05 March 2010

Giveaway & Excerpt: Danielle Trussoni - Angelology

~website author~
~Purchase a copy here~

I promised you a review yesterday but unexpected construction in my house got in the way of reading time so I have to set the review date back to March 9th 2009. I'm in the middle of this book at the moment and I'm discovering an astounding history of angels, myths and a nun who's on a path to unravel mysteries of her own past. Next week you will hear more from me and my experience with ANGELOLOGY.

Today however is going to be all about pimping this book. When I read this I sure felt the excitement for this book:

“There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bore children to them.”

—Genesis 6:4

Danielle Trussoni’s first book, the memoir Falling Through the Earth, was selected as one of the Ten Best Books of 2006 by The New York Times Book Review. A graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, she divides her time between the United States and France.

ANGELOLOGY blends Biblical lore and mythology to tell the riveting tale of ordinary people caught up in a battle that will determine the fate of the world. Sister Evangeline was twelve years old when her father left her at St. Rose Convent on the banks of the Hudson River. Now at 23, the beautiful young nun lives a quiet existence there—that is, until the arrival of a handsome academic inquiring about the letters between Abigail Rockefeller and the late mother superior. As Evangeline delves further into the correspondence from sixty years ago (and into dim memories of her own childhood) she learns she is part of a secret history that stretches back a thousand years: an ancient conflict between the millennium-old Society of Angelologists and the monstrously beautiful descendents of angels and humans, the Nephilim.

This blazing page turner is a highly original story that will transport readers to another world, full of angelic beings and biblical intrigue. Beginning in the tranquil corridors of an abbey in upstate New York, the story travels back in time deep within the mountains of Bulgaria, on to Paris during the Nazi occupation and finally to the epic landmarks of New York City, where the extraordinary climax takes place. The angels in this story are not your garden-variety cherubs, but striking, hypnotic and dangerous creatures. True to their depiction in the Book of Enoch and Paradise Lost, these creatures are immortal and deadly in their radiance. Their capacity for evil gives ANGELOLOGY the same spine-chilling allure that all good vampire novels possess, from Dracula to Twilight. The book has been optioned by Sony for Will Smith’s production company, Overbrook Entertainment.

So, I never read DRACULA or TWILIGHT for that matter but I love angels, I love being taken to various places around the world and WOII always provides a dramatic background with lost treasures. So I e-mailed and gladly said yes to reviewing this book :)

Here is an exclusive excerpt of ANGELOLOGY:
Reprinted by arrangement with Viking, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc., from Angelology by Danielle Trussoni. Copyright © 2010 by Danielle Trussoni.

Fifth Avenue, Upper East Side, New York City

Percival Grigori tapped the tip of his cane as he waited for the elevator, a rhythm of sharp metallic clicks pounding out the seconds. The oak-paneled lobby of his building—an exclusive prewar with views of Central Park—was so familiar that he hardly noticed it any longer. The Grigori family had occupied the penthouse for over half a century. Once he might have registered the deference of the doorman, the opulent arrangement of orchids in the foyer, the polished ebony and mother-of-pearl elevator casement, the fire sending a spray of light and warmth across the marble floor. But Percival Grigori noticed nothing at all except the pain crackling through his joints, the popping of his knees with each step. As the doors of the elevator slid open and he hobbled inside, he regarded his stooped image in the polished brass of the elevator car and looked quickly away.

At the thirteenth floor, he stepped into a marble vestibule and unlocked the door to the Grigori apartment. Instantly the soothing elements of his private life—part antique, part modern, part gleaming wood, part sparkling glass—filled his senses, relaxing the tension in his shoulders. He threw his keys onto a silk pillow at the bottom of a Chinese porcelain bowl, shrugged his heavy cashmere overcoat into the lap of an upholstered banister-back chair, and walked through the travertine gallery. Vast rooms opened before him—a sitting room, a library, a dining hall with a four-tiered Venetian chandelier suspended overhead. An expanse of picture windows staged the chaotic ballet of a snowstorm.

At the far end of the apartment, the curve of a grand staircase led to his mother’s suite of rooms. Peering up, Percival discerned a party of her friends gathered in the formal sitting room. Guests came to the apartment for lunch or dinner nearly every day, impromptu gatherings that allowed his mother to hold court for her favorite friends from the neighborhood. It was a ritual she had grown more and more accustomed to, primarily because of the power it gave her: She selected those people she wished to see, enclosed them in the dark-paneled lair of her private quarters, and let the rest of the world go on with its tedium and misery. For years she had left her suite only on rare occasions, when accompanied by Percival or his sister, and only at night. His mother had grown so comfortable with the arrangement, and her circle had become so regular, that she rarely complained of her confinement.

