Nothing much happens in the sleepy town of Venus Cove. But everything changes when three angels, Ivy, Bethany and Gabriel are sent from heaven to protect the town against the gathering forces of darkness. They work hard to conceal their true identity and, most of all, their wings.
But the mission is threatened when the youngest angel, Bethany, is sent to high school and falls for the handsome school captain, Xavier Woods. Will she defy the laws of Heaven by loving him?
Things come to a head when the angels realise they are not the only supernatural power in Venus Cove. There's a new kid in town and he's charming, seductive and deadly. Worst of all, he's after Beth.
The angels and Xavier must work together to overcome the dark forces - but will Beth survive the battle?
Review: For an author who had her first book published at age 13, it comes as no surprise that Alexandra Adornetto's first instalment of the 'Halo' trilogy presents a very worldly, in-depth look at relationships, love and the afterlife.
Halo is perfect for those struggling to fill the void left behind once the last Twilight book was closed, however it must be stressed that in reader to enjoy this book to its full potential, the reader should not compare the writing of Alexandra Adornetto to Stephanie Meyer as they are each in leagues of their own.
As with most teen-based novels, Halo covers life's main issues (the drama invoking tensions): love, friendship, school, family and the never ending battle between right and wrong (or in this case good vs. evil).
One criticism to be made is the story featured overly descriptive writing which in certain areas distracted from the story line and often left the reader confused.
Halo revolves around the central character, Beth, an angel who is visiting earth for the first time on a mission to bring more peace, love and an acceptance of God to the sleepy town of Venus Cove. Beth is supported on this mission by her 'Brother', Arc Angel Gabriel and her 'Sister' Ivy.
In a similar twist of fate to Twilight's Bella, Beth falls in love with someone of the other 'kind' and so the story unfolds. Good vs. Evil, right vs. wrong, friends vs. family. All this on top of the everyday trials and tribulation of being a normal teenager.
All in all, an engaging read. -Bridget Daly.
Alexandra Adornetto Alexandra Adornetto was only thirteen when she wrote her first book, The Shadow Thief, followed by two other titles. She has won various awards for her writing and in 2006 won the State Legacy Public Speaking competition. Her future aspirations are to work full time writing novels and screenplays, while also pursuing a career as an actor.
She is currently working on the sequel to Halo.
Harper Collins Publishers
Author: Alexandra Adornetto
You're an amazing success at 18, with four books published; who or what originally inspired you to become a writer?
Alexandra Adornetto: I kind of stumbled across writing as an accident, I had always been really interested in writing but the idea of writing a novel never really crossed my mind. That was until, I was in year 8 and was 13, all of my friends had gone to the beach and my parents wouldn't let me go. So, I started writing this novel, really just to keep myself occupied, but it became something I became really interested in and by the time the holidays were over I had finished it. I figured that I had put that much effort into it that I might as well send it to a publishing house. I didn't expect to hear anything back from them. Eventually I did and they had the suggestion of turning it into a trilogy.
At 13 years old you wrote your first book, The Shadow Thief, can you explain the process of a 13 year old writer and how you convinced publishers to give you a chance, even though you were so young?
Alexandra Adornetto: Yes, it was difficult, being so young and being in that industry, I mean being that young and in any industry is probably difficult. I think that I didn't take myself that seriously until Harper Collins started taking me seriously. Harper Collins called me up and they were treating me like an adult and called me into these board meetings, with a room full of adults, I kind of though 'if they think I can do this, then maybe I can'. I was thrown into that whole world and I really loved it and was able to become a part of it so fast.
How did your friends react?
Alexandra Adornetto: My friends mainly make fun of me in a lighthearted way. I think English class is probably the weirdest experience; a lot of my English teachers were a little bit scared of me, especially after the book came out. Also, if a teacher asks a question 'what does this word mean?' or 'can you interpret the meaning of this in text?' everyone would turn around and look at me.
Our reviewer described your book as "perfect for those struggling to fill the void left behind once the last Twilight book was closed". How does it feel to be compared to other amazing writers?
Alexandra Adornetto: It is really, really flattering. I have had some people say to me 'are you upset that people are comparing Halo to Twilight?' and honestly I am not, not at all. I really enjoyed the Twilight series and it has had such amazing success. I think obviously there are differences and Bethany is the supernatural character, so the situation is kind of reversed. I definitely am flattered by any comparison.
The theme is not new, it has been going on for a while, Harry Potter took the world by storm and it bridged the gap between children's and adult novels. Those books are just fantastic, because everyone can read them.
You are know for your descriptive writing, how do you ensure you have described a person, place or position adequately?
Alexandra Adornetto: Yes, it is actually a really difficult part, because you can picture the character or the setting perfectly in your head, the tricky part is trying to convey that through your own writing and words. That is probably what takes the longest amount of time, in dialogue it is reasonably easy, you can imagine how a conversation will go. It takes a while to figure out if you have described a characters facial structure or their hair and sometimes small details like what they're wearing or how they smell or move, you have to take all of those things into consideration. It takes a while, that part.
Do you believe, because you are a teenager yourself, you can write and relate to all the trials and tribulations of being a normal teenager?
Alexandra Adornetto: Yes, I decided to write Halo because I am a teenager and I don't have to imagine what it's like to be a teenager. Definitely a lot of the experiences that Bethany has dealing with her family, her attraction to Xavier and Molly and her school friends, almost all of those emotions and sentiments have been taken from my own experiences, apart of the fact that I am obviously not an angel.
What are you working on at the moment?
Alexandra Adornetto: I am working on the sequel to Halo. There are three books: Halo, Hades and Heaven. Hades, as you can tell from the title, is a little bit darker in terms of themes and a section of it is set in Hell. At the end of Halo you are given the sense that the villain or the 'bad boy' Jake, is not quite finished with Beth and so he has something planned. It is interesting at the moment as I am doing some research into the concept of Hell, which is hard to put into writing.