Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Review: Destined by Jessie Harrell

Hi all!

Here is a reivew of a YA with Psyche and Eros as the heroine and hero. Enjoy!






Title: Destined
Release date: 17th of November 2011
Published by: Mae Day Publishing
Reading level: FICTION – JUVENILE: Historical, Adventure, Romance, YA
Pages: 368 in Paperback
Source: Bought from the Book Depository

Summary:
When Psyche receives a prophecy gone horribly wrong, she learns that even the most beautiful girl in Greece can have a hideous future. Her fate? Fall in love with the one creature even the gods fear.

As she feels herself slipping closer into the arms of the prophecy, Psyche must choose between the terrifyingly tender touch she feels almost powerless to resist and the one constant she's come to expect out of life: you cannot escape what is destined
Review:
First things first, the cover art is so gorgeous, sweet and subtle. Regarding other more technical details, this booked had a text format I’ve never really encountered before, while it didn’t greatly bother me, it took some time to get use to.
Now onto the actual review: Greek mythology is a topic I’ve noticed comes up in a great number of books I read. I can’t say that I prefer that setting the most, but the stories created based on it are often very well written and have engaging plots. The story of Psyche and Eros has already been explored in various ways and formats imaginable. Despite this, Destined still manages to be original in the midst of endless attempts by giving the characters, mainly Psyche, a modern voice and attitudes to match. I was quite pleasantry surprised with this direction the author took and, overall, I can confidently conclude that the effort was successful.
Next to the plot, the writing style was something I enjoyed in this book, it was simple, straightforward and flowing.
Characters:
Loved:
Aphrodite – she was wicked, sneaky, smart (unlike how she is usually portrayed – ditsy, shallow, selfish and a dummy) and a real formidable player amongst the Olympians. I actually believed her to be a goddess in this book not a moody and vain teenager I usually encounter her as. I totally adored her in this book!
Eros – sweet, boyish, full of mischief and hunky. I liked his confusion and inner conflict regarding his feelings for Psyche, they actually developed by themselves without relying solely on the arrow he accidentally grazed himself with.
Alexa was a true inspiration, her ambitions, her view on life, her actions – always trying to do the right thing and any time willing to help and be supportive, even if she goes against someone or something above her with the threat of punishment.
The remaining characters including gods, humans, other beings were all very memorable, appealing and cleverly crafted as well. I especially liked Hermes, he came across as real good buddy.
Dislike:
Beware, a long rant on Psyche and her whole family ahead.
Psyche, oh, Psyche, maybe I’m too harsh but she was just plain immature, incredibly easy to sway and a total brat. Ok, I do respect her for having the courage to fight and take on the journey to find Eros but she didn’t manage to complete any of the tasks or overcome any of the hindrances with her own thinking. Every time she required help. And while I understand that being the case in the original as well, Psyche’s mostly modern way of thinking just made her look as a failure in those situations. Her speaking her mind was also something positive but in most cases she tended to get herself into more trouble because of it. Several times it was mentioned that Eros doesn’t deserve her, while to me it was clearly the other way around. I honestly tried to understand and sympathize with her, but I failed miserably.
Her sister was mean, grudge holding and bitter – ok, I agree it’s not fortunate to get shipped to a foreign land to get married feeling betrayed, but it shouldn’t be that unusual in those times and blaming everything on Psyche was immature and shortsighted. She remained a sore loser. Psyches parents weren’t much better either. While her mom did show some likeable qualities and her father later on, it didn’t entirely erase the fact that they came across greedy and uncaring taking full advantage of Psyche’s situation. I admit that the times were different and such behavior understandable under those circumstances but I still couldn’t help but feel annoyance for their choices.
Overall:
A unique take on the story of Eros and Psyche that is quick, easy and fun. Fans of the couple will experience the story from a new angle and newly introduced will be motivated to know the actual story because they want more of this legendary romance.



3 stars!

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