Twisted Fate by Jessi Elliott

I remember reading this book way back in June of 2017 when I was a beta reader. Even further backs read the first chapter in December 2016, so I’ve been waiting for this book to come out for a long time so I could gush over how much I love this book. And the time has come for me to do that.
Let’s start with the premise. That got me hooked immediately. It has everything I want in an urban fantasy story, paranormal romance, and a new adult romance rolled into one. I’ve been displeased with the general lack of genre new adult stories for a long time, but this is an amazing example of why there needs to be more.

I’m not going to really talk about Aurora’s “normal” life much in this review. Before she meets Tristan, she’s a regular college girl. She’s smart, sassy, much more fearless than I am but makes me aspire to be more like her, and has a good heart. And while that part of her life, particularly her family stuff, is well-written and important, it’s not the meat of the story.

But the fae world? Absolutely captivated me. Unlike the author, I haven’t yet read A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas, making Twisted Fate my introduction to new adult fae who are sexy, dangerous, and nothing like Tinker Bell and her friends. Tristan is all of those things (making him an automatic candidate for my latest favorite book boyfriend) and while he can be high-handed, he’s not malicious and clearly cares very deeply for Aurora. Zooming back out a little, the mythology and history of the fae in this story was really well thought-out. The war between light and dark fae was particularly interesting because it subverts almost every expectation I had when I first read about it (which is really tough to do since I often see things coming a mile away in books). My favorite part (besides Tristan and Aurora, obviously) was the fae magic. I’m a sucker for cool magic, and this book delivers the goods.

Now, onto the romance (I really buried the lead, didn’t I?): Give me a handsome, brooding, (preferably supernatural) guy, a witty/sassy girl who isn’t afraid of him like everyone else, and lots of snarky banter, and you can almost guarantee I’m a fan. Make each of them well-rounded with clear priorities, allegiances, and personality quirks? Now I’ll really love them: individually and as a couple. That one-two punch is important. And, boy, do Tristan and Aurora have all of these and perhaps most importantly (in a romance book, maybe in real life, too): chemistry. I could have made this whole review about their chemistry, or even about one particular scene that has the author embarrassed to have her family read the book—it’s that good. But all I’ll say is that if you like romance novels, but are sick of either the guy, the girl, or both being too one-dimensional for their own good, you’ll be pleased to know that Tristan and Aurora could pop out of the pages as real people (can’t say “humans” for the obvious reason that Tristan isn’t​).

In short: I love this book! Jessi’s take on fae is so interesting, all the characters are complex and intriguing, and the plot pushes you through from cover to cover, dying to know what happens next.

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