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Since We Fell
Since We Fellclaudia (10)
Ugh

I wanted to like this book. So. Bad. I liked the beginning, I enjoyed the writing style. Unfortunately, it almost seemed like a different author took over and it was, just, not good. I have to admit I didn't finish it.

MariaBarbagallo (1)
I felt the same way! It felt like two different books. Why even bother with the whole mother/father storyline?
Since We Fellkankrum3 (47)
???

I just started reading this book and it's super slow.... does it get better? is it worth sticking out??? i'd read the discussions but I don't want to be spoiled...

ChristenHarley (7)
Stick with it! It is slow in the beginning because you have to know her background and what she has been through. I loved this book.
HaleyBenedict (7)
This book does start out very slow, I lost interest at first. However, it starts speeding up, and I'm so glad I stuck through it. It ended up being one of my favorite selections.
Since We FellAmandaSweet (1)
I'm stuck too..

Just finished the book and agree with most that it felt like two different books within it. I'm stuck on the part where Rachel goes to answer the door after Caleb is killed. She reaches for her bag, crosses the threshold, handed Kessler his hat and gets out into the hallway....then the description on page 296: "the bullet enters her back, cut her spine in half, spewed the bone chips into her bloodstream as she collapsed into Detective Kessler."..... What??! I literally thought they died and then the book keeps going!!! What was the point of this?

erinrae (1)
Yes, I was very confused at that part too. I had to re-read the page 5 times and I still don't understand the purpose of that blurb.
AshleeHorvath (1)
I was a little confused on this too. Maybe she was thinking about what would happen if she tried to leave and it was just a flash of vision? It was weird that this was the only time in the book this happened though.
Since We Fellschuet23 (2)
Little Details

This has absolutely been my favorite BOTM. I experienced just about every single emotion in this book up until the VERY end - I was convinced that I would be heartbroken with the ending, but I was surprisingly pleased with it. I'd just like to give credit to the author for allowing Rachel to grow into a bit of a badass.

The little details in this book, however, drove me nuts. The one that I'm really hung up on is the end of Chapter 15 when Rachel realizes that Caleb was lying and had actually been out of the office... did that have any purpose other than to expose the lies in Rachel's life? Or was he actually doing something that relates to his and Brian's secret life, and I just missed that reveal later on? I'm losing sleep over this part!

schuet23 (2)
Since We Fellemollycat (8)
Like a Rollercoaster Ride...

This was one of my favorite books to read since joining BOTC in January. I thoroughly enjoyed the book's many twists & turns. Since We Fell was both captivating and suspenseful. I have passed it along to several family members and they have enjoyed it as well.

Jules2767 (2)
TOTALLY agree!!! My favorite BOTM read so far!!!
Since We FellMonicahhh (1)
What a mess...or so I thought.

This book felt as if it was composed of two COMPLETELY different stories, with little to no relevance (Not knowing her real dad, covering issues in Haiti, marrying a con man, etc). It made me think that Lehane pulled random events out of thin air. However, after some reflection, I began to see that the irrelevant became relevant. In her world of uncertainty Rachel, a daughter, wife and journalist was always committed to discovering the truth.

Mia (2)
Couldn't agree more. I loved the first half and hated the second half of the book. It was quite confusing/all over the place. I was super interested by Rachel's story, but felt that Brian and her relationship with Brian was a distraction. Pretty unimpressed.
KiersiHarmon (1)
Absolutely agree! I struggled to get through the first half as it was a continuous stream of random events. However it did come together beautifully and I loved the ending.
Clmccor (53)
Well put - this book is the type that you need to reflect after finishing. I felt I was constantly in a little tornado and everything kept coming in and out of it and I wasn't sure what to hang on to. But now that I'm done, I'm like, what a ride!
hannahbie (18)
Good point! I had been thinking of the book as two (almost unconnected) halves, but I can agree that the struggle to find what's real or true was present in both parts. After your comment, I can see that this theme does weave through the entire story.
Since We FellPompa (10)
question for the women

Has any girl not currently on her period (or even currently on it) ever thought on a day trip in the woods oh crap I hope I don't get my period because I might attract bears? ...... no? haha However, I loved the descriptions of Rachel's anxiety as it is something I struggle with and getting out of the house (although not to the extent of Rachel's agoraphobia). Overall, I loved this book!

Clmccor (53)
I have never though about it - but I have read about it in a few survival books... so someone, at some point must have thought about it and it has become a 'thing'. I did giggle while I was reading that part.
Becky (31)
Hahaha! I must admit that fear of attracting bears has never been a concern of mine... ever! :)
Since We FellKayla (104)
This Novel is All About the Details

I finished this book two days ago and have been waiting to post because upon finishing, I wasn't sure how I felt about it. I was one of the few readers who seemed to enjoy the upfront portrayal of Rachel's life - admittedly, I am quite interested in character development, so I may be biased here. Lehane's description of Rachel as an individual with anxiety and agoraphobia was well-written and helps bring to light the struggles and experiences of individuals with anxiety-based disorders. For me, this kept me quite interested, but I can understand the critiques that it reads slow to others.

After finding out that Brian was a conman, the pace of the book did pick up significantly and reading the second half of the novel took me half as much time as the first. As the details started unfolding about Brian and his "double", I had to go back and re-read the original story he had told Rachel. The author really did set-up what the reader needed to know, but did so in a way as to not give too much away too quick.

Overall, I think I may have been waiting for some "big reveal" or surprise ending at the conclusion of the book. Because that big reveal never happened, I cannot determine if I am satisfied or unsatisfied with this novel. After finishing, I even asked myself "If my partner was leading a double life and was in trouble would I drop everything and help him"? I appreciated how Rachel put Brian through a test of his love before just committing herself to help him. I would say this book was enjoyable and would recommend it to friends looking for a thriller.

