Defying Destiny

Alexa Chronicles Book 1

Fiction - Suspense
326 Pages
Reviewed on 04/24/2021
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Susan Sewell for Readers' Favorite

A businesswoman's life takes a whole new direction when she accepts a job at a genetics corporation in the chilling science-fiction thriller, Defying Destiny (Alexa Chronicles: Book 1) by K.A. Liddiard. Ashleigh Daniels is turning fifty, and after a lifetime of building her career, she realizes she has no family and no friends; she is alone. So, when Ashleigh meets Rick Malvern, an acquisitions agent for GenTech BioPharma Research, Inc., a large genetics corporation, she is ready for a change. However, as exciting as Rick makes working for GenTech sound, being employed by them comes with a hitch. Ashleigh has to abandon her previous life. In addition, an ironclad contract binds her to the corporation for twelve years with no recourse. After considering the pros and cons, Ashleigh decides the prospects are too lucrative to pass up and signs on the dotted line. But has Ashleigh missed something, and the offer is not as it seems? Is there a sinister motive lurking behind Rick's proposal?

Infused with mystery and suspense, the science-fiction novel Defying Destiny (Alexa Chronicles: Book 1) by K.A. Liddiard captures the imagination from page one. The action-packed scenes, intense atmosphere, incredible settings, and intriguing characters create a tense and compelling story. The flaws in Ashleigh's, Rick's, and Mitch's personalities give their characters an authentic aspect, making it easy to sympathize and identify with them. With a few unexpected twists and a lot of conflict, the storyline moves at an even pace, keeping the story's tension and apprehension alive. Stopping on a cliffhanger, it is a sensational beginning for a thrilling new series. Everyone who relishes the combination of suspense and mystery with romantic interludes will not want to miss it!

K.C. Finn

Defying Destiny is a work of fiction in the suspense, thriller, and science fiction sub-genres, and was penned by author K. A. Liddiard. The work is intended for the general adult reading audience, and it forms the first novel of the Alexa Chronicles. Our protagonist is the titular Alexa Dartmoor, a fifty-year-old career woman still filled with ambition, who decides to turn the clock back and have another shot at life with a brand new body and identity to boot. But the price for such a restart is high indeed, and Alexa finds herself working for the dangerous GenTech bio-science company. So begins a life of tough decisions and deep, thought-provoking questions about when science goes too far.

Author K. A. Liddiard has crafted a conceptual and exciting work of science fiction with plenty of adventure, suspense, and thrills to offer its readers. I felt that the work raised such interesting questions about the intervention of science into biology, the preservation of life and youth, and the moral cost of such things. This is all summarized beautifully in Alexa’s personal journey, which is told with realistic layers of conflict and emotion. The science fiction plot gets a little woolly here and there, but the internal logic is revealed more and more as you read on, and the work certainly leaves open questions for the rest of the series, which is an exciting prospect indeed. Overall, I would highly recommend Defying Destiny to fans of realistic heroines, clever science fiction, and for readers of conceptual dystopian fiction everywhere.

Vincent Dublado

Defying Destiny by K.A. Liddiard is a science fiction suspense novel with a slow burn. In this first book in the Alexa Chronicles Series, we get acquainted with Alexa Kate Dartmoor, a career woman in her fifties who was given the opportunity to defy aging. After a long period of stasis, she inhabits a younger body and a new identity and must re-learn things both physical and mental for her brain and body to function properly—and for her to stay safe. As she works for GenTech, a secretive biotech company that has the power and technology to reset the human biological clock, things can get pretty messy especially when employees show symptoms of divergence from the company’s core vision. GenTech prides itself on being an ethical company, yet Alexa becomes torn as she untangles concealed motives and questions her new identity.

Defying Destiny feels fresh with a plot in the cross-genre of science fiction and suspense that you rarely get to read. In a world where many of us are obsessed with staying young, Liddiard makes it look reassuring, but beneath its thin veil is a pact with the devil. The story becomes unsettling as it progresses, but at the same time, it is not afraid to share an opinion on corporate lies. K.A. Liddiard’s novel essentially has that Faustian feel to it, where the protagonist achieves a wish but with consequences in the process. Similarly, it deals with alienation, particularly in a place where you feel you do not belong because you do not conform to the norms. Liddiard brilliantly amplifies the idea with suspense. As it does not address all the mysteries in one go, this series must be read in its entirety. The prequel, Before Alexa, is a good place to start.

Jose Cornelio

Defying Destiny is the first entry in the Alexa Chronicles by K.A. Liddiard, an engrossing story that had me turning the pages nonstop. Technology offers a fifty-year-old, lonely woman, Alexa Dartmoor, a second chance at youth and at life. A perfect young body and a new identity are the reset that anyone wants, but is she aware of the cost? Now she must work for GenTech, a company that is in competition to take the lead in high-tech bio-science. As she navigates through the male-dominated world of her work, she begins to understand that not everything is what it seems. She feels betrayed by the very man she trusted. A moment comes to make a choice. Will she embrace her deepest values and the truth, or accept her new identity and watch GenTech’s nefarious plans unfold in silence?

It is a wonderful read, a story with fully drawn characters. Defying Destiny is suspenseful and thought-provoking, exploring strong scientific and ethical themes. The reader is forced to wonder and ask: Are there any boundaries to how far we can go to reinvent the world? The writing is crisp, the descriptions gorgeous, and the characters multifaceted. Apart from Alexa, characters like Rick Malvern, Mitch Donnelly, and Ashleigh Daniels are spectacularly written. Beneath their calm and seductive exteriors are monsters that are merciless. This SF thriller is packed with action, a tale that is pulse-pounding and so intelligently written that it becomes impossible to put down. I love stories with bold themes that explore complex issues. K.A. Liddiard delivers that and introduces characters that are not just likable but real. The realism is delivered effortlessly and it is interesting to follow Alexa as she grapples with ethical questions while navigating a dangerous world filled with slippery paths.

Rabia Tanveer

Defying Destiny is the first novel in the Alexa Chronicles by K.A. Liddiard. What price are you willing to pay to reverse your age and become young again? Alexa Dartmoor was a 50-year-old woman who was alone and unsatisfied with her life. So, when she was given the opportunity by GenTech to reverse her biological clock, she took it with both hands. She woke up two years later with a young body. However, she has no idea what she had embroiled herself in. Dangerous men had dangerous plans for her, and if she wanted to live, she had no other choice but to agree to whatever they said. They changed her identity and wanted to make her a pawn in the sick twisted games of the CEO. Was Alexa going to give in? Would she do what they expected her to do? Or was she going to fight back before they could do more damage?

Alexa’s life was hard, and K.A. Liddiard portrayed that beautifully in the story. The man she trusted and loved above everyone else turned out to be worse than her worst nightmare, and she was stuck in a situation where she could not find an end. However, her character was smart, and the author provided her with the tools to uncover the truth slowly but surely. The pace was perfect to make the story interesting. The narrative was strong and created opportunities for Alexa to grow and uncover the mystery behind GenTech and Rick. The story had the right balance of mystery, romance, and thrills. This mix of different genres worked in tandem with the author's style of writing. There was drama, there was suspense, and in the center of it all was Alexa. She was far more intelligent and capable than she gave herself credit for. Alexa is a protagonist to watch. I loved this book. It is an action-packed start to a new series that I am sure will be great.