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The Falling Between Us

3.60  ·  Rating details ·  227 ratings  ·  61 reviews
All-consuming fame and fortune prove too much for a teen popstar who suddenly goes missing--Eddie and the Cruisers for the Justin Bieber era.

After 15-year-old Joshua Blackbird posts a performance of an original song on YouTube, he becomes an overnight sensation, catapulting to the dizzying heights of celebrity. Joshua is plucked from his middle-of-nowhere small town to pur
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published March 13th 2018 by Philomel Books
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Average rating 3.60  · 
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 ·  227 ratings  ·  61 reviews

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Stay Fetters
Apr 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
"A blade of grass is connected to the others all around it, multiple blades pressed close, connected at the root, touching above it. Joshua’s absence is like that. It spreads through me and touches every thought."

We’ve probably all thought about what it would be like to be rich and famous. To wake up and know that somewhere somebody is thinking about you and the enjoyment you bring to their lives. We always assume it would make your life better but we never really look at the outcome. How it tak
**Thank you so much to the lovely people at Penguin Teen for sending me over a review copy of this!! I really appreciate it, but it didn't change my opinion of it!**

Oh, this is a tough one to pinpoint a rating. I'm going to go with three crowns at the moment, but it was super super close to getting a 3.5 crown.

This book was mesmerizing in a weird way, and it just emotionally pulled me in so deep. I felt like I was in such a different head space in this book, and I really have to commend Parsons
Apr 04, 2018 rated it liked it
*I was sent a copy of this novel from the publisher in exchange for an honest review*
I ended up giving THE FALLING BETWEEN US 3.5 stars.
I did enjoy my time reading this novel. It explored the struggles that celebrities experience with fame and expectations, but a few things didn’t flow as I would have liked. For one, I felt some of the characters weren’t developed well. Rox, the narrator, Joshua, and the entourage traveling with them were all described vaguely, and I would have loved to see mor
Alexis Jackson
Mar 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
It's been a wild ride for Joshua Blackbird and his girlfriend, Roxanne Stewart. After posting his original song on YouTube, the musician was snapped up by the music machine and became wildly famous, setting off on a nation-wide tour and leaving his small town home of Marchant, Georgia, far behind. From that promising, fairy tale beginning, Roxanne looks back on the eighteen months that have taken a toll on Joshua. It's pretty clear from the get-go that Joshua is done, completely used up by the e ...more
Samantha (WLABB)
Sep 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
This definitely had those Eddie and the Cruisers vibe, but it was about so much more. It was about watching someone you love fade before your eyes and feeling helpless. It was about love, loss, and the different ways we grieve. It also took a hard look at teen celebrity, which is always fraught with pitfalls. I liked the bit history between Joshua and Roxy and enjoyed the touch of mystery in the story.

Debra Mayhew
Aug 02, 2018 rated it liked it
While the writing for this novel is beautiful, the subject was just too dark and heavy for me. Perhaps the author intended it to be this way, but I felt myself being pulled into the oppressive world of Joshua Blackbird and the wearing push and pull of fame. Flashback scenes from simpler and happier times began to feel like the sun trying to push through before the clouds swallowed it back. The ending was not a satisfying resolution for me either, especially after the painful road to get there. I ...more
Martha Schwalbe
Jan 25, 2019 rated it did not like it
Throughout the book, the characters remained flat. The historical figure, Lillian Leitzel, offered the only more fully-developed character. I'm curious to know what appealed to the student who recommended this title.
I'd recommend it to strong readers since it took the fact that it is on the NYRA list for me to finish it.
May 04, 2018 rated it it was ok
Implausible that in 8 months that he would rise from being discovered on YouTube to having literally millions of dollars to throw away. The ending was pretty telegraphed as well, but it did show how being a "star" can destroy your psyche. ...more
Kelly (Simply Kelina) C.
I was sent this book by the publisher. My ratings and reviews will be my own personal opinions and are in no way influenced by publishers or authors who may have sent me books to review.

I have not heard anyone talking about this book. Before agreeing to review this, I looked it up on Goodreads. The first thing I saw was this was the perfect read for the Justin Bieber era (which is not me). Do not let that stop you from picking this up though. I read the premise and still wanted to give this a tr
Mackenzie Jager
Mar 30, 2018 rated it did not like it
To start, something positive. This book had a few beautiful sentences worth lingering over. The types of sentences that make you feel seen and understood--or even consider the world from another angle. Sadly, the one-dimensional characters and tired plot drowned most of those moments. I might have given this book two stars if not for the ending. (view spoiler) ...more
Heather Montgomery
Apr 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
You know when you pick up a book and you expect it to be full of the same old, same old, teen story? That is what I expected when I picked up a young adult that advertised teen love and a rock star. But Parson's writing blew me away. Fresh figurative language sucked me into the experience and kept me turning page after page. Yes, this is a teen love story. Yes, it is about a rock star. Yes, it includes all of the expected pieces. But, no, you won't be putting this book down. Enjoy! ...more
Mar 21, 2018 rated it liked it
I loved the way this book explored fame, grief, love, family relationships and other big topics. It was hard-hitting and emotional. HOWEVER, I really didn’t like the ending at all. It seemed unrealistic and was definitely unsatisfying. I liked it, but I won’t read it again.
Isaac Marie
Mar 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: eighth-grade
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Jan 10, 2021 rated it liked it
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Desiree Pekar
Jun 26, 2019 rated it liked it
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Cindy Mitchell *Kiss the Book*
The Falling Between Us by Ash Parsons, 283 pages. Philomel Books (Penguin), 2018. $18.

