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Fallen

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3.64  ·  Rating Details ·  574 Ratings  ·  106 Reviews
From the internationally acclaimed author of The Preservationist comes a provocative retelling of the story of Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel: a novel that gives new meaning to the words "temptation," "rivalry," and "murder."

Their expulsion from the Garden is only the beginning: Eve and Adam have to find their way past recriminations and bitterness, to construct a new life to
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Paperback, 256 pages
Published September 5th 2006 by St. Martin's Griffin (first published 2005)
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(showing 1-30)
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David Maine
Nov 08, 2007 David Maine rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
I know it's low-class to rate my own books. But I do, actually, think they're pretty good.
Donovan
Dec 15, 2007 Donovan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction-literary
Despite being inspired by content that has been around for a few thousand years, it is very original and fresh.

I was recently reminded of how much I enjoyed reading David Maine's first book, The Preservationist, and so I went out and picked up everything he's written since. The Fallen didn't disappoint - I love his writing. His style is wry and sparce. In this novel he tells the story backwards, beginning with Cain on his deathbed and ending with Adam and Even's banishment from the garden. I lo
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Ryan
Spoiler: Abel dies. The story of the first family is not anything new. The technique the writer uses to tell the story is quite novel.

At first, I hated this book. I did not want to read it and I thought it was awful. About 1/2 way through it became bearable. Towards the end I appreciated what he was trying to do. This story is told in reverse chronological order. By going in reverse chronological order, a boring 2000 year old tale that everyone knows became intriguing. Instead of going in a norm
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Christian
Mar 13, 2011 Christian rated it really liked it
I'm not sure where I came across a review for this book, and looking through my e-mail folders, I apparently didn't save the review, but I remember getting this book because I thought the premise was intriguing. Fallen is the story of Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel. What I thought would be interesting would be the way the author might put flesh on that story.

It is an engaging bit of storytelling. The main characters are all given personalities, and rather distinct ones at that. Adam is wishy-washy
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Shannon
I hated to put Fallen down. Even when I was frustrated with a character (I'm talking to you, Eve,) I was nonetheless riveted by how the four characters dealt with such issues as temptation, obedience, jealousy, pride, shame, fear and hope all within the construct of their various interpersonal relationships (Siblings, Man-Woman, Father-Son, and Mother-Son.) Having the story told in reverse was just the right mechanism, in my opinion, for revealing to the reader what made each of these characters ...more
Jaymi
Mar 01, 2009 Jaymi rated it really liked it
This book, written in reverse, was really entertaining and inventive. Every chapter seemed to allude to something that you didn't quite understand yet, but that would be outlined in the next chapter (that actually had happened previously). It sounds confusing but it was just interesting. I suppose that when telling a tale we all know, you have to find a way to make it interesting. I think David Maine did just that. It added dimension and depth to the age old story of Adam & Eve and their fam ...more
Marvin
Aug 06, 2009 Marvin rated it it was amazing
Shelves: religion
This story of Cain & Abel & Adam & Eve (after their banishment from The Garden of Eden) is necessarily even more imaginative than The Preservationist, because there's so much less detail in the biblical account. This one, with its more serious themes of fratricide & banishment & disinheritance (both God's of Adam & Eve & theirs of Cain), lacks much of the humor that was integral to The Preservationist, but it has the same wit & keen insight couched in the same spa ...more
Jenn
Aug 11, 2009 Jenn rated it really liked it
This story beautifully, and accessibly fleshes out the well-known Biblical passages from Genesis regarding the first humans. The early trials of Adam and Eve's survival, and the story of Cain's murder of his Brother Abel are presented in a very accessible, and relatable way. The way the characters seem so completely human, having the same thoughts and feelings any of us might, and even using modern language to express everything was extremely refreshing. Adam and Eve's trials are not unlike what ...more
Kat Gilmore
Jan 31, 2016 Kat Gilmore rated it it was amazing
I loved the storytelling element of this story. I love the author's way with words that weave around you as you read it. I listened to parts of this book on audio and other times I read the book. The audio was so nice to hear the author's words out loud around you. The author's word choice,metaphor and storytelling is literary and beautiful. I would read a recipe book if he wrote it. The story itself is a clever retelling of the Adam/Eve and Cain/Abel story. He gives these biblical characters li ...more
Laura
May 21, 2012 Laura rated it it was amazing
I actually picked up the book because it was in a group of many other 'must read' books. I read the in-cover synopsys and i got intrigued - i wasn't disapointed! I am facinated by the stories in the first testament, and as a matter of fact i own 3 different versions of The Bible for Children. The story takes you on a journey backwards about Cain's life, only to end with Adam and Eve's struggles to survive after the ban from Eden. The story presents the consequences first, only to show you how ev ...more
B
Oct 15, 2013 B rated it it was ok
The story (one most of us know) is told in reverse chronological order. This made it so hard for me to keep track of what was going on (even though I have a general sense of the story) and this was totally distracting.
And, even if the story was told in real time sequence, I'm not sure I would have been crazy about the book.
Sterlingcindysu
This was a very short book about Cain and Able, and a bit about Adam and Eve's fall from the Garden of Eden. There's different viewpoints throughout the book. Maine does a great job in covering some of the philosophical points, for example, why make sacrifices and offerings to the God that threw you out of Paradise without any skills or means for survival? And was the first murder spur on others as they heard about it? The reader needs to take a leap of disbelief for many things, such as the lan ...more
Ritu
Apr 05, 2014 Ritu rated it liked it
Shelves: 2014
The book has 40 chapters and begings with chapter 40 going backwards to chapter 1. It begins with Cain being on his deathbed talking to his son, remembering Abel, talking to Abels's ghost and then the incidents' are gradually unfolded. I guess the author's attempt was to enlighten us as to what made Cain do the things he did and the fall of Adam and Eve and their influence on the events. Everyone is probably familiar with the Garden of Eden and the serpent (devil) luring Eve to eat the forbidden ...more
Clinton
Oct 08, 2008 Clinton rated it really liked it
David Maine's sophomore outing is just as engaging as his previous work,The Preservationist. This is the story of Adam and Eve, their banishment from the Garden, and the effects on them and their children, particularly Cain and Abel. This is the story of WHY. Why did Eve eat the fruit? Why did Adam eat it as well? Why did Cain hate Abel and ultimately murder him? The blanks are filled in, and the characters, so dimly understood from the Bible, are fleshed out.

