Heaven’s Night by Harry Aderton
I was more than a little skeptical about a book based completely on the fall of Lucifer. Could anything new be added to this? There have been several attempts at weaving the fall of the angels into science fantasy lore – but usually as background for a story. Would it be possible to create an original and compelling narrative without being bogged down by the inherent religious dogma?
Surprisingly the answer is yes.
Harry Aderton has created an intricate and compelling angelic world. He combines familiar aspects of the biblical story with aspects of other world religions and with modern scientific theory. For the most part this works.
The story focuses on Sariel, one of the Archangels, and tells the story of the fall from his perspective. Sariel is a warm and relatable character which was pleasantly surprising. To take a figure as naturally imposing as one of the Archangels, chosen hand and voice of God, and humanize him without weakening him – well that is impressive.
Lucifer is almost sympathetic. Almost. And at first you find yourself feeling creeped out by that. Who wants to feel sympathetic towards the architect of the fall of man? But then you realize that it is necessary. Lucifer has to be more than just a stereotype for the meaning of the story to really hit home.
It is a little confusing at times though. Aderton has brought a wealth of biblical and canonical knowledge to this story paired with a fairly robust amount of information from other world religions. And it is a lot for the reader to take in. At times I felt like I needed a flow chart. I enjoy detail and backstory and intricacy… but occasionally I wish the knowledge had been imparted in a clearer fashion.
More importantly this is a well-crafted tale that does not preach or seek to shove a religious view down anyone’s throat. That is not to say there is not a discussion of faith and belief and relationship with God. There is. But it is an exploration of the broader ideas and concepts related to that- on a very personal level.
And did I mention there are some pretty awesome angelical battles? Because there are. The descriptions of the heavenly host battling the fallen created cinematic images in my head. Extremely well done.
I am no longer skeptical. I am a fan.
I was provided a gratis copy of this book for review.