Title: Fallen Angel
Author: Heather Terrell
Pages: 310 (ARC version)
Publication Date: Dec. 28th, 2010
For: 13+ some violence and sexuality
Ellie was never particularly good at talking to boys—or anyone other than her best friend and fellow outcast, Ruth. Then she met Michael. Michael is handsome, charming, sweet. And totally into Ellie. It’s no wonder she is instantly drawn to him. But Michael has a secret. And he knows Ellie is hiding something, too. They’ve both discovered they have powers beyond their imagining. Powers that are otherworldly.
Ellie and Michael are determined to uncover what they are, and how they got this way . . . together. But the truth has repercussions neither could have imagined. Soon they find themselves center stage in an ancient conflict that threatens to destroy everything they love. And it is no longer clear whether Ellie and Michael will choose the same side.
"I watched my curtains billow in the early autumn wind that wafted through my opened bedroom window. The night beckoned to me. And I answered its call."
In a Sentence
To me, Fallen Angel was composed of flat characters and an overdone plot wrapped up in pretty packaging.
Fallen Angel was Halo all over again for me. Maybe it's just me, but I feel like the YA paranormal romance genre is becoming over-saturated with the same storyline over and over again. Girl has some sort of "mysterious" power. Girl meets "mysterious" boy. They fall passionately in love with each other by page 100 and then go off on some sort of quest to discover the "mysterious" meaning behind some sort of giant question that the reader can guess the answer to in a few pages. Or worse, the title itself gives it away!
Maybe it's unfair to unload all of my frustration with the genre on Fallen Angel, but it was kind of the straw that broke the camel's back...if you know what I mean. The author's writing style did show potential, and here and there I got a glimpse of her creativity, but I felt like most of that potential was tossed aside in favor of creating a formulaic book that would appeal to the masses.
I think I could have handled the overdone and easily predictable plot if the characters were better developed. However, I felt like both Ellie and Michael, the two main characters, were completely flat. To me, they seemed to be representations of a type of person instead of actual persons themselves. Ellie was the insecure but intelligent teenager whose paranormal attributes made her "special," and Michael was the mysterious and ridiculously attractive guy who randomly shows up in the main character's life and ignores everyone else but her. Cue 100 pages of teenagers mooning over each other, bring in a "Big Bad," have the good guys kick some butt, and then throw in some sort of complication near the end to set things up for a sequel.
I do think that the author had a good start with the idea behind Fallen Angel. Yes, several similar stories have been done before, but the way she was taking the mythology of angels and the Nephilim intrigued me. The parts of the book that explained Ellie's origins were the ones that I actually enjoyed reading. However, in my opinion, an interesting mythology was not enough to hold the rest of the book together.