Among The Muses's Reviews > Chosen by Fate

Chosen by Fate by Virna DePaul
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Rated 4.5 on the blog.

Virna DePaul delivers another fabulous story complete with intricate plot line, unique and dynamic characters, and action with an air of suspense that keeps you highly engaged!

The Para-Ops team is composed of six primary team members -- and one director, pulled together for their talents. In book one, the spotlight fell on a human hostage negotiator and a dharmire, half-human, half-vampire clan leader. In book two, the spotlight shifts to concentrate on the relationship between the sexy, human shaman, Caleb O'Flare and Wraith, a wraith -- meaning she is technically dead.

Working as part of the team meant to help bring the Otherborn (weres, vamps, shapshifters, mages, wraiths) and humans to a civil understanding, team members, Caleb and Wraith, soon find a deep connection and attraction with one another. It started in book one, and comes to a head in book two, as Wraith finds herself a target of an attack, is battling against the increasing ticking of the clock on her inevitable -- and very final -- death, all while the team works to find the person(s) behind attacks on the females of the feline race, which could ultimately destroy all the good the government sanctioned Para-Ops team has worked so hard to create so far.

I am always amazed by the very intricate, complex, yet very easy to follow, plot -- and sub plot -- lines that Virna delivers. Obviously carefully thought out and articulated, Virna knows how to keep the reader highly engaged from start to finish! Complete with twists-and-turns and an air of suspense and mystery, I was always guessing what was going to happen next -- and was usually wrong to an extent. :) To add to the suspense, the book ends with a little cliffy that has me wanting the next book, Chosen by Sin, now!!

The characters -- where do I even begin? In Chosen by Fate, heroine Wraith becomes the character that really jumps off the page, additionally pulling sympathy -- and tears -- from the reader. Virna has given the wraith race an unique combination of paranormal aspects: on top of physically looking different (white hair, cloudy eyes), wraith's also feel pain anytime another person touches their skin, and have no past nor future. They don't remember who they were before their "death" and die their final death between the transitioning tenth and eleventh years.

Wraith, herself, is one heroine that struggles with not knowing who she was prior to becoming a wraith, and as she nears her final end, becomes obsessed with finding out. There's only one thing that can keep her mind in the present and long for something she desperately wants: Caleb. Yet, what makes Wraith herself, has also made her feel as though she's unworthy of any love and affection, which keeps her running from Caleb as well as the Para-Ops team. Only when she allows herself the passionate touch and kiss of Caleb does Wraith start to wonder if fighting to live might be worth it.

With that being said, I should also point out that Virna does a fabulous job at pulling real world issues into her stories and characters, which makes her urban fantasy settings and paranormal creatures seem more tangible. From higher powers, government sanctions, prejudice, judgment, to other external conflicts and personal internal conflicts, you definitely get a feel for a sense of reality in a fictional creation.

While readers can technically start in on the series with Chosen by Fate and not feel lost, I highly recommend that you start with Chosen by Blood to get a very solid feeling of the characters and what/why the Para-Ops mission started. However, no matter where you start, I'm sure you will enjoy the each of the books just as much as I have!

Chosen by Fate immediately pulled me in and made it very hard to momentarily set the book down. It's gripping with its life-like conflicts, highly engaging with its action and suspense, and is anything but flat with its dynamic and dimensional characters.

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