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Please note, this review was written before I became a Novel Publicity employee and has not been altered since. I was not given anything other than an ARC copy of Farsighted for this review.
by Emlyn Chand
genre: paranormal young adult
Each chapter starts with a rune and a premonition about what the hero will face in that chapter. Most were obvious given the premise of the story, but it was still a neat way to start each chapter.
I enjoy well read authors who can meld the classics with modern literature, so no one should be surprised that I love Farsighted main character Alex, a blind fortune teller based on Tiresias from Oedipus Rex and Antigone who narrates the story. Farsighted follows him as he develops his abilities to see with other senses, both in the present and future.
His two female companions, Simmi and Shapri are typical giggly teenage girls. Sweet, moody, and complicated. Shapri comes off prickly and a little harsh at first, but as the reader learns more about her life, it gets easier to understand her swings.
The only character I did not like was Alex’s mother. Her mood and life revolves around her husband. That is not to say that one should not be upset by marital difficulties, but her highs and lows, particularly in chapter twelve make her seem exceptionally weak.
The scenes are descriptive and colorful. Brilliant writing makes it easy to follow without feeling confused despite the narrator of the story being unable to use sight to describe his surroundings. I particularly enjoyed the descriptions Alex used to describe anger and the other unique ways he was able to “see” the world, the way he feels impending storms etc.
What I didn’t like was that the book was too similar to Greek literature, particularly the role of Fate and Destiny. “Two types of prophecies exist… Those that will happen no matter what and those that can be prevented,” one of the characters explains. This bothered me in my Greek Philosophy class and it bothers me here. The hopeless of knowing that an end is set regardless of actions does not appeal to me even if some endings are not written in stone. I cannot bring myself to believe that the Trojan War was inevitable any more than I can accept the same principle in other works. It is one thing for characters to be trapped in a situation based on past decisions and events, but to not allow them the chance to work their way out of impending disaster removes the responsibility for the consequence of actions. It allows for, “well I tried my best, oh well, that can’t be my fault because obviously it was going to happen anyway,” whether or not this is true. When one of the premonitions at the start of the chapter states, “[n]o matter how much time the traveler spends mapping his course… [h]e must learn to accept that he is a pawn in his own destiny,” I already know I’m not going to enjoy that chapter. However, this is a personal preference and I do not hold it against the writing. Let me put it this way, if you enjoyed the plot in The Butterfly Effect (2004 movie), then this shouldn’t bother you.
Other premonitions, Alex brings about himself and this is the part I liked. It is hard to do well. The excerpt from chapter 3 posted yesterday is an example of this. Was this a premonition that would have happened regardless? If Alex had not retaliated to the perceived slight, would the altercation have happened or not? We don’t know. You have to make it all of the way to the end to understand the true complexities of acting on unrelaible information (let’s face it, a “vision” that hasn’t happened yet is unrelable).
Even though I figured out much of the book before the characters, there was enough I did not figure out to make it worth a second read, thus earning it 4 out of 5 stars.
Want to find out which Farsighted character you are? Take this quiz.
Did you get the same character as either Eliabeth (Alex) or Ermisenda (Dax)? Let us know which Farsighted character you are.
Blog Tour Notes
THE BOOK: Alex Kosmitoras may be blind, but he can still “see” things others can’t. When his unwanted visions of the future begin to suggest that the girl he likes could be in danger, he has no choice but to take on destiny and demand it reconsider. Get your copy today by visiting Amazon.com’s Kindle store or the eBook retailer of your choice. The paperback edition will be available on November 24 (for the author’s birthday).
THE CASH PRIZES: Guess what? You could win a $100 Amazon gift card as part of this special blog tour. That’s right! Just leave a comment below saying something about the post you just read, and you’ll be entered into the raffle. I could win $100 too! Please help by voting for my blog in the traffic-breaker poll. To cast your vote, visit the official Farsighted blog tour page and scroll all the way to the bottom. Thank you for your help with that. We are listed as “Ermilia.”
THE GIVEAWAYS: Win 1 of 10 autographed copies of Farsighted before its paperback release by entering the giveaway on GoodReads. Perhaps you’d like an autographed postcard from the author; you can request one on her site.
THE AUTHOR: Emlyn Chand has always loved to hear and tell stories, having emerged from the womb with a fountain pen grasped firmly in her left hand (true story). When she’s not writing, she runs a large book club in Ann Arbor and is the president of author PR firm, Novel Publicity. Emlyn loves to connect with readers and is available throughout the social media interweb. Visit www.emlynchand.com for more info. Don’t forget to say “hi” to her sun conure Ducky!
MORE FUN: There’s more fun below. Watch the live action Farsighted book trailer.