Book Review: Cursing Fate by Brenda Drake

by - 7:21:00 PM

Title: Cursing Fate (The Fated #2)
Author: Brenda Drake
Pages: 220
Genre: YA Paranormal Romance
Release Date: 21 November 2016

From Goodreads: "There’s something strange about the Layne sisters, and Wade Diaz wants nothing to do with them. Especially the one who ripped his heart out and set it on fire before tossing it in the garbage several months ago. Iris. He can’t even think her name without unconsciously rubbing the spot in his chest where she left a gaping hole. But now her sisters are claiming some evil spirit is after his soul, and Iris is the only one who can save him. Well, at least his heart would stop hurting, right? Didn’t sound so bad.

Iris Layne has always been the sweet sister. She’s kind to everyone, including her best friend Wade… Until she makes a horrible mistake and breaks his heart. All she wants is to go back to before ‘the dumping’. Of course, Wade would rather see her in hell first. But then Iris touches her sister’s tarot cards and unleashes an evil curse intent on playing a deadly game where no one Iris loves is safe, especially Wade. How do you convince someone they need your help when you’re the one who hurt them most?"

Thank you to Entangled Teen for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for review!

Cursing Fate is the second installment in the Fated series by Brenda Drake and what a fantastic sequel it is! I really enjoyed the first one, despite having some reservations about it, but I absolutely loved this one.

This book follows Iris, the sister of Aster from Touching Fate. With Aster and Reese gone at college, Iris has been left to deal with the consequences of Aster changing her fate with Wade. When Violet returns home from her father's house, Iris moves into Aster's old room and discovers the hatbox hidden beneath the window seat. When she touches Aster's deck of cursed tarot cards, Iris becomes possessed by the spirit trapped within the cards. Now, she has to try to figure out a way to get rid of the spirit before she completes her "game" where no one that Iris loves is safe, including Wade.

Where to even begin? Let's start with the plot. Not only was the plot really fun and exciting to follow, but it was one where I found myself constantly wondering what would happen next and if it would be good or bad. The idea of the cursed tarot cards containing a spirit was something I didn't expect, but was excited to read about. At the end of the first book, there was a point where Aster heard something whispering to her as she bound and cleansed the tarot card deck, but it was very brief and it wasn't expanded upon very much. I'm really glad the author decided to take that idea and run with it, because it made this book so exciting and creepy! In Cursing Fate, readers get a bit more backstory into the history of the curse on Reese's family, and the Layne sisters ancestor, Crina, who also happens to be the spirit that is possessing Iris. It was nice to have that insight into the origin of the curse and why/how it came about in the first place. Honestly, the reason behind the curse is a bit sad, and I did find myself feeling bad for Crina for just a brief moment. But I loved the plot and how things played out, and now I'm wondering what sister the next book will follow. My fingers are crossed for Daisy, and I'm sure after reading this book, yours will be too!

Iris was such a wonderful character to read about and while Wade probably wasn't my favorite, it was still nice to get his perspective on the situation at certain important times in the book. I really enjoyed Iris because she was a very strong character, and aspired to be more like her twin sister Violet who was brave, positive, and very forgiving despite the awful situation she was experiencing involving her and her girlfriend. Also, just as a side note, I loved how instantly accepting all of the characters were (including Aster at the end of the first book) that Violet was bisexual. It was just like, no big deal to them and it didn't change anything about how they saw Violet or how much all of her friends and family loved her. Seriously, such an A+ way to tackle that and I would love to give Brenda Drake a hug for how well she wrote that whole thing! Iris was going through being possessed and having to deal with the world of fate changing, curses, and tarot cards that she thought was over with once Aster left, as well as the issues between her and Wade and having to deal with her ex-boyfriend, Josh, her fall from popularity, and being bullied along with Violet and others in school. It's great to see Iris grow from start to finish and kind of accept that she was unhappy with who she used to be and do her best to change and become more protective and more like her sister, Violet.

Wade was incredibly stubborn for a large portion of the book and it drove me absolutely bonkers. I understood that he was hurt by what happened between him and Iris, but his constant back and forth was getting to be a bit much for me. He talked so much about how hot he thought Iris was and how much he wanted her and would get so close to just going for it, but would then be like, "She hurt me and now I can't trust her but she has been my best friend forever and I do love her but she hurt me and I can't forgive that ever." I knew from the start that they would have to end up together, simply because they were too perfect for it not to happen. I loved that they were best friends that ended up together, and it drove me crazy that he took the entire book to realize that they were meant to be. This relationship was much more believable for me than Aster and Reese from the first one, because Iris and Wade had been a huge part of each others lives for a long time versus Aster and Reese happening upon each other and coincidentally being destined to be together. Although, I will admit, having them make a brief appearance in this book did make me smile and I was certainly happy to see them again! Basically, I loved Iris and even though Wade drove me insane, I loved him as well, and I loved the two of them together from the very first page. Both characters showed a huge amount of development throughout the story and I really liked how they both ended up by the end.

Once again, I loved Brenda Drake's writing. She has a way of being the perfect amount of descriptive to give you the feeling of being in the world and really lets you get to know your surroundings. It's fun and easy to follow, and I found myself absolutely devouring this book once I got started. Her characters are ones that you'll quickly fall in love with and her world building is very easy to get lost in. I loved that she continued to build upon the world of fate changers, and really took this book in a different direction, but still stayed true to the original world that she created in Touching Fate. I'm so excited to see where she takes the next installment both plot-wise and character-wise!

If you're looking for a fun, fast-paced, exciting, thrill-ride of a sequel, then Cursing Fate is for you! It has incredibly lovable characters, an expansion upon the world of fate changers, and a romance that you'll be rooting for from page one. Be sure to pick up a copy of Cursing Fate by Brenda Drake and continue your journey into the world of the Layne sisters and fate changing!

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