Originally published in June 2005, on my original 52 Books blog.
Psychic Vivian Kineally is surprised to find three terrified women knocking on her door and claiming to be the Fates, on the run from a mysterious power that is trying to capture them. The Fates have given up their magical powers in order to fulfil some new job specifications, having been fired and told to reapply only when they can show that they have the skills to do their job in today’s multicultural society. In the meantime, they will be replaced by three Valley Girl types, daughters of Zeus. They send Vivian to find Dexter Grant, a mage who they think can help them. There is an instant attraction between Vivian and Dexter, who becomes determined to save her from whatever power it is that is now trying to get to her as well as the Fates. They seek help from two other mages, but ultimately, it’s up to Viv and Dexter to save themselves and the Fates from the enemy (who, by the way, is shown to the reader from the start).
When I picked this book up at the library last week and read the back cover, I thought to myself: “Hmmm. Magic, characters from Greek mythology, humour AND romance. Should be good.” Unfortunately it falls short of expectation. There are just too many things to complain about in connection with this book.
My first complaint is that there is no indication that this book is part of a series. In fact, I didn’t realize that until well into the book, when characters popped up from a previous two books, characters the author obviously expected the reader to be familiar with.
My second complaint is that this is not a complete novel. The romance and the threat to the Fates parts are completed, but the story of the Fates’ problems is obviously just beginning, making it altogether obvious that you are expected to buy who knows how many other books to see that storyline resolved. Again, there is nothing to indicate this until the book suddenly ends without resolving the storyline.
My third complaint is that the romance feels undercooked, like a meal served up in a hurry.
In addition to the main complaints, there are some other faults I would like to mention. There is a lot of potential for good jokes that is mostly wasted, although I did laugh at the names of the new Fates and their obvious teenage shallowness and inexperience, and at the Superman connection. The middle part with the other mages feels unnecessary, and reads more like a reminder of the books they originally appeared in. And the villain, a supervillainess no less, is, in the end, just too easily defeated, with the author resorting to a deus ex machina device to get rid of her.
Rating: Easily resistible. Resisting the sequel(s) will not be a problem, although I may pick up the prequels to satisfy my curiosity about the other mages. 2+ stars.