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DNF: Something Like Fate by Susane Colasanti

May 4, 2010

Something Like Fate by Susane Colasanti
published by Viking Juvenile May 4, 2010

Lani is a bright, thoughtful, quirky teen and an avid environmentalist who believes her fate can be revealed through astrology, palm reading, and tarot cards. This buffers her from her fear of The Unknown. She avoids running with a crowd, sticking with her best friend Erin, her deeply-in-the-closet gay friend Blake, and the kids in One World, the school’s environmental club.

Erin is energetic, outgoing, and wedded to the popular crowd. She and Lani have little in common, but they have fun together. They’re also bound tightly by fate and by having shared a traumatic accident. When Blake tells Lani that Erin’s love interest, Jason, has a crush on her, she refuses to believe it. She and Erin are so different — how could Jason be attracted to both of them? And even if it were true, she couldn’t do anything about it. What kind of person would do that to her best friend?

Today is the release date for this YA novel. I borrowed an ARC from Around the World Tours, and this is the first time I haven’t finished an ARC I accepted for review.

When I started the book, I was immediately drawn in. The narrator, Lani, has a quirky, humorous voice, and I liked her friends, especially Blake, a pragmatic, funny kid who doesn’t share Lani’s enthusiasm for horoscopes and is held back by the impossibility of coming out to his dad. However my attention quickly wandered. In addition to the fact that I was preoccupied by many other things, the characters and dialogue just didn’t hold my interest. The characters spent a lot of time making small talk, the dialogue annoyed me a bit, and everyone started sounding alike to me. I also found the unfolding plot predictable.

I wouldn’t pan a book that I didn’t finish, unless it was so indescribably awful that I couldn’t see any hope of redemption. πŸ™‚ That wouldn’t be fair. Something like Fate has good qualities, and it certainly had potential — it just didn’t hook me. I gave up about 100 pages in.

However, if you enjoy YA fiction about friendship, romance, and the ebb and flow of daily life in high school, I think this is a book that deserves a look. I’ll refer you to Robby’s review of this book at Once Upon a Bookcase. He is one of my very favorite YA bloggers, as you may know. Unlike me, he’s part of this novel’s target audience;Β  he’s experiencing daily life as a high school student now instead of having been there, done that sometime when Reagan was president. And he thoroughly enjoyed it.

Read more reviews: Harlequin Twilight’s Book Blog; Chick Loves Lit; A Reader’s Adventure; Not Enough Bookshelves

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9 Comments leave one →
  1. May 4, 2010 10:45 pm

    Oh! But that’s definately not one of my better reviews. That’s when I was going through my whole “Let’s describe the whole entire book and then go into a long shpeel about everything I loved about it.” It was tiring to even write it, let alone read it.
    Nonetheless, thank you for linking me. Thank you for being so sweet and wonderful.
    I think I’ll post something about fate tomorrow, in between book reviews. Just for kicks, and by request. :]

    • May 4, 2010 11:03 pm

      I agree that it wasn’t one of your best, but it was still quite good. πŸ˜‰ I understood the book better after reading your review that I did after reading nearly half of it. You really *got* the story and characters, and you conveyed it really well.

      I can’t wait to read your thoughts on fate. As I said, I don’t believe in it, but the idea is really intriguing. And maybe people who believe in fate are onto something. After all, how could all those ancient Greeks have been wrong? πŸ˜€

      • May 5, 2010 12:43 am

        You read my mind!
        I’m glad I’m not the ONLY one who wants to cry when they read it. πŸ˜€

        • May 5, 2010 3:09 am

          Cry when they read what?

        • May 5, 2010 3:37 am

          I hope you don’t mean your review of Something Like Fate. I thought it was great. I was just agreeing that it probably wasn’t one of your top reviews, just like most of my reviews aren’t my favorites. As you know, I love your writing!

          On Tue, May 4, 2010 at 11:09 PM, Stephanie Ward wrote:

          > Cry when they read what? > >

          • May 5, 2010 11:07 am

            You’re so sweet! :]

            • May 5, 2010 10:16 pm

              I am taking over the comments section of your blog.
              I just wanted to tell you that I started writing my post about fate and then stopped. I started again, and stopped. I can’t get the wording right. I’m trying to explain it and I can’t.
              I just believe, you know? It’s so difficult to write about, because I’m not even sure why I believe in it myself.
              But I tried, and I hope that’s alright. :]

              • May 5, 2010 11:02 pm

                I know what you mean. It’s a bit like being asked to explain why you believe in God. It’s something you grasp with the intuitive, rather than the rational, part of your brain. πŸ™‚

  2. May 8, 2010 3:35 am

    Aww.. sorry this didn’t work out .. I’m not sure I will be reading it, but only because it really isn’t my cup of tea. But I’m glad this book has some good qualities!

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