Tuesday, 2 November 2010
Review: The Fallen Volume 1 (The Fallen & Leviathan) - Thomas E Sniegoski
On his eighteenth birthday, Aaron begins to hear strange voices and is convinced he is going insane. But having moved from foster home to foster home, Aaron doesn't know whom he can trust. He wants to confide in the cute girl from class, but fears she'll confirm he's crazy.
Then a mysterious man begins following Aaron. He knows about Aaron's troubled past and his new powers. And he has a message for Aaron: As the son of a mortal and an angel, Aaron has been chosen to redeem the fallen.
Aaron tries to dismiss the news and resists his supernatural abilities. But he must accept his new found heritage - and quickly. For the dark powers are gaining strength, and are hell-bent on destroying him...
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Aaron has grown up being shuffled between foster families and has no memory of his real parents. When he turns 18 very strange things start happening to him, he is suffering with recurring nightmares and is suddenly able to understand languages he's never even heard of before. Worried that he is losing his mind Aaron doesn't know where to turn. When a mysterious old man starts following him and claiming that Aaron is a nephilim (the son of a mortal woman and a fallen angel) Aaron doesn't want to believe him but as time goes by it soon becomes obvious that the man must be telling the truth. But can Aaron come to terms with his new powers before his enemies discover him?
The Fallen Volume 1 contains the first 2 stories in The Fallen series by Thomas E Sniegoski - The Fallen and Leviathan. I have to confess that one of the things that drew me to the book was the cover and I was expecting a story with a strong paranormal romance and was looking forward to reading it from a male character's perspective. I have to say that although there are hints at a possible future romance the book wasn't at all what I expected. It is actually a lot darker and more violent than I thought it would be and I think it would be popular with a male audience (perhaps with a different cover?) as well as with girls.
I have mixed feelings about the book - perhaps that is because of the expectations I had when I started reading. There were some things I really liked, Aaron is an interesting character and one I felt drawn to but I did get a little fed up with his refusal to accept things by the end of the second story. At first his reluctance was completely understandable but I just felt it went on a little too long and became irritating in the end. I absolutely loved Aaron's dog Gabriel and the relationship between the 2 of them, I don't want to give any spoilers by saying more so you'll just have to read the book to find out why! I enjoyed the action and although the first story is a little slower the pace really picked up in Leviathan and had me rapidly turning the pages to find out what happened next.
The main thing I had a problem with was the number of different viewpoints we saw throughout the story. We seemed to be constantly introduced to new characters and just as I was starting to think they were going to have an important role to play they would be killed off. I was never sure who was going to be important and I ended up getting confused with some of the names which made reading hard at times. I felt you could have cut away quite a few chapters without really losing anything important from the story line but making for a less confusing read.
Having said that I do feel that the author has raised some interesting concepts and I'm very curious to see how things will play out in the last 2 stories in the series. When you look at the angels versus the fallen angels it is interesting to see who it is doing bad things with the belief that they are working towards a greater good. The story really makes you think about good and evil and it will make you wonder if anyone is ever completely good or bad or if we are all just somewhere in the middle. I'm curious to see how Aaron will be able to reunite the fallen angels with God and to find out more about his parents and his blossoming abilities. I'm hoping that we will see more of the romance that has so far only been hinted at and looking forward to seeing more of both Aaron and Gabriel. I would recommend this series to YA urban fantasy fans who like their stories more on the darker side. If you're looking for a gentle romance this probably isn't the series for you but if you're not squeamish and want something that will make you think then it's definitely worth giving it a try.
Source: Received for review from publisher Simon & Schuster
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