The further you get into this book, the better it gets. Not much was happening at the start, apart from an introduction to some sort of detention centre for wayward schoolies (the Sword & Cross) for both the main character (Luce) as well as the reader. Obviously being a teen based correctional institution with no gender exclusions, there is the potential for romance, even if every single one of the members of the school have their own sets of emotional and psychological baggage to deal with.
And it took a while for the story to pique my interest. But pique it, it did, and in a very satisfying, compelling and intriguing way. At the thirty eight percent mark of the kindle version, the reader *still* doesn't know for sure what the story is about. We know Luce was involved in a truly tragic and horrific incident before the book started (But which is why she finds herself at the school to begin with). There are hints aplenty, and as a long term fan of the supernatural story, I am pleased to see which direction Ms Kate promises to take my imagination for the next few hours. There is our Luce, she has made some excellent friends, at least one enemy, the school librarian is a weirdo loony (unless she is one of the story’s principle characters) and it looks like she (Luce) is destined to fall in love with at least two of her fellow students, namely Daniel and Cam. There is a gorgeous scene at the end of chapter eight (in fact, all of chapter eight was gorgeous) where the author describes the beauty of the human being performing the butterfly stroke with great competence. And right at the end, she uses a combination of sunlight, water, and a very attractive male body to hint at the story’s plot.
And of course, I simply *adore* a good love story. This book has the potential to come up with an absolute doozie. Several convoluted, inter-related doozies, to be precise.
The writing style deserves a mention. Just like the classic television shows in recent years, only small parts of each character’s natures, and histories are revealed to the viewer at a time. Hints are given out, which act like minor story cliff hangers which strongly recommended (or is that suggest?) that you keep reading. And this works, by the way. It works very well. And on a literary level, I have been amply impressed on a couple of occasions. Taken from KL 1496, Ms Kate used a student’s shoulder blades as a metaphor for a link to metaphysics which, quite literally, stopped me in my tracks. I wasn’t expecting that. At all. But there is little to no humour in the story, (its not appropriate anyway) apart from some fondly remembered awkward silences and the hint of sexual tension at various points of the book’s time line.
So in summary then: this book is great. I won’t give it full marks - the following volumes of the series might be better. So FALLEN gets a very solid and hugely impressive four stars from this particular reader. Now let me get back to the Sword & Cross to learn what happens to Luce and her love life next...
- Audible Audiobook
- Listening Length: 10 hours and 57 minutes
- Program Type: Audiobook
- Version: Unabridged
- Publisher: Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd
- Audible.com.au Release Date: 25 August 2010
- Whispersync for Voice: Ready
- Language: English, English
- ASIN: B00NWJ73HE
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,219 in Audible (See Top 100 in Audible)