2.5 STARSThough truth be told, coming in, I did have some high expectations seeing as I've read the better angel books ahead of reading this.Angel Burn has quite the interesting twist in the angels sub-genre in that instead of having the usual religious backstory, angels are featured as beautiful, alien-like beings who come from a dying world and has come to our own using humans as sort of energy sources much like parasites. Shades of The Matrix' mythology now that I think about it. The title actually pertains to the residual effects of the angels feeding off humans that leads to blind angel adoration. What I found wholly fascinating about this story was how I realized that the scenario presented by this book is pretty realistic. In that in the event that angels make themselves known to us (wings and halo and all), knowing human behavior, forming a cult-like organization centered on them is not a too far off possibility. The story kicks off when our heroine, Willow Fields, your typical high school girl who just happens to also have amazing psychic abilities, had to do a reading on popular girl Beth. Now Beth has been "touched by an angel" so to speak and seeks Willow's help in making a decision to leave her life and join the Church of Angels. When Willow warns Beth of the truth behind this "encounter" her life is placed in danger while she becomes fully aware on what her abilities are borne from.This had all the right ingredients: a strong heroine, the hero is an Angel Killer who spent half the time in the book shirtless (!), a road trip set in the desert (!!) and a solid story setting to back it all up. But somehow the end product felt this side of bland.The writing was okay but didn't hook my attention enough to keep my wandering thoughts away from nitpicking.There's a certain lack of emotional panache in this story. I do not seek all-out DRAMA especially in YA books but that subtle tug was sorely missed here. The characters were likable enough -- I liked Willow's quirk of being a car geek and a "skirt mechanic" so to speak and Alex' past of growing up in an Angel Killer camp, with a Sears catalog as his source of education was interesting. But somehow, the story failed to capitalize on these aspects to give them better chemistry with each other. I wish the author exploited these avenues (and my feels) better to make them beyond likable, because I feel like I could've cried for the right reasons at the right moments for these two. But I just ended up crying in frustration.Willow's character felt a bit small against the enormity of her role in the grand scheme of things. Even the circumstances surrounding her joining Alex didn't feel logically sound. Her powers as a half-angel seriously needed some limits because at times, I had to question what was the point of Alex taking her away from everyone when she had all these abilities. I'm also not a fan of the angel and human parts of Willow being separate entities , why can't they just be one and the same? It gets a bit confusing in the narrative.Alex was a good hero but again, could've used a bit of drama on his past. He would've been a more interesting hero for me if he had to kill his brother himself after falling victim to Angel Burn than his actual story of guilt over watching an angel kill his brother in front of him. On the other side of the fence, the evil mastermind Raziel felt underdeveloped while the nameless angels pursuing Willow and Alex felt cartoonish in their scare factor. It is horrible to think that these angels can give you cancer or MS or a massive stroke with their touch but again, this kind of takes away a bit of the dramatic horror I would've wanted to feel some of everyone's urgency and fear.I want to nitpick some more but I'm putting away the red sharpie. This really had a good deal of potential but just lacked a bit of push to commit as a PNR. The book focused and failed a great deal on the romance between Alex and Willow but I have a feeling it would've fared better if this aspect of the story was kept to the background and the Angel Invasion was brought to the fore.