[PDF] ✪ Illuminate By Aimee Agresti – Heartforum.co

Illuminate Haven Terra Is A Brainy, Shy High School Outcast But Everything Begins To Change When She Turns Sixteen Along With Her Best Friend Dante And Their Quiet And Brilliant Classmate Lance, She Is Awarded A Prestigious Internship In The Big City Chicago And Is Sent To Live And Work At A Swanky And Stylish Hotel Under The Watchful Eyes Of A Group Of Gorgeous And Shockingly Young Looking Strangers Powerful And Alluring Hotel Owner Aurelia Brown Her Second In Command, The Dashing Lucian Grove And Their Stunning But Aloof Staff Of Gls Called The Outfit As Haven Begins Falling For Lucian, She Discovers That These Beautiful People Are Not Quite What They Seem With The Help Of A Mysterious Book, She Uncovers A Network Of Secret Passageways From The Hotel S Jazz Age Past That Leads Her To The Heart Of The Evil Agenda Of Aurelia And Company They Re In The Business Of Buying Souls Will They Succeed In Wooing Haven To Join Them In Their Recruitment Efforts, Or Will She Be Able To Thwart This Devilish Set S Plans To Take The Souls Of Her Classmates On Prom Night At The HotelIlluminate Is An Exciting Saga Of A Teen S First Taste Of Independence, Her Experience In The Lap Of Luxury, And Her Discovery She May Possess Strength Greater Than She Ever Knew


10 thoughts on “Illuminate

  1. says:

    Illuminate, with its enchanting cover and alluring premise, gives us a tale full of beauty, mystery and deception Although it failed to wow me, I was left enthralled by the mystery, and fascinated by the glamor Haven and two class mates, one of them being her best friend, are chosen for an internship at an over the top luxurious hotel Soon after they arrive, however, Haven starts to notice things are a bit off We begin with exploring this majestic hotel The elegant decor, the perfect employees, the vibrant night club it s all described wonderfully with enough details to make you visualize all of this beauty Even the somber passages become alive by the intimidating ambiance Aimee has given it As the plot takes a very long time to move along, we get well acquainted with this hotel through Haven, who is instructed to learn all that she can about the inner workings I was so enraptured by the extraordinary perfection, in addition to the unusual happenings, that the slow pace took a while to catch up to me, but eventually it did A bit past the half way mark I started to become less fascinated by it all, and simply wanted to move on to some action The secrets are divulged in such a slow, steady way that I never felt the excitement of apprehension, I merely strolled through, nodding my head, while everything leisurely fell into place It was still interesting, but not so exciting We ve got some enjoyable characters that help make the slow pace a bit satisfactory Haven herself is a bit hard to relate to Nerdy, bookish, keeping to herself, but suddenly acquiring great fashion and social abilities I had a hard time placing her personality Dante is also very clich being the gay character who likes to gossip, cook and fix hair I did, however, love Lucian and Lance Lucian has a certain mystique that makes him a particularly intriguing character, but Lance, the most in depth character in my opinion, went from shy loner boy to star of the show by the end of this book I loved his personality how he always stood by Haven and gave her someone to truly trust Although I did quite like the plot overall, as I mentioned it was a tad long winded, but also had a few sketchy details Haven s bizarre childhood abandoned in a ditch is only vaguely referenced We don t find out a whole lot about her supposed powers or purpose either Then, we ve got this cryptic book giving her vague messages that she barely questions before trusting it completely I wonder why she didn t just pack up and leave I know that s what I would have done But I m a wuss so. shrugs With excellent writing and breathtaking scenery illuminate is a satisfying debut that, even though I wasn t enad by it, I enjoyed it enough to recommend it, and will definitely be continuing the series For of my reviews, visit my blog at Xpresso Reads


  2. says:

    If this book had been edited down to a shade less than half its size it might have held my interest It took so long to set up the plot that by the time the big dramatic revelations occurred, I had lost my patience and was ready to move on Beautiful cover, first in a promised series, author with lots of entertainment connections, I m sure you ll see it all over the place, but with so much supernatural romance action out there now, there are many titles that will offer a compelling reading experience.


