Tuesday, January 19, 2010
Luce finds it impossible to let Daniel go. There is something achingly familiar about him and something more that he is keeping hidden. All the while, dark, ominous shadows are stalking Luce and only she can see them. Is she insane or are they actually something very real and dark tied in with the bizarre death that landed Luce in reform school?
I am happy to say that Fallen by Lauren Kate was better than I feared it might be. In this day of Twilight mania I find it very easy to expect very little out of these young adult supernatural romances. Fallen did, however, capture my interest after a woman came into the library where I was working ranting about how very good she thought it was.
The novel is well paced and I particularly enjoyed the rate at which Kate chose to slowly reveal information. On that note, thank you to the publishers for not giving away every single little mystery on the back cover! Too many YA supernatural romances seem to give these things away in the blurb these days. Fallen starts with a very strong prologue and I absolutely loved the tone that it set. If only that tone could have carried as strongly throughout the rest of the book although it was still good.
Luce's friendship with Penn developed well but in contrast other characters seemed to be forgotten. I am mostly speaking about Arriane. She was introduced as if she was going to be a significant character and seemed as though she would be one of Luce's closest friends but quickly seemed to fall to the wayside. While Arriane does make the comment "you've been hiding from me" as though to imply that she has been avoided by Luce, I still felt as though her absence went unjustified and prior to that moment I had been wondering why she had disappeared from the story.
I thought that Kate could have upped the action just a bit. I can understand why she approached the big finale the way that she did but, for example, instead of Luce just mentioning that Arriane showed her how to dodge the security cameras why did we not get to see it? Was she nervous about getting busted? I couldn't help but think that little things like the could have been used to up the tension just a little bit more. Speaking of the security, for having all of those cameras around, the students at Sword & Cross sure seemed to still get away with a lot. If the security cameras are supposed to create a feeling of oppression it seemed like nobody was really watching.
As for the romance, well, I confess I find it hard to get into a romance where the male love interest shares the same name as my brother but that is no fault of the author. The romance that Lauren Kate portrays is one of those where Luce feels intensely and is drawn to Daniel when she hardly knows him but Kate gives reason for this and it works in terms of the overall story. The love triangle also adds an interesting dynamic while trying to interpret Cam.
I found myself quite enjoying Fallen and that it was easy to read. There was something that drew me in, even if I cannot say for certain what it specifically was. Something that kept me up reading late wanting to know what would happen next. Early on while reading I could not honestly see how Fallen could warrant a sequel and if Lauren Kate had chosen to do so I am sure that it could have been fine as a stand alone novel. However, Kate has set herself up for the upcoming sequel while leaving plenty of questions open yet still providing enough answers to satisfy for now so I will definitely be keeping an eye out for the next book, Torment.
I also cannot help myself but to mention that I really love, love, love the cover on Fallen.