I’ve been reading several books with delicate topics in a row, I don’t know what happened.
As children, Nev, her twin sister Viv and their best friend Kinsley were inseparable. The day Viv died, Nev lost everything. Nev and Kinsley meet again as adults, by chance. Years of families blaming and badmouthing the other have raised walls of resentment and misunderstandings. Love and attraction, however, have a way of breaking even the highest walls.
Nev and Kinsley already feel the first flutters of chemistry at eleven, which isn’t easy to pull off. Ronica Black writes those first emotions with sensitivity and the promise of heat. When the two meet again not as girls but as women, these feelings come back to the surface as a hindrance, something that’s in the way of them acting in a civil manner with each other. But they’re also a fertile ground on which new feelings grow (though, while the chemistry is strong and believable, the sex scene is a bit cringey).
Both MCs are likeable and complex, even though I didn’t always find them relatable. The author has the characters find each other again at a moment in Kinsley’s life when she’s going through another very hard time and, again, feeling guilty about an accident. It temporarily breaks her but the adult she has become is strong and self-reliant. Nev hasn’t been so lucky. Not only did she lose her sister then her best friend but also her parents and she’s still coming to terms with the fact that despite being there physically, they cut her off emotionally. No wonder she’s closed off to the point of worrying her friends.
Speaking of which, I loved both Adriana and Arthur. There are other smaller secondary characters who all bring a little something to the story, but these two shine. Arthur, especially, as Nev’s mentor, an older man with Parkinson’s disease, whose wit and love for Nev can’t be subdued.
This story was a five-star for me for a while, then I’m not sure exactly what happened, it slowed down and I lost some of my enthusiasm. There are a few repetitive sentences, which make the book slightly longer than it should be and are probably responsible for the slump in tension.
Despite its premise – the death of a child –, A Fate of Turn isn’t a depressing story. There’s sadness and frustration and anger but enough hope and love to counterbalance them.