  3. says:

    Weirdly addicting page turner, but I spent probably 60% of the time like this because many of the plot points involved, though with something of actual purpose overall, read like something from an insane fanfiction written by a 15 year old view spoiler Let s take the best and brightest out of their senior year of high school and intern them at a hotel, full time Child labor laws Liquor laws PAH Teenager with practically no photography experience Sure, we ll hire her to take our professional portraits Our muralist is gone and the mural isn t finished Yeah, let s get two teenagers with no art experience to finish that up hide spoiler


  4. says:

    Let s be honest, here I will never finish this book As much as I enjoyed saying mean things about it for, like, 100 pages, I really don t see us forming a lasting relationship.Summary this book is terrible, please don t allow impressionable teenage girls to buy it We will not have this one in store.Caveat this book had the misfortune of showing up at the same time as Grave Mercy, which kept me up unil 2 30 one morning trying to finish it Because, when you have to choose between medieval nun assassins vs cheesy maybe angels, it s not really a choice, is it


  5. says:

    Rating 4.5 starsThree words to describe this book Beautiful, original, and absolutely MAGICAL It wasn t just the story that was magical, but the romance and setting too I honestly didn t know what to expect when I started reading this book, but Illuminate surprised me with how enchanting it all was Kind of like a fairytale spell.I m pretty picky with my angel books although I didn t even know this was an angel book until I read it , but I adored Aimee Agresti s interpretation Just like the storyline, it was completely original with a sort of mystical feel to it that only added to the intrigue But my favourite thing had to be the characters Sweet, intelligent, and passionate about photography, Haven was so easy to connect with And her romance with Lance was honestly one of the sweetest I ve ever read It was refreshing and realistic no insta love here , and he just had to be one of the most adorable boys in YA Both mysterious and mystifying, Illuminate was a debut that swept me off my feet The only thing is that some parts seemed a little long, but otherwise I had no complaints Aimee Agresti is definitely an author to watch out for BUY or BORROW With its gorgeous cover and magical storyline, this is a book that every angel fan should have on their shelf Original review at Mimi Valentine s YA Review Blog


  6. says:

    For the record I really don t like not liking a book It s awkward for both of us, kinda like a bad first date this is implying that I have much dating experience than I do It keeps talking and talking I keep searching for something, anything redeemable, that ll make me want to give this book a second chance.Me and this book just aren t meant to be.The biggest issue for me is that it just moves so slowly Half this book is spent running errands or on training montages Maybe other people are interested in what it s like to be a personal assistant to someone rich and glamorous, but that s not me There s life threatening danger, mystery and evil looming Instead of action, we get the two main characters delivering chocolate or uploading photos.Almost everything is revealed by eavesdropping through conveniently placed secret passageways that the owners somehow don t realize lead right to Haven s room and almost all the plot is conversationally driven 500 pages of errands, training montages, eavesdropping leading up to 30 pages of action just doesn t work.To make matters worse they listen to a bossy book written by a mysterious force and don t expect to know who that is by the end of the book The messages in the book are cryptic, vague, sometimes contradictory, and creepily similar to those weird motivation posters they put up in offices and schools You will learn inner strength to a degree far greater than you have ever known and physical strength None of this will be easy all of it will be necessary I m not the type of person to blindly follow a bossy book Haven is supposed to be smart, but as it becomes and obvious that the hotel is dangerous the stupider she seems to become At no point does she ever think Let s just leave, but just keeps on running errands for her demon boss even after the book tells her she s probably going to die.There were some believability issues with Haven for me She s supposed to be a tomboy who doesn t care about fashion, but whenever it comes to describing clothes it reads like a magazine Turns out the author is actually also a celebrity magazine writer I have problems when author s interject their voice into a character when it doesn t make sense Logically Haven, head likely found studying math than in a magazine, shouldn t be able to describe clothes that vividly.Overall this book just didn t work for me I hope other people, maybe those who like magazines or celebrities , will find this book appealing.Thanks to Southern Book Bloggers for letting me participate in this ARC tour Check them out here


