Friday, November 27, 2009

Fall Into Darkness (Christopher Pike)

Sharon McKay is on trial for killing her best friend Ann Rice and she’s in jail and everything, she even has a creepy lawyer named Johnny who wants to get in her pants. Apparently they’re charging her even though no body was found. It happened a month ago and she’s still sitting in jail. They don’t have a whole lot of faith in a teenage girl.

Anyway, Sharon and her quasai boyfriend Fred had gone on a camping trip with Ann, Ann’s boyfriend Paul and his brother Chad, who works for her. Things were rough between the girls because Ann’s brother Jerry was obsessed/in love with Sharon and he killed himself when she wouldn’t date him…or something.

Sharon was this great classical pianist who was already accepted to Julliard and Jerry was the annoying little brother of her best friend. She was nice to him and he never even looked at another girl because he was in love. Sounds a little more like stalker than love, but whatever.

They all go camping and Ann tells Sharon they should take a walk later in the night. Chad gives Sharon a back rub that gets her all worked up, but instead of doing anything, she goes for a walk with Ann. They clear the air and as she’s walking back, she hears someone yell, “don’t!”. She runs to the edge of the cliff and finds that Ann is gone. Now she’s in jail and doesn’t know that Ann actually set the whole thing up.

See Ann is super rich. That explains why she’s 18 and has servants working for her. She bought a car and left it near the mountain so she could escape without anyone seeing her and took rock climbing lessons so she could pull it off. She planned on meeting Paul in Mexico a few months later and of course left him all her money.

She jumps off a 500 foot cliff and falls down, where she’ll unhook one rope, destroy the evidence of the rock hook, attach herself to another hook and climb the rest of the way down. It kind of sounds like a good plan, you know, if you like dying.

Instead she jumps too far and too fast, which causes her body to slam into the mountain. She ends up shattering one arm and scraping her body up pretty bad. After fighting with the rope and hearing Paul climb down (he’s supposed to cut the rope), she manages to get herself off the rope and loose.

Then we jump back to the present day or whatever, when the trial is taking place. Johnny gets Chad to admit that he saw Ann reading a book about a girl who faked her death and set someone else up to take the fall. Then he apologizes to Sharon for getting her hopes up and thinking Ann was still alive.

Johnny also gets Paul to admit his part in the plan. Paul freaks out on the stand when he realizes that he probably cut the rope before he should have and killed Ann. He’s immediately taken into custody and the police let Sharon go. Johnny tells her that she can call him if she gets into trouble again, but the next time will cost her. Ew. Should an adult really be talking to a girl this way?

Sharon decides that she wants to go back to where it all happened and convinces Chad to take her. Chad tells her that he knows a way to get across the river that isn’t too far and leads her into a secret cave. We then learn that Ann had escaped the cliff and then made her way across the rushing river with a broken arm before passing out.

She woke up in the same cave and found Chad watching over her. He tells her that he knew all along what she was planning because HE set the plan in motion by giving her the book! He confesses that he was always in love with her and even told Jerry, but he dared to laugh at him. He ended up killing Jerry and making it look like a suicide. Then Ann tried to run and he chased her.

Sharon doesn’t know any of this, but she starts to feel uncomfortable. She stops at a pool and starts to drink, but discovers Ann at the bottom. They get the police and I swear the main cop should get sued. He calls Sharon a bitch about 15 times and roughs her up a little. He doesn’t believe that she found the body by accident and that she should fry. Sorry buddy, it’s called double jeopardy so that won’t happen.

She took a ring from the area that the girls called Chad’s ring. She bought it for Ann for her last birthday and asked Chad about her birthstone. He told her it was a ruby so she bought a ruby ring and then learned that was actually Chad’s birthstone. The cop is super pissed that she took it and claims that she probably stole it off the body.

They decide to stick around and camp after the cops leave because it’s just a dead body, nothing serious. She and Chad exchange a few kisses, but then she realizes that Ann left the ring there as a warning. Chad chases her because he realizes that she knows the truth and he tries to throw her off the cliff. She winds up on a ledge down below and he comes after her.

This time she puts petroleum jelly on the rope and as he comes down, she sprays bug spray in his eye. He drops down the rope and then comes after her again. When he gets to the top, she grabs a knife and cuts the rope, but he makes it back to the ledge below.

They have a long talk and she wishes that things were different because they actually did look good together. Then Chad jumps off the ledge and kills himself. The cops come back and all Sharon can do is think about Johnny. She knows that he can get her off, but she wonders what it will cost her.

I think the most disturbing thing about Fall Into Darkness was the whole lawyer thing. He’s out of law school, passed the bar and been practicing for awhile so he’s probably around 30. Sharon is 18 and her own mother is trying to fix her up with him because he’ll be “good” for her. Is that gross, or is it just me?


  1. "Is that gross, or is it just me?" It's totally gross!

  2. Thank you! My own mom would have freaked if I was interested in a 30 year old and still in high school/recently graduated lol

  3. I hated the TV movie they made from this book. They ruined a lot of things, especially the scene where Chad finds Ann and tells her how he manipulated her and set everything up.

  4. I've never seen the movie. Now I want to know how bad they screwed it up...

  5. Her best friend is Ann Rice?! Was this...before Anne Rice was writing? Is this Christopher Pike's love poem to Anne Rice?

  6. I think it was after she started writing, but before she became huge. Like early 90s?

  7. In the movie, there isn't the whole incident with Ann reading a book and getting the idea. Chad just happens to run into Ann down by the river (after she gets down from the rope) and tells her that he loves her.

    I thought Chad was much more creepy in the book, with the way he believed that he really knew Ann, thought they should have been together, and the way he tricked her into doing things.

  8. To be fair, I think that Sharon's mother was probably trying to "steer into the curve" with Johnny. She probably thought it would be better for her daughter to date a young man with a successful career, instead of someone like Fred (a guy Sharon found in a bar).

  9. I am reading this book now... And it is totally getting to me.!

  10. I didn't read the book but saw the movie. It's a little different from how it's written here. It ends up making you wonder about Sharon.

  11. I've actually never seen the movie, which is weird because I had the biggest crush on Jonathon Brandis LOL.

  12. "Is that gross, or is it just me?" - My husband and I have a similar age gap and I don't think it's "gross". But we met when I was working, bill-paying adult in my 20s, not a girl who was fresh out of high school.

    1. There's a big difference between being in your 20s and dating someone in his 30s vs. being a teenager and doing the same thing. I actually dated a guy 15 years older than me, but was in my mid-20s, out of college, paying by my own way, and had my own place at the time. The guy I ended up with though is actually only two years older than me :)