Monday, July 2, 2012

Review: Tyler Falls by Lori Clark

Tyler Falls

YA Contemporary

Publication Date
May 26th, 2012


Available At


By the time seventeen-year-old Tyler Falls meets Emma, his "Thirty-Days-Left-to-Live" plan is already in place -- and falling in love isn't part of that plan.

Tyler has suffered from manic depression for as long as he can remember. Through medication and therapy, he manages to keep his life together. But when his parents are murdered, he decides he's had enough of living as a broken person with a broken life. So, in thirty days, he plans to stick the barrel of his Ruger SP101 into his mouth and pull the trigger.

Emma Perez's brother, Ethan Giovanni, sits in a mental institution for the murder of Dr. and Mrs. Falls. Deemed mentally incompetent and unfit to stand trial, Ethan has one weekly visitor -- Emma. She doesn't deny his guilt, he's her brother and she loves him spite of the fact he's paranoid schizophrenic.

They say when you cross paths with someone more than once, it's fate -- you're destined to meet. Tyler doesn't know Emma is Ethan's sister, and Emma doesn't know Tyler's story either. When Tyler learns who Emma's brother is, the world he's rebuilt around her begins to crumble all over again and it leaves both of them wondering why fate has such a cruel sense of humor.

Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars

Tyler Falls is a really sweet romance, but for a story about a 17 year-old guy with plans to commit suicide and that unknowingly falls in love with the sister of the guy that changed his life forever, it shouldn't have been sweet. It should have been a gut-wrenching love story that rips the emotions from you as you read.

The struggles of the characters just didn't come across as plausible, they were too light for the depth that was trying to surface. There should have been many layers to peel back as we read, but I found the story too simple and straight forward to successfully pull me in. Especially with Tyler's tormented past and "Thirty-Days-Left-To-Live" plan. There should have been a monumental struggle with Tyler and how his plan was changing, but there wasn't. He just simply accepted the change in his life and the change of his feelings without any difficulties. The story revolved around a romance when I think it should have been more focused on two individuals that found the power to heal with each other. Which can be classified as the same thing, but it's not.

The story alternated with chapters from Tyler's perspective and Emma's perspective and while in most cases I revel in being able to get inside each characters minds, I was a little put off by the redundancy. Each scene that involved both Emma and Tyler were told from both perspectives with scenes of the same dialogue. There were some added scenes that took place prior or after, but sometimes the wording was different from the scene in the others perspective. 

My favorite aspect was the relationship between Tyler and his Uncle Kyle. That was the one thing that was the most natural and the most endearing. I also greatly appreciated that the characters were portrayed in a more natural light. Meaning: they cursed, drank a little and so on. Tyler Falls is a book that needed that 'uncleanliness' to show the roughness of the characters.

I did enjoy reading Tyler Falls, I just wish that the story wasn't so light considering the heavy-hitting premise. I can say, though, that I'm very intrigued to see what other stories Lori Clark will produce.

*Received to review via the author through Making Connections YA Edition*


  1. Thanks for your thoughts, but from what you've written the rating seems low. Would you consider posting your rating system? It might clarify things.

    1. My rating system is on the side. 2 stars means it was okay, 3 stars means I liked it. I rated it 2.5 because it was in the middle (I somewhat liked it). I thought it was clear why I gave it a low rating, but thanks for clarifying that for me. I'll have to try to make it more apparent that it was too light for the emotional depth that it was trying to reach. The struggles were almost non-existent when it should have been heavily laced throughout the story. Although, I describe it as sweet, 'sweet' shouldn't be a word used when you're reading about a teenager dead-set on committing suicide. I think I'll rephrase some words and add some more explanations. Thank you for the help :)