BeckyF (11)
I liked the first half better than the second. I liked the character development and I didn't mind the slower pace. I do think that the two sections didn't match very well, though.
Since We FellLoganJAlexander (15)
Ugh, Struggling.

Alright, I am maybe 144 pages into this book and I'm struggling! I don't feel like the "very public mental breakdown" had enough severity to it, or enough description. It kind of falls flat for me. I think Rachel as a character is just a little, eehhh. My opinion might change as I continue to slog through this book but its not likely that it will. I want more out of the book than it's giving.

VicL (1)
I am about 200 pages in and it is finally getting interesting. Keep reading, it does get better.
LoganJAlexander (15)
UPDATE: I finished the book, and the ending was better written than the first half of the book. That being said, this felt like two separate books, that should never come together to form a story. It just really did not work for me.
CrystalFilipek (2)
I completely agree with you. I think the second half of the book could be its own book without the first half. I know its about the details from what everyone says and it ties in to her mental health and her state of being alone/in constant search but what ever! Liked the last half didn't like the first half too.
Jess (4)
YES! This was like two different books. I oddly liked the beginning way more and was seriously struggling when the "gripping" ending started. I'd rather just spend more time with Rachel if she were to have run off alone and started over.
JenniferCarter (1)
Totally agree. I feel like this was two separate stories. While some aspects of the first half do come into play in the second, I feel like a lot of the rest wasn't relevant.
rajo (28)
I second this. I wish that all the character details that were built up would have actually had a point to the ending. Like why did her father never fit into the rest of the story anywhere?
CerebroCaro (49)
I struggled in the beginning too, but keep going, it gets better. It almost turns into a completely different book.
Mariko (1)
I think the story gets better after the first half of the book. But I totally agree with you that Rachel as a character isn't developed well in this book. I think most of the characters are just meh, but the story does get more interested towards the second half. I won't say any more to spoil it though.
Since We FellMolly (1)
What?!

I got so excited nearing the end of this book thinking that the author still hadn't tied in the strange death of her mother and the unanswered question of who her father was. I kept thinking " how is this all going to connect?" When the story ended without it all coming together I was shocked. Anyone else?

CillaRey (3)
Yes, I agree! One of the main reasons I stayed with the book was because I thought there would be a tie in with her mother and father at the end! For some reason, I thought Brian had info when he did investigate who her Father could be. I was hoping his info would reveal either who her Father actually is/ or why her mother died/ possibly why she "killed herself". Her mom was such a big part of her psyche in the first half of the book, and then boom, no more mom issues. Aside from the twist of Brian being a conman, I wanted an even bigger twist of who her parents were!
rajo (28)
Agreed. There was an opportunity for all the pieces to connect...but they didn't at all.
AbigailSteed (1)
I couldn't agree more!! It was like 2 separate books... not to mention the odd part about her dad
TDMiller (1)
I agree! The only justification I can believe for the intense first portion was to give the reason she has absolutely no family to look for her when she's whisked away a lot of character. And it builds up why she's so stressed out and in such a dark place when she flips out. I was still expecting that to come around again though. I was pretty disappointed in the end. I wanted more of it and I wanted a bigger twist!
ElizabethHolls (8)
I think the mother/ father story line could have been left out and the story would have been the same
ChristineDuane (47)
Agreed! The story was all over the place!
Rachelle (6)
That part actually didn't bother me. There was a character who said, at some point, that the mother probably committed suicide (I think because she was losing control of her daughter?) and Lee Grayson seemed pretty well established as her father. I agree with TDMiller that these people's stories were mostly there to establish Rachel's character and the fact that she has nobody to help her, to justify how she lost herself so much.
Rockward832 (3)
So is that why it makes sense that she chose to continue living the life of a con-man for the rest of her life? The story made it seem like the moral is if you have a 'lonesome' upbringing with no solid/dependable person to help you make it in life, then it's fair for you to choose an immoral path. Her husband lied about the foundation of their marriage but she still saw 'love' in his eyes and decided to become the Bonnie to his Clyde. She could have easily told the detective everything that happened the moment he came to her apartment to ask what happened. She had no fault in the situation at all and could have walked clean. She chose to save her husband but not telling the detective that she shot him in self defense when he pointed his gun towards her. If that wasn't the author's intentions, then she could have totally done without the entire Part 1 of the book. No need to go into the protagonist's mommy/daddy issues unless it was to weaken the reader's trust in the character being able to come out of a closed-off lifestyle.
Rachelle (6)
I think she chose to live the life of a con-man because Brian "rescued" Rachel after she fell apart, in part because of all her mommy/daddy issues. I do think the author had her forgive Brian too quickly though. I'm also not saying that I agree with her choices or that it was the moral thing to do. Just that it seems in keeping with her character.
Rockward832 (3)
Yeah, that makes sense for sure. It also bothered me that she forgave Brian so quickly. At one point, I thought she was going to screw everyone (Brian, Caleb, Haya, etc) over and figure out how to keep the money for herself and start a whole new life somewhere far away where no one knew about all her past insecurities and mommy/daddy issues..... OR she'd use it to go back to Haiti and but then she just decided to stick with Brian and let him take control.
MeaghanM (1)
I agree! I really thought the mother story line was missing closure.
ToryWaldo (3)
That's what I was thinking as well. I thought that there would be more closure since I thought the whole point of the book was the issues these two girls had with their moms that they hadn't dealt with? And then we never hear from S again...? I was expecting some closure for sure.
ToryWaldo (3)
oops...wrong book lol sorry!
Since We Felllauren (13)
Entertaining

I bet if I just picked this book up at an airport I would have been very happy. But I had high expectations after reading reviews and I think that ruined it for me. I was certainly entertained, just not sitting on the edge of my seat throughout the entire story.

[NEXT PART HAS SPOILERS!]

