Review: Illusions of Fate by Kiersten White

Illusions of Fate by Kiersten White

My rating: 1 of 5 stars
Received: borrowed
Publication Date: September 9th 2014
Publisher: HarperTeen
POV: 1st person & female
Pacing: fast
Genres & Themes: YA, Fantasy, Magic, Romance, Friendship.


“I did my best to keep you from crossing paths with this world. And I shall do my best to protect you now that you have.”

Jessamin has been an outcast since she moved from her island home of Melei to the dreary country of Albion. Everything changes when she meets Finn, a gorgeous, enigmatic young lord who introduces her to the secret world of Albion’s nobility, a world that has everything Jessamin doesn’t—power, money, status…and magic. But Finn has secrets of his own, dangerous secrets that the vicious Lord Downpike will do anything to possess. Unless Jessamin, armed only with her wits and her determination, can stop him.


DNFed at 53%


Advice: Don’t let the beautiful cover fool you.

I just didn’t find any reason to keep reading this book. The plot…it didn’t even feel like there was one determined. Poor to no intrigue and silly useless conversations that felt like fillers more than anything else are way too present in this story.

The main character, Jessamin, is in her teenage years but acts like an eleven-year-old one.

It.Was.Annoying. She was annoying.

Some parts of the story felt very absurd (my logical mind and absurdity don’t work well together) and that’s mostly due to, like I said, dialogs that didn’t feel important at all and just random. Sometimes Jessamin asks questions out of the blue or characters are talking about hair, dresses when, duh, there’s a guy that kidnapped Jessamin and that’s one subject that should have been more popular.

The writing wasn’t bad but it was not my cup of tea. Probably more because of the annoying elements that are filling the book than the style itself though. In my opinion, when you’re not enjoying a story or characters, then you can’t truly concentrate on the writing and determine if it is good or not. Sometimes it is obvious though. Like I said, not bad but what the author wrote about definitely did not impress nor captivate me.

I wish the secondary characters were better…but they’re not. There was a lack of characterization and character development and, plus, there were way too many of them. Often, there are some characters presented only to never appear again (well I may be a little biased since I didn’t finish the book but…)

I didn’t even register their names. (What would have been the point, anyway?)

There is some sort of magic but it wasn’t developed at all. Really, I don’t know why this book has been published; it just lacks! And I don’t mean to be rude but…sincerely, I just think that it could have been much better if the author worked more with making the character likeable and relatable and the plot more interesting and following, not a certain plan necessarily, but more like a certain intrigue that will keep us wondering and steal our attention. Although, it is my personal opinion.

There is one thing that I liked though: the pacing. It was fast and I believe I could’ve read this book till the end if I really wanted, but I truly found no point since it’s one of those kind of reads that are forgettable anyway.

I wish I could recommend you this book with its gorgeous cover but I really don’t want you to lose your time. This way you’ll have more time to read…Trial by Fire, perhaps? *winks*

My review on Goodreads.

58 thoughts on “Review: Illusions of Fate by Kiersten White

  1. Looks like Harper is publishing lots of DNFed books these days. I wonder what the editor found in this plot. The cover loos pretty indeed but…well, looks can be very deceiving. 🙂


  2. Great points, Lola! The plot was poorly developed. The secondary characters were bland as hell. The blasé attitudes irked me to the core. Now that I think of it, what about this intrigued me again. I went back and read my review (because memory is not my strong suit) and laughed because the rating totally contradicted the review that was just an onslaught of criticisms LOL I think (who do I kid? I know) it was the whole “Lord”/rich/gentry thing that pulled me in. In fact, I think I allowed myself to overlook everything and turn my attention only to the rich dude. What a bourgeois mindset to have.

    Sorry you got conned, love! Hoping your next read is better 😀


    • Oh lol, Jess! It seems like the 4 star rating you gave is not really accurate now, is it? ahahhaha but, you know, it’s okay! Even though you did not like many of the elements, you still enjoyed it and that’s all that counts for you case, in my opinion. (I don’t know if you actualy understood anything I said lol.)

      Thanks girl 😀


  3. I haven’t read a thing by Kiersten White but I always see that her books have mixed reviews…. But I will not most definitely pick up this one. Thank you for the honest review. And the cover looks good but I would rather not have the girl in the background LOL


  4. I saw your post on Goodreads and am so sad you couldn’t get into this read, I really wanted you to like it but it just goes to show that these reads aren’t for everyone.
    Sorry you didn’t like this. I hope your next read is better!!


