Love Fortunes and Other Disasters - Kimberly Karalius

This book reads like a chick-flick—delightful and enjoyable, but it doesn’t have too much substance. It made me very happy to read, but the only thoughts I went away with were of self-fulfilling prophecies and how we create our own futures.

 

In this semi-fantastical world, love charms actually work and Zita’s prophecies, available for residents of Grimbaud annually, predict the future. Fallon is stuck with a prophecy that condemns her to a life without love. This book centres on her dealing with this prophecy and on the group of students who begins researching other love charms to try and figure out if there’s a way out of their futures.

 

Grimbaud as a setting could be better expanded. It’s very intangible, as we have no idea what continent it’s on or time period it’s in. I’d like to know a little more about if this is a futuristic Earth or if this is just a country in an alternate world. The magic realism is unusual and sometimes hard to follow as there’s very little magic and I almost expect more to make it believable. A lot of people have strange names. While we’re able to suspend disbelief for the magic love charms and such, one aspect that’s not entirely believable is that parents are okay with their kids living in seemingly unsupervised dorms at the age of fifteen. This seems like more of a college environment.

 

Fallon seems very mature for her age, but she’s a very relatable character. Most people can relate to the idea of having no hope for love. Her determination makes her likable. She and Bastion have an interesting relationship that I was excited to see play out. At points, this book is very cinematic in an effective way. We see characters realise something and make a decision to go somewhere. This keeps suspense high.

 

In general, this book is fun and easy to read and flows quickly. The plot holds its own and is intriguing throughout.