I read this novel as a participant in a reading round at a German book forum. It was fun to talk and discuss this book with all the other participants and to see how different some of us thought about the plot. To be honest, this novel reminded me very much of the City of series by Cassandra Clare. There were many similarities. In the end, I can say, that despite the weakness this novel has, it was a very promising start into a new series. 

Celestial City-Akademie Der Engel Jahr 1*
by Leia Stone
Fallen Academy #1
Translation Michael Krug
Original Title Fallen Academy: Year One**
Publisher One on August 28, 2020
Genre Fantasy
Pages 355
Format Hardcover
Source Lesejury 

A world between angels and demons. When pitch-black wings grow from Brielle´s back, it´s clear something is going completely wrong. Could it be that a demon slumber in her? Nevertheless, she is accepted into the Fallen Academy of Angels. With her black wings, however, she is an outsider there. It does not help that the attractive Lincoln Grey makes her life even more difficult. Then her affiliation with the Academy is questioned at the highest level, and thus the chaos for Brielle is perfect.
Brielle is on her way to a ceremony where she will find out what sort of ability she has. When the war between demons and angels started years ago, and humankind had to deal with the unleashed powers that destroyed almost all humans or made them demons. And Brielle knows that she has not much to hope for. But when during the ceremony black wings break through her shoulder blades and she extremely suffers pain, even she knows that something has gone wrong.

The author´s writing style is soft and easy to understand. Some hilarious scenes and dialogues made me smile or laughing out loud while reading. Especially some scenes with Tiffany, the other girl at the academy who is giving Brielle, the main figure a hard time. Or at least, tries to achieve that. 

Leia Stone´s Fallen Academy starts with a fast-paced plot and some scenes where the tension building is done in a wonderful way. But that changes a few chapters later and from then on, the story is only a soft combination of various scenes and dialogues but nothing more.  After that, the other half of the book shows some weak spots in the story, some things are getting solved too fast and the end was without any surprises. 

Brielle is a teenage girl who has known what it means to be a slave for the demons all her life. Because her mother is one. Darkness is familiar to Brielle and yet she has a wonderful sense of humor, wit, and sarcasm that gives her personality the perfect touch. But don´t expect any of the shown characters to have some profoundness. Because there is none. Everyone reacts to what happens, and yes, some characters have gone through hell in their pasts. But there is no actual depth that a reader would say, counts.  

What began as a novel that inspired me with its great scenes and dialogues soon turned into a book that was still wonderful to read with small weaknesses. But after a few chapters, things went downhill. Problems were solved too quickly. The main character knew fighting techniques and had a strength that was a little unbelievable and one saw less and less of her training at the Fallen Academy. What started as a four-star novel was just a slightly above average book in the end. Too bad. Hopefully, volume two will be better there. 

Happy reading

*This book was kindly provided to me by One in exchange for an honest and unbiased review. Thank you. Therefore, the cover of the German edition is shown first in this review.

Deutsche Rezension

Der Schreibstil der Autorin ist sanft und leicht zu verstehen. Einige lustige Szenen und Dialoge ließen mich beim Lesen lächeln oder laut lachen. Besonders einige Szenen mit Tiffany, dem anderen Mädchen an der Akademie, das Brielle, der Hauptfigur eine schwere Zeit bereitet. Oder es zumindest versucht, das zu erreichen.

Leia Stones Fallen Academy beginnt mit einer rasanten Handlung und einigen Szenen, in denen der Spannungsaufbau auf wunderbare Weise erfolgt. Aber das ändert sich ein paar Kapitel später, und von da an ist die Geschichte nur eine seichte Kombination verschiedener Szenen und Dialoge, aber nichts weiter. Danach zeigt die Hälfte des Buches einige Schwachstellen in der Geschichte. Einige Dinge werden zu schnell gelöst und das Ende war ohne Überraschung.

Brielle ist ein junges Mädchen, das ihr ganzes Leben lang gewusst hat, was es bedeutet, eine Dämonensklavin zu sein. Weil ihre Mutter eine ist. Dunkelheit ist Brielle vertraut, und dennoch hat sie einen wunderbaren Sinn für Humor, Witz und Sarkasmus, der ihrer Persönlichkeit die perfekte Note verleiht. Jetzt darf man aber nicht erwarten, dass einer der gezeigten Charaktere eine gewisse Tiefe aufweist. Weil es keine gibt. Alle reagieren auf das, was passiert, und ja, einige Figuren sind in ihrer Vergangenheit durch die Hölle gegangen. Aber es gibt keine Tiefe im eigentlichen Sinne, von der ein Leser sagen würde, dass sie zählt. 

Was als Roman begann, der mich mit seinen großartigen Szenen und Dialogen begeisterte, wurde bald zu einem zwar immer noch wunderbar zu lesendem Buch mit kleinen Schwächen. Doch nach ein paar Kapiteln ging es bergab. Probleme wurden zu schnell gelöst. Die Hauptfigur konnte Kampftechniken und hatte eine Stärke, die doch etwas unglaubwürdig waren und von ihrer Ausbildung an der Fallen-Academy sah man immer weniger. Was als Vier-Sterne-Roman begann, war am Ende nur noch ein etwas über dem Durchschnitt liegendes Buch. Schade. Hoffentlich wird Band zwei da besser. 

**This book was originally published by CreateSpace Independent on August 10, 2018 

Leia Stone
Leia Stone ©Leia Stone

Leia Stone is a bestselling author who has published numerous books. When she´s not romping around the house with her two children, she´s writing new stories or burying her nose in a book. She lives in Arizona with her husband, the twins, and the family dog. 



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