Reagan started martial arts training at the age of 4. At 10, she was shooting high-powered assault rifles. As the daughter of two Black Angels, Reagan is destined to join the elite, top-secret group of international operatives. As Kristen Orlando’s novel begins, Reagan and her parents narrowly escape the attack of a hit man, forcing them to abandon their home and, not for the first time, start anew with fresh identities. Now 17, Reagan is tiring of these abrupt relocations. She likes living in their current location, where an adorable JROTC student named Luke lives next door.
But this pleasant life may already be compromised. Reagan has spotted a school janitor who stares at her a bit too intensely and a gray van that shows up a bit too frequently. It could be Reagan’s own amped sense of anxiety that has her on edge, but for a girl trained to kill, paranoia is a learned necessity.
This action-packed suspense novel is the first in a new series that features a kick-ass female protagonist whose training regimen and smoldering love interest rival that of Divergent’s Tris Prior. The lightness of the contemporary high school setting is offset by an undercurrent of grisly violence, and Reagan’s tortured contemplation of her own future offers a choice between the happiness of ordinary life and the darkness of the Black Angels legacy. A cliffhanger ending ensures a following of eager readers.
Diane Colson is the Library Director at City College in Gainesville, Florida.