I think Brian's master plan with all the "clues" and having Rachel be the one to shoot him was highly unrealistic. That's easy to overcome by the suspense factor, however. My biggest complaint is that Rachel and Brian end up reuniting and readers are left to assume they skip off into the flowers (with a child) in Amsterdam or something. For a protagonist that suffered abandonment issues throughout the book, I was sort of hoping she would tell Brian to get lost at the end and find happiness in her own independence. Oh well.

Bonus points for the funny descriptions and comparisons, though.

Rachelle (6)
I agree that the ending left something to be desired. I was ok with Brian and Rachel reconciling, but they seemed to take on Haya's baby as their own awfully quickly, without much remorse or grief. And learning that Haya spoke English and was playing Caleb the whole time seemed unnecessary, since her only role after that was to die.
lauren (13)
I hadn't thought of that actually. I did expect Haya to play a larger role, or Brian and Rachel to have an argument about whether or not to return for her. Now that you mention it, however, I do think the surprising revelation ended up to be wholly unnecessary. Perhaps the author sought to humanize her by revealing her backstory (prostitute, etc.) so her death would have a larger impact on readers.
CerebroCaro (3)
I thought the same thing and I agree that I think the purpose was to make the readers have more sympathy for her after they hear about her death. In my opinion, Haya's entire role before the backstory discovery was kind of irrelevant so I don't think her death would have affected me as much.
Since We FellJordanH (27)
I really liked this book

I think I'm in the minority here, but I liked the slow pace while we were getting to know Rachel. I liked her backstory which gave me a reason to root for her during the rest of the story. (And Brian and Rachel were my favorite "bad guys" to root for in a while!!)

I also enjoyed the ending. A bit of mystery, an addition to the twists, and I can assume the action was over. There's room for a sequel (or not). Either way, I was satisfied with this ending.

At the part where Caleb is shot, the detective comes back, and Rachel leaves the apartment, there is a paragraph about how she is shot in the spine. I figured this is one of her hallucinations but I had to reread this about four times before I could move on. Did anyone else struggle with her hallucinations? This one seemed a bit misplaced and bothered me for a while.

Hnoel (5)
YES! I just read that part last night and I was like WHAAAT? I thought it was bad editing lol. I had to come to this discussion board to see wth that was all about.
Jess (1)
I had to read that page over and over! Thank goodness I'm not alone.
Becky (31)
I was expecting that paragraph to be a clue that Rachel was suffering from psychosis and figured that in the end of the book she would have figured out that she actually killed her husband, husband's friend and husband's "other wife" due to paranoia from her panic disorder and trauma history. I thought perhaps that she was imagining an alternative story to cope with their deaths and to bring her husband back to life in her mind to a world that he didn't cheat on her and still loved her.
geni91782 (2)
Man, I would have enjoyed that so much more than what was actually written.
ElizabethHolls (8)
I did the same thing. It was interesting if it was a hallucination, but then there should have been more to make it work b
ChristineDuane (47)
That would have been a better ending, in my opinion!
JordanH (27)
That's a really interesting guess at how the book was going to turn out. It never crossed my mind. This is one of the reasons I enjoy discussing books with other readers - always a new perspective!
ChristineDuane (47)
I also had to re read several times because it was so confusing!
Natasha (35)
In my opinion, this was the worst part of the book. I had to reread it several times to understand that the paragraph was in her head. My friends were also confused by this bit, so I felt in good company.
Rockward832 (3)
Yes! The hallucination in the scene was particularly misplaced. Also.. this was the perfect opportunity for her to just come clean with the detective and rid herself of Brian, Caleb and the all scam. I'm not sure why she was hesitant to tell the detectives the truth even if she did think she killed Brian at the time.... wouldn't it be considered self defense since he was pointing the gun at her? He was the one with the double life and multiple scams in place while she was the "innocent shut-in wife" ?
JordanH (27)
I thought this was the worst part, too. I got that she was having hallucinations, but this part made me start to think I was suffering from them as well! It seemed unnecessary and slowed down what was otherwise an exciting part of the story.
Carissa (4)
Ugh yes agreed-Rachel having the hallucination was so out of place in the book I was so confused and had to reread it. This one did not fit at all.
TurningPages247 (4)
I also had to re-read that part a couple of times, I honestly felt that would have been a great conclusion! I liked that "scenario" in her head a lot better than how the book actually ended.
KristaMccorkle (2)
I was so confused about that part as well!!!!!!! i re-read it quite a few trying to figure out what happened.
BrittanyStevenson (2)
Yes, I had to text my friend to make sure that I didn't miss anything.
BrittneyReed (1)
Yes! I also reread it several times! I guess she was just going through a possible outcome in her mind. But it did bother me.
LaurenLiska (1)
I was confused with that paragraph too, when Rachel thinks she was shot. I read it a few times but then realized the story kept going. I liked learning about Rachel's backstory and find psychological thrillers interesting too. I had a hard time at first rooting for Rachel and Brian after the boat, but the history helped and the pace kept me engaged. I wish we could have seen them off to Amsterdam, but I guess it wasn't needed.
AshleySmith (11)
Yes! And it doesn't really address that she's even having hallucinations aside from when we are first introduced to them with the van colors and whatnot. So that left me wondering if there was more that were just hallucinations and I just wasn't catching them or something. I half expected Caleb to not even be at the table when she finally went back into that room and for her to have been imagining the whole thing in her head when the shootings happened, but obviously that wasn't the case. I do have to say this book kept me thinking as I was reading because of that aspect!
Since We FellMadeline (29)
A Strange, Strange Book...

‘Since we Fell’ opens with the shooting death of Rachel’s husband and, just like judge Sarah Weinman promised, the reader is hooked.

Unfortunately, that momentum is just as quickly lost in the chapters that follow. The first two sections of the book are best described as a motley collection of vignettes hastily slapped together like polaroids in an old family photo album. We see little scenes into Rachel’s past… her manipulative mother, her absentee father, her troubled first marriage, her emotional breakdown in Haiti.

