Marked by Fate: Origins (Marked By Fate #0.5)
by Kristin D. Van Risseghem, Rhonda Sermon, Melissa A. Craven, Kelly St. Clare, Amalie Jahn, Melle Amade, Debra Kristi, Ingrid Seymour, Alisha Klapheke, Lena Mae Hill, Sarah K. L. Wilson, D. L. Armillei, Jamie Thornton, Hilary Thompson and Erin Hayes
Rating: 4 stars
Genre: YA Fantasy anthology
Beginnings. Secrets. Deleted Scenes.
Transport yourself to other worlds with 15 Marked by Fate teen warriors…
…encounter shadows, queens, witches, and wizards who battle against immortals, angels, vampires, demons, genetically engineered soldiers, robots and gods. Let yourself be swept away by adventures in magical fantasy worlds, mind-blowing dystopian lands, space stations, galaxies, and alternate timelines.
The short stories and deleted scenes in Marked by Fate: Origins are exclusive to this collection and they go away–some of them forever–when the Marked by Fate full box set releases in October 2017.
Gain a glimpse of where the action begins, including a deeper look into some of your favorite characters! Get the Marked by Fate: Origins collection today to join these teen warriors in their adventures.
I decided to pick up this anthology as I already knew two of the authors in this set and was looking forward to getting a feel for some new to me authors. And after finishing this anthology I can say it was a great read. The two stories by authors I already knew were great and I discovered some new authors that I would love to read more of. I’ll do a short review of each individual story and then a summary of what I thought of this collection overall.
Ninjas & Nephilims by Kristin D. Van Risseghem – 3 stars
This was an interesting introduction to this author’s work. I felt like it gave a bit of a feel for the writing style of this author and for what this series is about. I did feel like the first two chapters were a bit impersonal, just summing up some key details about this characters life. The third chapter was my favorite as then it slowed down ad showed us one important scene. And I can only imagine how important and relevant that scene probably will be for the rest of the story. It did make me curious about book 1 and Zoe, who I think is the main character there? My guess is that the character from this story is one of the potential love interests. All in all this was a nice introduction to this author’s work.
Jonah’s Curse by Rhonda Sermon – 3 stars
This one didn’t quite work for me. It was just a sad piece of story and I didn’t really like the plot point. It felt a bit off somehow to me. I just feel that situations such as that feel a bit contrived in books were the character has two choices, but both are bad. I just didn’t like that he was forced to make that decision, it just felt wrong. And how is this the only way to cure this? And those death’s still aren’t his fault, but that of the evil guy. I did like how we got a bit of a feel for this world and learned some basic concept like the Midnight Society and those who opposes them and how it could be seen as a bit of a grey era as it’s unclear who really is the bad guy, it’s more two different stances on a topic. I am also curious who these characters are and how these events play a role in book 1.
Emerge: The Catalyst by Melissa A. Craven – 3 stars
This one’s about a race of immortals, a prophecy and the main character of this story has to make a choice. But this is merely a bit of background story I think, while it felt like an important part of backstory it’s more the set-up for the first book, which is the feel a lot of these stories seem to have so far. She learns some things and isn’t quite sure if it is the truth and what to do with it. I kinda liked her conversation with The Scholar and I am curious what choice she ends up making.
The Apple Rebellion by Kelly St. Clare – 4 stars
This was one of the author’s I already knew and having read the first two books in this series, I was really curious about this novella. It’s a great prequel novella and I liked getting this extra bit of background information. It’s well written and flows nicely. I think also for those who haven’t read the first book it will be easy enough to follow along, although you’ll know less of the world then. For fans of the series it’s nice to get a bit more information of Olina’s past and an important part of it. I really enjoyed this one!
Brooke’s Time Travel Notebook by Amalie Jahn – 3 stars
I am not really a fan of time travel, so I always have a bit trouble with time travel books and this story was basically a handbook for time travel. My issue with time travel made me enjoy this one a bit less, but I did really like how this was written. It’s a bit like you’re reading a book about time travel in that world. I think it was the notebook from a character basically about time travel. There’s parts about the history and the rules and how you can get to time travel. And some notes from who I guess will be the main character in book 1? It was really cleverly done and I did like that part. I also thought the way it was written, the history or maybe the world building did make sense as far as anything involving time travel can make sense. I mean how people reacted when they discovered it how things progressed and then how things went wrong and they end up with rules. It just felt pretty realistically. So I am not a fan of time travel, but I did think this one was written in a fun way! I don’t think I’ve read a short story like this one before, so it’s definitely original.
Instinct by Melle Amade – 4 stars
This story had shifters and took place in the Netherlands!
