Thursday, April 21, 2016

Book Review: Traitor Angels, by Anne Blankman

Traitor Angels by Anne Blankman book cover and review
Traitor Angels is a story about the life of John Milton's fictional daughter, Elizabeth. It takes place in the late 1600s, and all of the political attitudes of the time are accurate.

Milton is blind, and he's dictating Paradise Lost to his daughter, Elizabeth. He's a political outcast, and fears he may lose his head if the king decides to take it. When Antonio arrives from France, Elizabeth is confused as to why her father would have summoned him and wonders who he is and what her father is hiding. Soon after, the king's men arrive and haul her father off to a prison in London, and all of her family is taken to their London home.

This begins Elizabeth's and Antonio's quest to figure out the hidden message contained in Paradise Lost and save her father from the gallows. The details and the atmosphere of 17th century England are rich. The characters are well developed and the story has some complexity. The pacing of the adventure is what concerns me. The story moves slowly, and the tension stagnates until the very end. I'm afraid many teens will give up before they get to the good part. There is the development of a romance that will hold the attention of some.

The explanation at the end of the book of the truthful aspects of the story is appreciated and a detailed bibliography is also included.

Traitor Angels is an interesting historical fiction that made me curious about Milton and his work. However, I'm concerned about its appeal to the average teen because of its slow pace at times.

Published by Balzer + Bray, May 3, 2016
eARC obtained from Edelweiss
400 pages

Rating: 3/5

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