Fae (Fae Trilogy #1) by C.J. Abedi
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance
Publisher: Diversion Books
Source: Review Copy for Tour
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Caroline Ellis' sixteenth birthday sets into motion a series of events that have been fated for centuries. A descendant of Virginia Dare, the first child born in the lost colony of Roanoke, and unaware of her birthright as the heir to the throne of the Light Fae, it isn’t until Caroline begins a tumultuous relationship with Devilyn Reilly that the truth of her heritage is revealed.
Devilyn is the only Fae who is both of the Light and of the Dark, and struggles to maintain that precarious balance to avoid succumbing to the power of the Dark within him. He is the only one who can save Caroline from those who would destroy her and destroy all hope for unity among the Fae. He promises Caroline that he will protect her at all costs, even when it means protecting her from himself.
Told from the alternating perspectives of Caroline and Devilyn, Fae draws on mysteries, myths and legends to create a world, and a romance, dangerously poised between Light and Dark.
If it's not already clear to you from reading the synopsis, the world of Fae is an ambitious undertaking. Certain elements are common to the faerie arch: Light vs. Dark fae, laws governing their interaction with humans, and even a girl discovering she's part fae and heir to a throne are all devices I've encountered in other stories. In this case, however, there's even more involved. Now, there are a lot of books, movies, etc. that give a back story to Roanoke, and I've read a seen quite a few of them, but I have never before encountered a story that claims faeries as the catalyst. It's an interesting concept to be sure and upon thinking more about it fits with their folklore (luring humans and making them disappear and the like). I won't reveal exactly how it happens in the book, but that was probably one of my favorite elements of the back ground. As far as other things that make the story unique, there are seemingly random aspects of Norse mythology thrown in. For instance, Odin plays an important role. The Valkyries are his warrior goddesses, for lack of a better description. Valhalla exists. These elements were a little less sensical to me and left me very confused at the beginning before I'd settled into the story. But, whether I loved every element of it or not, the premise was certainly ambitious and intriguing.
Our main female character, Caroline, on the contrary, is very much what you would expect of this type of book. She's never fit in. She doesn't realize how beautiful she is. She keeps to herself at school except for her best friend. And suddenly she's finding out that she's not what she thought she was. All of these aren't uncommon in the genre, but it's not necessarily a bad thing. She was likable: kind, relateable, intelligent. She even had just a little bit of backbone that cropped up when dealing with Devilyn that made her fun to follow. So, is she unique? Not particularly. But she's by no means a bad character, either.
Devilyn himself wasn't all that different in a way. He's also rather typical of the genre: dark and broody and times, trying to protect the girl by staying away, struggling with his inner darkness, existing far out of the high school mentality, and perfectly beautiful and otherworldly. The one selling point for him, though, was that it's not as common to be able to see the male character's POV, which not only gave him an edge because it's a little different, but also because we got to see the mythology setup through his eyes rather than having to wait and guess forever. I saw that as a plus.
As far as their relationship goes, it was definitely heavy on the insta-love. It was a scenario that basically explained it by way of making them puppets of a prophecy, but I know that still bothers a lot of people (I'm on the fence and try to decide on how it's executed rather than just it's mere presence). And it was a little rough at times. But there were also some very enjoyable, chemistry-fueled moments.
Fae has gotten a lot of comparison to Twilight. I definitely see the similarities. The main difference, I would say, is the sheer amount of intricacy to the premise of this story. There are a lot more complexities present in Fae, but that's not always a good thing either, because the higher you build it, the more it can fall. Overall, however, Fae is an enjoyable read for fans of YA fantasy and romance, and manages to put some new and interesting spins on the faerie arch.
Colet Abedi ran development for ITV Studios and is currently Executive Producer on three shows that run in syndication called Unsealed: Conspiracy Files, Unsealed: Alien Files and Now Eat This with Rocco DiSpirito. She was also an Executive Producer on Posh Tots on HGTV. Prior to that, she was a Head Writer for 20th Television, a division of Fox, for two telenovelas, American Heiress starring Annalyn McCord and Robert Buckley and Fashion House, starring Bo Derek and Taylor Kinney.
Jasmine Abedi is an entertainment attorney, and has worked with entertainment powerhouses such as Fox, NBCUniversal, ABC, MTV and E! for the past 14 years. She has also worn many different hats in the entertainment industry, with Executive Producer credits for the television programs Posh Tots and the pilots Club Bounce (TruTV), Divas (VH-1), and Life With The Clarks (CMT). In addition to writing, she has also partnered with a law school friend to create the natural cosmetic company Generation Klean, Inc. Their products can be found online at www.generationklean.com and at major retailers (Whole Foods, Fred Segal etc.) nationwide.