I might be a couple of years behind in reviewing this title. To be true, I did read it for the first time shortly after it came out; like many other readers I was attracted by the pretty, melancholic cover. I didn't really like it much, back then. But now that the series is coming to a close with the publication of the fourth book, Rapture, I decided to give the books another go.
Fallen is the story of Lucinda (Luce) Williams, a sixteen-year-old girl who is forced to attend a peculiar boarding school in Georgia, Swords and Cross. Luce has to attend it by decision of the judge, after a strange accident in which her close friend Trevor died in a fire, while she was unharmed. Luca also has the uncommon ability to see "shadows" lurking around her, but doesn't talk about it with anyone in fear of being judged mentally instable.
At Swords and Cross, Luce is immediately attracted to Daniel and has the feeling they've known each other for a long time, even though he denies it and keeps his distance from her. Another student, Cam, seems attracted to Luce at once and they start going out, but then she regrets it as soon as Daniel begins to show interest in her. Meanwhile, dangerous shadows lurk around Luce and the school...
The first time I read this book, I was irritated at how Luce appears stupid. Even with her recurring dreams and visions, it takes her the whole book to guess Daniel's true nature. The reader obviously knows everything since the beginning, thanks to the prologue and the back cover, so it can be frustrating that the main character won't get a clue.
More to that, Luce makes some poor decisions and hangs out with Cam even though he appears dangerous, and then has to be saved like the proper damsel in distress. To tell the truth, on this second reading I almost found Cam more attractive than Daniel. I mean, Daniel is sort of boring. He's another Edward Cullen who leaves his love interest wondering why such a perfect creature would ever choose someone as plain and boring as her. Cam, on the other hand, has more of a "bad boy" allure. While I usually roll my eyes at similar characters, this time I felt like his badass nature compensated his being angelically beautiful. I'm not sure about this, but I almost think I'd root for Cam in future books. Not that it seems he really gets a chance with Luce.
As for the whole "damsel in distress" thing, if you can't stand it, you might have to stay clear of this book. I can think of at least four big moments in which Luce needs to be saved by Daniel. She might not be quite as stupid or as helplessly clumsy like Bella Swan, but really, Luce needs to start saving herself at least once in a while.
I'd recommend you try this series if you're a fan of paranormal romance, especially with angel themes (this was one of the first series about angels to be published, then a whole lot of them appeared.) I've read many not-so-enthusiastic reviews of Fallen, but this series seems to be quite successful all the same, so maybe you'd like it.Cover attraction:
I already mentioned that the beautiful cover was what prompted me to read the book for the first time. The Fallen series is like the poster child for "girl-in-a-beautiful-dress" covers. This one has a melancholic quality that matches the book's mood, even though it doesn't really tell you much about the story. I think it's a good choice for the target readers.