Quietly, so as not to draw attention to himself, Percival ducked into a bathroom at the end of the hallway, shut the door softly behind him, and locked it. In a succession of quick movements, he discarded a tailored wool jacket and a silk tie, dropping each piece of clothing onto the ceramic tiles. Fingers trembling, he unbuttoned six pearlescent buttons, working upward to his throat. He peeled away his shirt and stood to full height before a large mirror hung upon the wall.

Running his fingers over his chest, he felt a mélange of leather strips weaving one over the other. The device wrapped about him like an elaborate harness, creating a system of stays that, when fully fastened, had the overall appearance of a black corset. The straps were so taut they cut into his skin. Somehow, no matter how he fastened it, the leather cinched too tightly. Struggling for air, Percival loosened one strap, then the next, working the leather through small silver buckles with deliberation until, with a final tug, the device fell to the floor, the leather slapping the tiles.

His bare chest was smooth, without navel or nipples, the skin so white as to appear cut from wax. Swiveling his shoulder blades, he could see the reflection of his body in the mirror—his shoulders, his long thin arms, and the sculpted curve of his torso. Mounted at the center of his spine, matted by sweat, deformed by the severe pressure of the harness, were two tender nubs of bone. With a mixture of wonder and pain, he noted that his wings—once full and strong and bowed like golden scimitars—had all but disintegrated. The remnants of his wings were black with disease, the feathers withered, the bones atrophied. In the middle of his back, two open wounds, blue and raw from chafing, fixed the blackened bones in a gelatinous pool of congealed blood. Bandages, repeated cleanings—no amount of care helped to heal the wounds or relieve his pain. Yet he understood that the true agony would come when there was nothing left of his wings. All that had distinguished him, all that the others had envied, would be gone.

The first symptoms of the disorder had appeared ten years before, when fine tracks of mildew materialized along the inner shafts and vanes of the feathers, a phosphorescent green fungus that grew like patina on copper. He had thought it a mere infection. He’d had his wings cleaned and groomed, specifying that each feather be brushed with oils, and yet the pestilence remained. Within months his wingspan had decreased by half. The dusty golden shimmer of healthy wings faded. Once, he had been able to compress his wings with ease, folding his majestic plumage smoothly against his back. The airy mass of golden feathers had tucked into the arched grooves along his spine, a maneuver that rendered the wings completely undetectable.

Although physical in substance, the structure of healthy wings gave them the visual properties of a hologram. Like the bodies of the angels themselves, his wings had been substantial objects utterly unimpaired by the laws of matter. Percival had been able to lift his wings through thick layers of clothing as easily as if he had moved them through air.

Now he found that he could no longer retract them at all, and so they were a perpetual presence, a reminder of his diminishment. Pain overwhelmed him; he lost all capability for flight. Alarmed, his family had brought in specialists, who confirmed what the Grigori family most feared: Percival had contracted a degenerative disorder that had been spreading through their community. Doctors predicted that his wings would die, then his muscles. He would be confined to a wheelchair, and then, when his wings had withered completely and their roots had melted away, Percival would die. Years of treatments had slowed the progression of the disease but had not stopped it.

Percival turned on the faucet and splashed cool water over his face, trying to dissipate the fever that had overtaken him. The harness helped him to keep his spine erect, an increasingly difficult task as his muscles grew weak. In the months since it had become necessary to wear the harness, the pain had only grown more acute. He never quite got used to the bite of leather on his skin, the buckles as sharp as pins against his body, the burning sensation of ripped flesh. Many of their kind chose to live away from the world when they became ill. This was a fate Percival could not begin to accept.

The giveaway rules:

~for a signed copy of ANGELOLOGY~

* Leave a comment to this thread telling me who your favorite angel is and from what book he/she is. (I never grow tired of recommandations LOL)

*Leave a way for me to conctact you.

* This giveaway is international so it's open to EVERYONE YAY Thank you for that Lindsay from Penguingroup!

*This giveaway ends at March 12th 2010 and the winner will be contacted.

Donna from Fantasy Dreamer also has a giveaway of ANGELOLOGY going on, US/Canada only.

Have a great friday everyone!

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  1. Dunno any angels from books, I am afraid I have read about many.
    So can I go with Castiel from Supernatural ;) He is yummy and weird

  2. Jim Heron from JR Ward's "Covet"

    alterlisa AT yahoo DOT com

  3. MY favorite angel? Easy peasy. Raphael from Nalini Singh's Guild Hunter series. It doesn't get any hotter than this one.