The more I read, the more ‘Since we Fell’ began to feel like the literary equivalent of quicksand; each step forward dragged me deeper and deeper into the insufferable sludge that is Rachel’s psyche (or, rather, author Dennis Lehane’s attempt at portraying the psyche of a wounded woman with daddy issues and post-Haiti survivor guilt).

The chapters jumped in time, and each passage was definitively past-tense. As a whole, it had a memoir feel to it. In fact, the long-winded passages about Rachel’s foray into broadcast journalism and her doomed marriage bore a striking similarity to the Megyn Kelly memoir I read a few months ago. There’s nothing inherently wrong with that writing style or pacing, it’s just not at all what you’d expect in a book that has been dubbed a “literary thriller.”

That format and pacing are abandoned in the third act. We find Rachel married to Brian Delacroix, the man who has quite creepily followed Rachel’s every move for over a decade. Brian was first introduced in act one as a private investigator hired to track down Rachel’s father. When he and Rachel later reconnect, he (inexplicably) is some sort of international lumber tycoon whose career (again, inexplicably) takes him all over Europe on lengthy business trips.

While the discerning reader will quickly akin Brian’s story to a piece of swiss cheese, Rachel is smitten. They have the perfect relationship full of trust and love and inside jokes, until… until Rachel happens to find a receipt in his jeans pocket, bearing the wrong date format. Panic ensues, and the story goes from slow-paced memoir to ‘Mr. and Mrs. Smith’ style spy thriller.

There are bad guys with guns. There is violence. There are boats and safe deposit boxes and loads and loads of cash. Yes, it literally turns into THAT kind of story.

I spent 75% of the book picturing Brian as Finn Wittrock in a sweater vest and horn-rimmed glasses, but in the flick of a page he turns into Jason Statham. I pictured Rachel-the-shut-in as a bumbling, oversized sweater-wearing Dakota Johnson. But somehow, in a matter of pages, she rises like a phoenix from the ashes of emotional ruins and becomes some sort of gun-wielding, police-evading, hardened action movie heroine.

A few times I had to stop reading, just to glare at the cover of the book and ask, “really?! seriously?!” By the end, I didn't care about any of the characters anymore. Despite the great lengths that Lehane went to, literally paving Rachel's past brick-by-brick, I just wasn't invested in her, or Brian Delacroix-Alden-Whatever, enough to care.

It was just a really, really strange book.

lauren (13)
I agree. I admit I was entertained, but I felt the book was much more unrealistic than I anticipated after reading the synopsis.
HayleyStenger (10)
I agree, the first half was enjoyable and I felt like he spent a lot of time setting up Rachel and her character. I don't know WHAT happened during the second half. I felt like the author kind of gave up with the ending and it felt very rushed, and not thought out. I just threw the book aside in annoyance at the end.
CillaRey (3)
Maybe the author didn't know how to get into the mind of a woman as well as he thought he could? I appreciated her coming out of her anxiety, however I did think it was all too quick and matter of fact, like I know how to scuba, shoot guns, and pack a getaway bag.
CillaRey (3)
Agree with your description. But am obsessed with the idea of Finn Wittrock as Brian, like it all came together for me when I read this. I knew Brian had to be somewhat charming with a hidden dark side, and that actor is spot on! I have a whole new appreciation for Brian, ha!
CerebroCaro (3)
This description is spot on. I agree with it all.
Victoria (2)
I love the way you've described this book because it is exactly how I feel. There was so much back story, and the connections between Rachel's scarring moments were just not strong enough. Or there were too many. A suicidal mother, an absent father, a first marriage, a second marriage ... just too much. Then having her turn into some crazy action movie-hero was a little unbelievable. I liked the action parts, but the Rachel character was not real enough for me to really care about her "making a friend of the night" ending.
Natasha (35)
I think that the back story is important, but I wish that he would have used them as interjections throughout the action packed section of the book. I liked how details from her past helped her in the last section of the book. How in the world would she have been able to scuba dive if she hadn't been married to Sebastian? Overall, I enjoyed the book and would recommend it to others as a fun read. If it is ever in theaters, I'll take my husband to see it.
Since We FellJillian (32)
Overall 2 thumbs up!

This book was a pretty great read. I LOVED the ending. I loved how it evolved, but with that said, I don't think the first part lent as much as it maybe was supposed to. I get that it was setting everything up, but I felt like it was a large waste of time. I remember around page 237 it really started to get good, and it never stopped at that point. But the first 234 pages was just....meh. Wasn't necessary, it def didn't need to take up as much time as it did. With that said I loved how it all unfolded, I loved seeing Rachel wake up and come back to life, and the unwavering love Brian had for her, even when he was being dishonest! I would definitely recommend this book to my friends who want a good thriller to blaze through!

Since We Fellkalvarija (9)
Hmm

I was very excited to read this book after leaning this was the same author who wrote Shutter Island. I was not disappointed!

I really liked Rachel, she was the type of character you couldn't help but relate to someway or another. I was a little bored with the Haiti chapters, I really cannot tell you why, I think the randomness threw me off. It all made sense in later chapters....

I was left with more questions than answers in the end, but I believe that was the entire point of the novel and goes hand in hand with Rachel's life in general. Aside from that bit, this book is definitely a page turner and I am interested in reading more by this author.

