Early Review: Fated by Alyson Noel

, by Kt Clapsadl

Fated by Alyson Noel
Soul Seekers #1

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.

Daire's life has never been normal as she moves from movie set to set with her makeup artist mother. Even, so it's all she has ever known and she's relatively happy. All that changes when Daire starts to see strange and impossible things leading her into a mental break. She's sent to live with her long estranged grandmother who promises to help her recover. Her grandmother is the only one who knows that her visions aren't a sign of insanity, but of a higher purpose, one that will destroy her if she does not heed its call. She comes from a long line of Soul Seekers, people who can travel between the worlds of the living and the dead, and it's time for her to take her rightful place whether she wants to or not. But there is more standing in her way than her own reluctance as there is ancient feud between her long lineage and the evil opposition who will stop at nothing to defeat her before she comes into her full powers.

For the most part, the characters other than Daire seemed rather flat. However, while her character had some depth, Daire got on my nerves in beginning and even into latter parts of the books when she would throw her tantrums. For as strong as she seemed to be, she was awful whiny when things didn't go her way. Granted, those tantrums slowed down as the book progressed, so I still have hopes for her in the future. Perhaps as she matures and accepts her role in life things will get better. As far as the other characters, the were mostly forgettable, but I found myself quite disappointed with the "bad guy." Cade just didn't come across as threatening enough. His soul is supposed to be completely black, and yes you could tell that he was a slime ball, but he just didn't put out the sense of evil I would have expected. In fact he just seemed like another rebellious teen trying to prove himself to daddy, albeit in a nasty way. I hope he and the other characters get a little more developed in the future installments.

 I'm rather unsure of the romance in Fated. Based on the description, I had expected it to play a much larger role than it did. I'm not saying that I dislike the two of them as a couple or anything, it's just that it didn't feel real. I wouldn't go as far as saying it felt forced, but I would have preferred a little more build up or focus on the draw between them. I guess a lot of the problem was that while Daire had these feelings for him, she didn't really trust them due to the nasty prophetic feeling dreams she has had about him. I also couldn't get a feeling for Dace's side of things, and adding that into Daire's complete inexperience with emotional attachment it just felt a little wooden.

Not a whole lot happened in Fated. It had a very slow progression, granted that was due to a lot of set up and foundation for Daire's new role in life. But despite everything revealed in her training, I'm still not entirely sure what a soul seeker really is other than the ones with the power to stop the coyotes. I would have liked to have been shown what her real purpose was and exactly how she would help people. I understand not wanting to show your hand all at once, but I really wish there had of been a little more explained or revealed. However, even with my frustrations with some aspects of this book, I am incredibly intrigued with the premise, and I will definitely be coming back for more.


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