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Torment - Lauren Kate
As many of you might have already gathered from my previous reviews, and the fact that I have a blog which focuses upon books alone; I absolutely adore reading. I love stand-alone books, though I am always looking out for a series of books in the hope that I will fall in love with them and have longer in the respective worlds.
I came across this series quite a while ago now though due to the amount of books on my shelves, and more recently in my Kindle, the books sat on my shelves for quite a long time before I got around to picking them up again. I had also looked at reading them a number of times before, though something about them put me off, even though I felt drawn to them.
Torment is the second book in the Fallen series.
HELL ON EARTH
"Sometimes beautiful things come into our lives out of nowhere. We can't always understand them, but we have to trust in them. I know you want to question everything, but sometimes it pays to just have a little faith."
It took fallen angel Daniel and re-incanted Luce an eternity to find one another, and now something has changed. Luce has surpassed her previous lives and is still alive, and Daniel will do anything to keep it that way, though at what cost?
You would think that after so long apart, Daniel would want to keep Luce close to him at all times, though in the usual brooding way we have often seen in male characters of this kind (Edward Cullen and Angel from Buffy the Vampire Slayer to name a couple), I should have known that life would not be a bed of roses for the two star-crossed lovers. Instead of relaxing by the pool, cuddling up to his newly found love and sharing a plate of spaghetti like Lady and the Tramp, our brooding fallen angel dumps Luce at yet another school and leaves to hunt down Outcasts - immortals who want to kill Luce.
This is where the name of the book comes in. Of course, in his absence, Luce is absolutely tormented, though she soon realises that Shoreline is no ordinary school, and perhaps with her newly acquired Nephilim friends (offspring of fallen angels and humans), she will be able to figure out more about her past, the past that Daniel is inconveniently keeping from her.
Learning more about her past, Luce begins to suspect that Daniel is hiding something (she has only just realised this?!), something buried deep and reeks of danger.
What if Daniel's version of the past is not all that it seems? And what if Luce is really meant to be with someone else?
Described as 'the ultimate love story', it should come as no surprise that the love story between the two main characters is paramount within the first and the second book, though as you may have gathered from the write up above, this love story is not a straight forward one. Through the first book, we were left with a lot of questions about the two characters involved in this relationship, and although we learn a little more in this book, we are still left confused. This is not all of a bad thing, though, as it keeps the story mysterious and leaves it openly running forward whilst we come up with our own theories.
One aspect which started to annoy me in this book, more so than any other time, is the constant pining the two characters have over one another. Yes, I understand their misery at not being together, especially from the point of view of Luce, though I think we got the point after the first fifty reminders!
Apart from the few flaws in the characters, one main one which I have outlined, the characters as a whole have improved quite a bit from the first book, though at times I felt that the lesser characters were more well rounded that the main characters. This could be due to the fact that the mystery surrounds the main characters and hopefully, in due course, the characters will grow and expand, though for now, I do feel a little disappointed.
Heading back to the storyline itself, the same problem arose in this second instalment as we saw in the first; for about three quarters of the book, the story seemed to go nowhere. It barely progressed very far until this point and many times I felt it was slow and tedious. However, something once again drew me into the story and I found myself reading at quite a fast pace, barely wanting to put the book down. Perhaps it was the mystery surrounding the story that kept me entertained, though whatever it was, it certainly was not the beginning style of the story.
The final quarter of the book mirrored the first with the action and excitement doubling, though it was not until right near the end that I really felt the pull of the story. The question is whether you can bare a slow start enough to get to this energetic point? At times, I do admit that I felt like putting the book down, though the story already had a hold on me, and perhaps if you have read the first book and are thinking about continuing onto this book, you will feel the same.
As far as predictability is concerned, you will find a fair amount in this book, though there are a lot of twists and turns near the end which leave a lot of mystery still left in the air.
So what makes this book any different to other books along these lines?
Unlike the first book, I did not find this one overly unique. A lot of the school situation almost mirrored the first book, as well as many other books out there. Of course, the story as a whole does hold a different feel to it, and the storyline looks to be going where other may not have gone before (have I just stepped into a Star Trek review?!), so I still have some hope.
