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Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Book Review: All Fall Down by Ally Carter

Title: All Fall Down

Author: Ally Carter

Publisher: Scholastic Press

Publication Date: January, 2015

Hardcover: 320 pages

Stand Alone or Series: Series–this is the first installment in the Embassy Row series.

How I got this book: Bought

Why I chose this book: I really love Ally Carter’s novel, and just can’t get enough.  I was very excited for this new series to debut.


Grace Blakely is absolutely certain of three things:
1. She is not crazy.
2. Her mother was murdered.
3. Someday she is going to find the killer and make him pay.
As certain as Grace is about these facts, nobody else believes her — so there’s no one she can completely trust. Not her grandfather, a powerful ambassador. Not her new friends, who all live on Embassy Row. Not Alexei, the Russian boy next door, who is keeping his eye on Grace for reasons she neither likes nor understands.
Everybody wants Grace to put on a pretty dress and a pretty smile, blocking out all her unpretty thoughts. But they can’t control Grace — no more than Grace can control what she knows or what she needs to do. Her past has come back to hunt her . . . and if she doesn’t stop it, Grace isn’t the only one who will get hurt. Because on Embassy Row, the countries of the world stand like dominoes, and one wrong move can make them all fall down.


I absolutely love all of Ally Carter’s novels.  When I heard that this new series was going to start coming out I got really excited.  Carter’s novels are rich with detail, witty, and full of mystery and intrigue.  Despite all of that, I was a little hesitant.  I’m always worried that a beloved author’s new novel won’t live up to the expectations I’ve made based on her previous novels.  But that wasn’t an issue with All Fall Down.

We are introduced to our new protagonist, Grace, and immediately feel like we know who she is and why she is the way she is.  We empathize with her and her past.  But we never fully trust her.  I think this was one of the greatest parts of the novel that I haven’t seen with Carter’s earlier books.  I’m never fully sure if Grace is giving me the whole truth–if I can trust her.  And it just left me on the edge of my seat the whole time.

All of the characters, really, are so full of life.  They seem like such vibrant, full-of-life people that I would love to be friends with.  Why are they fictional?!

If I had any complaints, there would only be two small issues.  The first being that I wish there was more of a romantic aspect.  The synopsis mentions a mysterious Russian boy, and yes, he’s there.  But I want more of him!  I wanted there to be a building of some type of relationship that could be expanded upon in the later installments.  But the interactions between this boy and Grace don’t really happen until the end of the novel.  My second issue would be that the book ended.  I wanted more!  I want to read the entire series right now.  Unfortunately I’m going to have to wait.

I would definitely recommend this book to anyone.  It was amazing.  And if you haven’t gotten around to reading Carter’s other series, I would suggest you get on that.