Jillian (32)
I feel the same about the Haiti stuff. Other then it being used to set up backstory for Rachel, why she was who she was, it was all to long and drawn out. Written well, but ultimately not that important to the ending I think. I liked the questions at the end as well! I like not always being told what happens next, when it is not all tied up in a bow, happily ever ended! These books are the ones that stay with me and I think about randomly, like, I wonder if Brian and Rachel stayed in Amsterdam, or if they moved on?! =-)
jana (10)
Glad to hear someone else was bored with the Haiti stuff! I actually skipped over a few pages there(shame on me, I NEVER do that!) but then Whiddys name kept coming up so I had to go back and reread as I just KNEW it would somehow be central throughout the rest of the book lol...that's what I get for skipping over huh? Serves me right I guess
Since We Felllitzwhip (9)
Where's the epilogue?

After reading the rest of the comments, there seems to be a love/hate relationship with this book. I loved it. Or most of it. I actually took the longest getting through the first section, which seems to be opposite of many readers, but then I read all of section two and section three in one day.

The book just went to a place where I wasn't expecting (but was excited to go to!). I found it to be page turning and exciting and I was literally on the edge of my seat. Obviously when you look at the characters individually (i.e., Rachel) there's some concerns and issues, but as a whole I found this to be just really good.

Until I got to the last 10 pages...it was here that I realized that what I thought was going to happen was not going to happen. That the closure I was looking for in this book, was not going to be presented. And then I was given THAT ending. Can you call that an ending? Maybe to a chapter....but not a book. I'm not sure a sequel would be warranted.....there's not THAT much to tie up, but an epilogue would have helped! Like, 10 years later - Brian, Rachel, and AB? Or Rachel and AB? What did she do with the passports? What's going on in Amsterdam? Who's in jail? Anyone? Who's 70 million richer now? Anyone? I just needed one more chapter.

pm (18)
I thought the ending actually tied things up nicely. When she's walking up the stairs and says she feels brains passport in her back pocket and before when she asks if he wants more kids that was closure enough for me. Its safe to assume that they will make it to Amsterdam, live happily ever after, etc. I feel like if that WASNT the case, the author would have continued the book another 50 pages or so
jana (10)
I agree on the passports! Rachel telling Brian she mailed the passport was both insurance for Rachel(that Brian wouldn't kill her because at that point she still didn't know how all this would shake out) and it was a test of Brians love. Would he get her out of there and safely to Amsterdam IF he thought there was nothing in it for him but Rachel herself? I think Rachel and Brian belong together and I just LOVE how this book didn't tie up all nice because that's life right? Like Rachel said sometime you just have "make a friend of the dark".
polkadotpolka (16)
Kinda... That illusion lets you know that she more/less forgives Brian, or at least is going to work with him on this & not kill him or double cross him, BUT Amsterdam is far away. There's a lot that could happen. It would be nice to at least have them securely on their way to Amsterdam before ending like that.
polkadotpolka (16)
YESSSSS!!! So many things left open... TOO MANY THINGS LEFT OPEN!!!
Hamptot71 (2)
I heard Lehene speak last night and I specifically asked him where was the ending. He said the story was about rachel's journey: growning up with her awful mother, searching for her father, the agoraphobia etc. At the end of the book, Rachel had come out of her shell and he felt there was nothing more to say. If you read the book with that paradigm in mind then yeah there's an ending. Unfortunately I did not. I needed to know. It was the most unsatisfactory answer ever.
Julia (21)
I got the impression that the ending wasn't an ending at all, but just a teaser for a sequel, like in the movies. I felt that the whole book actually was made for the movies. Rachel did too much of an abrupt change when the book sequenced into the second half. For me it didn't hold true with who Rachel was at the beginning.
BeckyF (11)
I agree. This book definitely felt like it was made with the intention of turning it into a movie. It was kind of a big change for Rachel, when the first two acts of the book had more of a feel like the point of the book was to showcase how a person's life can change a lot over a lifetime. I loved the intro, I thought it was written very well (and I wished I could share it with my 9 year old who has been studying inversion as a literary device in his composition class but it was too violent), so I kept waiting to see how such a woman would snap and be driven to murder. Her suspicions of Brian felt a little out of left field, but I didn't feel like Lehane left any holes in the plot for how he got to the end. I didn't like how he ended it, the last line especially just seemed out of character for Rachel, but I guess it was her new self. I would have liked to know what happened to them beyond that point, but I'm ok not knowing.
Hamptot71 (2)
You are spot on. Lehene said he'd already written the screenplay sans the first 100 pages. I found that curious because he spent so much time explaining to me how this was Rachel's journey and everything else was extraneous. He said he wasn't interested in the characters past the point he wrote them so I feel that the movie ending will be just as vague as the books.
lauralou22 (9)
I literally just finished the book and would have loved and epilogue. What the heck? I need one more chapter also. I hate when I spend so much time on a book and then I get the rug pulled out from under me.
JenniferNash (19)
I am a reader who does not mind an open ending... but this ending was too open for my taste. We don't even know if they made it to the airport! I almost felt like the author didn't know where he wanted to take the characters so he just stopped writing. An epilogue would have been awesome.
AubreaVanderMolen (11)
I was kind of disappointed by the lack of an epilogue as well. I have a habit (a bad habit) of reading the last page of a book before I start it, and when I did that with this book I kind of ruined the ending for myself. When I was nearing the end I kept checking to see how many pages I had left because I thought there was no way they were going to come to the closing I had hoped they would. Reading the last page confused me at that point. I agree that the second half of the book was much easier to read than the first half. Like you, I finished the second half in about three days while the first half took me almost two weeks. It almost seemed like I was reading a different story. I liked Rachel in the second half a lot more than I did in the first half. To me it seemed like she was growing as a person and was less afraid. I liked that (though I don't agree with some of her decisions).
Since We FellPossibility (6)
Pacing Felt Off

As a brand new subscriber, I am over-all satisfied with the purchase. However, I did feel the pacing was inconsistent. As others have stated, the first half of the novel was great! I was drawn to the story, and especially to Rachel. Although my life does not resemble hers, her character was very relatable. I felt great empathy toward her through the struggles with career, marriage, mental health, family, and a lack of belonging. I cheered her on as she fell for Brian and their relationship blossomed into something beautiful and sacred. The care he shown for her was swoon-worthy. And then the second half of the book came…

While I was still intrigued by the plot, there were instances of Rachel’s behavior that made me think REALLY??? Such as the reaction to the receipt. Some scenes flew by so quickly, that I had to stop and think wait, what? The ending, I did not feel was satisfactory. Leaving the story with bidding farewell to an almost stranger’s corpse, made me want to shake Rachel. Did she not learn her lesson of needlessly stopping with hitmen hot on her trail the first time??

