Review: The Third Angel by Alice Hoffman
Favorite Line: “I’ll show you what love is. ‘Bryn grabbed Lucy’s hand back and put it to her chest. Bryn’s flesh was hot and Lucy could feel her heart pounding. She felt her own blood rush to her head. Everything seemed heightened and fast and wild. ‘Now you know.’ Bryn cast Lucy’s hand away. ‘Don’t forget it.'” (p.225)
Three stories weave together through strong women. Maddy and Allie Heller are sisters who turned out very different from one another. Allie is engaged to Paul, while Maddy seems to be drawn to him. This one man teaches them a lesson. Frieda Lewis finds herself friends with an up and coming rock star. He declares her his muse and she desperately wants to be with him. Bryn Evans is about to be married. Her past catches up to her in the form of her ex-husband, whom she is still in love with. Also, Lucy Green must find a way to forgive herself for an accident she believes she caused. All her life she keeps looking for the Third Angel to bring back her optimism in humanity.
I have read a few Alice Hoffman novels and enjoyed them, so I expected the same. My expectations were not accurate; I loved it. The story is told in three parts and are connected only in the slightest way.
The story begins with sisters Maddy and Allie. They are Americans, though Allie now lives in London and is getting married. I must admit, this part was my least favorite. These characters did not have as much attention grabbing characteristics as the other characters. Allie does peek my interest in the end with her love story.
The second part, with Frieda, is when I really became interested. We drifted back in time where the times were exciting in London. I loved reading about Frieda’s times with her rock star. It was exciting and I easily felt the same emotions Frieda did while she discovered parts of herself she never knew existed.
The final story is of Lucy Green. She is young and visiting London for the first time, so it is refreshing to see the city through the eyes of a newcomer. Her adventures through the city left me wanting to travel there myself. As this is the last part, the reader can see even more of the connections coming together.
Hoffman is an excellent writer, this I have known, but it is clearly evident in this novel. She effortlessly goes back in time, telling each story even better than the one prior. All of the stories are tied together. That is my favorite thing to happen in a book. So many details are intertwined so beautifully, that I was frequently impressed by her skill. As new connected details emerged, I would have to pause to think of the intricacy of putting them together.
All in all, I loved the book. So much so, that it is now my favorite of hers. Practical Magic was my favorite and it is a close second. I look forward to reading her next novel as well as the rest of her older ones.
For: Alice Hoffman fans who will not be disappointed.