate :

Illuminate is a story that I could not finish in one sitting. Not because it was too long ( not to me anyway ) I was busy, unable to sit down for hours at a time to read. However the fact that it took me longer to read than most book recently did not detract from it's awesomeness, to me it added to it. Too often do I read a book in one sitting and instantly feel as if it ended too quick. Illuminate was a story that I took in small chunks, then let it settle in my mind overnight, it was wonderful. I enjoyed having a story that made me slow down a little bit, if I had read it much faster I think I would have missed things!

Aimee Agresti has this wonderful style of writing, detailed and explanatory without being overwhelming. Mixed into the story is some wonderful Art history, architecture, photography, As well as Capon and Chicago history! As an art student I really appreciated the way she describes things, without it feeling like I am taking a class.

Sigh.. How to talk about this book! I have not read very many Angel books, though I know they are everywhere. However I feel like this story shows an interesting view of angels, just how do they earn their wings?

Haven's character was one that was easy for me to connect with, an outcast at school, a bit of a loner, who doesn't always feel right in her own skin. Feeling unimportant is the norm for her, so being thrust into a world where she feels admired and needed, it's something that takes some getting used to.

Dante, Haven's best friend is one of those people who have a vibrancy to them, a spark that draws you in like a moth to a flame, as you hope that some of their outgoing personality will attach itself to you.

Lance, Oh lance. He grew on me so perfectly. Like a new friend who you can just tell, is going to be a big part of your life.

Lucian, You ever have the feeling of wanting to reach through the pages of your book so you can smack a character? That would be him. Though there is some " Insta love" an undeniable instant attraction, there is a darkness to him, always looming. You will feel right along with Haven as she is pushed and pulled in many different directions. Though I felt like smacking him in the beginning, I can say that Lucian is a very dynamic character, and he may just surprise you like he did me.

Aside from Lucian there is another relationship that comes into play. No I won't tell you who, but I will tell you it was perfectly executed. It felt REAL and honest, and grew at just the right pace, and ... sigh. made me swoon a bit ;)

The darkness in this story was done in such a way that it slowly creeps in and expands, infecting everything in the story and connecting it in a wonderfully twisted way. This story was everything I wanted in a book right now. It was intense and beautiful, it held my attention and my love for it grew over the nights when I let it all sink in.

I seriously hope this book gets the attention it deserves.

Aimee Agresti is a Debut Author who I will SERIOUSLY be keeping my eye on. Though there is no title or news out on it yet there will be a book #2- and I will be anxiously awaiting it!

Who do I recommend it to ? Fans of Angels, Fantasy, love stories that feel real, horror that creeps it's way in, Artists or Art lovers. Or even if you are none of those, if you give this book a chance, you may be one by the end!

Rating 5/5