  7. says:

    Haven Terra is a very serious student aiming really high for her future career She wants to be a doctor and with that plan in mind she is volunteering at the local hospital, where her adoptive mother works, and applies to tons of programs to earn those extra credit that might help her get into an esteemed school There s one program she didn t apply to though, the Department of Education s Vocational Illinois Leaders internship program With two of her fellow student, she has been chosen to leave school to work in a prestigious hotel, but none of them are quite ready for what awaits them there I find this review really hard to write because I honestly didn t like this book, but I can see its potential and how someone else might enjoy it So I ll try my best to show you both sides of the coin in this review I ll be honest with you, after a hundred pages I was ready to give up on this book, but I hang on because I requested it for review, and I was really hoping I would like it.The first thing I didn t like about this book is the entr e en mati re There is a very prominent high class, snobbish, elitist atmosphere to this novel, and it s a set up I personally don t like From the get go, Illuminate reminded me a lot of the Blue Bloods series by Melissa de la Cruz, a series I don t like, because of its worldly ambience I know there are a lot of fans of that series out there, so I m sure this particular aspect won t be an issue of many of you.The cast was also problematic for me The staff at the hotel is called the Outfit and they are essentially a bunch of zombies You eventually understand that they sold their souls, but does it have to turn them into mindless beautiful creatures I could overlook this problem, but the main characters also had some major flaws, namely Dante, was the worst He is so overly stereotyped it s painful to watch The kid is gay, so far so good, but did he really need to be a gossip hungry, shopaholic, who s an extremely good cook, likes to play dress up and can whip up an haircut in a blink of an eye It was just too much to be believable, or even comfortable Haven was ok, but nothing I have to admit I had a soft spot for Lucian, one of Haven s boss, but I felt like he could ve been so much , so I was slightly disappointed The star of this book though, hands down, is Lance This guy was definitely made of awesome He came into the game with an underdog tattoo on his forehead and left with a superstar one I even had an Atta boy moment at the very end when a tidbit about him was revealed, I m sure you ll know what I m talking about if you ve read the book.The main problem with Illuminate though, is that it s way too long The novel has 530ish pages and pretty much nothing happens in the first 300 pages or so Agresti took way too much time to set the table and by the time something was actually reveled, the reader was bored, at least I was See the thing is, I think a lot of the previously mentioned flaws could ve been overlooked if we didn t have so much time on our hands to think about it all Illuminate isn t a bad book, but it needed a lot cuts during the editing process, in my opinion If you put the plot on fast forward, it s not bad Aimee added her own touch to the old as dirt battle between Heaven and Hell and I particularly liked the original way a good guy was to defeat the bad guys On the other hand, even after 530ish pages, we only have a vague idea of what the main character s powers are and one would assumed one was entitled to get some answers after sticking around for so long I m confident, or at least hopeful, that the second book will move faster now that the truth is out in the open.On a positive note, I found the end was exciting There was finally some action, an heart breaking decision was made and Lance provided us a squee moment I would recommend this book to fans of the Blue Bloods series because of the worldly set up, but beware that this book is twice as long as a typical Blue Bloods novel, so you need not to be bothered by lengthy introductions.


