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3.9 out of 5 stars
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VINE VOICEon 23 May 2010
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
When I opted to check Fallen out, I did so believing it was going to be a straightforward dark fantasy adventure. Then I started reading it and began to cringe. I'd picked up a teenage romance novel (admittedly not my first choice of genre) or so I thought.

The one thing reading Fallen has taught me (and this should apply to all readers), it's that one should never underestimate a book. Because it's greatest power is always that it can surprise you. And that's what Lauren Kate has done with her (quite frankly) enthralling read.

Fallen focuses on one Lucinda Price, a narcissist teenager with a horrific past. Lucinda has been sent off by her parents to Sword & Cross reform school. Immediately, Luce finds herself struggling to fit in with the strict regime of the school, as well as trying to find her place among all the other misfits she's landed up with. And to cap it all off, Luce is head-over-heels in love with Daniel Grigori, a distant, cold teenager who couldn't care less about her.

It may sound so simple, but like epics such as The Gargoyle (Andrew Davidson), The Hunger Games (Suzanne Collins) and The Kin (Gillian Wallace), Fallen becomes so much than its premise implies. And that's because of how Lauren guides her story.

There is a plot to Fallen, but it doesn't come into play until the last few chapters. The majority of the book is purely character-driven, with Kate keeping the primary focus on Luce and chronicling her struggles to adapt and survive in the harsh environment of Sword & Cross. Then the author throws the characters (one-by-one) into the mix, and before long, you witness a colourful cast germinate and interact before you.

It's certainly a creative way of establishing all the characters before getting into the thick of things. In the long term, it's a wise course of action as well, as the Fallen series is planned to span across four books. So if we're going to go on a long journey, we want to get to know, love and hate all the protagonists/antagonists.

Throughout the novel, many supernatural elements are touched upon and hinted at, but it isn't until the final chapters when the whole complexity of Fallen changes entirely. Revelations and plot twists kick in and will shock you to the core. And there's nothing cheap about any of it, because the whole read is just wonderfully paced and builds-up to a rip-roaring climax that will leave you hungering for more.

Lauren Kate has certainly gotten her Fallen series off to a strong start. She certainly has a strong understanding of character. Time will tell if her plotting can pay off. I'm certainly intrigued to find out more after such a strong start. Highly recommended.
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on 11 December 2009
I picked this book up yesterday as I saw the cover and LOVED IT - its dark, mysterious and beautiful - just like the story inside! I don't want to focus on Twilight because nearly everyone compares their books to Twilight nowadays and there are loads of copycats out there, but as a fan of these types of books, I really think this book has everything Twilight offers and more (plus its about angels, not vampires!) It's one of those books which you start reading and you can't stop. The story begins when Luce, our main character, arrives at a new school under mysterious circumstances and meets a boy who she is drawn to and who she is sure she has met before. Lots of twists and turns later, the story gets more and more exciting as you go on, and has everything you'd want from a novel - gorgeous boys (good and bad!), a love triangle, romance, best friends, mystery, action and a great fight at the end! I can't wait for the next one now ........... hurry up and finish writing it please Lauren Kate!!
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on 31 March 2012
I am a twilight fan and this was the first paranormal romance i read afterwords. I havnt compared it to twilight as its a book in its own right.
Im prob a bit older than intended audience (im 22) but i loved it, and i didnt feel too old for it.

The characters are likable and interesting, it can take a chapter or so to get into it, i was thinking in the first chapter i wouldn't like it, however it drew me in and and i couldn't put the book down again....i carried it around with me reading lines when ever i could.

The story is sown up and all the mystery is all brought together at the end which gives a great and full ending to the book which i feel many books lack.

I wish it had a little more romance in it though!

This is the first in the series and its incredibly captivating book. It has romance, mystery and twists. It a nice read.

I would recommend this to anyone who wants a good paranormal romance novel!

Please rate my review as helpful :)
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Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Since the Twlight saga I have found it hard to keep buying really good books for my daughter who is vampire mad, and yes before you say it this book is not about blood sucking vampires.

I read the blurb on this one and thought I would give it a go, a nice change from Edward and Bella and it seemed well written and thought through.

