Max Larsen isn’t quite sure of where he fits within the grand scheme of his pack or what he’s supposed to do with his life. But he does know that Christian, the pack Alpha, is his mate. Convincing Christian they belong together is another matter altogether. As he tries to untangle the realities of his non-existent love life, Max also must deal with his abusive father and the legacy of his painful childhood.
Although Christian would rather deny it, his wolf knows that Max is his mate and the pack’s next omega. But Christian wants to take his time claiming the young man and making sure their union is well founded. And he wants to make sure that Max has a chance to stand on his own two feet. Now he has to convince Max that waiting is the right choice.
Denying Fate is sweet, but it never really jumps off the page, which is a shame because the story had potential. Max and Christian aren’t well-defined as characters, but Max reminds me of an overgrown puppy. His exuberance and enthusiasm for Christian are infectious, even when they lead him to make some rather questionable choices. Christian feels almost like a non-entity. He was least impressive Alpha I’ve ever found in a shifter series. Max’s best friend Seth is actually the most in depth character and he and Max together make a far more connected couple than Max and Christian. Which was altogether odd and there were times I felt like this was more Seth’s book than Max’s.
The biggest issue Denying Fate has is its tendency to rush from one moment to the next, without giving events or characters a chance to breathe. As a result, at times it feels like a litany of various actions, rather than an actual story. There is no courtship to speak of between Max and Christian and it’s glossed over as something we’re supposed to care about, but are never given a foundation upon which to do so. Months pass within the span of pages and the story ends up feeling rote and stifled as a result. Denying Fate almost reads like the outline of a story rather than a fully developed book.
I wanted to enjoy Defying Fate. Max and his enthusiasm for Christian are charming and sweet and they make his character easy to like. And Seth is an interesting secondary character that actually brings a bit of vibrancy to the book. But on the whole Defying Fate never finds a way to convey its story in as much detail or scope as it should have. This one ended up reading like a shrug rather than anything substantial.
A review copy of this book was provided by Dreamspinner Press.