AubreaVanderMolen (11)
Hi there, I share most of your feelings about this book. I thought it was very interesting and pretty well written, but it struck me as kind of odd that the author took so much time to describe minuscule things that didn't seem to matter to the story and breezed through some major events in Rachel's life. I understand now (after finishing the book) that some of the smaller details were really important to the outcome, but it still seemed off. I also cheered for her when she found Brian and they started their life together. I went through this whole thing where I loved his character, then I hated him, then I kind of loved him again (but in a strangely different way). I certainly didn't expect things to turn out the way they did for him. The first and second half actually seem like they're completely different books to me. I found it a little strange that half way through the book Rachel talks to her "friend" and she suddenly gets the idea in her head that her husband is not the person he says he is (though it did pique my interest). I actually think Rachel herself was a lot more interesting in the second half of the book. I definitely understand that the person she is in the first half of the book is someone that a lot of people can relate to, but I feel like she seemed so much stronger in the second half. Like you mentioned, some of her decisions probably weren't the smartest. Prolonging your journey when your on the run from people who want to kill you not once, but TWICE had me wanting to scream at her. While I didn't agree with some of her decisions, I think I was more fond of her throughout the second half because she did seem more sure of herself in a way.
Since We FellCarlyBrownlee (4)
Loved The Book (SPOILERS)

First BOTM !

I actually liked the fact the book was split into 3 different parts of her life. I hate reading a book with parts that all end up telling the same story, no point in making parts if it's all the same! I would like to have at least had Rachel get a chance to see meet her dad rather than him being dead but I understand the need for him being dead. And I love/hate he ending! My only hope is there is a sequel !

Since We FellCabinFever (6)
Worst Book I've Finished in a Long Time

I read this book in its entirety, which is why I say it's the worst I've finished reading in a long time. For books I truly dislike, I don't make it all the way through. This writer is good, the book is bad. I liked the basic premise, but I found myself groaning throughout, mostly through the dialogue after Rachel learns Brian is a bad guy, but also during the expositions of her psychological growth. All of the dots were connected for us when it came to her mental health milestones. All of the characters seem to pull from the same reservoir of vocabulary. Which made the dialogue mirror a primetime crime show. So, I did finish this book, but it was so painful, all the way to the end where we are surgically cut off from any resolution whatsoever.

Since We FellBaileyPorter (3)
**Spoiler questions **

At first I loved this book! The ending ruined it for me. It gave off a Mr. & Mrs. Smith type feel for me. With that being said I still love Brain even after the truth came out. I wish he would have been a bit more upfront with her, but ya know... also, how did he know he was going to have to take his death when she went on the boat?! Did his friend know he was going to do that? Why didn't he tell her that Nicole was his sister?! Ah so many things left undone! I want to know how they get to Amsterdam, how the finance sharks don't find them and how many kids they end up having!! Dammit.

CarlyBrownlee (4)
I obviously can't answer all those questions but the first one about how he knew he was going to have to take his death... that was a set up. That Andrew guy was hired by Brian to say all those things so Rachel would start looking into her husband so Brian could fake his own death. And because Caleb was in on the whole thing from the start, (I'm using my imagination here a little) when Rachel first called Caleb and told him to get over to her apartment now is when Caleb called Brian and told him to get to the boat
polkadotpolka (16)
I agree. Maybe if it wasn't Rachel who "shot" him, it would have been Caleb instead so there was always going to be a "dead" Brian. It just depended on who shot him. I also wondered why even fake your death though--- Rachel was the only one who thought/knew he was dead. Why not just tell her then and get to the safe house? I don't understand the set up for that, unless I missed or am forgetting some part right now....
BaileyPorter (3)
Ahh yes you are so right. I didn't think that through completely. I just noticed my typo, I meant to put fake his death ha! ????
BeckyF (11)
My first thought when Rachel followed Brian to Nicole's house was, "how does Rachel know it's a wife and not his sister or something?" So when that was revealed I wasn't surprised.
polkadotpolka (16)
Same.
AndreaS11 (12)
Yes to all of the above! I want a sequel to see how everything plays out, but I did love the fact that she screwed with him about the passport!
KristenHansonAlexander (11)
Yes! I kept hoping it was a trick because for some crazy reason I wanted them to stay together after I found out he didn't cheat on her! I kept hoping it was a trick to test him or make him feel the way she felt. Towards that last page and a half I was upset she really did it until that one line. I may have audible said a triumphant remark after reading it.
AubreaVanderMolen (11)
I wanted them to stay together too! I was hoping I wouldn't be the only one. He definitely deserved the thing with the passport, but after I found out the other woman was his sister I actually started to like him again. I really want to find out what she ended up doing with the passport.
BeckyF (11)
As she's walking up the stairs to see Haya it says she felt the passports in her pocket. She had put both hers and Brian's in her pocket and lied about mailing it so she could have the power in the situation.
Chelseapegram01 (8)
What is your speculation about what she did? I figured that she told him she had mailed it away to see his reaction. But since she still actually had it, I think they'll all make the getaway together.
KristenHansonAlexander (11)
I agree. I see them living happily ever after in some far off place. As crazy as that seems, all signs point to that. Especially the final chapter being called family portrait. (I think)
Since We FellKourtneyJohnson (4)
EHHH...

