Thursday, January 27, 2011

Book Review: Torment by Lauren Kate

Torment by Lauren Kate

Reading Level: Young Adult
Hardcover: 464 pages
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0385739141
ISBN-13: 978-0385739146
Source: Bought from
Cover: In *love* with this cover. Didn't think it be possible to top the last cover but by god, they did. The pose, the model, the color palette is all perfect! But what I'm especially in love with is the carry over of the birds in the background! Nice throwback to the first novel!
First Sentence: "Daniel stared out at the bay."

Mini- Review: If you fell for Fallen, you'll flip for Torment!

Book Summary:

Hell on earth. 
That's what it's like for Luce to be apart from her fallen angel boyfriend, Daniel. 
It took them an eternity to find one another, but now he has told her he must go away. Just long enough to hunt down the Outcasts - immortals who want to kill Luce. Daniel hides Luce at Shoreline, a school on the rocky California coast with unusually gifted students -Nephilim, the offspring of fallen angels and humans.
At Shoreline, Luce learns what the Shadows are, and how she can use them as windows to her previous lives. Yet the more Luce learns, the more she suspects that Daniel hasn't told her everything. He's hiding something - something dangerous. What if Daniel's version of the past isn't actually true? 
What if Luce is really meant to be with someone else? 
The second novel in the addictive FALLEN series . . . where love never dies.

The Review:

There were so many things I loved about Torment-- the great cast of characters was back along with some new ones, the fresh change of scenery, the same fluid writing I came to expect from the first one and a fast moving plot. It had a lot of bright points but it did have a few downfalls which I'll being going into in this review. What I will say is, as a whole, I liked Torment more and that's always a step in the right direction!

Going back into Luce's world was exciting and I was happy to be there. I really liked the supporting characters in the first one, with a special emphasis on Arriane and Roland, so I was glad to see them back. Kate did an amazing job of giving us great characters on each side of the spectrum of "good" and "evil" which really blurs the line. This was especially reflected well in Steven and Francesca and trickled out to all the people. Plus, the addition of Miles and Shelby really gave the story some fresh life and I loved those characters. Luce's friendship with both of them was really great. However, I found myself liking Luce and Daniel less and less.

I understand that Luce was confused about a lot of things but I was frustrated that she lost her way halfway through the story. She was so wishy-washy about everything and a lot of the times when she felt like she was trying to assert her independence, she was just being purposely dumb. What I liked about her in the first novel was that she was pretty good at figuring things out for herself. By the time she put two and two together, so had I. But in this novel she was a lot slower.

Daniel also took a turn for the worst. He was demanding, controlling and kind of jerk for someone who loved Luce so much. I just wish those two would learn how to talk. Luce often said that when they were doing anything else with their mouths besides kissing, everything turned to Hell and she was right about that. I didn't understand why he would just talk to her about things. But when Luce kissed Miles, I felt for Daniel, a lot. So I'm ready to be done with him but I do want these two to learn how to communicate stat.

The changing scenery was exactly what this story needed. I was a big fan of the atmosphere of the first one but after I closed the book, I didn't want to go back there again. I wanted something new and lush to make up for all that brown and grey. Obviously Kate felt that way too and she went all out to make us marvel at the school she created. From the salty sea breeze to the huge redwood trees, I was totally there in California and loving it!

The plot of this one seemed a bit less breakneck. I wasn't dying to find out anything but I was enjoying the moral grey lines that Kate threw up. It was interesting to see demons portrayed as regular people with different beliefs and even more interesting that I think Luce was leaning towards them. Those Announcers she was playing around with were way more dark side than light because we only saw the demons really using them. We got to see that the angels knew how but it was the demons that mastered it. I really hope the third novel dives into this full fledged and we go back into her lives to figure out who she is. I also hope that Luce emerges stronger because of it.

Kate has a way of making third person feel like first person but with the added bonus of getting to figure out how more than one person feels about what's going on. The writing is smooth with an amazing balance of character's feelings and perceptions and details to make the world come alive.

Torment was a great read but because of the good stuff, the bad stuff became all that more obvious. I think it's that Second Story Syndrome coming into play. Torment suffered pretty badly when the author tried to ripe the two main characters apart instead of making them try to talk to each other and in there lay its faults. But it was still a great ride, more fun than the first, and I'm eagerly awaiting the second one. If you liked Fallen, I highly suggest continuing the journey with Torment. I'm a fan and I'm sticking it out till the end!



  1. Brilliant review, Amber! I didn't really love Fallen, so I've held off on reading Torment, but I loved your review. I think I might try it after all :)

  2. Great review! I enjoyed both books in the series so far. Lot's of opinions on the series, but i'm glad you liked it! :)

  3. Great review! I totally agree with you when it comes to Daniel. He was just so darn stubborn throughout the entire book-- acting more like a father than a boyfriend. I mean, just tell Luce what's going on, don't treat her like she's five. (Funny, though, the majority of the ppl I speak with see no problem with Daniel, just Luce... That worries me a tad bit about what these YA novels have made us females think is 'fine'...)

    Anyway, I loved Shelby and Miles, too. They saved the novel for me!

  4. I agree. I wish Daniel wasn't a jerk in this one. I think a better love triangle is with Cam. I thought that's where the story was headed. I think there's something there we still aren't be made aware of. Why does Cam have feelings for Luce? But then Miles was thrown in. I like that Luce has a friendship with Miles. As for the plot, I'm still confused on all the angels and demons, including the whole war. Hopefully more will be explained in Passion. I loved the setting in this one, too!

  5. Bravo and so happy to hear you enjoyed this one.

    LOVE LOVED the covers!


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