Early Review ~ Fated by Alyson Noël

Posted May 3, 2012 in Review / 1 Comment

Fated (Soul Seekers #1)
By Alyson Noël
Expected Publication May 22, 2012
St. Martin’s Press
YA Paranormal
3 1/2 hearts out of 5 
Won from Goodread’s First Reads Giveaway

From Goodreads: Lately strange things have been happening to Daire Santos. Animals follow her, crows mock her, and glowing people appear out of nowhere. Worried that Daire is having a nervous breakdown, her mother packs her off to stay in the dusty plains of Enchantment, New Mexico with a grandmother she’s never met.
There she crosses paths with Dace, a gorgeous guy with unearthly blue eyes who she’s encountered before…but only in her dreams. And she’ll get to know her grandmother—a woman who recognizes Daire’s bizarre episodes for what they are. A call to her true destiny as a Soul Seeker, one who can navigate between the worlds of the living and the dead. Her grandmother immediately begins teaching her to harness her powers—but it’s an art that must be mastered quickly. Because Dace’s brother is an evil shape-shifter who’s out to steal her powers. Now Daire must embrace her fate as a Soul Seeker and find out if Dace is one guy she’s meant to be with…or if he’s allied with the enemy she’s destined to destroy.

Having never read anything from Alyson Noël up to this point, I was really interested in this new series of hers.  I love the Southwest and everything Native American.  And then to win Fated from Goodreads as part of their First Reads program?  You better believe I danced a little jig as soon as I got that news!!

This was a tough story for me to review, though, because I wish I could write 2 reviews for it.  I’d write a 3 heart review for first 82 pages and a 4 heart review for entire rest of the book.  I know, it seems like I could just give a pass to those first 82 pages and chalk it up to world building for a new series.  But it was a good 28% of the book that just kind of lagged for me.  And it was in the beginning, when you really want to grab the reader and hold them in.  But Ms. Noël had weaved such an intriguing mystery that I had to keep reading.

And my need for closure/continued reading was rewarded with an awesome tale built within Native America folklore and based on shamanism.  Since I’m a little new to the YA genre, I haven’t seen a world built around Native American “magick” and folklore.  I totally ate it up!

Daire, was a unique character because you saw how she adapted to her environment.  When she was with her mom, she had to act like an adult and was pretty much on her own.  But when she was her grandmother, she got to be the teenager she always wanted to be.  A lot of her actions were based on how she was raised so you couldn’t get too annoyed by them.   And her independent spirit ultimately comes in handy.

German cover of Fated

Worth the read in itself is the supporting character of Xotichl (pronounced So-chee).  She comes out of practically no where and totally rocks!!!  I can’t tell you more, it’ll totally spoil her for you!!  Other characters like Daire’s grandmother, Paloma, Chay, and of course the brothers Dace and Cade also make the story worth the read.

And world building continued at a much faster pace through to the end of the book.  As Daire learns to navigate through her new powers as a “soul seeker” we learn all about this new world of hers.

If you can stand just a wee bit of slowness to start, I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised by this spin on Native American folklore.  After the exciting ending of Fated, I will definitely be looking forward to Echo and jumping on it as soon as I can!!!

Fated is book one in the series with that next one, Echo, coming out in November 2012 (Yay, I don’t have to wait long!).  Mystic follows around May 2013 and Horizon is planned for November 2013.

A great big huge Thank You to Goodreads and St. Martin’s Press!

About Kristin

Kristin has to ensure she gets her minimal requirement of "happily ever after" books in between those books that contain cliffhangers and never-ending story arcs. It's for her family's sake. When not reading, she's homeshooling her 10-year old son, watching cartoons on TV, or taking a nap.

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