Lanie Bross's debut FATES is perfect for fans of Jennifer Armentrout, Julie Kagawa, Rachel Vincent, and Sarah J. Maas, and for girls who love all things pretty, romantic and inspirational. One moment. One foolish desire. One mistake. And Corinthe lost everything. She fell from her tranquil life in Pyralis Terra and found herself exiled to the human world. Her punishment? To make sure people's fates unfold according to plan. Now, years later, Corinthe has one last assignment: kill Lucas Kaller. His death will be her ticket home. But for the first time, Corinthe feels a tingle of doubt. It begins as a lump in her throat, then grows toward her heart, and suddenly she feels like she is falling all over again--this time for a boy she knows she can never have. Because it is written: one of them must live, and one of them must die. In a universe where every moment, every second, every fate has already been decided, where does love fit in?
I am huge fan of all things Mythology, so when I read the blurb for FATES, I was really excited. Unfortunately that excitement fizzled pretty quickly as I started reading this book. From the very start things felt jumbled and rather all over the place and the characters had no real depth, but I'll get into them in a bit. There was very little explanation in the world building, leaving more than a little confused, which only got worse the longer I read. Once they reached the alternate (worlds? realms? I honestly have no clue...) I had pretty much given up on following the story and wound up just skimming. Honestly there were several times I asked myself why I was still reading the book. Sure there were elements there that interested me, and that's probably what kept me reading as I was waiting for something to come together. But unfortunately it never did.
Now getting to the characters. Perhaps it was because things kept jumping around, and there were no real explanations, but I wasn't able to connect with any of them. Corinthe is just well, odd. She's completely out of touch with the world, which would have been a whole lot more understandable if she had of just been booted out rather than ten years ago. It just seemed completely unrealistic and frustrating to be honest. Then you add in the love interest. I just didn't "get" him at all. The instalove baffled me. I mean while that kind of relationship progression isn't at the top of my favorites, it doesn't typically bother. However, in this case there just was nothing at all to support it. It was literally zero to one hundred in no time at all, and when you add in the wooden characters, it just did not work at all for me. I've said it before and I'll say it again, I can overlook almost any flaw in a book as long as the romance is strong. But when that romance is weak, it just pulls everything else down for me, and that was the case here.
Looking back, I realize I probably should have DNF this book, but I really like to finish what I start, and there's always the chance a book will turn itself around. Unfortunately that just wasn't the case here. I'm sure others will enjoy this story more than I did, but for me it's a pass.
(Received a copy from the publisher via Edelweiss)