One thing which I find very important in a book is the ending. A story can be written perfectly, though if the ending is wrong, then it gives me a really terrible feel to the whole book, almost as though I feel my time was wasted reading it, even if I did enjoy the rest of the story.
So how does the ending of this book compare?
The ending is, once again, the best part of the book. Although it did not have the excitement the first book held, it did have some great moments with a large twist at the end which I did not see coming.
This book best falls into the young adult paranormal romance genre.
"Loneliness in a crowd of people was the worst kind of loneliness, but she couldn't help it."
Is this a fantastic read? Not by a long shot. It lacks energy and strength that you would expect to see in a book such as this, though once you hit the mid-point (or just beyond), you will find a huge contrast in style and flow. I am glad that I ploughed through the slow parts and am hoping that the next book will bring something much better into the fold. By the look of the end of this book, we should probably expect something completely different. Whether this will eb a good or bad difference is yet to be decided.
This book is just over 450 pages long and can be found on all formats of book from the Kindle for £4.33 (which is a little too much in my opinion) to paperback for £4.56 or second hand from a penny, to audio books which range from £2.05 second hand all the way up to nearly £18.00 which is completely unreasonable in my opinion!!
A LITTLE SOMETHING EXTRA
As well as the four main books in the Fallen series, Lauren Kate has written a series of shorts which run in and around the main books. These shorts are exactly what they say on the tin - shorts. Pages seem to range between two to fifteen pages so you can not even call them a short novella!
Due to the length of these shorts, they can not be made into a full review though I thought I would add a couple which occur around this book as a little extra to this review. These are almost like missing chapters in some sense. You will be able to find little reviews on these shorts as and when I read them on my book blog; Elfie Books (link found below).
A Date with an Outcast (2.1)
This short follows Shelby and Phil before Shelby finds out exactly who Phil is. It takes place at the beginning of the second book in the series; Torment.
I was wrong when I thought six pages was short - this one is even shorter at only two pages long! To be honest, this short is barely worth the time. Not just due to the poor length, but due to the insert itself. It does not give us any new insight and I feel that both the short and the characters are poorly written in comparison with the main books and the other shorts which have come before this. Personally, I would say avoid this one completely, though if you do read it, it will only take a matter of minutes if that so it is not stealing too much of your time!
Cam Goes hunting (2.2)
This short takes place within the second main book of the series; Torment. Fans of Cam will love this four page short that focuses upon him alone as he tracks down outcasts in an effort to protect Luce.
We get a little insight to more of Cam's feelings towards Luce, though it mainly adds an extra paragraph or two of 'behind-the-scenes' within another main book scene.
It seems the further we go through these shorts, the less entertaining or interesting they actually are. Perhaps I should quit whilst I am ahead?
Inside Francesca's Office (2.3)
These shorts continue to be very short with this most recent one falling in at a mere three pages. I know these act like missing short scenes, though it would have been nice to have them a little longer!
This scene takes place upon the arrival of Roland in the second book of the series; Torment. What is interesting about this scene is the fact that it is written from the point of view of Francesca, a teacher at Shoreline. She is a character I despise in the main books though through her point of view we are able to see the world through her eyes illuminating her thoughts and feelings a little better for us. My personal opinions of this character has not changed after reading this, though. Stephen and Roland also appear in this scene, and all characters are written as well as they are in the main books with personalities that you will either love or hate.
A slightly condensed version of my review can also be found at http://elfie-books.blogspot.co.uk
The story starts shortly after the battle at Sword and Cross along with the start of the truce between the forces of good and evil. We are gradually introduced to other elements outside of the main factions of good and evil, all of which are dependent on Luce. It is definitely necessary to read this series in order to get the full benefit of the nuances of the plot.
The most amazing plot teasers are placed throughout the narrative, making me shoot through the pages to find if my assumptions were correct. The plot had me hooked like a drug addict needs their next fix, I needed to carry on reading to get my 'fix' of the plot.
I found the character development astounding, it really blew me away. Especially that of Luce; from following what she is told, she develops independence and curiosity to challenge the information she is given (or not as the case may be). Although Luce feels love for Daniel she does question how she can feel such intense emotion when she doesn't really know Daniel. She feels she is unable to follow on faith alone. She is emotionally stronger than she is given credit for. Her 'talents' are revealed slowly, taking even Luce by surprise at the things she can do.
