• A Past that Shimmers
Shimmer Book Cover Shimmer
The Rephaim
Paula Weston
Young Adult Fiction
Text Publishing
March 14, 2016

Gaby thought her life couldn't get more complicated. She's almost used to the idea that she's not the teenage backpacker she thought she was. She can just about cope with being one of the Rephaim—a 139-year-old half-angel—whose memories have been stolen. She's even coming to grips with the fact that Jude, the brother she's mourned for a year, didn't die at all. But now Rafa—sexy, infuriating Rafa—is being held, and hurt, by Gatekeeper demons. And Gaby has to get the bitterly divided Rephaim to work together, or Rafa has no chance at all. It's a race against time—and history. And it may already be too late.

woman fighting martial arts slow motion swordA Past that Shimmers

Shimmer is the third book in a series about half-human, half-angel warriors, known as the Rephaim. Their mission is to bring their fallen angel fathers, who have escaped from hell, to justice.  The only problem is that no one knows where they are. Except for Gaby and her twin brother, Jude…but they can’t remember their old lives as Rephaim, let alone whether or not they met with the Fallen during the year that they were missing. The first two books in the series, Shadow, and Haze, revolve around one of their fellow Rephaim, Rafa, finding Gaby, and convincing her that she was born to fight demons and search for the fallen, and then their quest together to find Jude. Haze ends with a romance brewing between Rafa and Gaby, successfully reuniting with Jude, and Rafa being captured by demons.

Shimmer is an excellent book, and the entire series is entertaining, and riveting. All three books were ones that I could not put down. Shimmer picks up immediately after Rafa’s capture, and focuses on Gaby’s desperate rescue mission, and her frustration that she cannot remember her past. Her past is constantly there, shimmering just over the horizon, taunting her with questions she cannot really answer. For example, what caused her falling out with Rafa before she disappeared, and should she allow that to hold her back from giving into her current feelings for him? Why are the Rephaim divided, what role did she and Jude play in the past to cause the division, and does she want to choose the same side now that she has a do-over?  If ever a character faced an identity crisis, it’s Gaby!

Despite the specter of their past together, I’ve been rooting for a real union of Gaby and Rafa since book one in the series, and I was not disappointed when they finally gave into their feelings. Their romance was over 100 years in the making, and as one of Gaby’s friends pointed out, probably about thirty years over due. But Ms. Weston leaves her readers with the nagging question of what will happen when Gaby does remember the past? Was Rafa right to put Gaby off each time she tried to be affectionate with him, cautioning her that if she could remember the past she wouldn’t want him? Which brings us to the cliffhanger at the end of Shimmer: Gaby does remember everything. She remembers what a badass warrior she is, but also what went wrong between her and Jude, the cause of the division between the Rephaim, and why she was angry with Rafa. None of these memories are revealed to the reader though, nor are we given much of a hint as to how she will react to the memories.

As I have mentioned in previous blog posts, I am partial to books that feature angels and demons. That admission aside, I highly recommend both this book, and the series as a whole. It may seem like I have given away a lot of details in this review, but this information barely scrapes the surface. The characters are all very complex, and there are several different side stories, including romances, alliances, and political intrigues, that occur concurrently to the action between Rafa, Gaby, and Jude. Give this series a read, and then let me know what you think!

As a side note, the final book, Burn, releases in June, and I cannot wait to get my hands on a copy!