About five minutes after Twilight entered the public consciousness people have been wondering what the next supernatural craze will be. Werewolves? Maybe, but who wants to have to take their significant other out for “walkies” at three in the morning? Zombies? Doubtful, but at least they really, truly love you for your brain. I’ve wondered myself from time to time, but I doubt my own personal choice – Young Adult Owlbear Romance – will ever be truly embraced by the reading public. Instead, I’m starting to think that the next supernatural trend will be angels.
Think about it: they’re walking, talking embodiments of beauty and power, less than gods but more than men. They’re supernatural free agents, able to walk off the job at any time – that is, if they don’t mind burning in H-E-Double-Hockeysticks for all eternity. Are you a chaste, beautiful girl looking for a mysterious, brooding “bad boy” of a boyfriend? Why settle for a wan, sparkling bloodsucker when you can have a fallen angel? Imagine telling the other girls in Algebra class that your boyfriend is in Satan’s bowling league!
Two recent books explore the darker side of angeldom: the novel Angelology by Danielle Trussoni (my personal choice for tongue-twisting title of the decade next to Jean-Christophe Valtat’s Aurorarama), and the collection Visitants, edited by Stephen Jones.
Described by USA TODAY as “The Da Vinci Code meets Raiders of the Lost Ark“, Angelology is the story of Sister Evangeline, a nun who stumbles upon a secret history of fallen angels mingling with human women to produce a hybrid race called the Nephilim, and a conspiracy to capture a religious artifact that could tilt the balance of supernatural and mundane power in the world forever. An engrossing story of ancient religious mysteries, secret societies and ruthless enemies, Angelology will be popular with fans of popular fiction and dark fantasy alike.
Edited by legendary anthologist Stephen Jones, Visitants collects stories of angels good and bad, with contributions from Ramsey Campbell, Chelsea Quinn Yarbro, Neil Gaiman, Jay Lake and many more. The angels of Visitants intervene in the lives of men and women, often with entirely unintended – and occasionally horrific – consequences. By the end of the book you may begin to wonder if having a “guardian angel” is such a good idea.