  5. Why do bad books always have such beautiful covers?? Kiersten White’s writing seems to be on many readers’ favourite lists, so I’m surprised to hear that this one fell short in such a huge way. However, you’re 100% right in that nothing can save a story from annoying characters. Thanks for doing the dirty work for me!


  6. I was like “Ooo such a cool cover”, then I saw your advice and rating lol. Sorry to hear you didn’t enjoy this one. I’m not going to lie, I sort of chuckled when I read the name “Lord Downpike”, it just doesn’t sound vicious to me… No plot development and an annoying MC? Yeah, I think I’ll pass on this. Great review, hope your next read was better!


  7. I hate not finishing a book, but sometimes it’s just not working for me. Good job to making it over half. When I give up it’s usually in the first three chapters. Yeah, no plot and annoying characters, not much reason to keep reading. Thanks for the warning about this one. You’ve saved others!


  8. Kiersten White is always an either hit or miss author for me. Looks like this one is a definite miss in my books and that I shouldn’t go near it. I’m sorry this one didn’t work for you (even though the cover is gorgeaus!)


  9. Aw. What? DNFed at 53%? And I have been meaning to read this because of some glowing reviews that I’ve seen all over the blogsophere. Good thing that I haven’t bought it yet. XD Thanks for rescuing my pocket, Lola.

    Argh. This sounds like a very painful book. Gaaah. I really hated it when the conversation between the characters do not contribute positively to the whole story. It’s like they’re just making some small talk for the sake of making an impression that there’s a story to tell. Sigh.

    I hope your next read will be better than this one. 😀


    • I love rescuing people’s pockets 😀 They do the same thing for me. I always at least read a negative review before buying some book.

      It was just purposeless and I didn’t find anything I loved in it so…DNFed. 😛

      Thanks a lot, Charlotte!! xx


  10. Awww…I’m sorry you didn’t like this Lola! I didn’t love it personally, but I didn’t necessarily hate it like you did. Nonetheless, I can definitely see where you’re coming from. Jessamin can definitely be a bit annoying at times, and the world-building definitely could have been more developed. Thanks for sharing Lola, and, as always, BRILLIANT review! ❤ Sorry the cover deceived you on this one! 😦


  11. Sorry you didn’t like this one more! I’m currently reading it and I have no idea how I feel about it. I got a finished copy in the mail so I feel like I should give it a try even though from the first few pages I felt like I might end up DNFing. There’s something off about the way the characters interact that I can’t quite put my finger on. Jessamin keeps acting very zoned out, like she’s a total ditz and forgets where she is all the time, or she’s under some sort of spell. I’ve gotten a little further into it and I’m intruiged enough to keep reading, but yeah. I can’t quite figure out what I don’t like about it. It might just be Jessamin herself though.


  12. Awh, I’m so sorry this book didn’t work out for you – it sounds like it wouldn’t work very well for me, either.
    (That cover is beautiful, though…)

    Your gif was hilarious! It perfectly sums up the feeling of a DNF book.

    Great review! 🙂

    Jules @ The Book of Jules


  13. Hmm I’ve never read anything by White so I wonder if I would like it. I do hate immature characters, and if you couldn’t be bothered to learn the secondary characters’ names, I know they weren’t strong enough.

    on to better books!

    Amber Elise @Du Livre


  14. Aww sorry this one was a miss, but at least you tried! The cover is so pretty! I think I read a book by this author awhile back & didn’t finish it. Just couldn’t get into it! Hope your next read is better!!


  15. Glad to hear the pacing was fast because from the sounds of things, there were lots of things that annoyed you. Which is too bad, it reminds me of The Chaos of Stars also by Kiersten White, there were so many annoying things for me, even though I loved her Paranormalcy series. Lovely review Lola. Thanks for letting us know your thoughts!


  16. Sorry you didn’t love this one, Lola! I finally decided to just go “what the hell” and add it to my Goodread TBR despite being iffy about Kiersten White. I haven’t read anything by her yet, but my best friend has read and loved the first two books in her Paranormalcy series, so that’s on my TBR…all of her other books though, have all been taken off of my TBR…Glad to hear that this had a fast pace though!


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