Waterfall is the second book I have read by Lisa Tawn Bergren. The first book I ever read by her was Breathe. I wasn’t as impressed by that book as I thought I would be. All the reviews I read on Breathe were really good. But, personally, I didn’t think it was one of the greatest historical books I’ve ever read. Breathe was average, if not below average because of the overused themes and ideas. But I feel much very different about Waterfall. I now know why Breathe wasn’t as good as I thought it would be. The author is much more adept at writing in first person than in third person. Waterfall was in first person, told from Gabriella’s point of view. Breathe was told in third person.
First of all, I loved getting to know Gabriella. She is my age, so I felt closer to her because of that. Also, I have a sister who is Lia’s age, so I could totally relate to both girls. The whole story is a whirlwind of color and adventure and Medieval times. It felt realistic. I enjoyed looking through Gabi’s eyes and being in her head and feeling what she was feeling. I kept on thinking about what it would feel like if my own sister and I got separated in the circumstances that Gabi and Lia were in.
Marcello was every girl’s dream. Tall, dark, handsome. Sensitive and sweet. He was a wonderful character who really didn’t seem human because he had no flaws whatsoever. The end of the novel was one of my favorite parts because (spoiler alert here) Marcello made Gabriella promise to come back to him before she had to leave with Lia. It was so absolutely and genuinely romantic I’m sure I sighed.
The only thing I found wrong with the novel was the spiritual aspect of it. God was mentioned rarely. There were a few prayers here and there, but only in the most desperate of times. Gabriella really didn’t develop a deeper faith, nor did she really have much of one in the beginning. If she had, it would have added a deeper aspect unto the novel. There was mention of Christ briefly, but not a full explanation of the gospel. Since this book is aimed mostly at teenaged girls (who are usually consumed with boys and clothing) there should have been more about Jesus, and how a faith in Him is more important than anything else in the world.
I think that the author should always write in first person. It is what she is most comfortable with. I can tell. I couldn’t quite pinpoint what was wrong with Breathe but now I understand. The author is not as comfortable with third person as she is with first, so Breathe came out somewhat awkward. Waterfall was an excellent read not only for teenaged girls but also for adults as well. I was certainly impressed with it. I give Waterfall 41/2 out of 5 stars.