I loved the book at the beginning. Fast-paced, engaging and I really felt for Rachel. However, the second half felt predictable and disappointing. Am I alone in this?

SarahTruax (2)
I agree. Half way through the book I found Rachel annoying. Overall I didn't find book very engaging. Definitely not the worse thing I've ever read.
claudia (10)
I 100% agree. I couldn't finish it...
KourtneyJohnson (4)
I finished it, which says something. But really out of a need for a conclusion rather than a desire to keep reading.
SarahTruax (2)
I did the same. I definitely wouldn't recommend it to others though. Like so many in this group have stated, the first and second half of the book seem disconnected. This may be purposeful. The author broke the book up in parts to represent different stages of Rachel's life. Going from the adventurous journalist, to the woman crippled by her anxiety. The only common thread I found was a woman dependent on a man in her life that she doesn't know their identity.
jltobb01 (7)
I agree. To me it felt like I was reading 2 different books. The first half of the book I thought was riveting, but the second half was like "really? THIS is how it's going to end?"
jltobb01 (7)
I agree. To me it felt like I was reading 2 different books. The first half of the book I thought was riveting, but the second half was like "really? THIS is how it's going to end?"
jltobb01 (7)
I agree. To me it felt like I was reading 2 different books. The first half of the book I thought was riveting, but the second half was like "really? THIS is how it's going to end?"
MaryKateNewell (6)
I completely agree! It was fast paced in the beginning and kept me highly engaged. As I got towards the middle of the book, my interest started to fade. It slowed down, because very predictable and I struggled to finish it.
Since We FellHeidiBolduc (10)
Great first read!

With "Since We Fell" being my first official Book of the Month book, I have to say that I was very satisfied overall. I personally felt it was very easy to relate to Rachel, despite the fact that I did not grow up with a single mother and have never experienced panic attacks myself. As a few others have mentioned, the only aspects of the book that confused me a bit were the quick plot switches with the book focusing on the mystery of her father and then changing over to everything centering around Brian. Perhaps the author intended this book to actually be two books at one point in time? Either way, the consistency of Rachel herself throughout the book made sense and I found myself getting sucked back in every time I picked it up to read. There was always some issue that Rachel was freaking out over and somehow that kept my attention, wanting to know what would happen next. Did anyone else feel like there were a few moments where plot twists happened so quickly and unexpectedly that they had to go back and read over things to figure out what was actually happening?

CerebroCaro (49)
Yes! I felt exactly that way when she was just suddenly almost married to some guy we're supposed to know named Sebastian? I reread twice to make sure I hadn't just totally blanked on the fact she was dating somebody!
Since We FellStacieC (6)
So much left unfinished

I loved the writing in this book. I kept reading because i enjoyed it, however, it was so slow. 250+ plus pages building a character with a lot of rabbit holes. So much time was wasted on details like finding her father, then it fizzled out and didn't go anywhere. The book felt so disconnected! The last 100 pages felt like an entirely different novel. For the most part, I liked the book but i wouldn't read it again. When i finished it i felt a little let down.

KristenHansonAlexander (11)
I was disappointed that she never got to actually find her father. And the way that Jeremy James fizzled upset me too, but I can see how she needed to be alone in this battle to come into her own worth.
StacieC (6)
There were so many pages dedicated to the subject it was just weird that it was over so quickly and we never returned to Jeremy or James.
KristenHansonAlexander (11)
Yes it was mentioned slightly but in a way that it was over, that in a way and not meaning to he abandoned her as well.
KourtneyJohnson (4)
I totally agree. It definitely felt like the air was let out as the book came to an end.
Since We FellJanetBelland (3)
Imagining Amsterdam *Spoiler Warning*

'Since We Fell' was less than I expected, but more than I had hoped for once I started reading it. It seemed to predictably be a balance between a never-ending life of a city-girl and one-panic-attack away from disaster. That being said, I wasn't expecting Brian's backstory and it was a bit of a relief knowing that Rachel's anxiety wasn't the climax or the cause of the story's conflict.

Which leads me to my inquiry: assuming all went according to plan and Rachel, Brian, and AB made it safely to Amsterdam, do you think Rachel's panic attacks returned? Or do you feel that this adventure/nightmare freed her from her agoraphobia?

ElizabethHolls (8)
I feel like Rachel never had panic attacks. It's almost like she felt "alive" for the first time in her life. I believe they made it to Amsterdam and lead a sick and twisted life together and they were their own kind of happy.
JenniferNash (19)
Having read Shutter Island (which I loved) I was also glad the whole book didn't end up being a product of Rachel's mental health issues, too. I feel like Rachel's panic disorder was likely a product of trauma associated with lack of control... she is really able to take back control during the events at the end of the book, so I think it's very possible that she was able to free herself. The real question in my head is does Rachel stay with Brian? The obvious answer is of course not... but as misguided as that man was he really did seem to genuinely love her. (But that might be the romantic in me. )
KristenHansonAlexander (11)
I agree. I think this battle she had to go through, and the reason Brian did it to her, was to get her control of herself and emotions back. She had lost so much and the violence in Haiti crushed her. Going through what he put her through made her face all of her fears so abruptly that she had no choice but to gain her strenght back. And about her and Brian, maybe I have lost my mind, who would want to stay with someone who ruined their life as they knew it, but he was the only one who could save her from herself. He was the one to love her despite her struggles. Yes it was a horrible way to get her there and lies are never good, but in this alternate reality I have lived in the last week with the book, I see them staying together. They are connected more than just how they fell in love but now with this situation.
Chelseapegram01 (8)
I agree with you, Kristen! In a very strange sort of way, all of the horrible things Brian did actually worked together to help Rachel conquer her fears and anxiety. She had to face and talk about things that she had never talked about before. By the way, I thought was an interesting thing in the story. We thought we knew about the night in Haiti, that she was plagued by that night because of the young girl's death, but it wasn't until so much later in the story do we learn the REAL reason. I was struck by that, as I thought about the book after finishing it.
KristenHansonAlexander (11)
Yes! I knew it felt like there was more and especially with the one girl that she kept mentioning. Closer to the end she did say how she would have just been raped but then to learn they made her say that she will be good! Talk about breaking you down to the lowest levels. I totally felt for her in that moment. It was one of those....well I don't know what I would have done in that situation ..,,
JanetBelland (3)
I feel like Rachel's life was filled with uncertain relationships with men (mostly potential fathers) and she didn't want to give up on Brian.
Since We Fellndarty (17)
Well hmm

