Fated by Alyson Noel
Author: Alyson Noel
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Genre: YA Paranormal
How I Read It: ARC received from the publisher – The views expressed in my review are mine alone and I have received no compensation for these opinions.
Synopsis: Alyson Noel paints a magical new landscape in the first book of the Soul Seekers – a spirit world between the living and the dead, where fate and passion collide.
At the center of it all is Daire Santos, a 16-year-old girl whose life has taken a bizarre turn – animals follow her, crows mock her, glowing people appear out of nowhere – and the disturbing visions are getting worse. Sent to stay with her grandmother in the dusty plains of Enchantment, New Mexico, it is there that Daire learns of her true calling as a Soul Seeker – one who can navigate between the worlds of the living and the dead.
Now she must embrace her fate and find out if Dace, the boy in her dreams, is her one true love…or if he is allied with the enemy she is destined to destroy.
My Review: Upon first reading the summary of this book, I somehow thought it would be less supernatural like and more Dead Like Me meets living people. I mean, calling someone a Soul Seeker sounds like you’re swiping their soul right before they die!
I quickly learned that this was not the case, and despite that, it was an entertaining read. I will admit that it took me awhile to warm up to Daire – I don’t love reading about whiney teenaged female leads in books. Don’t get me wrong, I remember some of what it was like to be a teenager, but sometimes I get frustrated with the attitude that comes across in the pages. As much as it seems like it, not everyone is out to get you kids! And with that statement, I become the annoying adult infusing unwanted maturity and wisdom into a situation.
With that in mind, it’s not hard to imagine why I liked Daire much better during the second half of the book than the first. I tend to like characters more when they have a purpose, whether that’s self imposed, destiny, or something they simply stumble upon.
Her Seeker bloodline aside, Daire is an unusual teenager any way you slice it – she grew up on movie sets around the world, taking internet school and not really having any friends until she finally settles in Enchantment after all the weird stuff starts happening. I think this made it easier for her to adapt to her destiny, being accustomed to non-traditional things probably makes something crazy much easier to handle.
There are definitely several central type conflicts to this book, but kind of like a TV series that has a more long-term plot line, this one is working towards what will come later in the series. Personally, I love this type of writing because the author has given herself plenty of time to realize the full story she wants to show us. The villain isn’t trying to accomplish everything at once in this book, Daire doesn’t find out everything there is to know, and we’re left with enough of a question about what this whole thing is even about that, well, I am eager for the next book to come along!
Read this book if: I’m guessing that existing fans of Alyson Noel will enjoy this one, and it’s a generally good YA read, so fans of those types of reads will like it too.
My Rating: 3.5/5 – Two thumbs up, fine holiday fun!