My daughter is presently sitting her end of term exams and has still found the time to read this very thick book. Reading is not her strong point the book has to be exceptionally good for her to even get past first chapter. She refused to read J K Rowling hated the style of writing found Joseph Delaney not to her taste but is a Stephanie Meyers fan through and through.

She enjoy this book very much and likes the characters as well as the story line. She would not pass this book onto a male friend but would a female. For her to have read the book at the speed she has it would have to be a very good book indeed. If your teenagers liked Stephanies Meyers or like Evermore then this could be a book to buy for an xmas stocking filler.
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VINE VOICEon 11 December 2009
Two star crossed lovers are caught between heaven and hell being torn apart by the very thing that draws them together...

Lauren Kate's Gothic romance seeths with the archetypal tumult of star-crossed passions, in which the supernatural element serves as heady spice. Lucinda and her fallen angel channel Romeo and Juliet, Heathcliff and Cathy, their audience falls under the spell of a love that is not only undying, but immortal.

Fallen will leave you wanting more!
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on 23 March 2010
The flurry of new fantasy teen romances in the wake of the 'Twilight' phenomenon is exciting and none more so than the quickly rising genre of 'Fallen Angel' fiction. A genuinely interesting concept: Luce is a troubled young girl who, after an accidental fire that may not have been an accident, ends up locked away in a reform school called Sword & Cross. On her very first day, overwhelmed by homesickness and her new scary and deliquent classmates, she meets the gorgeous Daniel and feels an irresistible attraction to him. But Daniel has a secret.....

And that is where this book lost me.
The two stars go to the great concept and the fact that despite being about 300 pages too long it was (for the first 3/4 at least) full of dark atmospheric moments. But it needs a severe edit (this is another symptom of the 'Twilight' effect - Meyer's books were also unnecessarily bloated)- it lacks plot and the characterisation is almost entirely dependent on the supernatural rather than basic human relationships.

Which leads me to my main concern: the heroine of this book is so preoccupied with this random boy who is ceaselessly and unreasonably mean to her and, against her own better judgment, is happy to brood and fret over him and his every whim/opinion that she lacks a definition of her very own - and thus is instead entirely defined by her attraction to him (and therefore appears to lack any wit or rationality). I understood her reticence at first (after all, who wouldn't be awkward on their first day in what is essentially a teenage prison?) but her continuing obsessions and melodrama made me go so far as to despise her. This is a weird trend in teen fiction - to have soppy heroines obsessing over nasty boys - and can surely lead nowhere good. This is a trend obviously at work in 'Twilight' and was also the main drawback of another 'Fallen Angel' fiction, 'Hush, Hush' by Becca Fitzpatrick, though to a lesser degree.

I can only ask: What happened to the pop culture feminist icons like Buffy and Veronica Mars that I loved as a teen? Or, more importantly, what happened to teenage girls in fiction being intelligent, fun-loving and witty? That's the girl I wanna read!

Introspective melodramatic teens will appreciate this, but only if they are into leisurely-paced stories and are able to rise above the strange aspects of the romance at its heart.
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on 16 August 2014
When I saw this book, I fell in love with the cover and bought it. The synopsis was quite appealing and intriguing too. I am really glad, I bought it because the plot, the characters made for a compulsive read. Exactly the type of YA book I enjoy reading. Couldn't fault anything about the book.
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on 13 May 2014
I’ve had this book on my book shelf for a couple of years now and never made the move to pick it up and read it. It’s only since having a Kindle that I decided to download it on there and try it out. However the real push to finally reading this was finding out that they’ve just finished filming the adaptation which very much intrigued me.

Fallen is the tale of Luce, who, is sent to the Sword & Cross school after an incident resulting in the death of a boy called Trevor. She’s struggled most of her life because she sees ‘shadows’ that are only visible to her and their visits are starting to happen more often than she’d like. On arriving at the boarding school, where most of the students are there as a result of breaking the law, she sees Daniel. Immediately she feels a connection with him, although he does everything possible to ignore and push her away from him. In spite of his actions she finds herself thinking about him more and more and becomes slightly obsessed by him.