  4. My favorite angel is Raphael from The Guild Hunter series. He is currently my #1 book boyfriend. I hope you have read the series by Nalini Singh. If not you have too. He is not the only hot angel in that book. I've got to re-read the series again. LOL!

  5. Noah from Gentlmen Prefer Succubi... HOT HOT HOT!


  6. Illium from Nalini Singh's Guild Hunter series. Just gotta love his blue feathers and acrobatics. ;)

    Reaver from Larissa Ione's Demonica series, even though he hasn't been a main character in any of the books.

    I'm also giving a shout out to Olivia's character in Gena Showalter's upcoming release The Darkest Passion (releases in June). I have a feeling she's going to be an angel to look out for. ;)


  7. Patch from Hush Hush is my fav angel right now.

    lizzi0915 at aol dot com

  8. Gah, my memory isn't what it used to be. + I'm indecisive so it wouldn't be much help if I still had a good memory.

    However, I did just read and Falling, Fly by Skyler White and really liked Olivia. She's a fallen angel of desire/vampire which makes an interesting mix. The angel myth in the book is very enjoyable! I hope you get a chance to check it out Leontine!

    Thanks for the giveaway btw =D

    mishtakes AT gmail DOT com

  9. the only angel type creatures I can think of at the moment in books read are the valkyries from Norse mythology.

    Thank you for the chance to win.


  10. My favorite angel is Lassiter from The Black Brotherhood novels by J.R. Ward.

    Please count me in.

    cindyc725 at gmail dot com

  11. I'm not sure. I'm about to ready the Remy Chandler series by Thomas E. Sniegoski & I'm hoping for great, great things. : )

    I did love the Thorn St. Croix trilogy by Faith Hunter, but, though the angels were helpful, I didn't cheer for any specific ones. Fabulous series, though.

    ambience.of.rain {at} gmail.com

    Thanks for the giveaway!

  12. Me want please. ;)

    Meljean Brook and Nalini Singh write some of the best hottie angel men ever.

  13. Jim Heron from JR Ward's "Covet"And Lassiter from "Lover Enshrined"
    I really liked this book ANGELOLOGY~ Sounds like a great read.
    have a good one Ann

  14. I haven't read alot of books with angels in them, I know there are so many good ones out there I need to rectify the problem stat! I do like Carter from Richelle Mead's Kincaid series! Angelology sounds like an interesting read - I'm looking forward to seeing what you think of it!

  15. Wow! The more I read about this novel the more I want it in my greedy hands!!!

    Thanks for this great contest, excerpt and opportunity, Leontine!

    Let's see, my favorite angel is....Does it have to be an angel per se?? I'll name two just to follow the rules so my first choice is Michael, the Doyen and leader of the angelic born Guardians in Meljean Brook's Guardian series. He's so mysterious and in each installment, Meljean gives you just enough to leave you panting for more. She's torturing me!!!

    And second: At the moment, I'm totally lusting after Sophie Renwick's fallen angel, Suriel. That sinful immortal has a story that I'm dying to read.


  16. I'm sooo looking forward to this book after reading the following Q&A with Miss Trussoni: http://pursuitist.com/arts/interview-with-angelology-author-danielle-trussoni/

  17. I enjoy Nalini Singh's angels! tWarner419@aol.com

  18. arrggghhh... I haven't read any books about Angels before...

    but still count me in for this giveaway ! i love to read it :)

    uniquas at ymail dot com

  19. Archangel Gabriel from Bible actually (at least that's as far as I can remember) for bringing the good news to Mary that she will be pregnant with Jesus.

    Thanks for the great giveaway.

    lillyswistek at gmail dot com

  20. I really havent caught up with the Angel character trend yet. I see a lot above that are on my wishlist but I havent read any that I can remember yet.

    This sounds like a good place to start though!

    bacchus76 at myself dot com

  21. Ok, i dont know it this will count, but my favorite "fallen angel" is Beezlebub from "Requiem for the Devil" by Jeri Smith-Ready. One of my all-time favorite books!
    Thank you!

  22. Hi Leontine!
    I will go with Raphael (Nalini Singh) - he is an extraordinay character with a lot of facets.
    Angelology sounds very interesting and I can't wait to read your review for more informationes :)
    greetings, Ina

  23. How's the construction going, hon? Are your bookcases being build?

    I just came by to tag you for this (if you have time to play): http://erotromreader.blogspot.com/2010/03/bald-face-liar-or-creative-writer.html

  24. Now I think about it I haven't read many books with angels - only the Old Testament and then the angels aren't named.

