Saturday, January 18, 2014

Gods and Visions: Review of Destiny Gift

*I received a free copy of this from the author in exchange for an honest review.

I went into Destiny Gift not knowing what to expect, but I was immensely surprised by how much I enjoyed it. The concept of Nadine, the main character, meeting the real-life man she's been dreaming about really intrigued me!

Rating: 3.5 stars!
Once I started reading, I was kind of hooked. This book did not take me at all long to finish! I loved the main character's voice and how she told the story. Her inner dialogue flowed easily, and I found myself pulled along on Nadine's journey to discovering what her visions really mean.

However, the book didn't really pick up for me until the halfway point. Much of the beginning is very basic and mundane, except for Nadine's visions and the Victor in her dreams showing up. Most of her inner dialogue revolved around the fact that the Victor in real life was not the same man she'd fallen in love with during her dreams. It's hard for Nadine to take, so I understand her need to figure him out. But she spent quite a lot of time talking about Victor, and even Micah. It turned into a love triangle quickly, and I'm sure that subplot will still remain in the second book. I'm not so sure Nadine even understands who and what she wants. Her feelings for Victor, especially, were back and forth and quite confusing. I understand her confusion, because she fell in love with a man who didn't exist and the one standing before falls short of that high standard. But sometimes, that heavy focus on the two boys instead of her visions took away from my reading enjoyment. 

I thought Nadine was a pretty strong character, though she did tend to get on my nerves. Like I said above, much of her dialogue revolves around the men in her life, especially Victor. It made the romance seem more important than what was really going on with her visions. I didn't think she spent enough time trying to figure out what they meant, or why she has them. Her visions showed the past, the present, and the future, but it took her a long time to even question them. But Nadine was a likable character who felt very realistic in this post-apocalyptic world. Though there is major importance in her visions, Nadine doesn't stop going to school or let it rule her life. I liked that, but then again, the story-line didn't really move until Micah showed up, demanding that they leave because someone wanted them dead. After that, the plot thickens. 

I think this book was more mythological than paranormal, but I loved those aspects of it. Destiny Gift, at first, seems your basic paranormal and post-apocalyptic novel. The readers find out what's really going on before the main character does. Much of the mythological aspects were easy to figure out, or at least, guess about. (Cheryl's character was very easy to figure out!). But who would have thought the destruction and desolation of the world was because the real gods and goddesses got greedy and started a war with each other? I loved the mythological story-line and plot! It was my favorite part of the book. It seems really straight-forward when you get sucked into the visions with Nadine, but there is so much more going on than what is shown. I guessed at what it all meant, and I was partially right. But I still don't know everything. So, I'm really looking forward to what's going to happen in the second book, because that was one sucky cliffhanger!

The secondary characters were all very well-written, especially the two swoon-worthy love interests and the villainous gods and goddesses. They all seemed to have a role to play, even if it was to hurt the main character. Victor and Micah were polar opposites, two male characters whose ancestry is a lot more complicated than any of them could have guessed (I was actually pretty close with that guess). I want to know more about them! They're both really intriguing and well-written. And, of course, extremely hot and protective.

Overall, I really enjoyed Destiny Gift. I just felt that the focus of the book was placed more on the romance, or the lack of one, between Nadine and Victor. The confusion of him being different from her dream Victor was heavily focused on in the beginning that I thought it took away from the mythological story-line. But I loved the complex characters, and I can't wait to see where this plot goes!