Release Date: December 8, 2009
Read it in: 4 days
The Hook: “What if the person you were meant to be with could never be yours?”
OK, I know there are mixed reviews out there about this book. It seems like it has some fans and then there are those that simply CANNOT STAND it. I, personally, liked this book. I didn't LOVE it, but I enjoyed reading it. I wasn't bored, and I thought the closer to the end I got, the more intrigued and wrapped up in the story I became. Now, I have only just started reading YA fiction so to be honest, I have very little to base an opinion on as far as paranormal romance/forbidden love go, especially in terms of this theme being over-done and cliché. Maybe this gives me a fresh viewpoint on the whole genre??
That being said, I have read Twilight and I really thought Fallen was overall a better book than Twilight (Twilight fans please don't hate me). However, I think it’s also probably another case of a book being popular more for the marketing it’s had than based on actually being an awesome, unforgettable story. It’s not that Fallen was a bad read—it just wasn’t all that memorable, either. Here's some things I did like about it:
- The story unfolds in mid-19th century England and from the beginning draws you in—there is something intriguing and mysterious that keeps you reading
- Luce's character is portrayed well- she is an actual living, breathing, thinking human being—vulnerable, innocent… she has some depth to her and her thoughts and reactions very often echo those of the reader (ex: “Why is everyone at this school so weird?” p.52). I could relate to a lot of the things she goes through at the reform school and her reactions generally make sense.
- The scenes of Luce being thrown into the hellish world of Sword & Cross reform school reminded me slightly of Mr. Brocklehurst’s school in Jane Eyre-- and Kate does a really good job at painting vivid pictures that are dark, brooding- and at times pretty sexual/erotic-- the perfect mix for a Gothic story of doomed lovers. But there is nothing cheap or trashy with the way Kate describes the interactions between Luce and Cam/Daniel- they are heavy and deep, pained and other-worldly, all at the same time.
- The book cover is freaking gorgeous.
- The dialogue was at times very forced- and forced dialogue always winds up sounding incredibly cheesy…(phrases like “nice digs,” “capiche,” “He has the hots for you,” “absolute lame-o’s”-- Who talks like that???)
- Daniel was a bit too Edward-esque-- too perfect and a super a-hole. But Kate does a pretty good job at giving a reason for why he's such a jerk to Luce towards the end of the story-- and it makes sense. (Well, it did to me anyways). He redeems himself.
- Luce’s parents are clueless, apathetic, unloving and fake—not to mention bordering on sadistic in their absolute negligence of their daughter. I kinda wish they had spontaneously combusted to be honest…