Series: After Trilogy #1
on July 12, 2011
Genres: Adult SFF
*This book was provided by the Author for review. No compensation was provided and all opinions are strictly my own.
When the world ends, all that is left is love....
As chaos descends on a crippled Earth, survivors are tormented by strange psychic gifts. In this time of apocalyptic despair, love is put to the test. One woman with mysterious healing power guides seven children to safety. Charismatic Arthur offers her a haven. Slowly Emma falls for him. But at the moment of their sweetest love, his devastating secret is revealed, and they are lost to each other. Will Emma stay with him?
The first in a romantic trilogy set during the end times.
“Fallen” by Traci L. Slatton left me with a book hangover. There’s no other way to describe it. Ok, maybe there is. Have you seen the movie Silver Linings Playbook? There’s a scene when Pat is reading a book that doesn’t end well, and he throws it across the room at the wall (or was it out the window? I can’t recall). Anyways, I wanted to pull a Pat, because when I got to the ending I was crushed. I’m not saying it was a bad ending. It was just heart wrenching and left at such a cliff hanger, that I had a hard time handling it. Two days later and the hangover still remains. I just need to get the second book already so I can find out what happens. I digress.
“Fallen” is the first book of “The After Series” and is about a woman named Emma, who is caring and looking over 7 children (only one of which is actually her own). A mist has tormented the world, killing everyone it reaches, and leaving the earth in ruins. Separated from her husband and other child during the chaos that ensues after the mist first appears, Emma is left to do the only thing she can: run and hide. She takes her daughter Mandy with her, and along the way they pick up children who have no one else. During their journey one day, the mist traps them, and the only thing that saves them all is a group of men on horses. It’s then that Emma meets Arthur, a man who will change her life forever. She makes a decision in order to save her children, and from this point forward Emma and the children live with a band of people, on the run from the mist.
The camp the men bring Emma to is a small community in itself, full of refugees hiding from the mist. Arthur is in charge, and runs a tight ship. Traci Slatton did a great job of describing the camp in detail, and the people living there. Her characters were all unique and interesting, making the book that much more enjoyable.
My favorite part of the book was the relationship between Emma and Arthur. I’m not passing judgement on this part of the book (can’t give out spoilers, go get the book!) but I want to acknowledge the hard choice Emma made when she first met Arthur. During a time of apocalyptic anguish, a lot of hard decisions have to be made, and had Emma not done what she did, it’s likely the children in her possession would not have lived as long as they did. This book poses hard questions, that makes the reader ask themselves what they would do in a situation like this. That’s why I liked this book so much. It was realistic and harsh at the same time. In life or death situations, human nature will do just about anything to survive. Also, there’s an internal battle Emma (and some of the other characters) are fighting with; their idea of right and wrong. Before the mist, what was acceptable was different and there were more rules. After the mist destroys the earth as they know it though, this ideal of right and wrong changes. In order to adapt, they have to change how they perceive these values.
Another interesting aspect of the “Fallen” was the supernatural powers some of the people are left with after the mist shows up. Emma is one of those people, and her power is special, making her a target for enemies who want to capture her for her power. She isn’t the only one with powers though. One of the children in her care is Newt, who is quite possibly the sweetest child of the group and is always trying to help. I fell in love with Newt from the beginning, and I really enjoyed watching how she used her supernatural ability to help those around her.
The only reason I gave this a 4.5 instead of a 5, was because I thought the science parts of the book could have been explained better. The idea of the biomind and how the mist works was really confusing at some places in the book. Had it been explained better, I would have given “Fallen” a 5. Other than that though, I loved this book to pieces! I can’t wait to start reading the 2nd one! Has anyone read ahead yet or even finished the series? Is it worth my time to finish it?
Let me know in the comments!
Reviewed by Emily!
My name’s Emily and I’m a 21 year old college student. I’m studying business and english, with the hopes of getting into editing and publishing when I graduate. I live in Wisconsin and when I’m not busy cramming for exams or working, I’m reading books at an alarming rate, or writing. I also enjoy photography and camping with my family. I love reading all types of books, but my favorite is fantasy! I co-blog over at Wholly Books.
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