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Fallen – Lauren Kate

It seems it’s all about fallen angels at the moment, and one of the most prominent recent releases is the dark and atmospheric Fallen, by Lauren Kate.

Like Hush Hush (see review), it’s got an evocative cover, but while there are similarities between the two novels, it’s not fair to compare them as each has its own rhythm, style and intent.

Quick synopsis: When troubled Luce is sent to a bleak reform school, she’s immediately drawn to Daniel, convinced she knows him from somewhere. The handsome stranger acts indifferent to her, but it’s clear he’s hiding something. But Luce is also grappling with dark shadows that have haunted her for years, and which seem to be growing in strength since her arrival at the gothic reform school.

It’s not giving too much away to say that Luce is one half of a couple doomed to fall in love over and over again – and each time she must die. And each time, Luce has no idea what’s happened in the past, or what’s ahead. That burden is carried by her celestial lover, who’s incapable of preventing her death.

Fallen has one of my least favourite plot devices – the love triangle – but by the end of the book it’s clear there’s much more to this one than meets the eye.

(And the idea of fated love – whether it’s doomed or not – to me raises the question of the value of falling for someone you were destined to be with. Where does choice and free will come into it? I’m hoping Kate tackles this theme in future instalments.)

There are plenty of mysteries, morally ambiguous characters and red herrings throughout Fallen. In this first instalment of a planned series (Torment is due out in September), some of the big questions are answered, but even more are raised.

Fallen is a compelling read. It starts in the claustrophobic world of the reform school, and ends with a violent celestial battle in a cemetery. But all of this seems to be merely setting the scene for a story of far broader scope.

The proof of how well Lauren Kate unravels her gothic mystery will be in future books… which I’m looking forward to reading.


About paulaweston

I'm a writer. And a reader.

7 responses »

  1. Sounds like a great read. I have a love-hate relationship with the whole ‘star-crossed lovers’ theme. After watching ‘Troy’ on TV this week I am just starting Homer’s ‘The Iliad’ because of the whole Paris/ Helen of Troy romance, and I have been trying to get a copy of Baz Luhrmann’s ‘Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet’ after watching the film adaptation of Nick Earl’s ’48 Shades of Brown’ which refers to the fact that Romeo and Juliet met, fell in love and committed suicide together in 4 days.
    Your ‘Fallen’ synopsis reminds me a bit of an episode of ‘Blood Ties’ (murder/ mystery show with vampiric and supernatural themes) where a 15 year old lad is searching for his fated love. The couple had been living, loving and dying together for a couple of hundred years until their last fatal car crash together in the 80s. The girl died (and was reincarnated as per their eternal fate), but this time the boy was left on life support for several years by his brother who couldn’t bear to have the plug pulled, meaning that the boy is now several years younger and has missed their usual rendezvous at an old tree. Now older, the girl is for the first time considering whether she should try to fight fate and break free from the eternal life and death cycle with her loved one.

  2. the book fallen seem really interesting with the shadows that idk what you said is probably what would make it the book to draw in readers but were can you get the book at

  3. Post #2 from me for this book, (!) having now read and thoroughly enjoyed ‘Fallen’, as well as revisiting ‘Romeo and Juliet’ in print and on film. Gee, that Shakespeare fellow could spin a good yarn, couldn’t he!
    But, back to ‘Fallen’. By the end of this book, we (and Luce) have some answers about Daniel and the nature of their relationship, and we have gained some knowledge about several fellow students at the school. As you say, though, this just prepares us for the next book. I am looking forward to reading more about this ill-fated pair, but am hoping that Kate will expand on the whole fallen angels mythology and their place in the world (presumably here on Earth, above and below!).

  4. Pingback: Torment – Lauren Kate (sequel to Fallen) « Other worlds

  5. Pingback: 2010 in review « Other worlds

  6. My daughter wants this dress and the gloves…. Not too sure where to get them? Any ideas….? Thank you

  7. Pingback: Megan's Mysteries - Fallen

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