Always forever maybe book cover

Predestined (Existence Trilogy #2) by Abbi Glines

Predestined (Existence Trilogy #2) by Abbi GlinesPredestined (Existence Trilogy, #2) by Abbi Glines
on March 29, 2012
Pages: 213
Goodreads
three-half-stars

You would think after helping save her boyfriend from an eternity in Hell that things would go back to normal. Well, as normal as life can be when you can see souls and your boyfriend is Death. But for Pagan Moore, things are just getting weirder. 

The high school quarterback and reigning heartthrob, Leif Montgomery, is missing. While the town is in a frenzy of worry, Pagan is a nervous wreck for other reasons. Apparently good ‘ol Leif isn’t your average teenage boy. He isn’t even human. According to Death, Leif doesn’t have a soul. The quarterback may have skipped town but he’s still showing up in Pagan’s dreams... uninvited. 

Dank has known from the beginning Leif wasn’t human. But he hadn’t worried about a simple soulless creature. Now, he realizes he made a grave mistake. Pagan’s soul has been marked since birth as a restitution, to a spirit so dark not even Death walks near it. Dank knows saving Pagan’s soul won’t be easy but Pagan is his. And he’s already proven he’ll defy Heaven to keep her. If Hell wants a piece of him too, then bring it on.

Predestined is the second book in the Existence Trilogy. Throughout book one I had grown so in-love with the characters and the story. I could barely wait two days after reading Existence before I bought Predestined. I gave book one a raving review rating it with 4.5/5 kitties. Although I loved the new surprises and turn of events that took place in Predestined, I finished it, pretty disappointed. I firmly believe that a good story is supported and sustained by its assembly of characters. In Predestined I saw a new side to one my favorite characters and it turned me off, completely. I literally cringed while reading because the way they acted and everything they said unappealed to me in a big way. In the end I was left with a lot of mixed feelings. The character that I’m referring to plays a very important part and I’m slightly worried about how the next book will go. However, I definitely will be getting book three. Even though there was a part of Predestined I didn’t like, there was many that I did.

Predestined picks up a few weeks after Existence ended. Pagan’s life for the most part, has gotten back to normal. Well, kinda. Although she’s now officially together with Dank, as you can imagine, having a relationship with Death is pretty difficult. A job that requires around-the-clock soul collecting, and Pagan’s own pesky little soul that always tries to release when she and Dank are “in the moment” kind of inhibit the two from having any type of normal-like teenage relationship. Plus, Leif, Pagan’s now ex-boyfriend has been missing ever since Dank revealed a big secret about him at the end of book one. Pagan has constantly been dreaming about semi-forgotten past memories which all feature a cute little boy who always seems to rescue Pagan whether it be physically and emotionally.

There were a lot of great character developments in Predestined. I feel like the friendships really involved into something special. Although Pagan, Miranda, and Wyatt have been friends for so many years, you really see how close they are in book two. Some of the past memories Pagan recollects have do with younger versions of herself, Wyatt and Miranda. It was great to look back on how their friendship and see how it evolved. Plus! Younger-Pagan was so cute! She was a little tom-boy with “girls can do anything that boys can do” attitude. She was so feisty. I loved it. Another great character was, Gee. Her first appearance in book one unsettled me a bit. It was very “girl-interrupted” (inside joke). Although she wasn’t featured too long in book one, she really got a chance to shine in book two. She and Pagan became quick friends. Besides the fact that she is very protective of Pagan, Gee is also extremely funny. She’s edgy, sarcastic, and completely lovable.

Okay now it’s time to talk about Dank. Dank is the character I alluded to in the beginning. It may be a slight-overreaction but I am completely and 100% team anti-Dank as of right now. I’ve said it many times before, I’m a complete sucker for the dark and brooding-types so of course I was immediately drawn to Dank. He fits my preference profile 110%. In Predestined the reading experience was different. This time around the narration swapped between Pagan and Dank. We got to follow the story through both POVs. From a story stand point it made a lot of sense to divide the narration like this because for a while Dank knew what was happening before Pagan did. I realize that nobody is perfect and it’s these imperfections, how they grow, where they came from, and so forth that make a person interesting, especially a literary character. However, I did not enjoy learning more about Dank. I found him to be extremely possessive and aggressive and not in a sexy or lovable way. The more I read Dank’s thoughts, the more I clenched my teeth. For example, Pagan is a pretty shy and moderate girl. She’s not the type to go out wearing mini-skirts and low-hung tanks. She’s not the type to showoff a lot of cleavage or other areas of skin so the fact that Dank thought that she was flaunting herself in a pair of jeans and boots, was insane. Whenever she would merely talk to a boy he’d growl. If he was werewolf instead Death I’d be okay with it (ha ha) but otherwise I just thought it was ridiculous. Time and again he even said to himself that he was super-possessive and it just drove me even crazier. A big aspect of Predestined was Pagan and her feelings of being controlled and owned by Leif. HELLO. That’s exactly what Dank does. I felt like there was a lot of hypocrisy going around. I’m big on free-will and self-choice and it drove me nuts seeing Pagan and Dank together. Okay. Time to stop ranting…

All and all I did love Predestined because it was a great sequel. It had a lot of back story, great characters, mystery, and adventure. Because of these aspects, I’m thoroughly looking forward to book three. However, I can’t wipe out the teeth-clenching impressions and memories of Dank. He’s one of those characters that I fell in love with quickly and dumped even quicker.

