Title: Strange Angels
Author: Lili St. Crow
Release Date: May 14, 2009
Publisher: Razorbill (Penguin imprint)
Dru Anderson has been "strange" for as long as she can remember, traveling from town to town with her father who hunts the things that go bump in the night. It's a weird life, but a good one... until it all explodes, in an icy, broken-down Dakota town when her dad disappears and a zombie busts through her kitchen door. Alone, and more than a little terrified, Dru's going to need every inch of her wit and training to stay alive. The monsters have decided to hunt back, and this time, it's Dru who's on the menu
Strange Angels is packed with tension, action, and more than one smart mouth who won't stop. What hold the book together is a strong, rather dangerous, and impossibly stubborn heroine without a hint of teenage girl sugar-coating over top. Dru's a badass, and she makes no attempt to hide that fact that she's rough and ragged at the edges. This is certainly not a typical YA paranormal novel.
Dru leads a very odd life, constantly on the road with her dad hunting the supernatural monsters that terrorize other people. It's clear that Dru's going to be a little more bizarre than most teenage girls, because what normal well-adjusted girl becomes her father's helper when he goes off killing monsters?
When the zombie shows up, everything goes downhill. Dru's on her own now, she's got to remember what her dad taught her before she forgets it all in a massive panicked rush, and she's got to remember how to survive. Because she knows what's out there in the cracks and crevices, what thrives in the shadows. Of course, what she doesn't expect comes in the form of two stubborn boys who are willing to keep her safe.
Books where the setting and the season leaks out from the page and into my hands are rare, and this one does it. Dru's surrounded by snow, winter coming down on the Dakotas, and as I read this a chill crept out and into my hands. So visual and so realistic.
As a book that features one of the more gritty, harsh, stubborn, and complicated heroines I've come across, I would certainly recommend this book to fans of Vampire Academy and the TV show Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Sometimes, you need a heroine who drives a truck with an AK-47 in the back, and Dru's that kind of girl.
(I own a copy of this book.)