The introduction of her new classmates at Shoreline gives an opportunity for the reader to compare and contrast their personalities and appearance to the characters we already have in place. I actually really liked the introduction of Miles as an alternative love interest for Luce. His temperament is so completely different to Daniels that as a reader you question who would be the better choice for Luce. However, I had the nagging feeling at the back of my mind that there are more to Miles and Shelby than has been revealed so far.
At the beginning of Torment, Daniel came across as a bit controlling. He is in the position of possessing the knowledge of Luce's previous incarnations, making him fully aware of all the possible dangers/consequences. He is unable to share this knowledge with Luce, yet he expects her to trust him based solely on the depth of the emotion they share. Daniel's character is revealed slowly, like peeling the layers of an onion. I was profoundly sadden at the thought of his having other girlfriends. Although I am not convinced this notion has come from a reliable source. However the seed of doubt has now been planted. As the story progresses we are able to discern the full extent of Daniel's devotion to Luce, it took my breath away.
The imagery and descriptions were realistic and relatable, making the story completely believable. I was wishing I could go to school at Shoreline. The contrasts between Shoreline/Sword and Cross was startling in the imagination. So well described you could build a three dimensional picture of both.
The reworking of bible stories was ingenious. I really liked how the reworking showed that nothing is black and white, there are shades of grey; IE there are always two sides to every story. You cant have good without evil, there has to be a balance, a yin and yang scenario sprang to mind.
The ending was action packed and dramatic leaving me yearning for the next installment. This is one story that can literally be taken in any direction, and I for one cant wait to see where it is heading.
I did warn you that gushing would be involved but I hope I have made concise points with my gushing thrown in. I loved Fallen and have increased my love of this series with Torment. Thank you UK Book Tours for giving me the chance to read it. One word AWESOME.
Torment is the sequel to Fallen by Lauren Kate (see my review for that) and follows on from where Fallen left off.
Luce has finally found her angel. The one she is just meant to be with. THE ONE. He's waited all his life for her, but what if Luce is actually meant to be with somebody else?
Luce finds herself at another school, called Shoreline, but this one would hardly be much more different than Cross & Sword. So much brighter and more freedom. But Luce isn't really free. Daniel won't let her leave campus and to make things worse, Daniel isn't even there with her. They've been forced apart, despite Luce's protests, for her safety.
Unhappy about her separation from Daniel, she wants answers, but she's not getting them from him. She learns from others, about her mysterious past lives and about Daniel and she suspects he's hiding something.
In Torment, we get to meet new characters, among them are Luce's roommate Shelby (who's a great friend, but seems to hold some kind of grudge) and Miles (who takes a shining to Luce). Torment wouldn't be a sequel without a few characters from Fallen turning up too, some of them most unexpectedly!
Luce is no longer afraid of the shadows like she used to be, like she had been all her life, instead she is now able to manipulate with them and see what they really do, but as with everything... a little knowledge can be a dangerous thing.
Daniel is supposed to be keeping his distance, but keeps turning up. He's as elusive and as secretive as ever, and frustratingly so. Luce wants answers (and so do we!), but Daniel seems to side-step the questions and tries to seduce Luce with his charm instead.
I have read reviews that have said Torment has a cliffhanger ending, but I don't think that's true. I think the ending of the book is simply the transition from this part to the next. If it's meant to be a cliffhanger, then it's certainly not an annoying one (in my opinion).
Like Fallen, Torment's story builds momentum and it had me turning the pages eagerly. I enjoyed reading Torment, even more than I enjoyed Fallen! It's a great sequel and I'm finding myself eagerly awaiting the next book in the series, Passion. However, it's going to be quite a wait as the book doesn't yet have a release date (as far as I know - so please correct me if you know otherwise!), all I know is that it's going to be a prequel.
Torment is dark and romantic, with some action and a little bit of fun. There's no doubt that Lauren Kate can write good young adult fantasy books. I'm certainly looking forward to the next one!
