Monday, March 1, 2010

Review: And Falling, Fly by Skyler White

Genre: Fiction, Dark Fantasy
Edition: Paperback ; Provided by the author
Page Count: 335
Pub. Date: March 2, 2010
Series: Part of The Harrowing Series

My Rating: 3.5 stars (out of 5)
Amazon.com: N/A
Goodreads: 4.00 (Average)

Recommended For: Mature readers. Adult fans of dark fantasy, paranormal books.

My Summary & Thoughts:

If I had to use a term to describe and Falling, Fly, it would be "kind of like falling down the rabbit hole." The characters are unusual, the surroundings imaginative, and the story unique. The book falls outside of the mainstream and is, in essence, a tale about desire vs. love, and the differences between.

From the beginning we are introduced to Olivia, the fallen angel-turned-vampire of our story. For thousands of years she has fed off the desire and fear of man but has never tasted it for herself. Her mission of redemption long lived has lost its meaning and the task of conformity no longer suits her. So she flies back to Ireland, to the Hotel of the Damned buried deep underground to lose herself in her damnation.

Dominic O'Shaughnessy is an innovative neuroscientist who is breaking ground in his field - while trying to forget a past that spans the last thousand years. He is a reborn. Cursed to immortality and visions of lives past lived, loves past lost. He believes his curse to be nothing more than delusions trapped somewhere in the recesses of his brain. But what fate reveals could be more than his rational mind can handle. Until he meets his guardian angel.

The story is told from two alternating points of view; one from Olivia in the first person and the other from Dominic in the third person. Two very contrasting characters, seeking different ideals, who come together through somewhat fateful circumstance. Their chemistry is magnetic and the sexual tension taught. So much so that I was a bit relieved when the book ended because it was a bit of sensory overload. But the two complex characters really bring a fantastic dynamic to the book. Their character development from start to finish is strong and really well done. And that's not to forget the secondary characters who really help set the tone, providing a little bit of wit and a side of horror that adds to the ambiance of the novel.

The aspect I enjoyed most about and Falling, Fly is the writing. It spans so many different elements while providing abstract details that pack a poetic justice. The prose is almost regal and quite enchanting, giving the reader a certain sense of artistry that you can't help but get lost in.

But where and Falling, Fly fell just short for me is the pacing. It's fairly steady throughout most of the book, providing a lot of rich description for the unusual surroundings and the characters, but the climax happened a lot later than I would have liked. The first two-thirds of the novel is fueled on sexual tension and the dynamic between the characters, which sustained me long enough to reach that point but it felt like a long time coming once I got there.

Overall Consensus: and Falling, Fly is a dark tale that weaves vampire mythology, neurological science, biblical ideals, and hints of steampunk into a sinister story full of sensuality and rich symbolism. It's unique in its portrayal of representing vampires as fallen angels and I was quite intrigued by Skyler's vision of L'Otel Matillide. The prose is mesmerizing and that is a quality the sets this novel apart from other dark fantasy books I've read in the past. It tackles many different avenues of desire and, in my honest opinion, it portrays vampires as the blood-thirsty beings they should be. A definite read for those looking for a book outside of the norm.

P.S. Please keep in mind that this is an adult read. Meaning explicit scenes and language. Pursue at your own leisure.


Tales of Whimsy said...

Great review :)

Natalie said...

Great, detailed review. I've been seeing this one around and wondered how it would be. It sounds interesting. I'll probably give it a shot eventually.

Misty said...

I am quoting your review and linking to it in mine (http://bookrat-misty.blogspot.com/2010/03/and-falling-fly-by-skyler-white.html). Thought I'd let you know. :)

Alyssa Kirk said...

Love a good vamp read. Thanks!

Cindy said...

I love the cover :) Great review, this sounds like a good read!

Simcha said...

This sounds like an interesting book. I've been seeing it around on different blogs but this is the first review of it that I actually read. Perhaps I'll give it a try. Thanks for the review!

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