Theia Alderson has always led a sheltered life in the small California town of Serendipity Falls. But when a devastatingly handsome boy appears in the halls of her school, Theia knows she's seen Haden before- not around town, but in her dreams.
As the Haden of both the night and the day beckons her closer one moment and pushes her away the next, the only thing Theia knows for sure is that the incredible pull she feels towards him is stronger than her fear. And when she discovers what Haden truly is, Theia's not sure if she wants to resist him, even if the cost is her soul.
Published 1 March 2011
Before you say anything about how clichéd it sounds, hear me out in six words: this is one good book, darling!
I know that there's a huge mountain pile of books that have been circulating around the YA book pool-- the forbidden romance (Twilight) kind of books. But they are currently on the wane, thank God.
I know you might be rolling your eyes over the crazy similarity Falling Under's synopsis seems to have to this specific pile of books. But, be prepared to be surprised!
I know you might be growling with exasperation at the stereotypical YA heroine who is naive, innocent and oblivious to her charms, and the bad boy demon prince who is both a curmudgeon as well as a jerk. Nah, nah, you are more than mistaken.
The story completely won me over with its clever twist in the plot. That, and that only. The boldness and generosity of Gwen Hayes fully shone through her amazing control of the storyline.
Yes, the characters are more than typical.
But guess what, the story takes on a complete turn in the second half, with the two of them suddenly switching roles. And, guess what, our male lead, Haden, is actually brutally honest with the fact that he is a jerk and acknowledges it straight to Theia's face. Let's take a look at his frank confession with Theia:
“This isn't a crush, it's obsession. You are never not in my thoughts.
Your scent carries across a room and paralyzes me with longing.
I don't want to hold your hand.
Part of me wants to set you on fire and hold you while the flame consumes us both, to eat your heart so I know that only I possess it entirely.”
Like whoa. He totally got me there, what a 5-star character!
However, I had a slight problem with our Little Miss whom he was talking to. At this point of time in the story, she was still strutting around as a one-dimensional character. Honestly, I do understand that it's hard for authors to portray innocent girls in YA books as they all unavoidably fall into a stereotype.
But, thank you Gwen Hayes, for showing me another side of the story and making Theia a stronger heroine with your brilliant twist.
Yes, the TWIST.
Let me go into that.
In case you haven't noticed yet, many YA novels are either cut off at the climax or hand you only one climax in the entire tale, telling you to buy the sequel to find out what happens next. However, Gwen Hayes hands us a really rich tale, with several climaxes. There were a few times when I thought that the story was drawing to an end, but the twists came one after another, weaving together to form a fully-developed story worth my time.
And, thankfully, I can't help but say this with vigor: no love triangles!
The romance was pretty okay since it's the norm now that the YA female would always be irrevocably in love with the ridiculously handsome dare-devil. Oh, but to give the author due credit, the two other romances (her best friends and x and y) being illustrated in the novel was pretty satisfying too!
One other fantastic point about Falling Under is the dark tone of the book. The creepy horrors of Hell are fascinating-- sewn-together ladies, butlers with no empty faces, the nightmare realm of love and death...
Dangerously alluring and deliciously dark, Falling Under is a book that had me skeptical then delighted. How wicked, how lovely.
I'm undergoing a busy time in my life which leaves little time for reviewing extensively on this blog -- but fret not, I'll be updating my reading status & continuing to share what irks/delights/moves me on Goodreads, so do find me there (if you haven't already)!
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Hi I'm Sel - connoisseur of love stories, romantic and lover of green tea, weird music and words that can make me cry.
I'm 16 and dreaming big.
Life can be stunning when you choose to live it that way :-)
I am in no way monetarily compensated or bribed for any word on this site. All books reviewed were either bought with money (from my own pocket) or provided as a review copy from publishers. Consequentially, all criticisms or praises were written in accordance to the material's perceived merit. Each review has a source which states where I obtained it from.