Language: PG-13 (15 swears, 0 ‘f’); Mature Content: PG-13; Violence: PG



Roxanne and Joshua have been friends forever, long before Joshua became famous. Now everything has changed and his manager, Artie, controls everything. She’s decided it’s time for him to have a new girlfriend, she’s decided who he can talk to and what questions the media can ask, and now
Jonathan Gentry
Aug 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
In Parson’s sophomore novel we follow Roxanne Stewart on a mystery of sorts. After her boyfriend, Joshua “Shu” Blackbird, posts a performance of an original song online, he goes from small town native to international pop-star. But out of the blue he disappears eight months after stardom finds him. Was he murdered by an insane fan? Did he kill himself to escape a life he didn’t intend living? These are the questions that plague his girlfriend Roxanne’s mind. And she will stop at nothing to disco ...more
May 28, 2018 rated it liked it
I gave this book 3 stars, mostly for the final third of the book.

This story follows Roxy a teenager girl who has followed her boyfriend, Joshua, into the chaotic world of being an adored superstar. The character describes the world around them as a machine that once living in it, takes over and moves everyone impassively forward. Joshua aware at his own loss of agency becomes distant and isolated. Roxy tries to hang on to their relationship and remain a grounded reminder of simpler times.

I actua
Jan 21, 2020 rated it it was ok
2.5 stars.

I finished this last night, and at first, I had a relatively positive reaction to it. The more I've thought about it though, the weirder I feel about it. It's not bad. I mostly enjoyed reading it. It's just the story that didn't really do it for me. I saw a review on here that compared Rox to Nick Carraway in The Great Gatsby, and I think that's perfect. She feels so unimportant except to fill the role as narrator.

Now to the weird parts. I think the book was pretty good up to the poin
Heather Mayberry
Mar 06, 2019 rated it it was ok
An interesting plot, but many of the characters other than Joshua and the manager seem too forced. Roxanne, the main character, is so bland it’s scary. Her appearance is heavily described, and from that description you expect her to have a lot of spark, but honestly other than her obsession with the circus she doesn’t have a personality other than “Joshua’s girlfriend.” Ty was an interesting plot development, although his short make-out session with Roxanne seems fo have came out of nowhere. The ...more
Sep 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
You want to believe in these characters from the first pages. You want to imagine they are some kind of star crossed couple under the controlling umbrella of a latter-day Col Tom Parker. You think you can understand their trailer park backgrounds and their motivations to use talent and opportunity to escape. But you"d be wrong. As in her first book (Still Waters) Ash
Parsons crafts superbly authentic, intelligent, and non-traditional young adult characters and places them in the unrealistic and h
Jul 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
Easy to follow and had characters who were fairly complex despite the lack of focus on anyone but the two protagonists and one of their siblings. It was a nice read for slow night shifts and I think it did a good job illustrating how complicated and constant and frustrating fame can be, especially for someone with legions of obsessive fans. It also does a decent job of representing depression and how it manifests itself in different ways. But I can't five star it, because there were a few parts ...more
Karen Gedeon
The Falling Between Us by Ash Parsons - Seventeen year old Rox tells the story of her boyfriend Joshua Blackbird from the time they first started dating in ninth grade through his discovery and into his name becoming the name on the lips of every teenage girl in the world. She narrates the reader through her observations of the price he pays for stardom and compares her life to the famous acrobat Lillian Leitzel. Heartbroken over his death/disappearance she continues her story of grief and recon ...more
K.C. Maguire
Mar 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book. Not what I expected as a follow-up to Ash Parsons' previous book and it certainly demonstrates her range as a writer.
The story was unexpected and unusual - plays with our fascination with social media, fanfiction and the price of fame via social media. It also weaves in grief, love, and a healthy dose of mystery. The genre-blending and intriguing characters kept me on my toes as a reader and I was engaged until the last minute.
In some ways it reminded me a little of "Eliza and
Jul 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Haunting and gorgeously written, The Falling Between Us is the story of one boy's meteoric rise to fame, told from the point of view of his longtime girlfriend Roxy. Roxy lives on the sidelines of her boyfriend Joshua Blackbird's superstardom, but that just means she has a front row seat to the ups and downs of the music industry. The price of fame is all-consuming for both Roxy and Joshua, and before long, the cracks begin to show. When Joshua disappears, the public is devastated, as is Roxy. N ...more
Mar 17, 2019 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Amanda Studer
Jun 19, 2020 rated it liked it
2.5 stars

Maybe I read too many Wattpad stories like this when I was a teenager, but... this book was very average to me. Predictable a lot of the time. The only thing about this book that stood out to me was the author's inclusion of Rox's love for Lillian Leitzel, which often seemed misplaced or as if it didn't fit properly in the context of the situation she was trying to place it in?? I do think this book gives a good perspective on the negative aspects to being famous, but the comparisons,
Lovely Loveday
Mar 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
The Falling Between Us is full of love, loss, heartache, and friendship. You will be drawn into the relationship between Joshua and Rox as they try to remain, normal teenagers while dealing with the side effects of fame. Parsons writes with an easy and fun style that will make this one a fun read for everyone. The characters are realistic and easy to relate to making them memorable.  A story that is hard to put down once you start reading. Parsons draws you in from the first page with a complex ...more
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Ash Parsons has been involved in Child and Youth Advocacy since college. Recently she taught English to middle- and high-school students in rural Alabama. Watching some of her students face seemingly impossible problems helped inspire her first novel, Still Waters. Additionally she has taught creative writing for Troy University’s ACCESS program and media studies at Auburn University. Ash lives in ...more

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