by Lauren Kate
What if the person you were meant to be with could never be yours?
There's something achingly familiar about Daniel Grigori.
Mysterious and aloof, he captures Luce Price's attention from the moment she sees him on her first day at the Sword & Cross boarding school in sultry Savannah, Georgia. He's the one bright spot in a place where cell phones are forbidden, the other students are all screw-ups, and security cameras watch every move.
Even though Daniel wants nothing to do with Luce--and goes out of his way to make that very clear--she can't let it go. Drawn to him like a moth to a flame, she has to find out what Daniel is so desperate to keep secret . . . even if it kills her.
Dangerously exciting and darkly romantic, Fallen is a page turning thriller and the ultimate love story.
*** MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS ***
Yep, I've just read *another* fallen angel book. Seems to be my thing these days, huh? I've been aware of this series for about a year now, since a coworker had read the first three books and fell in love with them. (The fourth/final book just came out last week.) She'd offered her copies to me many times, insisting that "You just have to read them! I know you'll love them!" At the time though, I blew it off because the idea of angels seemed to be the current cheesy replacement for vampires. Ha, yeah, so look at me now . . . reading angel books left and right!
Having just recently read the Hush, Hush series, I couldn't help but wonder how similar these books were going to be. I was so happy to see that Fallen was something completely different. It didn't take me long at all to be sucked into this story. It was an easy read, well paced without relying on the dreaded 'tension building' stall tactics. Everything seemed to have a point, and I liked that. Towards the end though, some of those annoying tendencies started to pop up more, and I admit the last fifty pages or so were dragging for me.
Seventeen year old Luce is sent to reform school after a crime she remembers little about. She's immediately drawn to fellow student Daniel but he wants nothing to do with her at first, and then sends a whole lot of mixed signals after that. Luce starts having weird dreams about him, weird feelings like she knows him from somewhere. She's drawn to him, and can't understand why he's nice to her and nearly kissing her one minute, and turning a cold shoulder to her the next.
Send in Cam, another classmate who is charming and handsome and totally into Luce . . . and she doesn't know what to think. Why does she keep obsessing over Daniel when Cam is right there, everything she wants Daniel to be?
One funny thing I kept mixing up in my thoughts while reading this is that Daniel is blond and Cam is dark haired. Since I prefer dark hair and dark eyes over blond any day, my mind kept seeing Daniel as the dark one and Cam as the blond one. Going one step farther, I kept seeing Cam as the guy who plays Jake in The Secret Circle . . .
I never really did form a clear picture of Daniel in my head. Booooo, I know.
Anyway! I fell in love with Daniel. Finally, a main guy character that isn't an arrogant ass. Daniel is so much more like Edward Cullen than he is like Patch or Scott (Hush, Hush), or Finn or Loki (troll series), or even Phoenix (Embrace). Daniel is ancient, but again is locked in a teenage body. His simple caring touches do more for his hotness than tons of sappy dialogue or acts of macho anger ever could. His story is so sad . . . to keep being brought together with Luce throughout the ages, in many different lives, only to have to lose her time and time again. I heard the song A Thousand Years, the song from Breaking Dawn, while reading this book and I was bawling my eyes out because it seems to almost fit Daniel and Luce better than Edward and Bella. It was so heartbreaking to learn about his story, and so hauntingly sad that she has led many lives but doesn't know any of this. She does start to learn details towards the end of the book, but even so, I think his side of the story is so much more tragic because he remembers everything, but she sort of just starts from a blank slate each time.
I was sooooo loving all of this and then, of course, it had to be ruined by the usual angel wars, the good angels/bad angels, and the fact that Luce is highly sought after by them all. *sigh* Yes, I know there has to be some drama, some form of crisis and conflict to make their relationship hard fought and tragic but really? Can't we come up with something new? Or can't we focus more on that sad relationship? Daniel had one simple statement early on when trying to explain to Luce . . . "I don't know how to stop it [her dying]. I don't know what to do." That just broke my heart. He's had all this time to find an answer, a loophole, a solution, and in all this time he still can't find one. His defeated admission of "I don't know what to do," just killed me. So why can't we have more of THAT?
But no. For reasons this book doesn't quite explain, there are many more angels interested in Luce than just Daniel. She is now the key to something and needs to be whisked away and protected at all costs. I *don't* like when it comes down to this. Didn't like it in Twilight, didn't like it in Hush, Hush, didn't like it in the troll series, and was sooooo disappointed to find it again in this one. This is only the first book of this series though, so hopefully things will shift to something else in coming books. And it didn't ruin this book for me, because it wasn't the main thing going on. These boring revelations didn't pop up until closer to the end, and that's probably why it started to drag for me.
And I really didn't like or understand that little turn of events in the epilogue. All the more reason to dive right into the next book, huh?
Overall, I really liked this book but didn't love it as much as I thought I would early on. I definitely like it more than Hush, Hush because the characters aren't so snotty and the story is a lot less complicated. I shouldn't even compare the two, I know, but sometimes you just can't help it. I'm glad I've finally given in and read this book.
Have YOU read Fallen, by Lauren Kate? What did you think? I'd love to discuss it with someone, anyone!