Thursday, April 18, 2013

Review: The Trouble With Fate (Mystwalker, #1)


The Trouble with FateAuthor: Leigh Evans
Series: Mystwalker, #1
Release date: January 3rd 2013
Publisher: Tor UK
Paperback, 344 pages
Source: Publisher for review
Buy: The Book Depository

WHAT SHE DOESN'T KNOW MIGHT KILL HER: Hedi looks normal. Yet that's taken effort. Her fellow Starbucks baristas don't see her pointed ears, fae amulet or her dark past, and normal is hard for a half-fae, half-werewolf on the run. Hedi's life changed ten years ago, when her parents were murdered by unknown assassins. She's been in hiding with her loopy aunt Lou since, as whatever they wanted she's determined they won't get it. Things change when wolves capture Lou, forcing Hedi to steal to free her -- for if she can offer up a fae amulet like her own they may trade. But it belongs to a rogue werewolf named Robson Trowbridge, who betrayed Hedi on the night of her greatest need. Over forty-eight hours, Hedi will face the weres of Creemore, discover the extent of her fae powers and possibly break her own heart in the process.
With hundreds (yes, hundreds) of urban fantasy books behind me, I really thought I’d seen it all, but a sentient amulet for a sidekick is news even to me. Merry the fae amulet is an endless source of entertainment. She doesn’t speak, obviously, but she has ways to express her opinions rather loudly regardless. Most of those ways end up being very painful for poor Hedi. But Merry also has the ability to heal and she uses it to help Hedi whenever it’s needed, and in turn, Hedi feeds her and keeps her safe.

Hedi is a somewhat unusual UF protagonist. A half-fae-half-werewolf in hiding, she is neither nice nor particularly brave, and she never utters a sentence that isn’t rude to at least three people simultaneously. But being privy to her thoughts meant I also got to see the hows and whys of it firsthand, and while none of it made her more likeable, it did at least made me sympathize to a certain extent. At the same time, being inside Hedi’s head was often a hilarious experience. Her distinctive, clear-as-bell voice jumps out at the very first page.
If people stayed with proven facts, work environments would be easier. Groundless accusations just stir things up, like the whole “Who hid the turkey breast sandwich behind the milk?” controversy. Did they think I did it? Well, prove it. Maybe I did do it, and maybe if you were an anal retentive asshole who counted cookies and sandwiches, you might feel those were two good reasons to fire your barista. Maybe.

Oh, but the romance in this one is as heartbreaking as it is unusual. Hedi has been in love with the werewolf Trowbridge for as long as she can remember, but he never returned her feelings. For one, when they knew each other she was only twelve and he was in his late teens, and later she disappeared and he married a girl named Candy. Now Candy is dead, and Hedi and Trowbridge are forced to work together. To make it even worse, there’s also the small matter of Hedi’s amulet being in love with the Royal Amulet around Trowbridge’s neck.

Achieving a life-long dream and getting Trowbridge into bed isn’t so hard for Hedi. There’s a connection between them and neither of them tries too hard to resist it. But as Trowbridge himself pointed out, he’s no prize – after years of hiding, guilt-ridden, drunk and bent on revenge against the weres who killed his family, not much of the old Robson Trowbridge remains. And the memory of his dead wife Candy is always between them.
He waited for me to explode again, and when I didn't, he used two fingers on my forehead to ease me back into my seat. "You are one crazy-ass Tinker Bell," he said, returning his attention to the road.

The Trouble With Fate is full of action and sexual tension, my two favorite things. The ending, I have to admit, took me completely by surprise, and although it’s not a cliffhanger at all, it left me pining for the next book.


17 comments:

  1. Trowbridge? Really? Interesting choice of name. :) I've seen this around a few times, though I never would have guessed it was urban fantasy from the cover alone. I like the sound of it though. Even better that the ending caught you by surprise. Predictability has ruined many books for me in the past. Lovely review, Maja!

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  2. "never utters a sentence that isn't rude to three people simultaneously" -- ahhahaha! This sounds quite intriguing, what with the sentient amulets and all. Might have to check it out!!

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  3. The amulet for a side kick reminds me of Gwen's sword in the Mythos Academy! He talks to her as well and has a thirst for blood, it is pretty humorous!
    Sounds like a fun read!

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  4. "and she never utters a sentence that isn’t rude to at least three people simultaneously."

    This made me snort. And also fall a little in love with Hedi. Clearly she's my (and Mary's apparently) kind of of character. I love that this book is full of sexual tension, I LIVE for sexual tension in my UF books, so this is going on my list for sure. I can't wait to meet Hedi and Trowbridge (and their amulets, obviously).

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  5. Always nice to run across something unique isn't it!? I have never read anything with a sentinent amulent. It reminds me thought a bit of the talking sword, Vic, in Estep's Mythos Academy. I love that this is full of sexual tension and a monogous romance. no cliffhanger that is a good thing as well. I haven't heard of this before, I will have to see if it is available in the U.S. yet.

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  6. Oh I love the sound of Hedi. Snark! :D I've not heard of a sentient amulet, but I was thinking it sounds a bit like the Mythos Academy books with Vic the sword. :) Oh and did I hear no cliffie??? YES! They don't need a cliffie to totally want that next book. Hm... I really think I need to add this to my ever growing wishlist! Brilly review m'dear!

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  7. The fey and werewolf combo is very interesting. Curious how that will work out. And the quote about the sandwich had me smiling and made me realize that Hedi and I will get along just fine. :)

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  8. Action and tension are two of my favorite things in an UF novel too, not to mention I love the unique idea behind this. I'm definitely adding it to my TBR - after the second book releases so I won't be left pining! ;)

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  9. Wow half fae half wereworld? And here I thought I'd heard it all! Haha. Hedi sounds like an entertaining MC though. I don't mind unlikeable personalities (well to an extent) if you're meant to GET why they,re that way. I also love sarcastic humor so I usually get a kick out of those. The romance also sounds like it has all the feels!!

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  10. I do love sexual tension! And this is what makes me say YES "the small matter of Hedi’s amulet being in love with the Royal Amulet around Trowbridge’s neck." The weirder the UF, the more I tend to like it! This sounds great even though you had some issues, I'm very curious!

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  11. Hm. Half-fae-half-werewolf, huh? Two things I tend to avoid. But then again, the Weird Girls series has plenty of werewolves and it's a favorite of mine. Maybe I should just try it.

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  12. You can only imagine how new this was for me! I totally agree with you - that little amulet was great touch to the story. I'm dying to read next in the series because the second half of the book was so good. I hope that it'll continue that way. Great review Maja :)

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  13. I don't know, something about how you described Hedi has already endeared me to her, Maja! Maybe it's her total rudeness, lol! Maybe it's because I feel sorry for someone who has been in love forever without the feelings being returned. I already want to smack this Robson character upside the head! Yet another UF I want to read, thanks to you! Brilliant review. :)

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  14. Alas, I have to admit I couldn't even make it through the blurb of this one due to the character name 'Hedi'. Too close to Heidi, but far enough to make me twitch.

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  15. I think I'd like Hedi, or at least have fun with her voice. And I'm always game for a new UF with hefty doses of action and sexual tension. I'm definitely adding this one to my evergrowing list. :-) Lovely review!

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  16. Oh, now this one sounds like some great twists to the genre. And a good ending, even wanting more. :) That's wonderful. Thank you.

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  17. What a lovely review. I hope you'll enjoy THE THING ABOUT WERES. The one thing I've heard consistently from Advance Readers about the second novel in the Mystwalker series? They LOVE Trowbridge! I wonder how they'll feel about him in THE PROBLEM WITH PROMISES...

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