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on January 21, 2016
Although the lush language that Marisa de
lots Santos is well-known for is in abundance from the first page, this story moves at a snail's pace which becomes increasingly annoying. Virtually no plot or character development takes place until the last few chapters. Instead the pages are filled with whys and what ifs. By the end, I grew to appreciate the lush language, put to fine use describing the Phillipines and the transformations and clarifications that took place there. It appeared to me that this was a possibly great short story that should never have been forced into a novel. Finally, the content and the form were a disappointing mismatch.
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on August 4, 2012
The irony isn't lost on me that Marisa de los Santos' new book, Falling Together, centers around three once-inseparable college friends who come back into each other's lives several years later, because the return of Marisa de los Santos with a new novel felt a little like a reunion to me. Like her earlier novels, Love Walked In and Belong to Me, there's so much more to this book than meets the eye, and as I tore my way through it, I felt many of the same emotions her characters did.

Pen (short for Penelope), Will, and Cat met in college. "Met cute," they liked to say, when Will and Pen came to Cat's aid when she was in the middle of an epileptic seizure in a university bathroom. Pen was the idealist, Cat the flighty one, Will the steadfast one. The three were inseparable for a number of years (often at the expense of romantic relationships any tried to pursue), until one day, Cat decided to get married and determined that in order to have any chance at a successful marriage, she needed to end her friendship with Pen and Will. Shortly thereafter, Will left Pen, because he said he didn't know how to be friends with just her. Will and Pen both got on with their lives, until one day just before their 10-year college reunion, both received an email from Cat saying she needed help and begged them to come to the reunion. The email sent their lives into disarray, and is the catalyst for an interesting, sometimes frustrating and heartbreaking, journey.

Some have referred to de los Santos' novels as "chick lit," because they're books about relationships and love, but I believe that doing so denigrates the quality of her writing and her storytelling ability. Her use of language is almost poetic and she develops characters that seem fairly simple on the surface but are truly complex, flawed, unique people. While some of the directions the story takes are a little overly dramatic, the book pulls you in emotionally and makes you want to get invested in the story. I thought this book was fantastic, and you can't go wrong with either of her other books. Take the chance--you won't regret it.
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on May 5, 2015
"Falling Together" is a throughly engaging novel. Full of rich details and complex emotions, this is the kind of story that makes us readers feel connected to the characters, and also makes us truly care. A poignant study on friendship and family, "Falling Together" is an emotionally satisfying read. Tracy Shawn, author of "The Grace of Crows"
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on June 3, 2013
Let me start by saying that this is the first book I have read by Marisa de los Santos. Most of the reviews recommend her other works as being better than this. I don't know about that. I seriously doubt I will giver her another chance just because I had such a negative reaction to this work. This book honestly felt like it was going to last forever. So much happened and didn't happen that I found myself lost in places, apathetic in others, and finally just praying it would end. I made a deal with myself that I would finish every book I purchased on Amazon no matter how painful and that was the only reason I finished this book. I did have to skip a lot of pages though. It was the only way I could preserve my sanity and my kindle. There were a couple of times I wanted to throw it against the wall.
But before I continue my rant...lets talk about the story.....

Pen, Will, and Cat were best friends in college. They were more than best friends...they were connected emotionally, metaphysically, but never physically ( it would have been a bit more interesting if there was a triangle there...but their friendship was too PURE for that). The did everything together, lived together, went to parties together, ate together, and judged people together. Then one day Cat falls in love with a man that Will and Pen don't like, loath is probably a better word, and the friendship disintegrates. They make a deal to never contact each other again and they stick to it for 10 years.

10 years later....

Will is a children's author who sounds pretty cool and sexy in the beginning but is washed out by the other personalities in the book as the story progresses.
Pen is a single mother who lives with her brother and struggles between being condescendingly optimistic or silently pessimistic towards this very strange world she lives in.
And Cat has left her husband and disappeared after her father died. Cat, although fiercely loved by all the characters including her husband, is probably the most selfish and emotionally apathetic character in the book. I couldn't figure why she was the one that glued them together.
And then there is Jason...who is Cat's jilted husband and the only character in the book who seemed to have an emotional center. He was also the one that they made fun of and treated horribly.
Cat sends an email to her friends 10 years later that she is in trouble and needs them. That they should come to their 10 year college reunion and they could all re-unite. Of course Will and Pen jump at this. It is Cat asking after all. And they go...only to discover that Cat has disappeared and her husband, Jason, is looking for her. And so starts the journey (half way through the book I might add) that takes them all the way to the Philippines and back. Do they get what they want....noooooo. Is there even a bit of resolution in what felt like a thousand page book....nooooooo. It ends like it started...on a long hanging thought.
Between the flashbacks to the college days and the never ending dissection of every thought these characters were having, I seriously thought I was going cookoo. I probably did based on the writing of this review ;) Seriously though... I would give this one a pass. It's long, drawn out, and the characters portrayed were not people I could relate to or even like.
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on August 5, 2014
I really wanted to like this book because I absolutely LOVED her two other books, Love Walked In and Belong To Me. This book just never drew me in all the way; I couldn't put the other 2 down and devoured them within days, but this one took me about a month due to lack of interest. The buildup was long and the ending was rushed. By the end of the novel I was irritated by the main character Pen- cliché and pathetic. I did enjoy the portrayal of the Jason character, she did a great job taking him from someone we want to hate to someone we feel great empathy for. Overall, a huge disappointment based on my expectations. If you are a fan of Marisa de los Santos' other books, pass on this one- you'll only be let down.
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on May 9, 2015
I didn't enjoy reading this book as much as I enjoyed the previous one. I think it might be because the characters were a tiny bit younger, or because the book showcased a lot of their college days.

Still, she writes so beautifully that it feels like a treat to read language strung together so well.
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on December 5, 2013
I've read everything by Marisa de los Santos and all of her books are so charming. Falling Together is wonderfully written, she creates incredible characters who at first you are not sure how they will develop and you may not like them too much but by the end of the story you want to know more. She weaves the story so beautifully that you won't want it to end. I was so engulfed in the story that I didn't realize the pages were dwindling.

It's the story of three friends who go through college together and become separated. After years go by they are searching out one of their friends. It is not just the story of romance, although love is found but it is also the story of how through anything they will always have each other.
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on October 26, 2016
I'm a great fan of Maria de los Santos' books, and this is no exception! It took me a few chapters to catch on to the characters and follow the plot line, but it was worth every effort once this story unwinds in the hearts of readers! A very sweet novel, and who could not love the slow progression of love dawning on the two of the main characters?
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on August 4, 2017
The book was wonderful, well written and narrated. The copy that I purchased was listed as being in very good condition. Several of the CD's were damaged and skipped in many places. The final CD with the last chapter was so damaged, I was not able to listen to the ending of the book. Very disappointed.
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on June 2, 2013
While I do really enjoy Marisa de los Santos novels, this one was just too dragged out. I liked the characters and felt they were developed well. I honestly find the story more than a little unbelievable. Not the desperation and extent that they really wanted to find their friend. I was not believing the idea that you would chase someone halfway around the world to a foreign country.
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