  8. says:

    Angsty angel books usually go into my burn before reading pile, but the blurb on this one promised at least some action so I decided to give it a go, needless to say I was pleasantly surprised.First off a warning, this book is about 20% too long and I feel a lot in the first third could and should of been edited out for spacing pacing, starting at the hotel and a quick recap for instance would ve saved about 2 chapters of slog, which is why I have to say it s only a really like and not an amazing But the villain, Aurelia, is who really sells this story it s rare in a YA book to have an antagonist so fully fleshed out, most of the time they re caricatures or just plain bad people , but she has weaknesses, flaws, moments of strength, something that s missing from typical YA fare That s not to say heroine Haven is a lightweight either, she holds her own and the conflict between the two is well done Add in some chilling and dark ritual scenes and a literally explosive conclusion, this book is pretty good.


  9. says:

    I had really high hopes for this one, so it kills me to say that it didn t live up to my expectations, though it was still a decent story Instead of being amazing like I was hoping, it was just okay.Overall, I thought that the concept of this book was amazing A group of people that were all incredibly gorgeous are in league with the Underworld and they re pretty much trafficking souls It was very creative And by the cover of the novel and the name of the series, you can easily tell that Haven is one of the few good people fighting against the monstrously huge population of the evil, even if she doesn t know it yet While I very much enjoyed the plot and how Agresti managed to get the kids to the hotel via perfect grades something I wish would happen to me I was not always happy with the delivery So I want to spend this review explaining what, I believe, hindered this awesome sounding novel from reaching its full potential.First of all, the characterization Haven was an incredibly smart girl that took pride in that She s not all that physically attractive and she s ashamed of scars over her heart and on her back She ll do anything to keep them covered up Found in a ditch on the side of the road as a baby, she was adopted by a nurse named Joan that raised her the way children in young adult novels should be raised seriously and studiously She was no absentee parent, which I enjoyed However, my one pet peeve with Haven is that as smart as she claimed to be, she was very naive to obvious negativity around her and she was very gullible She had no common sense and lacked the ability to put two and two together, especially when a handsome boy that normally would not pay attention to her decided to realize she actually existed It was frustrating to see this girl who brags about being independent and intelligent turn into a pile of oblivious putty under Lucian s watchful gaze Aside from that, I have to admit she s a very strong and intriguing character, I just wish she wasn t so easily taken advantage of Another example is when Aurelia was in her office talking about something that is going to happen between Dante and Etan She heard literally what they were planning and didn t put two and two together that Dante was in trouble until chapters later Instances like this had me rolling my eyes A lot.Then there s Dante and Lance Dante is Haven s best friend He is a homosexual and was stereotyped in the sense that he knows everything about fashion, tends to be very loud, feminine, and exaggereted with his speech, he s colorful in both the way he dresses and acts, and at some point in the novel he pulls the you can t understand what I m going through because I m gay card and suddenly turns evil Now, do I think there s anything wrong with this Not at all I have many homosexual friends, but it frustrates me to see homosexuals stereotyped in young adult literature Do I think it was on purpose Not really, his character is unique and his certain feminine qualities come in to save Haven s day many times because she knows nothing about fashion and make up and how to be a girl, but I wish he wasn t feeding into a stereo type Lance is the strong, silent type Also intelligent, he s incredibly tall and lanky with huge glasses He and Haven quickly become friends when Dante becomes overly enraptured and obsessed with his boss, Chef Etan Lance, like Haven, has scars he is ashamed of, like one right below his eye Watching their friendship blossom was very fascinating He s the type of guy that you realize is super attractive the you get to know him the way that young adult love interests should be.And lastly, there s Aurelia, Lucian, and The Outfit I don t think I have many positive things to say about any of them The first thing Haven notices when meeting Aurelia is that she looks nearly Haven s age not old enough to run a huge hotel based off of Capone s reign in Chicago The age thing can be found in Lucian, too Again, he s supposed to be a superior of Haven s, but they re so similar in physical appearance It bugged me out that there was no proper mention of age until nearly the end of this 500 page novel Aside from that, Aurelia and Lucian both need better qualities While Aurelia