September 18, 2013

The Way We Fall by Megan Crewe

Title: The Way We Fall
Author: Megan Crewe
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Publish Date: January 24, 2012
Genre: Young Adult, Dystopia, Science Fiction, Survival, Romance
Rating: 2.5/5 Stars

It starts with an itch you just can't shake. Then comes a fever and a tickle in your throat. A few days later, you'll be blabbing your secrets and chatting with strangers like they’re old friends. Three more, and the paranoid hallucinations kick in.  
And then you're dead. 
When sixteen-year-old Kaelyn lets her best friend leave for school without saying goodbye, she never dreams that she might not see him again. But then a strange virus begins to sweep through her small island community, infecting young and old alike. As the dead pile up, the government quarantines the island: no one can leave, and no one can come back. 
Those still healthy must fight for the island’s dwindling supplies, or lose all chance of survival. As everything familiar comes crashing down, Kaelyn joins forces with a former rival and discovers a new love in the midst of heartbreak. When the virus starts to rob her of friends and family, she clings to the belief that there must be a way to save the people she holds dearest.
Because how will she go on if there isn't? 
Poignant and dizzying, The Way We Fall is the heart-wrenching story of one girl's bravery and unbeatable spirit as she challenges not just her fears, but her sense of what makes life worth living.
The Way We Fall was, in short, not what I expected.

I'll admit the gorgeous cover was what first drew me in. How could you look at this book and not want to read it? So I picked it up. And read it.

About fifty pages in, I knew I was going to struggle to get through the book at all. And that’s what I did. Struggle.

The characters were dry and boring, and if they weren’t dry and boring they were just plain annoying. I didn’t like the main character or the supporting characters - they were all flat and meaningless. Nothing about any of them made me enjoy the book even a bit more. Kaelyn was a weak, helpless girl who didn’t show any bravery over the course of the novel.

The plot was ridiculously fast-paced. The big events rushed past in a split second, not even giving you enough time to process what had happened. An example of this is when Kaelyn contracted the virus – which was completely predictable – and got sick, went crazy, and was cured all in about thirty pages (not including the after-effects). I was confused and frustrated with this and the other elements of the book that happened this way too.

Kaelyn and Gav’s relationship seemed to be thrown in randomly towards the end of the book, even though we could see it coming about one hundred pages in. Similar to the main plot points, it went too fast and they were a couple out of the blue in the middle of an epidemic while all of their family and friends were dying. I felt that it didn’t add anything to the plot or characterization. Actually, it made them both seem extremely selfish.

The writing was far from quality. The phrases and words that were used were childish, and there were way too many exclamation points – this may just be a pet peeve of mine, but I can imagine it bothering others, too.

The characters didn’t react correctly to trauma. When Kaelyn’s mother dies, she is upset for a few hours, and then proceeds on with her life, only thinking of her fleetingly in times of distress. When her dad dies, she doesn’t think too much of it. Even when she doesn't know if Drew is alive, she doesn't think about him.

The one thing I did like about this book was the potential it had. Despite the fact that there are many books centered on viruses and epidemics, the idea was original. If the writing had been better and the characters had been developed more, I would have enjoyed it much more.

Overall, I tried so hard to love this book, but I just couldn’t. Unfortunately, I don’t think I’ll be picking up the sequel any time soon.

2 comments:

  1. Well, bummer. I'm sorry it didn't work for you. I get so disappointed if I took the time to read a book and ended up really not liking it because there are so many books I want/need to read and so little time. Thanks for the review!

    Tressa @ Tressa's Wishful Endings

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