Fair To Hope
That is, until she is surprisingly named Kachina, the fabled chosen empowered to fight the last battle for the fate of the world. Having to kill someone she loves was never part of the bargain, even if it means saving everyone else from damnation.
Building a normal life free from the pull of the Taram--seems like the only answer to her prayers. Except her best friend, the other Kachina, is coming. The legend is clear that one of them must die.
Velma will have to weigh the cost of her life against a world that's constantly betrayed her and quite literally decide if she'll be damned in dying, taking the whole world with her.
Velma is brutally betrayed by her best friend when he chooses the Eirum over becoming Taram. Now they are enemies, destined to mark souls and build their strength for a final battle where one of them must die. But Velma doesn’t want that life, all she has ever wanted is normal. How long can you run from fate before it catches up with a sickening crunch?
Velma is a gorgeous character; she is emotionally traumatized and reluctant to trust, yet there is a goodness to her which endears the reader. She is tough at the start and grows tougher still in the face of the obstacles.
We get a brief recap of the history between each character and the main protagonist, however more information and interaction could have been warranted with a few of the prominent characters. In particular Josh—the best friend and love interest, and Bailey.
The angst and tragic love between Josh and Velma from the start is a major strength of this book as is the Author’s visual description of each character.
A hidden world exists amongst our everyday Earth. The Taram fight for good, and the Eirum fight for evil. They claim souls in riots where they fight for the right to mark human souls. The two chosen Kachina are fated to settle things once and for all.
Fair to Hope had potential to be an incredible world of good Vs. evil and weak Vs. strong with all the suspense and complexities not often found in the young adult world. It fell slightly short in its delivery. It is not until quite far in that an explanation as to what Taram and Eirum are, and how Velma came to be where she is, is given. There was confusion as to the exact rules of the world, and even upon finishing the layers are not completely understood.
The setting of the town, Fairhope, is well described, as is the concept of Ahali and Cleaning. These rituals within the Taram and Eirum went a long way in building authenticity of the urban fantasy world.
Sam Reed has a beautiful, lyrical style of writing. Her prose is subtle and foreshadowing. It is enjoyable to read a novel where your mind has to work harder to piece everything together. This is rare in young adult writing. The main protagonist’s reflective musings show the author has a great depth of understanding into human nature. These passages were a pleasure to read.
Occasionally, I was required to reread sentences because of the structure, however as I grew more used to Reed’s style this was less of an issue.
This novel is suitable for 13+.
Less subtlety and more concise explanation regarding the characters and world-building, in combination with the author’s beautiful writing style, would have made this a five star. I was still drawn to see what happened to the characters in the end, and think this author has great potential.
“But over time, generations tended to forget things, while those who remembered them often remembered them more.”