February 16, 2011

Book Review of "Falling Under" by Gwen Hayes


Title: Falling Under
Author: Gwen Hayes
Classification: YA Fiction, Fantasy, Paranormal
Source: ARC review copy from the publisher.

Overall Grade: 
Would I read it again? 
Would I recommend it? 

Summary (from Goodreads):

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.

My Thoughts:
What Worked:
  • The characters. I felt like Theia and her friends Donny and Ame were very real teenagers for the most part. Hayden was also intriguing.
  • The story. Falling Under is not exactly like any paranormal romance you've read: It's a bit darker, a bit spookier and a bit more creepy.
What Didn't Work:
  • The dialogue. There were some points in the story where Hayes lost the authenticity of her characters with the dialogue. Take the following example from the book:
"When one of the varsity basketball players tried to pass without even seeing us, Donny drew the line. 'Hey, Bill, did I ever tell you how much it meant to me that you made sure my needs were still met that one time you couldn't get it up? That makes you a real gentleman,'" (page 14 in my version.)
  • ... To me, this doesn't seem like a normal thing for a teenager to say. I know that authenticity isn't the most important thing in a novel, but this crossed the line a bit for me.
  • The pacing. I felt a bit confused at times in Falling Under. It seemed to take Theia an awful lot of nights of seeing and visiting Hayden in her dreams before she actually approached him in real life. I think the pacing of the story was a bit lost in the grotesque world of Under that Hayes created.
Overall, Falling Under is definitely a haunting new page-turner that will delight the more morbid fans of paranormal romance immensely!

Overall Grade: 
Would I read it again? 
Would I recommend it to others? 


  1. That line you quoted struck me as off, too. It bothered me, actually. Obviously, I had been swept away by everything else in the book and managed to forget it by the time I wrote the review! LOL

    Great review! :-)


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