There is a great legend of the guardian angel who traveled across time and space for the human girl he loved, slaying those who would threaten her with a gleaming sword made of heavenly light.
This is not that story.
Jerome Hancock is Heidi Devine's guardian angel. Sort of. He's more of an angel trainee, in heaven's soul-rehabilitation program for wayward teens. And he's just about to get kicked out for having too many absences and for violating too many of the Ten Commandments for the Dead.
Heidi, meanwhile, is a high school junior who dreams of being an artist, but has been drafted onto her basketball team because she's taller than many a grown man. For as long as she can remember, she's heard a voice in her head - one that sings Lynyrd Skynyrd, offers up bad advice, and yet is company during those hours she feels most alone.
When the unthinkable happens, these two lost souls must figure out where they went wrong and whether they can make things right before Heidi's time is up and her soul is lost forever.
If there is one thing that really makes a book for me it is a unique and compelling voice, and, oh boy, this book has it in spades! I fell for the voice within the first few sentences and it seriously just kept going until the end. Jerome isn't at all your typical YA guy, and I loved that about him. He has this unique take on the world and this way of looking at things that just made me crack up over and over again. He's a total screwup, but he's a loveable screwup.
This is a book that made me both laugh and cry. I thought at first it was just going to be funny and silly, a satire of the countless angel books on the market. But it turned into something so much more, and I found myself wiping away a tear or two at some of the scenes toward the end of the book. I love when a book can ride that balance between smart humor and touching truth, and this one does it perfectly. It's a lot of fun to read, it has a compelling, consistent, and hilarious teen boy voice, and it gives you a lot to think about, too.