A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Some mixed messages here: There are fallen angels of different types, some demons, and some characters who used to be one or the other and have changed sides...it is hard to tell exactly who the good guys are, or whether all fallen angels are evil, and how much is based on any actual theology. But there are definitely good guys and bad guys, and the good guys are more likable! One main message is to follow your instincts, or your heart.
Positive Role Models
Luce is not the strongest female role model, but she befriends Penn, who is smart, brave, and loyal, and funny, too...and Daniel has the best intentions, if not completely altruistic motives. Her parents seem to have her best interests at heart, even when they send her to reform school.
Violence & Scariness
Luce has visitations from dark shadowy beings who threaten her; young men engage in fistfights at a bar; a friend is killed in a fire; her best friend dies in a battle; two girls engage in a viscious fight; supernatural beings engage in epic battles.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Luce makes out with two different boys and has passionate dreams about Daniel, the love of her life.
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Occasional or single use of "hell," "s--t," "ass," and "bitch."
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
These high school students drink on campus at parties; many students smoke cigarettes. Luce meets a boy at a bar who is drunk.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this book is about as innocent as Twilight, focusing heavily on romance (though fallen angel romance) without much more than kissing and passionate dreams. There is underage drinking and smoking and teachers who turn out to be evil.
Is It Any Good?
There are lots of plot twists and turns to keep the action from being too predictable, and enough romance to satisfy legions of teen readers longing for their own teen angels. Who knew fallen angels could be more charming than vampires?
There are so many similarities between FALLEN and Twilight in plot and characterizations, but Fallen has more strong friendships between likable girl characters, and that whole boarding school mystique going on. Luce is almost convinced that she really is mentally ill, although the shadowy beings who menace her seem so real -- and their origins are revealed in good time in a surprise twist.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.