As she settles in to life at Sword & Cross she gains the attention of a boy called Cam, who seems very interested in her. She also makes a ‘kind of’ enemy in Molly who picks a fight with her on her first day by dumping a plate of meat loaf on her head in the cafeteria. But then she ends up making friends with Arriane, Penn and eventually Gabbe.

The story centres around Luce’s relationship with Daniel and her starting to realise just who he is and what they mean to each other. At first I was a little concerned about how obsessed Luce became over Daniel and I thought to myself that it was just a little too much – I mean she was bordering on stalker behaviour!! However, once their relationship was fully explained I could forgive the obsession as it made perfect sense. I felt a little sorry for Luce who had no idea what was happening to her when most people around her knew what was going on while trying to keep her safe. But despite their best efforts she kept pushing to find out more and more until the end result was inevitable. By the end I did think that it was an amazing coincidence that so many people at this school were involved and had been for many years!!

The one person not involved in the whole situation who also helped Luce in her ‘research’ about Daniel, was Penn. I loved Penn and thought that she was a great ally for Luce who helped her to settle into the school and had no agenda like most people. She was almost like an anchor for Luce – grounded in reality and not involved in the whole supernatural thing that seemed to be happening throughout most of the story. The other character that I loved was Arriane – I just loved that she was so eccentric and the complete opposite to Penn. As the story progresses you see that both Penn and Arriane really care about Luce and just want to help her.

As it should, being the first book in a series, Fallen opens up so many opportunities to carry on the story leaving many questions unanswered and giving you just enough information to help you understand how people fit together and what the tone of the series is likely to be. In this case it’s how two people can be together when their relationship is ultimately doomed to fail unless they can work together to reverse whatever has befallen them to keep them apart. Is their love strong enough to break whatever has cursed them? Only time will tell.
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on 9 March 2011
Lucinda's just been enrolled at a reform school, only she doesn't belong with the other kids and hasn't done anything wrong. Her parents think she may have mental health issues, even though she tells them that the childhood shadows she always saw following her no longer exist. Only thing is, the shadows are very much there - they were there the night Trevor died and though she remembers nothing of what happened to him many still see her as a suspect.

The other kids at Sword and Cross Reform School are a motley bunch of new offenders and reoffenders - except Penn. Penn has a different story - all the kids here have a story, but the only story Lucinda's interested in is Daniel's. From the moment Lucinda first sees Daniel she feels as though they know eachother and she feels that they share a connection...so why is he one of the people whose most hostile toward her? Another boy is so much more attentive to Lucinda and at first she's grateful to have someone who seems to care. Only Cam isn't Daniel, even though being with him sometimes makes her wonder why she doesn't just give the guy a break.

The author's writing is wonderfully descriptive. It was easy to picture what all the people in this book looked and acted like. I could imagine the way the reform school and practically smell the swampiness of the surrounding area.

My main gripe about this book is the pacing. For a while we were gently moving along - at first I thought it was too slow, but then I settled down - when all of a sudden Cam acts as a catalyst that sees a major battle between the 'kind of, sort of good' and the 'downright evil' being played out. Then the action was over in an instant and we have the epilogue that prepares the way for the sequel... No. I wasn't happy with the pacing at all.

I liked the 'Fallen Angel' element. Which of the reform kids or faculty are human and who's a little more than they first appear to be?
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on 21 March 2010
I bought this book in a supermarket partly - as someone else has said - because the cover just drew me in, and also because it had the fantasy theme which is so popular at the moment.

Just to make it clear I am a mid thirties woman who has read all of the Stephanie Meyer books, His Dark Materials, Harry Potter, Eragon etc However, I also read historical fiction, chick lit, biographies and so on. I'm not a mum who reads her children's books (I don't have kids) I just like a good story (and I don't really consider this a children's book in the way that it's too young to be read by adults. It's a book to be enjoyed by teenagers and adults alike)

This book is set in a strange pupil reform / detention centre in the US although it could really be in any country in the World. The characters are all mysterious but believable and the story has substance. I'm not going to tell you what happens. You can gather bits from the back cover and obviously there is an element of 'supernatural' phenomenon but aside from that all you need to know it's a damn good story with good characters and the ending leaves the way clear for the sequel (out in Sept 2010) or can finish you adventure there and then.

I really, really enjoyed really it and I have the second book on order :)
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