Title: and Falling, Fly
Author: Skyler White
Genre: Dark Urban Fantasy
Publication Date: March 2, 2010
Format: Trade Paperback, 352 Pages
ISBN-10: 0425232344 (Berkley)
ISBN-13: 978-0425232347 (Berkley)
An edgy, erotic blend of fantasy and romance-from a debut author whose star is on the rise.
In a dark and seedy underground of burned-out rock stars and angels- turned-vampires, a revolutionary neuroscientist and a fallen angel must pit medicine against mythology in an attempt to erase their tortured pasts…but at what cost?
Olivia, vampire and fallen angel of desire, is hopeless…and damned. Since the fall from Eden, she has hungered for love, but fed only on desire. Dominic O’Shaughnessy is a neuroscientist plagued by impossible visions. When his research and her despair collide at L’OtelMathillide- a subterranean hell of beauty, demons, and dreams-rationalist and angel unite in a clash of desire and damnation that threatens to destroy them both.
Quick & Dirty: A complex, intriguing and atmospheric read that will have you thinking.
Opening Sentence: The angel of desire is damned.
Olivia is a vampire and fallen angel of desire. She goes through the motions, but in reality she’s dead inside. Olivia feeds off the fears and desires of others while she herself derives no pleasure. Trapped in hopelessness, despair, and unable to feel pleasure or pain, Olivia is on the hunt for love. She wants to get her wings back so that she can return to Heaven. Dominic O’Shaughnessy is a neuroscientist battling his own demons. He’s haunted by memories of suffering and loss and struggles to separate reality from delusion. They both end up at the Hotel of the Damned in search for answers.
“and Falling, Fly” is a philosophical journey that delves into desire, life and death. Ms. White certainly did an excellent job of setting the mood of the novel, making it very atmospheric. In addition, The Hotel of the Damned especially is a fascinating concept/place. Olivia has pretty unique abilities that intrigued me, but I don’t want to give too much away.
I had a hard time writing this review. This dark tale of despair, desire, damnation left me a little frustrated as a reader. Ms. White switches between narrative POVs, which at times pulled me out of the story. I was never able to really establish a connection with Olivia, and as a result I didn’t like her character. She never felt sympathetic to me. I also found the pace of the novel to be a bit off at times, and certain elements of the story confusing. I did enjoy many elements of the worldbuilding, but sometimes I thought that the mythology was a bit dense.
Overall, lovers of dark fantasy should read this book. I love dark fantasy but found this debut novel to be a tough and complex read. The book has a great premise, but falls a little short in the execution. Ms. White does skillfully blend some creepy and chilling elements in this twisted world to give the book a unique appeal.
In the moon’s naked light, all the places where his face wears rage are stripped to an ancient, bare pain. His eyes pierce me. “Thank you,” he says again. “I needed to get away.” His beautiful lips curl into a soft smile before he presses them against the knuckle of my thumb. A hard, motionless shiver radiates from that point through the deep bones in me. My nails quill against my crushed fingers, but he’s looking right into me, warmth and memory in his night-blue eyes.
FTC Advisory: Berkley provided me with a copy of and Falling, Fly. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review. In addition, I don’t receive affiliate fees for anything purchased via links from my site.
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