After reading the first book in the series quite some time ago, and forgetting there was another book to be released now, my daughter decided she was going to treat me, well she found it and lobbed it into my shopping trolley and I paid for it, but the thought was there!
Warning this may contain spoilers for the previous book "Fallen".
The book I will now review is - "Torment by Lauren Kate".
The book starts with the main character Luce and her boyfriend of now and in many previous lives also, Daniel, a fallen angel.
He is rushing to get her hidden away at a school he and fellow fallen angel (who has chosen the darkside) Cam, has found out enrolled Luce into, this is a school which has half human students and half nephillim (contain angel DNA), this should shield Luce for long enough to keep her safe.
Why does she need protecting, her true love Daniel knows all the answers to this question, but so far has only managed to answer a bit, this being they have been in "true love" for nearly a thousand years, but due to him being cursed because of his falling from heaven, as soon as they kiss she self combusts and dies, and this has been the chain of events for all those years, with her being reborn every 16 years, and seems to find Daniel out and the chains of events triggers again.
This time was different though, she got to the stage of kissing Daniel, though he did try and resist her for quite some time, when they did kiss she didn't die, something was different, and this is where the trouble lies, as now there is a compete divide between heaven and the fallen angels on earth, does this mean an "end of days" war?
This book started quite slow, as I said earlier I had forgotten about it, so it took me a good chapter to remember what had happened in the previous book and catch up with what was happening, though as it was set a day after the original book was set I soon caught up.
After this I had to get used to a whole new set of characters that seem to be no sense, with there being many of the angel related students at Shoreline school and even an angel and demon couple teaching at the school, both completely in love and gorgeous to boot, but both knowing if there was a war they would have to kill each other!
This book moves very slowly, revealing very little at a time, but when a fact is revealed it seems timely and wets the appetite for the next point, though there is plenty of other stuff happening aside from the past revealing, making this quite a detailed book that has to be concentrated to read.
The book is written from the third person perspective, and though contains many characters new and old alike, doesn't categorise each chapter for each character like some books do, but actually takes it one day at a time, counting down the truce time that has been called between angel and demon Daniel and Cam, which has been called for 18 days to try and protect Luce from any outside forces, this in fairness is what both sides were originally fighting for and the truce seems to be any easy one, though Cam has already (in the previous book!) tried to corrupt Luce into enjoying fruits "from the dark side!".
This book is easy to read and once settled into is a really good thriller/love story, and would be perfect for young teenagers upwards, with there being no sex or even bad language to speak of, very much in the same vein as the Twilight books.
I do recall now saying I wouldn't be buying this book because of how the previous book finishes, leaving whole sections out just for the author to be able to write a second book.
This book finishes the same, but I didn't feel so cheated this time, with the story getting quite heavy towards the end, a break is the ideal thing and the next book "Passion" due for release in summer 2011, which I now am looking forwards to.
Price wise this purchased this from www.asda.co.uk, hardback, and paid £5.00, a mere snip I feel!
For more information visit - www.fallenbooks.co.uk
Thanks for reading x
I bought this book as soon as i had read the first book 'fallen', which absolutely awestruck me! I read the back of the book whilst in the shop and it intrigued me so much i just had to buy it and i did not regret it!
Torment is the second book in the series and you truely feel how the main character 'Luce' is feeling. you can relate to her frustration and loneliness as you are thrown into the book yourself with the authors pure talent in making you feel your actually in their with her.
'Luce' is the kind of character i have never come across before and it is such a breath of fresh air to read this book. The author keeps it very entertaining with lots of action, emotion, frustration, humour and just absolutley captivating you.
You watch (I say watch as this is exactly what you are doing with the authors such descriptive writing.) 'Luce' go through soo many emotions in this book, seeing her struggle with realising she has lived so many past lives with her fallen angel Daniel but usually only ever living to be 17. You feel yourself relating to her when she has insecurities about being in love with Daniel, is he really the one? and you certainly feel her frustration when Daniel will let her know nothing, making you want to grab hold of him and slap him silly! You see her start to relax around new characters 'Miles' and her roomate 'Shelby' two new characters you come to absolutley love. You can feel Luce's fear when she finds out one of her teachers is a demon, which is totally understandable after the way 'Cam' was in the first book fallen.
