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The Way We Fall (Fallen World) Hardcover – January 24, 2012

4.1 out of 5 stars 90 customer reviews
Book 1 of 3 in the Fallen World Series

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The third and final book in Brandon Sanderson's The Reckoners series. Hardcover | Kindle book

Editorial Reviews


"As hope wars with loss, this gripping, psychological thriller never loses focus. Though Crewe's story can be gruesome and horrifying, she escapes the trap of making events too depressing and hopeless, maintaining a strong sense of realism throughout." -Publishers Weekly

"Crewe utilizes a less-is-more approach, subtly closing the walls in on the characters as they run out of resources... Readers will root for the believable characters struggling through heartbreaking situations." -Kirkus Reviews

"This is the kind of book that makes you look up in alarm when someone near you sniffles. It viscerally conveys the horror of sudden, brutal illness and the struggle between being humane and saving your own skin." -Booklist

"The book offers a compellingly tight focus, relating the town's descent into chaos with heartbreakingly vivid details.... The inclusion of more quotidian elements, such as Kaelyn's emerging romance with a local boy and her reconciliation with a former foe, make the survival story even more harrowing." -BCCB

"With elements of social commentary on the human reaction to panic and fear, a tender first love story, and a thrilling survival story, The Way We Fall will hook readers from page one. Crewe has masterfully created a tale so suspenseful that when the last page is read, readers can only hope that there is more to come." -CLCD

About the Author

Megan Crewe(www.megancrewe.com) finds writing about herself much more difficult than making things up. A few definite facts: she lives in Toronto, Canada, with her husband and three cats (and does on occasion say "eh"); she tutors teens with special needs; and-thankfully-the worst virus she's caught so far is the garden variety flu. She is also the author ofGive Up the Ghost.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 - 12
  • Series: Fallen World (Book 1)
  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Hyperion Book CH; First Edition edition (January 24, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1423146166
  • ISBN-13: 978-1423146162
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (90 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #755,333 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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More About the Author

Like many authors, Megan Crewe finds writing about herself much more difficult than making things up. A few definite facts: she lives with her husband, son, and three cats in Toronto, Canada (and does on occasion say "eh"), she tutors children and teens with special needs, and she can't look at the night sky without speculating about who else might be out there.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
In a lot of ways this book reminded me of Life as We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer, which I hated. Thankfully, I did not hate this one. The similarities are in the narrator and the scope of the story. Kaelyn and Miranda, at least at the outset are pretty similar characters, although Miranda is much more social. Both are whiny and a bit selfish at the beginning though.

Both stories are also written in a diary format, although Miranda writes hers to herself and Kaelyn writes to her friend Leo, in preparation for making up with him when he comes home or, once things start going to hell, for him to find once she's dead. Their tales focus on the way their lives are affected and have no real view to the world at large.

However, the big difference here is that The Way We Fall is, in my opinion, much better written, although employing a similar simple style. Kaelyn is not an outstanding girl; she's not extraordinarily smart or beautiful, and she's socially awkward. At the beginning, I found Kaelyn pretty annoying, although I did think it was really cool that Kaelyn wants to study animals. She was awesome in her passion, if nothing else. As the book went along, though, she really develops into a much stronger character.

So far as the reader knows, this disease outbreak is primarily limited to the island, meaning that the scale is much reduced from that of most dystopias. However, not too far into the outbreak, the government stops helping like they should be. Left to their own devices, people seem to do one of three things: try to save everyone, hide from everyone and everything, or descend into anarchy and violence. Mankind is, as is often the case in dystopian literature, as, or perhaps more, terrifying than the disease.
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Format: Hardcover
I'm kind of obsessed with YA dystopian fiction. I read it all and rarely feel compelled to write a review. The Way We Fall was different for me. It has all the classic elements of the genre--despair, romance, self-reliance. I felt connected to the main character, Kaelyn, immediately. She was a new take on the female narrator trying to come to terms with her sense of self in the midst of chaos. Definitely more courageous and intelligent than Life As We Knew It's Miranda, but not quite as awe-inspiring as Divergent's Tris. She's a regular teenage girl who finds herself stranded on an island with her parents and brother as a deadly virus begins to destroy her town, person by person. I actually believed that Kaelyn could fall in love under these harrowing circumstances. And I appreciated her struggle to maintain hope and live in the little moments of joy. There's also a social and political subplot that left me wondering what the rest of the world would truly do--or not do--if a small town were in such a situation. Crewe has an intriguing way of inviting readers to reflect on their own emotional reaction and social role in such a disaster. Would you be the terrified anarchist, detached scientist...? Overall, it was well-written and captivating, which lead me reading late into the night.
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Format: Hardcover
The book starts with Kaelyn writing in a journal to her best friend, Leo. After a fight, he left the island for a private boarding school in New York. Unsure whether she will be able to bring herself to talk to him when he returns for the holidays, she has decided to start writing in the journal as a pseudo catharsis. However, a strange virus hits the island, people start dying, and the Canadian government puts the island under a strict quarantine. Kaelyn sets out to chronicle everything that is happening. She hopes that--if Leo is able to return to the island--her journal will be able to tell him everything that has happened since the virus started.

When I could pull myself away from Resident Evil and knitting, I had a hard time putting this book down. It was extremely engaging, well written, and also heartbreaking. I loved how raw Kaelyn was in her journal entries. She was a very sympathetic character, and she was really easy to feel connected to. Even though the audience only sees the other characters through her eyes, the author did a wonderful job balancing how Kaelyn perceives them and who they truly are outside of her perceptions.

At some level, it would have been nice if there had been a little more gang activity. However, it is quite possible that there wasn't more because Kaelyn didn't spend a ton of time outside of the house or away from the hospital. That being said, the reasoning behind burning down houses and buildings was very interesting. Usually, it appears as though the gangs of people are just out for meaningless destruction. Crewe did a wonderful job of focusing their anxiety.

The love interest was wonderful.
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Format: Paperback
The first novel in the Fallen World trilogy is an excellent beginning to the story of a truly frightening possibility faced by our world today. When a small island is infected with a mysterious illness, one of the residents, Kaelyn, begins to fear for the safety of those she loves. Megan Crewe has created a scenario that is scary because it is a completely plausible threat. It is one thing to read about aliens attacking Earth, but quite another to read about a killer virus that could just be a mutant strain of something out in the world right this moment.

Megan has written a fantastic story. It is told through a series of journal entries to Kaelyn's friend, Leo, who has moved off the island. The journal entry format was used well to express the deep fears of Kaelyn, which are likely reflected in all of the residents. It also serves to make the story much more personal. With viruses it is so easy for the story to become about symptoms and statistics, but this format makes it about the people stuck in this situation and their families. It really helped me to connect with Kaelyn, as well, because it felt so honest.

I thought the characters overall were well fleshed out and mostly likeable. Even the characters that didn't play as big a role, like Kaelyn's dad, were very realistic. His concern and his frustration felt genuine. Megan does really well at using the little things to make her characters come alive. There was a little romance included as well, which added a great element but didn't interfere with the real purpose of the story. I also loved the mystery that surrounded some of the characters, like Kaelyn's brother, Drew. There were many different aspects to the story which were meshed together extremely well.
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