Obviously this book is not canonical
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Jintana
Sep 08, 2012 Jintana rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio
ผูแตงเอาเรืองราวในพระคัมภีรเกา (The Old Testament) ทีบอกเลาเรืองราวเกียวกับมนุษยคูแรกของโลก อาดัมและอีฟ มาขยายความ จากวันทีทังคูถูกพระเจาขับไลออกจากสวนเอเดน แลวหลังจากนันชีวิตของทังคูดำเนินไปอยางไร แตผูแตงเลาเรืองยอนจากตอนจบทีเคนลูกคนโตของอาดัมกับอีฟกำลังนอนรอความตายอยางโดดเดียวไปยังตอนตนทีมาของเรืองราวทังหมด

แมจะเปนเรืองทีผานมายาวนานนับพัน ๆ ปี แตปมประเดนกไมลาสมัยเพราะเปนเรืองราวของมนุษยและกิเลส ศาสนาคริสตบอกวามนุษยเกิดมาพรอมกับบาปกำเนิด กคงคลายๆ กับทางพุทธทีวามนุษยเกิดมาพรอมกับกิเลส ไมตางกันในแ
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Lisa
I thought this was an interesting look at the story of our first family, Adam and Eve. It was told in four sections, each from a different perspective, in reverse order from Adam and Eve's fall from grace and their expulsion from the Garden of Eden. I felt like I was watching an old fashioned movie reel in reverse.

The murder of Abel by his brother Cain held a prominent spot in the plot. I think this was so because Cain's exile from his family mirrored his parents exile from the garden. It also b
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Krystal
Jul 07, 2011 Krystal rated it really liked it
Not a religious person in the slightest, I was a little leery of this book. But once I started reading it, I was instantly sucked in. The book tells the story of the first family, but telling it in a wonderfully real way. The story begins with Cain on his death bed, and every chapter jumps you back farther in time. You’re constantly learning what led to the events you just read, which makes for a really interesting read. We look back through the life of Cain, then the lives of Cain and Abel and ...more
Phil Whittall
May 17, 2016 Phil Whittall rated it really liked it
Most biblical novels that I've come across have been rubbish. Stuck in the Christian ghetto writing nice Anglo-Saxon stories that play to religious sensibilities. David Maine on the other hand writes with imagination, verve and wit. His stories follow the biblical narrative without deviation but they provoke, excite, challenge and stir one to think about the story behind the well known stories.

I first came across his writings with his first novel 'The Flood' and this his second successfully gets
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Nurture Waratah
I am not a religious person, nor am I Christian, but that did not prevent me from enjoying this novel. Beginning with the final days of Cain and moving back in time to Adam and Eve's banishment from the Garden, this book portrays the dusty old Bible stories in a brand new light. Breathing life into these well-known characters in a way no Bible story ever could, Maine reminds us that few people are truly evil and that we all have the potential to commit terrible acts.

The names in this book are al
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Sam
Oct 25, 2008 Sam rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book blew me away.

I knew the story of Adam and Eve - and that they had two sons - and that one killed the other because he was jealous. But - for me - David Maine brought this story and these characters to life in such an unexpected, real way.

Before - I'd just accepted the moral of the story - and what was being implied by the way in which it was told.