This is truely a fantastic series and i hope many more readers like me enjoy it as much as i did. You can sense something so big and unexpected is about to come and the end of this book is a true cliff hanger! i really did scream out loud when i realised i would have to wait till next year to find out what happeens!
I really can't give much more away as i think this is a book best read yourself :)
Finally I must say Lauren Kate has such a way with words that you can not help but be intrigued and captivated by this new and exciting genre of angels :)
I feel this series is going to be well on Par with the world famous 'Twighlight Saga' by Stephanie Meyer. If they do make a film about these books which i hope they will. It is gauranteed that i will be the first one to watch it :) I just hope the film if they made one would do the book the justice it deserves.
*may contain spoilers*
I was so eager to read Torment after finishing Fallen, and really hoped it would deliver when I finally got it. needless to say, it was awesome.
Torment continues the story of Luce, who is *still* trying to figure out the mystery that is all of her pasts lives. The angels and the demons have decided that she is such an important person that they've declared a truce to make sure she is protected. Daniel and Cam have decided to send her off to Shoreline, a school on the coast of California, in which there are also 'gifted students' (aka, Nephilim) who get to follow a special syllabus that is..something else really, as well as it being a school for 'normal' people.
In Torment, well, to put it quite plainly, Luce is a very disobedient girl. But I don't blame her all that much! As much as I love Daniel, he is being totally shady and mysterious about everything. But then I don't blame Daniel all that much either; he's placed Luce in this new school for her own protection. He's asking her to stay on the school grounds, and the school grounds only, so she's safe from the Outcasts (aka, the enemy), which isn't really that hard, but Luce seems to think otherwise and is happy with doing the complete opposite!
On the matter of Daniel keeping secrets from Luce, he is really quite frustrating! I didn't understand why he couldn't just tell her things, it would've made things for him and her so much easier. It would've prevented all this hurting going on on both sides of the relationship. And hey, if you were told you lived lives before this one, wouldn't you want to know more? About what you were like, who your family were, what happened to you?
Things start to get a little tricky when Luce immerses herself in finding answers to all her unanswered questions in The Announcers. And even after new teachers Francesca and Simon (fallen angels from two different sides who are, like, an item) advise her not to mess around with them anymore because of how dangerous they are, she still takes the risk.
Francesca and Simon are awesome. Truly awesome. I loved the new characters that were introduced, as well as the familair faces we were reunited with from the first book. My favourite? Miles. A really interesting, new love interest for Luce. He is as sweet as sugar and I just want to EAT HIM. No kidding. I'm not even going to say anything else about him apart from READ THE BOOK and fall in love with his sweetness.
I was surprised to see how much Luce's character has developed since Fallen. I loved how she was so curious about everything and did quite a lot without actually thinking about the consequences. It added a sense of ambition and edge to her which I really liked. Although I though she was a teensy bit whiny. What? I said a teensy bit!
The beginning was heavily focused on the pain both Luce and Daniel are feeling while apart. There were some very strong emotions portrayed and I think that was a very good element to the story. Around the middle-ish, close to the end-ish is where the action picks up and it starts to get abnormally thrilling.
That ending..oh my. It was such a cliffhanger I can't even explain. Let summer roll on for Passion right now!! Thanks to the lovely people at Random House for my copy of Torment, don't forget me come June!
*please note that I wrote this at an abnormally early time, and uh, yeah..don't ask what's going on here :/
Torment is the sequel to Lauren Kate's 2009 novel, Fallen. Torment is released in the UK on 30th September 2010 and published by Doubleday Children's Books and is 480 pages long. Thanks to Lynsey over at UK Book Tours for this one!
Lucinda Price recently found out that she and boyfriend Daniel have lived many past lives together... but only for seventeen years. Daniel is a fallen angel and choosing her caused him a life of pain each time that she dies. Now that he has found her again, Daniel will do everything to make their relationship work, especially because Luce is mortal and wont die when she is 17 this time around.
