‘Torment’ & ‘Passion’ by Lauren Kate

When there’s not much to say about either installation to a series, I figure, why not just combine them? Both of these left me feeling so-so at the end; although they are incrementally better than the first book, Fallen. So let’s dive into them…..

From the Cover of Torment:

How many lives do you need to live before you find someone worth dying for? In the aftermath of what happened at Sword & Cross, Luce has been hidden away by her cursed angelic boyfriend, Daniel, in a new school filled with Nephilim, the offspring of fallen angels and humans. Daniel promises she will be safe here, protected from those who would kill her. At the school Luce discovers what the Shadows that have followed her all her life mean โ€“ and how to manipulate them to see into her other lives. Yet the more Luce learns about herself, the more she realizes that the past is her only key to unlocking her future . . . and that Daniel hasn’t told her everything. What if his version of the past isn’t actually the way things happened . . . what if Luce was really meant to be with someone else?”

This, the second book in the Fallen Series, felt like the author was finally figuring out where she would take this world. In it, Luce is sent away to “hide” while Daniel and Cam team up to protect her. Of course, Luce has no idea and begins to wonder if Daniel is really a good guy when she finds out. Fortunately, with Luce’s separation from Daniel, she finally grows a backbone. Granted, she waffles when he’s around but still, she starts to question things that I was wondering in the first book. Namely, WHY?! Why does she HAVE to love Daniel? Why is SHE so special? WHY WON’T ANYONE TELL HER SQUAT? I mean, I totally understand that in the past she blew up when she learned even the teeniest fact and that’s why they’re handling her with kid gloves. However, I think the author drags this out a little too much. This tactic is very tricky and one has to walk a thin line between annoyingly exasperating and addicting intrigue. I still feel this fell way too close to the former scenario.

Want to know the author’s solution to Luce’s stonewall of information? The Shadows. That’s right. Those things that killed people in the first book. Those things that terrified Luce all the way into a school for troubled youth. Those very same things are actually… Good? Or at least… non-biased? Here’s the deal, the Shadows are memories of a sort that can be manipulated and viewed like a YouTube clip. They appear to be somewhat sentient and come when called, show you what you want to know, and can help you learn about the past by viewing it almost as if you were there. I’ll acknowledge that this is a pretty cool twist. However, if they are memories at their core, why did people die when they got wrapped up in the Shadows? It’s that pesky “WHY?!” again. Did the author think we’d forget that from the first book?!

We leave Torment when Luce jumps into one of her Shadows, a.k.a. Announcers, after a whole new group of baddies (the Outcasts) that are hunting for Luce makes themselves known. She’s finally had enough of all the lies and wants answers. Like, now. The best place to find them is in the past. No surprise, Daniel isn’t exactly pleased. By the way, I’m still not #TeamDaniel. He comes across very arrogant and controlling. I’m all for alpha males, I normally find that endearing in fiction, but his brand just isn’t working for me here. I was quite pleased when Luce did what she did on the roof and Daniel saw it. I won’t spoil it but suffice it to say, I wanted to scream, “Ha! Take that, Asshat! Think you’re entitled to her love just because it’s you and you say so? Think again.”

Dividing Line Infinity

So that takes us to Passion. Book #3 in the Fallen Series. From the Cover:

“Luce would die for Daniel. And she has. Over and over again. Throughout time. Luce and Daniel have found each other, only to be painfully torn apart: Luce dead, Daniel left broken and alone. But perhaps it doesn’t need to be that way. Luce is certain that something – or someone – in a past life can help her in her present one. So she begins that most important journey of this lifetime: Going back eternities to witness firsthand her romances with Daniel and finally unlock the key to making their love last. Cam and the legions of angels and Outcasts are desperate to catch Luce, but none are as frantic as Daniel. He chases Luce through their shared pasts, terrified of what might happen if she rewrites history. Because their romance for the ages could go up in flames forever. Sweeping across centuries, Passion is the third novel in the unforgettable epic Fallen Series.”

Of the three so far, this was the best. Not “knock it out of the park” amazing, but still the best in my estimation. In this book, Luce uses the Announcers to jump back in time and experience some of her past lives. She believes she can glean some answers as to what happened, how to fix her current situation, and ultimate why Daniel loves her so much. Sadly, none of those were really answered in my opinion. She does learn that her death comes at different times and there doesn’t seem to be a set trigger. Try as she might, she’s also not the one to create the loophole that has allowed her current life to exist free of going up in flames. As for the final goal of hers, she learns that Daniel legitimately does love her but still not why. How did it start? When did they meet (apparently it was before creation)? What is it about her specifically that has him bound to her throughout eternity (besides the curse)? You know, that one moment where you know this one person was meant for you to love forever. That feeling you get when you click together like puzzle pieces or two musical notes that make a cord. We learn that the curse is infinitely worse for him but he has a choice. He could walk away. He could give her up and save himself the heartache. But he chooses to stay and he chooses her every time. I’ll allow that that is sweet. By seeing this over and over and over again, Luce begins to truly grasp the depth of his love and devotion. While I, as the reader, haven’t fallen for Daniel, he is beginning to grow on me. I like his past version better. He isn’t so controlling and closed off.

Even though Luce doesn’t get her questions answered, we still learn a bit more than we did in the previous two books. The thing I liked the most about this addition was the time travel as a method of unveiling. Of course, there is that nagging concern that Luce could alter the events (and almost did a few times), but we begin to see the path they’ve taken together to get where they are now. We see why Daniel treats her as he does. We discover that he’s just as lost as she is even though he pretends to act like he knows what he’s doing. We also learn that while Daniel was a “leader” in Heaven, he wasn’t an archangel like it was alluded to earlier in the series. Finally, we learn what exactly happened to cause the Fall and why Luce is so important. Who’s choice ultimately condemned the Fallen angels. Spoiler: It wasn’t Lucifer. For all these answers that I had to trudge through three books to get to, this is why I liked Passion. Personally, I think I figured out some of the other plot lines (like Luce was originally an Angel too) but I guess I’ll just have to wait and see if I’m right.

My ratings – Torment: 3.5 Bookmarks… Passion: 4.0 Bookmarks


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