Both those things immediately got my attention. I don’t think I’ve read many english books that take place in the Netherlands, so it was fun to discover this one did. And shifters! This one had lots of different types of shifters, which was interesting. It was obvious this story is part of a series. While we get to know some details I also felt like some things weren’t totally clear and things progressed pretty quick at times. But overall I really enjoyed this one and I just wanted to know more about these characters and the world as I liked the glimpse we got. This story really got me curious about this author’s series. It’s a bit angsty, which fit the tone of the story. And there’s a potential for a love triangle, but I am not fully sure yet. It definitely got me curious about this series and I just discovered I actually already got a copy of the first book in this series when it was free, yay!
A Becoming Attribute by Debra Kristi – 4 stars
This one was a lot of fun! I liked the power of the main character and the cat! It was well written, the pace was good and I wanted to know what was going on with these characters. I did think the scene with her sister felt a tad rushed and a bit off how she reacted to it, but besides that I really enjoyed this story and it makes me curious about the rest of the series.
Unsweet by Ingrid Seymour – 3 stars
This one was okay. I thought the joke that was played on the main character wasn’t really funny, although she didn’t think so either. Somehow the whole scene felt a bit off and I thought it was a bit weird she used her powers for something like that if she didn’t want to use them. Her powers did seem interesting though, but there are hints she has been through some difficult times because of it. This one just didn’t catch my attention as much, but I did think the power of the main character was interesting.
Kingsman by Alisha Klapheke – 2 stars
Unfortunately this story didn’t quite work for me. I didn’t really care about the characters or got intrigued about going on. The main character didn’t seem too likeable, but that’s also because he was caught in a very difficult situation. He does something that probably ends up being bad in this book and while I get the dilemma between his loyalty and duty and what is right is probably going to be a main point of this story, I just couldn’t bring myself to quite care about it from this story alone. I also found the Scottish accent at the start a bit overdone and it felt a bit jarring.
Before the Magic by Lena Mae Hill – 2 stars
The title seems fitting as this story has no magic or fantasy aspect at all, but I figure that comes later. This one reads more like the first chapter or set-up for a book, but without a hint of what’s next I didn’t really felt any curiosity about the plot. It’s mostly just a very sad story about a 14 year old girl discovering her father is death and going through the motions afterwards. This series might be great after this, but I didn’t really care for this short story in and off itself.
Prince of Hawks by Sarah K. L. Wilson – 4 stars
I really liked this one. The magic the main character had was interesting and I liked how the author wrote this story. You get a bit of a feel for the world, that makes me curious to know more about it and these people. And the twist at the end was a nice touch.
Hag’s Hut on the Hill by D. L. Armillei – 3 stars
I think was a deleted scene, but it was still easy to follow along even without having read the book. I didn’t really understand the world, but from what I gathered there is the normal world and then another world. I also felt like I missed some info about the characters, but that makes sense as it’s a deleted scene. But at the same time it was a scene that was easy to follow on itself with the info we got here.
Doormaker: Devil’s Harvest by Jamie Thornton – 3 stars
This was a pretty original story. The whole concept of the doormakers was unique and interesting, I just wanted to know more about how it all worked as it could be a tad confusing at times. But then the main character of this story doesn’t quite know how it works either. While I liked the concept, the story was just okay. It’s about a kid who gets himself into some trouble and it just felt like this was going to end badly. He made some mistakes, but I did feel like he meant well as he was trying to help his family. The story didn’t fully grab me, but the concept of doormakers does have me curious.
Wrath of Witches by Hilary Thompson – 4 stars
This was a good one, it had some interesting character, some action and we got a glimpse of this world. It makes me curious about the world and I want to know more about. It was written nicely and I enjoyed the story. I also liked the characters and the whole story made me curious about this series.
I Want to be a Pirate by Erin Hayes – 4 stars
Having read almost all of the books in this series (I am currently reading the last book) it was awesome to see where it all started. It’s a short and sweet story and it has so much significance to this series. It was really fun to get Neptune’s story now, as he plays such a big role in this series. I liked how we got to know a bit more about his character and his interactions with this person he met and how it influences his live and also how he started Neptune’s world. Great addition to this series!
My opinion of the set as a whole– 4 stars
Overall I really enjoyed reading this anthology. It was fun to discover new to me authors and the two stories from authors I already knew were great. Many of the authors in this set I would happily read more of. I added some new books to my to-read list already, discovered I already owned some books by the authors in this set and signed-up for some newsletters. There were two stories that didn’t quite work for me and a few that were just okay, but also some that I really enjoyed and made me excited to read more by that author. I actually already started another short story by Melle Amade that I got from her website as I wanted to read more.
I had a lot of fun while reading this one and I like sets like these with short stories that introduce me to a bunch of new authors. I would definitely recommend this set, whether these authors are already familiar or not, I think these stories are great for all. And no mater what your preferences when it comes to fantasy, this book had a bit of everything, shifters, immortals, time travel, special gifts, travel between worlds and more. And while I prefer anthologies to box sets I have a feeling I probably will be buying Marked by Fate once it releases.