News of Luce's mortality has spread and there are a lot of people out to get her. Daniel calls a truce with the demons in order to kill of these hunters one by one and save Luce. In order to keep her safe he decides it would be best if she goes into hiding. Luce is hidden away at Shoreline, a school mixed with humans and Nephilim. Shoreline is supposed to help Luce and keep her safe at the same time but she has no idea what is going on. Daniel is reluctant to tell her anything apart from the fact that she needs to be there...without him. Although Luce makes new friends quickly at Shoreline, everything she thought she knew is not what it seems and she begins to question her relationships past and present with Daniel. Why wont he let her know what is happening and is he telling the truth about what she does know? Luce has a lot to learn in a very short amount of time but will she be able to handle it?
What I thought
One of the things that I really liked about Fallen was the fact that I got to see glimpses of Daniel and Luce's past lives and I was extremely happy to see more of that in Torment. Luce's past lives that she can't remember play a large part in the overall story and I was glad to see that. It was about time that Luce learned more about who she has been previously and what her relationship with Daniel has been like over the years. It really isn't fair that he knows everything and she doesn't is it? Luce really came into her own in this book and I ended up liking her a lot more than I did in Fallen. Her intelligence really showed because of how much she questioned everything. I liked the fact that she refused to be bossed around by Daniel and told him exactly what she thought about him trying to do that. Luce in Torment was the Luce I had wanted to see in Fallen.
The shadows that have haunted Luce all of her life play a massive part in the story and this was one of my favourite things about Torment. So much is revealed about what the shadows are and what part they play in Luce's life and also past lives. The shadows really tie in Luce's insecurities about not only her relationship with Daniel but also about who she really is. I'm really hoping that the shadows are featured in the next book so that I get a better understand of both Luce and Daniel.
Daniel annoyed the hell out of me but kind of in a good way. He really isn't around an awful lot in this book and for good reasons, but I would have liked for him to have been featured more. His character really takes a back seat in order for Luce to shine and for her to learn so much instead of overpowering her like he normally does. The reason why I liked him being annoying was because it made me feel like I wanted to jump straight into the book and sort him out myself. He deserves a good slap or at least some sense knocking into him because I didn't agree with the way that he treat Luce. His attitude really drew me into the story and made me want to find out more about why he was acting this way.
I LOVED the fact that other people knew who Luce was as soon as she entered Shoreline. It seemed to me that if Luce and Daniel had been through so many lives together already, then people who had also been around that long would know about their relationship. Luce's peers reacted like star struck teenagers when they realised that it was really her and all seemed to have questions they had been told as children about her and Daniel. I know if this was me, I would have been whispering with my friends, wondering what the real story was.
I always love a book with a lot of mythology and background and Lauren Kate didn't disappoint me. I found finding out about the history of angels and demons fascinating because different characters had different views on what really happened and who was on what side. Not everything was revealed but what I did learn made me question everything was going on and everything that I thought I knew about the characters already. I think that because of this, book 3 will have some shocks about what is really going on.
One of the aspects of Torment that I wasn't so keen on was the timeline and how realistic it was. The book is set over a period of 18 days and that was way too short for my liking. Some of the things that happened in those 18 days just didn't fit and I couldn't really believe that they were happening. Even though I liked Luce, she too was slightly annoying at times. She makes out like 18 days is such a long time to be away from Daniel but at less than 3 weeks, I didn't really get it. How weak is she that she cant deal without him for only 18 days and especially because he tells her that it is for her own protection. Because of either the constant whining or secrecy from Luce and Daniel, I couldn't help but feel like they were being stupid and selfish at time.
I think a lot of people are probably going to scream at the ending because of how massive the cliff-hanger is but I thought it was fantastic. Usually I hate unanswered questions but Lauren Kate left me wanting more in such a good way by ending Torment exactly where it should have been left. I'm excited to find out what Daniel does next and what else Luce will learn about her past lives. A huge battle between angels and demons seems imminent and although I know the good guys are supposed to win, I'm not too sure who the good guys are anymore.
The good far outweighed the bad and I really did enjoy it overall. Torment has mystery, intrigue, action and romance...near enough everything that I could want from a book. A great sequel that sets the scene amazingly well for book 3 and I can't wait to find out what is in store next for Luce and Daniel.