Spoilers

Ok first I enjoyed this book. I was really drawn to Rachel. At first I didn't really understand why a breakdown that went viral was so upsetting that she could no longer function. I knew there had to be more to that story. I Got to the 2 part and really wasn't sure where it was going. Now the twist gets interesting. I really didn't expect that. Honestly I was really expecting something else. I got to the ending and thought it was fell flat. Maybe it was just me, but I felt like it just ended with nothing.

Again I did like the book. But I guess I was expecting more from Dennis Lehane because Shutter island was amazing.

JenniferNash (19)
I enjoyed the book a lot, but I will agree with you that Shutter Island was better... maybe because the whole plot and subsequent twists were more original.
Melissa (4)
I think the author had a tough time with the breadcrumbs on this one. Shutter Island was done so well and each clue, and each line in the book was purposeful. I think he tried to do the same thing here but clues led to dead ends, some parts skipped around, and the big reveal was a letdown. I'd read Lehane's next novel, but nothing will top Shutter.
SuzanneAllen (2)
I totally agree with you on the ending. During the part when she was at the bank, and for that second she thought that he hadn't included a passport for her, I felt a lot of emotion, and thought the book was going to take an interesting twist. Then it didn't.
JenniferNash (19)
Oh, I forgot to breathe during that scene! I so wanted Brian to be redeemable that I was really happy her passport was there, but I definitely wondered what she was going to do if it wasn't.
Since We FellAshleySmith (11)
It Was Okay...(Spoilers sort of?)

It was a slow buildup, but I honestly didn't mind that, and I liked that the author put so much into showing us Rachel's character throughout her life rather than just when the meat of the story happens. It wasn't really what I was expecting though! I kind of thought it would be more of a mystery than it was, especially once Rachel started looking into what Brian was really up to on his "business trips." (that was the most thrilling part for me!) After we find everything out, however, it's sort of just a thrilling along-for-the-ride sort of story. I was also starting to wonder if she was having some sort of psychotic break when she found out that Brian wasn't where he said he was, but that he really was and she was just going crazy and getting paranoid since she had been going out into the world again and had cracked. Not the case. Again, not really what I was expecting but still enjoyable.

Since We FellKaren (1)
question to other readers

I am still working on this book, but I am confused, about Rachel's "break down" on tv that went "viral" and made things hard for her, when I read the "breakdown" it didn't sound like a big deal, but then as I read the story it goes on and on about what a big deal it is and how it was a huge breakdown. Did anyone else get lost with this???? (I'm still reading and not finished yet)

Collynware (1)
I think I understood her breakdowns (you learn more about her situation in Haiti that leads to it), but I think I was more confused about the missing father. That was such a huge part of the beginning, so I was confused when the story went in a completely different direction. I kept waiting for some twist of events where she learned who her father really was. Overall, I thought it was a good book, but I think I enjoyed Mystic River more.
LizzieF (2)
I completely agree with your point about the missing father being such a huge part of the first half of the book. I kind of think that is why he divided it up into sections with date ranges. I read it more as a journey through Rachel's life with interesting plot twists...which helped me get over the great shift in plot topics. If you think about it, Brian really doesn't take huge precedence in the novel until later, although you could argue his storyline is greatest in the book. It was an interesting read, and I think her mother's personality and her search for her dad are what makes her the way she is. So, I think that we had to know those stories before we could get into the relationship between her and Brian.
HeidiBolduc (10)
Good point about the book divisions!
mnoury16 (7)
That is a great point! I also kept waiting for the father or the breakdowns to make another appearance, but I agree with you, those were more to keep the plot moving towards her relationship with Brian. Although it was difficult for me to understand that until further along in the story!
DeeJ (1)
I agree with you Lizzie. I think the father/mother back story is a vital building block of Rachel's personality, and it's important if only because it's what brings Brian into her life. Without the father backstory she would probably have never even crossed his path and then there wouldn't be a story. Her breakdowns were hard to grasp when I read them, but I think they get put into perspective as more information is revealed.
HeidiBolduc (10)
From my experience with broadcast journalism, I would say it was a matter of her breakdown leading her to never be able to attain the career status she once had. She would probably be able to find a job with another station, but it would be in a much smaller market and may not be on-air considering what happened with her. Knowing this, she probably figured she may as well just consider it a "career ending" mistake, because who wants to go back to work in a lower position in the same field? It would be like a McDonald's manager having to start over by working on the grill--ain't no one got time for that.
Natasha (35)
I'm around the same part of the book that you are and I think that in the viral video era, it is easier to make a big deal out of nothing. Just think about the "ain't nobody got time for that" clip that went viral a few years ago. It was so small and before social media, no one would have paid attention to it.
JenniferNash (19)
You will get the "Haiti" situation much better closer to the end. I think it's also helpful to remember how cutthroat the world of media journalism is - ANY mistake in that position can be a career-ending since there are twenty people in line waiting for the chance to take your spot. Look into the book "10% Happier" by Dan Harris, a television reporter who actually DID have a panic attack on the air if you're interested. I've youtube'd the panic attack and it's hardly noticeable to the audience, but it's very clear to everyone in the newsroom that something went very wrong.