Now - I have a different perspective to explore and delighted to discover that there is a plausible alternative tale. Sure - one that still
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Christina
Dec 15, 2013 Christina rated it liked it
This is a book that has some beautiful points as a writing and character exercise - taking figures from myth and giving them living, breathing human motives, loves, jealousies, and failings is no easy task. However, I felt the story as a whole fell short. There were questions raised in the opening chapters from Cain's point of view that are never addressed. The book proceeds in reverse chronological order, and although some of the events alluded to in the beginning are put before the reader, I w ...more
Bookmarks Magazine

Interweaving original sin, theological inquiry, and biblical murder is no easy task, and Maine navigates between genuine reverence and sly irony with deftness. Fallen is a wry and daring novel, even more so than Maine's debut The Preservationist (2004), a lively rendering of Noah's clan on the ark. While Maine shines at fleshing out the weighty themes of the Old Testament with three-dimensional characters (squabbling yet sympathetic), the retrograde plotline of his new novel, traveling from murd

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Laura
Apr 20, 2011 Laura rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biblical-fiction
David Maine brings intrigue and mystery to one of the most familiar stories in the Bible: the story of Adam and Eve and their sons, Cain and Abel. The momentum of this story comes from the fact that it is told backwards, beginning with Cain about to die and rewinding all the way to Adam and Eve's first night after leaving Eden. It really was the perfect way to tell this story--rather than watching everything unravel, we begin with a disappointed Cain on his death bed and explore the reasons behi ...more
Noël DeVries
Dec 25, 2010 Noël DeVries rated it it was ok
I expected this to be ground-breaking, but wasn't impressed.

Resentment of God and his will are perfectly legitimate emotions. He's not that great.

A second race of people, not descendants of Adam, suddenly appear as spouses for the sons of Adam, but their mysterious origin is never explained. Wondering then how their descendants happen to qualify for the blood/grace of the Last Adam? A good storyteller knows that when you're working with a limited cast, you can't suddenly pop people out of nowh
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Josh
Sep 15, 2012 Josh rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2012, novels
Not a book I would broadly recommend for some really bad theological implications, but from a storytelling perspective I found this book insightful (and even fascinating at times). Maine tells an extended-fictional version of the first family on earth from an "inside their head" perspective. The POV of the omniscient narrator gives us insights into the struggles of the first 2 generations, but misses the boat in some critical assumptions. For example, one of these assumptions could lead to the d ...more
Beth Anne
i went into reading this book with high expectations. i really wanted to like it.

ended up...eh...not so much.

i mean, it was fine. but it surely didn't blow me away. the story was, well, duh, the stories i've heard and read a million times growing up. maine didn't really add much new to it....or make it any more interesting.
in fact, he may have made it LESS interesting.

i found the dialogue to be awfully written...sophomoric at best. and the rest of the narrative not much above that.

i think the
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Dave
Feb 21, 2008 Dave rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another book I judged by its cover and it did not let down.

'Fallen' tells the life story of Cain...you know, that guy from the Bible who offed his brother Abel...but there's a bit of a twist. The story is told backwards. In the beginning of the book, we meet a Cain who's on his dying bed. With each following chapter, Cain is younger and younger as we experience his life in reverse. All the while, he is haunted by his biggest sin, the murder of his brother Abel. Further along in the book, we even
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Chris
Dec 19, 2007 Chris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It took me a while to adjust to the reverse chronology (in the same way that the movie "Memento" takes a little getting used to at first) but once I had adapted, I couldn't put the book down. I found Cain and Eve (the "sinners" and doubters of God) to be the most fascinating characters in the book. In most stories, the characters with flaws and blemishes are the most believable and the most interesting. When I ponder the death and the destruction caused by humans, I often find myself wishing for ...more
Lori
The retelling of Cain and Abel, in reverse.... But modernised. I picked this up after my religious/conspiracy-lit phase was drawing to an end- due to reading through the entire librarys stock and hitting more dirt, than PAYdirt...

I wasnt holding out much hope for this one. I liked the blurb on the flap, but past expierence proved that what sounded like a great novel very rarely delivered in this genre...

Low and behold... after paying full hardcover price for it (for lack of finding anything bett
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JSou
Adam & Eve. Cain & Abel. Stories that have been drilled into my head since I was a toddler, yet David Maine makes these biblical characters seem fresh and original. I love how Maine expands more on the so-called "evil" characters of the Bible, to give them more of a real, identifiable story.

Told in reverse chronological order, the story opens with Cain as an old man waiting for death, and ends with Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. Maine's ability to flesh out his characters so well ke
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I was born and raised in Connecticut but spent much of my adult life overseas, living in Morocco from 1995-98 and in Lahore, Pakistan from 1998-2008. Since 2008 I have been living and teaching in Honolulu. I began getting published in 2004, with The Preservationist, a retelling of the Noah story from Genesis. This was followed by Fallen, which reexamined the stories of Eve/Adam and Abel/Cain. In 2 ...more
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