Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Review: Fates by Lanie Bross

Fates by Lanie Bross
Book One of the Fates series
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Publication Date: February 11, 2014
Rating: 2 stars
Source: eARC from NetGalley

Summary (from Goodreads):

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?

What I Liked:

I really, really wanted to like this book. It was a highly anticipated read for me, and when I received a review copy, I was ECSTATIC. There is nothing like getting one of your most anticipated reads really early, right? Or at all, to be honest. Nevertheless, I was heavily disappointed by this book.

Basically, Corinthe needs to kill Lucas, in order to restore the balance of the world. She is an Executor, sort of like a Grim Reaper who doesn't necessary kill, but this was her first kill mission (it's rare for her to be asked to kill directly). Everything does not go according to plan when she not only fails to kill him, but sends him through a gateway, and then falls in love with him.

I liked the writing style of this novel. It's very lyrical and descriptive, which was both good and bad. In the beginning, I thought it was gorgeous. Eventually, I got tired of reading the descriptions, and started skimming. That's bad. 

Oh and no love triangle. That's ALWAYS a plus.

I can't think of any more positive comments. 

What I Did Not Like:

Where to begin. I had so many problems with this book, but I really wanted to like this book, so I feel like while I was reading, I was trying to make excuses, so I would hopefully enjoy the book. That never really happened, which was unfortunate. The book was confusing and a bit dry, the romance was cliche and rushed, the plot was weird... I don't even know about characters or the character development. 

My biggest problem was confusion. I was confusion pretty much from start to finish, which is never a good sign. I didn't understand what was happening in the beginning of the book, yet I held on to the hope that all would be revealed and explained by the end of the book. I don't know if things actually WERE revealed and explained by the end - if they were, then I completely missed those explanations (which is doubtful, because I'm a careful reader, even when I skim). So, things just didn't make sense.

Like, I still don't get exactly what Corinthe is and was. An Executor, a Fate, okay, but what are those things? What do they do? Where are they from? Describe that place - Pyralis? What is the Crossroad? The gateways? Where did Lucas end up when he went through the gateway initially? Where are all of those worlds? I don't understand and I hate being confused!

The setting was the WORST. After Lucas and Corinthe go through the gateway, they go from world to world (or what I'm assuming are different worlds). But that's just it! I don't know where they ended up! It wasn't Pyralis, Corinthe's old home, and it wasn't modern day human world. It was other places, but at one point the setting kept changing paragraph after paragraph, and I couldn't figure it out. Are they in a vortex or something? Is the Crossroad some sort of portal? Ugh.

I mentioned that I liked the writing style... which I did, but eventually, it just started to seem dry. The story didn't seem to have any life to it, and it was because of the writing style sometimes. I started skimming when I saw long paragraphs of descriptiveness coming, because they weren't helpful, they didn't help procure images in my head, and I was getting bored fast. Not that I was ever SUPER bored in this book, but seriously, the tone AND mood of this book is dry. Lifeless.

The romance is cliche, in my opinion. I have to kill you... but wait, I fell in love with you. Oops! And then when the reason for their instant connection is explained, I was like *roll eyes*. And yes, there is that connection, but from the beginning, their relationship seemed insta-love-based. I so wanted to like Lucas and Corinthe together, but it was based on nothing. There were hardly any interactions between them up until a certain point, in which Corinthe is still bent on killing Lucas. The romance seems forced and rushed. Boo.

I don't even know how to comment on the characters of Corinthe and Lucas. They seemed so flat to me. I didn't relate to either of them, although I could feel myself wanting to do so. Like, I wanted to feel Corinthe's plight over having to kill Lucas, but it didn't seem real on her, so that feeling didn't translate over to me. Does that make sense? And the characters didn't change much, from beginning to end. I can't even say much about character development because I really didn't see any in motion.

Overall, this was a poor start to a series. Confusion is not the way to go, my friends. Don't leave readers completely in the dark like though... or think that you're explaining things when you're not. It does not work in your favor. I struggled with this book (even though it actually was a really quick read).

Would I Recommend It:

Err, not really. I was so excited to read this book, and it was a total letdown for me. I wish I could say, yeah, totally READ IT! But this book was not what I expected or wanted. I ended up being more confused than anything else, and disinterested. It's unfortunate, but it happens!


2 stars. I really, really wish this book could have turned out differently for me. Unfortunately, that was not the case. I might still read the sequel though. 

Was this review helpful? Please let me know in the comments section!


  1. Aww I'm sorry that this one didn't live up to your expectations. I agree, an overly descriptive writing style, while beautiful at first, can definitely get tiresome. Also the fact that the two main characters are flat and underdeveloped turns me off, if you don't even count the romance that sounds soooooo cheesy and overdone. Great review, Alyssa!

    1. It was unfortunate! I really wanted to love this one - I've been dying to read it for months and months. There were too many negative things that bothered me though :/

      Thank you, Eileen!

  2. Hmmm... so sad to hear it wasn't as good as you would have wanted. =(
    I had my doubts about the book, mostly because the relationship sounded a bit like insta love to me.
    After your review, I won't be getting this book for sure.
    Thanks for your review!

    1. It IS sad! I wanted this book to go so amazing. The romance is a bit insta-love-y. Blehh. I hope you read something spectacular instead! You're most welcome, Pili :)

  3. It's always frustrating when you're really looking forward to a book, and it becomes such a disappointment. I hate when a story has me really confused. I get annoyed and the fact that you kept hoping for everything to be explained, and it wasn't, is tough. I loved how you explained what didn't work for you, and why. This was a very constructive review, and hopefully the author will be able to keep some of your suggestions in ind for her next book.

    Lindy@ A Bookish Escape

    1. It really is! This was a novel that I NEEDED to read. I'm a little mad that this book wasn't as good as I expected. But, that happens, right? Thank you for the comment, Lindy!

  4. Lifeless, Confusing, Cliche, flat, boo and ugh... Yeah, not great words to read in a review for a book you were (previously) super excited for. Excitement died. Sigh. Another one bites the dust. As usual, I will still give it a shot if I get the chance, but my hopes aren't all that high. Thankfully, I have a teeny bit better of a time DNF'ing if I MUST now than I used to. Thanks for your review!

    1. Unfortunately, that was the case for me. I hate that, don't you? Perhaps borrow it from the library if you see it.

      Thank you for the comment!

  5. I think your only hope is that the answers to your questions are in the second book, maybe third? Sorry to hear that this book was such a let down for you.

    1. That's true - if I care enough by the end of this year to request an ARC, then I'll read it. Right now, ehhh. Thank you, Alyn!

  6. Awkward... I definitely thought that was a mermaid on the cover (and therefore a mermaid book) until just now.

    Isn't that the worst, though, when you dislike something you're just SO excited for? It's one thing to build a world slowly, which can obviously result in some confusion at first, but to not build one at all basically? No good.

    I'm sorry you didn't like this, Alyssa! :(

    1. LOL! Nope. No mermaid.

      And yeah, I was super thrilled to have the opportunity to read this book. But it really just did NOT work out for me. Blehh.

      Thank you, Rachel!

  7. Oh bummer. I had wanted to read this--now I'm not too sure :-( Sorry, this didn't work out. Flat characters and confusion--meh.

    1. If you do end up reading it, let me know how it goes! Or I'll just stalk your blog ;) But yeah, it wasn't all that great :(

  8. Oh man. This sounds like you really struggled. I am now losing a lot of interest in reading this one. I do trust your opinion.

    1. Definitely struggled with this one, Vivien. And I was SO EXCITED for this book. Alas, the disappointment... *if* you end up reading this one, I hope you enjoy it! If not, don't feel bad, because you're not really missing out (in my opinion, of course).


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