[ARC Review] Illusions of Fate by Kiersten White

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Title: Illusions of Fate
Author: Kiersten White
Series: Standalone
Genre: YA Historical, Magic
Format: Hardcover, 288 pages
Release Date: September 9th 2014
Publisher: HarperTeen
Source: ARC received by publisher in exchange for an honest review

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“I did my best to keep you from crossing paths with this world. And I shall do my best to protect you now that you have.”

Jessamin has been an outcast since she moved from her island home of Melei to the dreary country of Albion. Everything changes when she meets Finn, a gorgeous, enigmatic young lord who introduces her to the secret world of Albion’s nobility, a world that has everything Jessamin doesn’t—power, money, status…and magic. But Finn has secrets of his own, dangerous secrets that the vicious Lord Downpike will do anything to possess. Unless Jessamin, armed only with her wits and her determination, can stop him.

Kiersten White captured readers’ hearts with her New York Times bestselling Paranormalcy trilogy and its effortless mix of magic and real-world teenage humor. She returns to that winning combination of wit, charm, and enchantment in Illusions of Fate, a sparkling and romantic new novel perfect for fans of Cassandra Clare, The Madman’s Daughter, and Libba Bray.

I will always read books written by Kiersten White because I am always a fan of her characters, especially her female characters. I always find that they are strong and usually sarcastic which is a win win scenario for me. And so when I picked up Illusions of Fate and started reading I was not disappointed in Jessamine, our main character. She was fierce, strong and independent which was something I loved reading because we are used to seeing female character who are in need of saving, so this change of pace of great to see. I also loved her personality because she was so snarky and witty, something I love reading and so if I have to name the one thing I loved the most from this book it would be Jessamine. She was a great female heroine.

The writing style for me was a bit of distraction and i think it is because I am not used to reading such formal writing in the YA genre. It fit perfectly with the setting and the storyline, but for me it was just distracting. It took me out of the story on more than one occasion which was not optimal for me to enjoy the book as much as I wanted to. I give so much credit to Kiersten for writing in that style because I can only imagine how hard it would be to stay so formal throughout a 200 and something page book. I honestly think I was just taken aback by that style because it was not something I had expected going in.

The secondary characters were great, especially the villain. I am a sucker for a great bad guy and Illusions of a Fate had a great one in the beginning. He was mysterious, extremely creepy and had no mercy for anyone when it came to punishment. I loved all of that because it made the story that much more interesting. But i was sad near the end because I felt like that villain turned a bit soft and he wasn't that menacing as the story went on. Finn, Jessamine's love interest was just Meh for me because I wasn't really that interested in him and honestly I was just not attracted to him in the story. I think that hindered my liking of book as well because Finn was a very large part of the book and because I wasn't that interested in him, I felt disconnected with the overall story.

In the end I did really enjoy certain aspect of this story, Jessamine was a great character to get behind and the setting was absolutely amazing and sucked you in right from the beginning. But lack of interest in certain character and the writing style took me out of the story and hindered my reading experience more than I wanted.

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