 

three-half-stars
Always forever maybe book cover

Existence (Existence Trilogy #1) by Abbi Glines

Existence (Existence Trilogy #1) by Abbi GlinesExistence (Existence Trilogy, #1) by Abbi Glines
Published by WIld Child Publishing on December 13, 2011
Pages: 161
Goodreads
five-stars

What happens when you're stalked by Death? You fall in love with him, of course.

Pagan Moore doesn't cheat Death, but instead, falls in love with him.

Seventeen year old Pagan Moore has seen souls her entire life. Once she realized the strangers she often saw walking through walls were not visible to anyone else, she started ignoring them. If she didn't let them know she could see them, then they left her alone. Until she stepped out of her car the first day of school and saw an incredibly sexy guy lounging on a picnic table, watching her with an amused smirk on his face. Problem is, she knows he's dead.

Not only does he not go away when she ignores him, but he does something none of the others have ever done. He speaks. Pagan is fascinated by the soul. What she doesn't realize is that her appointed time to die is drawing near and the wickedly beautiful soul she is falling in love with is not a soul at all.

He is Death and he's about to break all the rules.

WARNING: There are slight spoilers in this review but I promise what I say is but the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Existence.

Why did I choose to read Existence? What can I say… I’m a sucker for the dark, sexy, potentially dangerous, and tortured-souls type. Those boys are my kryptonite. I just love it when a strong girl comes in and starts to peel away their hard, outer shell, letting the deep-down vulnerable side peek out.

Existence’s summary had all my favorite elements. Suffering hotty? Check. Sizzling romance? Check. Supernatural element that’s sure to cause some roadblocks? Check. Check. Check! To be honest, I had actually had Existence on my Nook for a couple weeks before I got around to reading it. The book sounded awesome and I loved the cover, but something prevented me from diving right in. I had high hopes for it and I guess I was just worried I’d be let down because a few books I’d previously read were a little lack-luster. However, I’m so glad that I finally sat down and started it. I read Existence in one sitting. I just couldn’t put it down!

Pagan Moore is just like your average teenage girl. Well. Not exactly. Since she was a little girl she’s been able to see these beings she refers to as souls. Whether she’s walking down the school hallway, driving through town, or chilling in her bedroom, on occasion, these souls come and go. Although she’s tried profusely, none of these wandering spirits seem capable of interacting with her. But besides this supernatural quirk–like I said, she’s pretty average. She lives with her mom, a stay-at-home writer. She spends a lot of time with Miranda, the super-bubbly, always eager to point out a hotty, best friend, as well as Wyatt, her other best friend and Miranda’s kinda ex-boyfriend (there’s unresolved feelings).

Leif, a fellow classmate and football-god is one boy Pagan hasn’t thought too much about. Although practically every girl in school, including Miranda, would practically die at the chance Leif would give them the time of day, Pagan seems to be immune. She finds Leif to be the typical, big-man on campus: super-popular, gorgeous, gifted, and shallow. However, when Leif approaches Pagan for tutor help, she’s absolutely baffled. She thinks it’s ridiculous that the school’s golden-boy is asking for any help, let alone hers, when he claims to be having trouble in public speaking. While spending time with Leif, Pagan discovers that the age-old “don’t judge a book by its cover” rule is true when she witnesses a different side of Leif. This usual premise could pretty much fill out the rest of the book, but it takes a backseat when Pagan meets the first wandering soul that actually speaks to her. The soul, a gorgeous, snarky, and in my-opinion wise, being, lights a fuse which leads Pagan down an explosive road of discovery. He’s dark, mysterious, and full of secrets, and Pagan is absolutely enthralled. However, when things heat up with Leif, Pagan struggles with choosing the easy or potentially-dangerous route, when it comes to her heart.

I loved Existence. The writing flowed well with interesting and engaging dialogue. I found all the characters were very likable and real. Like Pagan I was drawn to the mysterious soul, as well as captivated by the cute and misunderstood football player. Miranda although boy-crazy and bubbly was a great friend who always had Pagan’s back. Another aspect of Existence that I truly loved was the multiple plot twists. Although early on you sense a love-triangle, the events that took place throughout the novel were completely surprising and slightly chilling.

five-stars