Book review by
Debra Bogart, Common Sense Media
Fallen Book Poster Image
Parents recommendPopular with kids
Fallen angels are the new, more charming vampires.

Parents say

age 13+
Based on 6 reviews

Kids say

age 13+
Based on 39 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Educational Value
Positive Messages

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 & Representations

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.


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.


Luce makes out with two different boys and has passionate dreams about Daniel, the love of her life.


Occasional or single use of "hell," "s--t," "ass," and "bitch."

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.

What 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.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 2, 6, 9, and 11-year-old Written bylexsmom1979 July 15, 2010

Too mature for 13-year-olds

Why does this website say this book is okay for kids age 13? And then say that there is cussing and make-out sessions? Also, it doesn't mention that the... Continue reading
Adult Written bykierstinr November 12, 2014


In this book Luce is an extraordinary girl who can see shadow’s and doesn’t understand it. To her it seems like when she’s the most happy they come and take tha... Continue reading
Teen, 14 years old Written byMim Z April 9, 2021


I found this book on a list of good books for teens. I started reading it as a book to pass time, in the story Luce the main character bounces between to boys a... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byshadowprincess January 7, 2019

Dreamy, dark, angelic romance

I think this book is great for teens ( 12+ ) who are into angels, romance, anticipation and a gritty setting.
The story follows 17yr old Lucinda Price ( Luce... Continue reading

What's the story?

Seventeen-year-old Luce is sent to reform school after her boyfriend dies in a suspicious fire and she is blamed for his death. Being sent to new schools is nothing new to her after a lifetime of treatment and mediation for seeing "shadows," but the new school is the worst so far. At least until she crushes on a hot guy named Cam, and then falls under the spell of beautiful Daniel Grigori. Could Daniel be the love of her life? A new friend helps her spy on Daniel's past and although Daniel resists her advances at first, soon he is fighting Cam for her. Innocent students start dying, and Daniel admits that their love is not the only thing at stake. An epic battle ends the book and the true nature of many are revealed -- but enough new questions are raised to make readers anxious for the sequel.

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.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the epic battle going on in and what theology the story borrows from. Do all religions believe in angels and the fallen angel story? Do all religions have a version of heaven and hell?

  • Luce was in therapy for "seeing" dark shadowy beings who threaten her. Why would doctors give her antipsychotic medications for that?

  • What makes the story of star-crossed lovers so appealing? What are your favorite love stories? Do they always end happily?

  • Disney is reportedly making this book into a movie. Who would you cast in the main roles? What parts of this nearly 500 page book would you cut to make it movie-length? What should be left in?

Book details

  • Author: Lauren Kate
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Book type: Fiction
  • Publisher: Delacorte Press
  • Publication date: December 1, 2009
  • Publisher's recommended age(s): 12 - 17
  • Number of pages: 452
  • Last updated: June 19, 2019

Our editors recommend

For kids who love star-crossed romance

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