Fractured Dream by K.M. Randall
My rating: 1 of 5 stars
[Disclaimer: I received a free ebook from Net Galley in exchange for an honest review.]
I really wanted to like this one, but what sounded like an interesting fairy tale-inspired fantasy turned out to be a melodramatic, overwrought teen romance drama.
Story Sparks (yes, that is her name, and it drove me nuts) is abducted, along with her two best friends, by a water goddess (Sandeen) who tells her that she used to be a goddess herself and needs to dispatch an evil overlord who is trying to destroy her world and the fairy tale world. Seriously, this actually sounded interesting. Not so much. Her uncle was abducted by the same water goddess before Story was born, and her mother has been a bit batshit about the lake ever since. So when Story goes missing, of course her mom (Edie) completely falls apart. After that we don't hear from Edie for pretty much the rest of the book.
So Story ends up going off on her magical quest to save the world, but doesn't have all the information she needs because Sandeen and pretty much everyone else in her life feels the need to keep secrets and not tell her anything, but still expect her to save them all. Okay, right.
There is a lot of sexual tension between Story and her best (straight) friend Adam (I say straight because her other best friend, Elliott, is gay, so no sexual tension there except between him and every single male fairy tale character he meets, because apparently he's a giant ho). The sexual tension between Story and Adam is weird, because apparently they aren't actually interested in each other, even though they each get jealous whenever the other shows any interest in anyone else. But eventually Story falls in love with someone, and Adam is all "Woe is me" until he meets someone else, and then it's like there was never anything between them from the start. What?
The secrets and lies and convoluted story line were way too much for me to handle. And the "origin story" that Story gets several times throughout the book changes so drastically, because everyone has a different version. Whose is right? Apparently only the last one you get in the last few pages of the book.
The writing was juvenile and sweeping. There was definite obvious use of a thesaurus. Every single character was beautiful no matter who they were. An old crone? Oh she was beautiful even with all the wrinkles on her face. The most normal guy on the planet? He's gorgeous and Elliott is drooling all over himself. No room for ugly people here! And the overbearing romantic style of the writing was too much. I felt like I was reading a book that was being put on as a play with some really bad actors who would get down on one knee and soliloquize to an inanimate object. Story's heart broke every time Nicholas looked away from her or frowned at her. It was trying way too hard to be a great book, and didn't try to be a good book.
I really don't understand how this book has almost completely five star reviews on Goodreads. It was not good. Story was a giant pain in the ass, and none of the other characters were even close to like-able. And the writing was just plain teen.
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