Monday, December 30, 2013

Review: Tumble & Fall by Alexandra Coutts

Title: Tumble & Fall by Alexandra Coutts
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux 
Release Date: September 17th, 2013
Genres: Sci-fi, Contemporary, Romance, Drama
Medium: Hardback, Won Via Giveaway

Amidst the shadow of the end of the world, due to an incoming asteroid named Persephone, several teens are forced to step back and take a look at their lives and decide what they will do before the end of the world. Faced with decisions of apologizing, making up, severing all connectionsq, last minute bonding, and repenting all their bad decisions, several friendships and romances blossom as their last days dwindle down.

This book gives me such conflicting emotions. On one hand, I loved the sweet end-of-the-world romances and dramatic family problems. On the other hand, I hated the vague characters, the confusing flipping back-and-forth of the POV, and the boring writing. Really, this novel was mediocre at best, and definitely a book I wish I could have liked better. I had high expectations for this novel, and it fell through within the first few pages.

First of all, the plot was dragging and quite slow and boring. To be honest, the first half of the novel wasn't up to par and was seriously lacking. The plot also lacked definition. It was all very expectable and uninteresting. And another thing that made my reading experience less than enjoyable was the POV's and chapter. There was so much put into flipping into the POV's of every single main character that you never felt like you were spending enough time with one character, let alone enough time to get to know them. This constant flipping back and forth of POV's left you slightly confused and disinterested at times and didn't really "work" until the last few pages of he novel, when the characters all came together to meet for the (literal) end. I understand what the author was trying to do, but it just did not work out for this novel. It was a definite flop for the publishing company.

Onto the characters, I thought a few of these characters were almost interested. A few of them seemed to pull at my emotions, tugging at something resembling compassion. But most of the time, it was pure annoyance, and I couldn't get into the characters' voices much. They all seemed very two dimensional and flat. Very little character development also happens in this novel, and that was very sad to see, especially with such a dynamic plot line (that could have still been better researched and more defined.)

Onto a happier tone of my review, there was one romance in the novel that I felt was really in tune. It is a main focal point of the plot, and features the tragic love story of a girl and her deceased boyfriend who leaves her, amidst the apocalypse, with a mystery to be solved alongside his best friend. New friendships and romances blossom in this story, sometimes a little too "out-of-the-blue" and making you think it's all a little fake. But then, it was still nice. The more I think of it, this story is an interesting and quite different take on the end of the world. Instead of chaos and fear, there is instead a central bonding of humans as we all await the end together. Although it is nice, I found it lacking, and wish I could have enjoyed it so much more, because it really did have an interesting premise. A classic case of a beautiful cover masking mediocre writing, all ruining a plot with possibilities? Maybe. Though I didn't enjoy it as much as I wish I could, several others online sing their praises of this book, so you could definitely check this novel out anyway. Maybe you will have a different reading experience than I. 2.5 stars.

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