The Trouble with Fate by Leigh Evans
Tor Books (Jan 2013)
Paperback, 344 pages
The Trouble with Fate by Leigh Evans twists the paranormal as we know it and reshapes it, with werewolves conflicting with fae and leaving our heroine stuck in the middle.
Belonging to neither world, Hedi Peacock (once named Helen Stronghold) is half-fae, half-werewolf. She has the magic powers and softness of her fae mother whilst retaining the animalistic instincts of her were father. A barista at her local Starbucks, Hedi has a penchant for trouble, problematic considering her need to go unnoticed by the local werewolf pack.
Her parents were murdered when she was 12, with the fae taking her twin brother, Lexi, through the magical portal to the fae world of Merenwyn. Hedi was saved by her fae aunt Lou, whom she now has to care for as Lou is slowly fading away. The fading causes her aunt to have mad delusions and dreams, which slip into Hedi’s mind and steal over her conscious thoughts. The ability to see these dreams places Hedi in danger, as it means she is capable of entering Threall, the mystical realm between Merenwyn and Earth which could trap her soul forever if she enters it.
On top of all this, Hedi must ensure that they are not discovered by the werewolves as the portal to Merenwyn was sealed shut, leaving her and her aunt as the last remaining faes. The ancient grudge between faes and wolves makes them both a target, especially as Hedi was believed to have died all those years ago.
Having survived under the radar for ten years, Hedi’s world is thrown into disarray at the appearance of Robson Trowbridge, the son of the former werewolf alpha and Hedi’s teenage crush. From his appearance in her Starbucks to his later appearance as an attack target, it is clear that her attraction to him remains after all these years, with the implication of another forbidden love like that of her father and mother.
The wolves are after a fae amulet, an Asrai, in order to help them open a portal to Merenwyn, a forbidden act against the treaty between the two species. Hedi possesses such an amulet, which she names Merry, her only friend in the ten years her and her aunt have been hiding out. Could Merry really be the amulet they seek, and what will happen if they succeed in opening the portal?
A complex novel that succeeds in crafting a detailed supernatural world, The Trouble with Fate is beautifully written, packing in more information than you realise at first glance. I loved Hedi’s wit, as she is fabulously funny and her thought processes are definitely unique. At times this wit and description was a little too over the top for me, but I loved it anyway.
Would I wither like her one day? I have my own measure of Fae blood, bu it’s diluted – poisoned, Lou once said – by the Were blood running in my veins. Sometimes I find myself thinking too long about whether I’ll fade like Lou or live long like a Were.
As a heroine, Hedi is strong-willed but also fragile, and it is clear from the outset that the death of her parents and loss of her twin still haunts her. She struggles to cope with her dual-heritage, as she has never let her wolf side truly surface and prefers to think of herself as fae. However, her magic is not without repercussions, leaving her in pain if she uses too much and excruciating agony if she uses it to cause others harm. It is her emotional battles between right and wrong that make her more intriguing, as it demonstrates how her humanity is being torn apart by the wolf and fae inside of her.
Trowbridge makes for a somewhat confusing love interest, as at first it is unclear if he can be trusted, and whether he actually feels something for Hedi or is still mourning his wife, Candy. I liked his strong and defensive nature, as he is clearly willing to protect our heroine no matter what, but at the same time I couldn’t completely accept him as her mate. I think it was the fact that she’d thought about him for more than ten years, and unbelievably she still wanted him despite what had happened in the past (an event I won’t spoil). As much as we all like the thought of our teenage crush suddenly noticing us, in this book it just didn’t feel as romantic as it should have.
Overall, I really enjoyed this book as it has a really strong plotline and I couldn’t help but enjoy reading from Hedi’s perspective. There are several twists and turns, some of which you can predict and some you can’t, as well as the introduction of some other great characters. Although I wasn’t sure about Trowbridge as a love interest, I still enjoyed seeing their relationship develop, especially as more secrets got revealed. I’m looking forward to book two so I can find out more about Merenwyn, as well as the mystical and forbidden realm of Threall.
A fantastic start to a new series, I loved the blending of the fae and werewolf worlds, and the manifestation of Hedi’s personality. I can’t wait to see where this series goes, as the author has definitely set up a world with infinite possibilities. A heartbreaking ending, this book will leave you craving more.
BOOKS IN SERIES ORDER
- The Trouble with Fate
- The Thing About Weres
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