first comes off as a savvy business mogul, she quickly begins to show her impulsive, evil, true colors The switch almost came overnight and was slightly frustrating And Lucian, half the time he wants Haven and the other half he is standing her up He s a good guy and his heart is in the right place, but his evil, jealous boss is ruining him as a person making him a selfish, undesirable, nearly controlling date The Outfit is full of gls, as the synopsis explain, that can only be compared to evil zombies That s pretty much it.Next, I mentioned last paragraph that this book is over 500 pages long and it feels every bit that way I m all for detail, I love it, but there s a difference between boring thoughts and essential detail to paint vivid imagery It took me a solid 50% of this novel to get over the hurdle from the beginning of the book It was full of so much useless detail Haven s thoughts didn t drag me in the way they should have and they only truly captured my attention once she began scheming It took me two weeks to read this one because I just didn t want to get over the first half of the book due to all of the unnecessary information that was slowing it down, but once I was 50% of the way in I finished the book in one sitting However, if book two is anything like the second half, than I am really excited I think, in part, that the first half of the book dragged because, in my opinion, there was way too much talk of sinning and the concept of souls While not religious, it almost seemed religious because some characters spoke of crossing over to the dark side religiously and with such reverence Souls were brought up in really weird ways On page 248 of my ARC, Lucian even mentioned how he picked out specific food for his date with Haven to nourish her soul Things could have been approached differently Face it, bosses would never encourage their protegee interns to do bad things and instead would applaud their clearly good nature The intrigue and attempted luring of Haven could have been better thought out and enacted.And my last questionable aspect of this novel was the diary One day near the beginning of Haven s stay at the hotel, a blank black book shows up for Haven and as days go by, entries are suddenly scribbled in it, dictating to her what she needs to do to survive in a world full of evil As freaked out as she is, she follows the rules the diary gives her because it s all so weird But I got a very Tom Riddle esque vibe from this Magic book suddenly shows up, tells you what to do, slowly takes over your life Sure, this one wasn t evil, but you catch my drift In all honesty, I had something similar occurr in a story that I wrote when I was eleven years old Yes, eleven years old I feel as if this was a childish solution to slowly help Haven discover who she was that could have been constructed in a better way as well It s something out of a young middle grade, not a young adult novel And the fact that this book was so important to her understanding of things yet we didn t meet who was behind it just yet was frustrating Again, I sincerely hope that we learn who was behind it in book two or I may not be able to deal with it.So, all in all, you can see I had a lot of problems with the execution of this one, not the characters and the plot, but how Agresti chose to go about things It wasn t very believable and, often than not, childish However, since I think this book still deserves three stars, the amazing plot concept was enough to keep me reading and overshadow a lot of the negativity until I began reflecting on all of my notes for this review So, I plan on picking up book two, though I m going in with realistic expectations than I did its predecessor If it is anything like the second half of ILLUMINATE, Agresti will show immense growth that ll excite me and keep me reading My fingers are crossed.I recommend this book to those who enjoy good vs evil stories Then again, I also think this is appropriate for younger level readers that like big books I don t know about others my age, but I think all of my pet peeves are appealing to younger children Thank you to Jennifer at ARCycling for giving me the chance to review this book off of my wishlist


  10. says:

    I really did love this book Boring at first, but you know, to those people who are upset it took long for it to get interesting, next time you pick up a book, be patient While you re being patient, I suggest you devour chocolate It really does help Okay, so, is the girl on the cover her daughter The author and the model on the cover look related, and really alike Anyways, the thing where she found out she was an angel at the end was wonderful If only this could happen to me Be walking around in an amazing hotel, then defeat some demon things, and then BAM I m an angel It would be the best day Again, another short review But hey, it was a good book Short reviews for good books I m not going to do a review on Harry Potter, because absolutely no reviews on AMAZING books Just rating I m getting off topic I tend to do this a lot The book, Illuminate was a fabulous story The details about the hotel were fantastically formed, so I could picture it exactly how I wanted it in my own little head, in my own little world of fairytales.