    Pilgrim's Progress had angels but although it is an interesting book you hardly become emotionally attached to any of the characters.

    But if I can cheat and turn to film I have to put in a good word for Loki and Bartleby from Dogma they were so conflicted and had such a personal relationship with God that they are the Angels that always spring to mind.

  25. I really like Patch, from Hush, Hush, you know he is somehow bad but you don't know how much until the end! He is no so the good angel type!


  26. I haven't read a lot of books with angels as the main character. One that does stick in my mind is Angel with Attitude by Michelle Rowen. My fave angel that's only a secondary character(at least for now)is Lassiter in the Black Dagger Brotherhood series.

  27. Ooops. forgot my email

  28. This cover for some reason reminds me of the film Constantine...

    love the excerpt....


  29. Sounds great, please add me :)

    Sassy dot Brit at gmail dot com

  30. Hmm I love Nalini Singh's angels especially Raphael. I liked that she didn't take the normal direction of how angels came into existence. Also helps that Singh's Angels are ubber sexy, Alpha Like, & apparently can make vampires.

    Great giveaway Leontine!!!

  31. My favorite angel is Lassiter from the Black Dagger Brotherhood. Who can resist?
    "Lassiter, the fallen angel, didn’t seem any less fierce than the brothers, however. Maybe it was his piercings, or the fact his eyes were all white. Fuck it, the guy’s vibe was all hardcore."

    yeseniah23 @ gmail. com

  32. I haven't read about many angels in regular books the only one I can think of is the Bible. And all of them are pretty amazing there I like Gabriel who fortold Jesus's and John the Baptist's births. This book sounds very interesting. I have noticed there are a lot of books either just out or about to be involving angels. :)

  33. I love Samaria angels (Sharon Shinn). My favorite is probably Obediah.
    Thanks for the giveaway.

    teresa.fav AT gmail.com

  34. Mu favourite angel is Raphael from the Guild Hunter series by Nalini Singh.


  35. My favorite is Remy Chandler, series by Tom Sniegoski.

    ki mi ka io @ yahoo.com (no spaces)

  36. I haven't read that many angel books but I loved Daniel and Cam in Fallen by Kate Lauren :D

    Thank you!


  37. Well, I don't have an example of an angel in a book, but I loved Christopher Walken in the Prophecy as Gabriel.


  38. My favorite angel would be 'Arch Angel' from the X-men but if you're looking for a real angel then there's plenty to be had in Anne Rice's 'Angel Time'.

  39. I was sent over by allthingsurbanfantasy@gmail.com I was in Complte Shock That "Angelogy" was a "Giveaway..So nice to do this..I amf rom the Upstate Area,near Convent,Am a firm believer in 'Angels of all Kinds" 'I hope I win..And I never say that for real..But this is one book,that I wait for in Paperback if need be..Thank you Again..and I will follow your site as well Vtcozy Susan

  40. My favorite good angel is Seth from the film "City of Angels". My favorite badass angel is Christopher Walken in the film Prophecy. But I have to say that Gabriel in Constantine was just as interesting as Walken's gabriel. As you can see, I watch a lot of films. The angels in The Subtle Knife and The Amber Spyglass are definitely interesting (also "fallen"). You may contact me through my blogger profile email.
    Thanks for this post!

  41. Unfortunately I haven't read any of the angel-themed new books yet (and Falling, Flying, Hush, Hush, etc), but I ahve heard great things about Nalini Singh's series, so I will definitely check those books out.

    The only angel that come to my mind is Carter from Succubus Blues by Richelle Mead, but he wasn't that likable (or hot for that matter..).

    Thank you for making this giveaway international!!

    stella.exlibris (at) gmail DOT com

  42. I recently read Mark Twain's Letters From the Earth, and Satan is a very humorous angel. Funny stuff.

    patronus89013 at yahoo dot com

  43. I would have to go back a while to give you an answer.

    One book that I still have on my shelf which was OK but not an outstanding one was Angels on Fire by Nancy Collins. It is crammed with good and bad angels and other creatures. The 'good" angel was Joth.

    Thanks for opening the giveaway to worldwide entries.


    buddytho {at} gmail DOT com

  44. My favorite angel is Lassiter from the BDB series by J.R. Ward.


  45. I <3 Lassiter from BDB!

    melissapascarelli at gmail dot com

  46. Thanks for hosting a great giveaway! I'm racking my brain here trying to think of an angel in a book I've read... outside of the bible that is! I'm stumped... but please enter me! :)

    heather y


I love to hear all your voices and opinions so thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment.