Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Review: Fate Fixed

Description: When Lexie Anderson’s mother suddenly announces she is marrying a Romanian immigrant, Lexie willingly leaves behind her busy life in Connecticut for her penance in “The Moose Capital of the World.” Small town living is strange enough, now Lexie must cope with her overbearing stepfamily monitoring her every move. They disappear into the woods at night and keep a strange secret locked in their shed. Her once calm mother is now having violent outbursts and Lexie’s little sister is hearing sinister sounds coming from the forest behind their new home. Lexie’s biggest surprise comes when she discovers the boy she has been dreaming about since her accident is living in Maine. Despite Torin’s questionable reputation, Lexie cannot resist the physical and emotional attraction pulsating between them. Animals and people in town are turning up dead and Lexie learns the strange new world she lives in has real life monsters. Just when she decides she wants to be with Torin forever, she must fight to protect her mother and sister from being harmed by a formidable evil.


Lexie Anderson is coping. Her father was in a fatal accident, her mother is moving on, her little sister can't let go, and her new step-family of freaky and demanding man-children are chronically loud, obnoxious, and have absolutely no respect for her reasonable boundaries. And as the broken girl who was behind the wheel...

It's all her fault.

As her loving nature folds into her overwhelming grief and guilt, she remains silent as the shaking hands of little sister Ella and erratic mother Ruby point to her as the cause of their pain.

Since the heartbreaking tragedy that shattered her small family, she's had very little respite from the hole her father left. She's leaned on her quirky BFF Liz, and found moments of sanctuary in a nightmare. The dream has reoccurred nightly since the accident, and in spite of the terror it brings - she can't help but eagerly await it. It begins with a run into loving arms, encompassed by the perfection of the nameless boy, only to abruptly end with a horrific death he can't save her from.

What Lexie believes to be her biggest fears rupture Ruby suddenly and suspiciously brightens, she quickly announces that she's found the "love of her life": not Ella and Lexie's father, but an intense Romanian immigrant she met online after a prompting from her girlfriends. Ruby declares that she and her new lover Dragos are eloping in Vegas, and mixing their families with an immediate upheaval to Erris, Maine.
Lexie, grieving the loss of her hometown and friends, is terrified of something she's afraid to voice: the possibility that leaving Connecticut and Liz behind means the boy will stay behind too. After a year - could the dreams really stop? Would she have to let him go, too?
But Ruby is smiling. She seems actually, genuinely happy with this man. And Ella is getting attached to the youngest brother, Nicolai. Unable to fathom ruining the happiness that she took away, she becomes a sacrificial lamb -- and in the memory of her father and the hope for a better life for her mother and sister, she willingly agrees to abandon everything. Even her best friend - possibly even him.
Much to Lexie's shock, she didn't leave him. The boy is real, he's living in Maine, his name is Torrin, he's sexier than Lexie's beloved celeb-crush Jared Leto, and he crossed an obnoxious crowd of boisterous teenagers at a late-night rave just to be near her.
Suddenly, there is a few too many things Lexie's unable to deny. Torrin captivates her in ways nothing else ever has -- but his dark reputation and seclusion amongst his equally handsome cousins can be as frightening as the way his face changes when they're alone.
She also can't deny the disturbing and uncharacteristic behaviors of her ill mother, the "night watch" runs of her step family, her stepbrothers peculiar fondness of sniffing her, or the fact that there are people in her room when they shouldn't be -- and worse, people and animals that are missing when they shouldn't be. Lexie has to decide whether Torrin's the monster she knows is coming -- or if he's been sent by fate to protect her from something far worse than he could ever be.
Between the frightening obsession and domination of her animalistic new siblings, her mother's sudden mental illness, her sister's infatuation with Nicolai, and unfounded groundings that prevent her from contacting voice-of-reason Liz, there is absolutely no one she can trust. With one brother is completely off her radar and completely on Ella's, Lexie can't decide whether befriending the seemingly "normal" brother Alec or fearing the obsessive and controlling brother Maxim is the right decision to make. With fierce game-changers, blind-sighting good intentions, and no one being what they appear - especially human, deciding who's side she's on could be a fatal mistake.
With scenes like Ella sleeping before a flickering television in the middle of the night awaiting the return from unexplained patrol night runs, Ruby clawing chunks of hair from her head in mascara-laden tears while singing a gentle love song from Taylor Swift, Wolf ready to service and feed, Torrin leading Lexie on a decript roof to steal a kiss that nearly kills her, and the ethereal BF's mother Endellion twirling a classic Irish tale derived from a terror-stricken nightmare, it's incredibly easy to say that Fate Fixed is my favorite book.
While the writing is simplistic and beautiful, the plot itself is complex and perfectly woven. It manages to leave the reader gnawing at the inside of their cheek. Girls will fall completely and irrevocably in love with the edgy passion of Torrin, and guys will love the heart-pounding action. The author pulls off the raw darkness of death, a passionate love story, an all-encompassing mystery, the action-paced fight scenes, the ferocity of love and war, and a unique and individual perception of vampires and werewolves that answers the questions we've been dying to know. Wrapping Viking, Romanian, and Irish lore and fascinating religious outtakes into an incredible story that spends more time fighting, writhing, and living than it does berating the reader with unnecessary fluff. The reader will starve from the nameless villain's hunger, yearn from Torrin's eyes, and fight through Lexie's drive. Flying between the strong but troubled artist's heart of Torrin, the broken heart of Lexie, and the heartless, monstrous beast known only as Wolf, it's impossible to put down. The plot surges through the book, and between aftershocks and falling from their seat, ends with an explosive war that leaves readers begging for more from the cold ground.
A gorgeous cover, a perfect love story, a terrifying villain, and an enthralling mystery will leave readers insatiable. Well-written, beautifully crafted, and a subject prepared to answer the yearning heart-calls for empty but adoring fans. Fate Fixed redefines the classic war of vampires and werewolves. In a market that was fading fast, Fate Fixed invigorates and livens the need and desire for more of its kind. It's fierce, it's edgy, and it's brilliant. It's Twilight's and Underworld's unstoppable young-adult lovechild - and it's foaming at the mouth.

I recommend this for lovers of Raised by Wolves by Jennifer Lynn Barnes, Wicked Lovely by Marissa Marr, Strange Angels by Lili St. Crow, and If I Stay by Gayle Forman, specifically. I feel that all lovers of the YA paranormal romance genre will love, adore, and crave this.

Highly recommended!

See my latest interview with Bonnie Erina Wheeler here.

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