A guest review by Sirius
Summary: I really liked this gay thriller/love story with fallen angels and demons as some of the characters.
Nicholas Reynolds had messed up: he’d taken two party drugs that didn’t get along with each other. Now, his glamorous Saturday night plans had been reduced to throwing up in a thin, lightless alley.
Up until tonight, Nick had been doing well enough, even by Los Angeles standards. A model-slash-actor of respectable success, he was young, healthy, very attractive, and the hub of his requisite clique. He was generally popular and appreciated—although perhaps not enough by the guy he was dating who, interestingly, insisted they were not dating.
Though, what made this particular evening truly remarkable for Nick was not his life-threatening overdose.
No, it was the enormous demon who also thought Nick’s lightless, Hollywood alley might be a good place to hide…
In his triumphant first foray into full-length novels, Joshua Dagon has unleashed the rich and compelling tale of the fallen angel, Marbas, and the circle of friends who risk everything to oppose a dark and growing evil. Set in the vainglorious world of the Los Angeles club scene, these novels adeptly confront dogma, addiction, ambition, and revenge with the powerful forces of optimism, friendship, redemption, and above all, love.
By the end of The Fallen, readers are whole-heartedly caught up in the lives of the characters, and upon completion of Demon Tears, they long for another chance to laugh and cry with Joshua Dagon’s beautifully crafted characters.
Some warnings first. The book is pretty heavy on the religious themes; it is not exactly traditional Christianity, but in some ways it is close enough. One of the main characters or even the main character of the book is a demon/fallen angel. If you are happy to read the twists on religious themes, do not worry, but if you are not, you may be better off staying away.
Second warning concerns the writing style. If you decide after reading this review that this book may interest you, I HIGHLY recommend reading the sample first, because it reflects the author’s writing style quite well. I read this book for the first time a year and a half ago and had originally written a review on Amazon, which I have left up, and have read the other reviews there as well. If you read reviews that say that the book is too wordy, well I think that is correct: the book is really, really wordy. Case in point chapter one, which felt to me as if the author could have told about the meeting between Scott and Nick in three times less page space, and so many times I caught myself reading the same thing told in different words in chapter one. But, if you find that the first chapter does not scare you away, note that the more I read, the less his wordiness bothered me, however again this may not be the case with you.
Last warning: there is the pretty heavy drug use — ecstasy and heroin — throughout the book by the main characters, in case anybody is offended by it.
So if anybody else is still reading this review after all those scary warnings :), here is why I loved this book despite all the stylistic imperfections. It is very noticeable how much the author LIKES all his characters…well maybe except one or two of them. When I say “likes,” I do not mean that he portrays them all as perfect. Quite the contrary. I felt that The Fallen is one of the most non-judgmental books I have ever read. The author treats his characters with tenderness and compassion, and I actually liked almost all of them, and definitely all four guys from Nick’s crowd a lot, drug use or not.
I felt that the author did very creative play on fallen angels/demons mythology in this book, although to fully appreciate the creativity you will need to read the sequel called Demon Tears, which I will probably be reviewing here as well. It was just enjoyable and fun to read for me.
This is also a thriller more than a romance; there are bad guys/demonic entities which do bad deeds and threaten some of our characters. However, there are two very gentle and tender love stories here as well, which are woven into and enrich the main plot. They are just not necessarily the main focus of the story, although come to think about it, love is definitely one of the main themes here, so I am having trouble determining which storyline is definitely secondary and which one is not.