Black Wings

The world of Black Wings is one where humanity has been irrevocably altered by science so that their exteriors reflect the most black-and-white view of their inner desires and beliefs. On the one hand, there are the Anlights, the winged and beautiful representatives of the best aspect of humanity, and on the other, the Varkins, gray-skinned, yellow-eyed predators formed from the criminals and outcasts. Annabel, the last surviving Anlight imprisoned by the Varkins, the only member of her race with black wings, has just about given up hope of ever rejoining her people when the unexpected happens: the leader of the entire Varkin race develops a sexual interest in her.

Iryna K. Combs’ Black Wings offers the reader a parable of a society with no gray areas of morality, the moment of the transformation deciding for each entity and its descendants whether good, or evil, is their lot. The action through the first two chapters is well-structured and paced, but unfortunately the middle two-thirds are much slower, the main focus being Annabel’s romantic entanglements. The action ramps up again abruptly in the last twenty pages to culminate in the final battle of good against evil, winding up the story begun in chapters one and two. Overall, this is a fairly light, easy read, well-suited to younger readers, with good scene-setting that in many ways forms the main strength of the story.

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