Author: Alexandra Adornetto
Age Group: Teen/Young Adult
Series: Halo, book three
Star Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
The bottom line: The final book in the Halo trilogy wraps things up neatly, as well as adding new characters and new twists, and it was enjoyable--I couldn't put it down!
Heaven begins with Xavier and Bethany getting married after graduation, much to Heaven's displeasure. Their union is met by dissent up above, leading a rebel faction of celestial soldiers called the Sevens to pursue them and bring the "renegade" Bethany home to Heaven, to deal with the repercussions of their decision. Ivy and Gabriel are panicked, as the two didn't even talk to them before marrying and defying God's law. Forced to flee to Mississippi from Venus Cove, the family hides in plain sight, the couple enrolls at Ole Miss to try and have a normal life, albeit under aliases--and as brother and sister. Fun, huh? Meanwhile, Molly follows the two, having transferred to the university for a guy named Wade. The family is able to hide for about a month or so until they are found by the Sevens and their leader, Hamiel. In a showdown between them and Bethany's family, Xavier is killed. Inconsolable, Bethany actually fights a grim reaper to bring back Xavier's soul.
She succeeds, but the time period was so long between Xavier being dead and alive that Lucifer--that's right, the Lucifer, as in the Devil, possesses Xavier's body, as recompense for Gabriel murdering Jake, one of the Original angels to fall with him and one of Lucifer's first sons. For a while Lucifer torments the Churches--Bethany in particular--through Xavier's body--until Bethany conjures up Jake's soul from Hell at Lucifer's behest to propose a trade: Xavier's body free of Lucifer in exchange for Gabriel's wings being literally ripped out of his back. Gabriel agrees, much to Bethany and Ivy's dismay, and thus saves Xavier. Right after that, the reader finds out a secret about Ivy, Xavier, and his family--I won't reveal this. You guys will see if you decide to read it.
That threat eliminated, Gabriel falls into a very human state of depression and ends up saving Molly from Wade's abuse, and soon Bethany and Xavier are once again cornered by the Sevens. Bethany, unable to see Xavier or his family harmed, surrenders and goes back to Heaven with them all, getting locked up as a result and placed with the Heavenly equivalent of a shrink. Despondent and angry, Bethany goes out of her way to antagonize her shrink, Eve. Gabriel comes to give Bethany a hint on coming back to earth, and soon she meets Xavier's dead girlfriend, Emily, who reluctantly agrees to help her. One thing leads to another, and Bethany loses her divinity, ripping out her wings and falling to earth, and making her way back to Xavier. The book ends with the two joyously reuniting, and Bethany rapturously realizing she has a belly button, can have children, grow old, and die. I loved it and it ended perfectly for me, but the whole series was wonderful and is one of my favorites of all time.