Fury Frayed

Of Fates and Furies Book 1

Young Adult - Fantasy - Urban
279 Pages
Reviewed on (not set)
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Stephen Fisher for Readers' Favorite

Fury Frayed by Melissa Haag is a wonderfully written urban fantasy for young adults that is suitable for any age group. Being the first book in a series, it really sets the tone for what is going be an awesome series. The story begins with Megan Smith getting into trouble at school for fighting. She is always getting into fights, she is always angry. When Megan arrives home, she finds that her mother has told her to pack once again, because they are moving. They get to their new destination, a run-down house with an overgrown yard in a small town in Maine. After they spend the first night there, Megan wakes up alone. She finds a note fromher mother, informing Megan that she is now on her own. The house is hers and she has been left with a hefty sum of money to survive on until she finds a way to earn her own money. She finds out that she has been enrolled in a special academy called Girderon, a school for mythical non-humans to learn how to blend into human society. While waiting to begin school, she meets a few of the main characters in the story, which include werewolves, a griffon, and a succubus that become her best friends. Megan has caught the eye of a certain werewolf named Fenris, who has his own pack of she-wolves. With Aubrey as the rival territorial queen bee, Megan has allies in Oanan the griffon, and Eliane the succubus, her best friends who have her back and can help with her anger issues.

Ms. Haag moves this story along at an amazing pace and it quickly becomes filled with murder mysteries, secrets, as well as fantastical creatures that have existed throughout time, bred out of legends and gods. This story, with its cast of characters, at once reminded me of a cross between Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief and the sci-fi channel series Lost Girl that introduces the idea of the Faery world co-existing with humans. Plenty of action, suspense, and even provocative love interests. The characters' personalities are just so well developed, especially Megan. She has a sarcastic sense of humor that is just irresistible, and will make you laugh out loud and often. When she is listed as a suspect for two bodies that were found in her presence, Megan wants answers, and decides to find out her lineage by sneaking into the school after hours. Fury Frayed delivers on all levels from page one, and all the way to the end. It is really hard to put down. All I can say is wow! I cannot wait for the next installment from Melissa Haag. Brava!

Liz Konkel

Fury Frayed by Melissa Haag is the first book in the Of Fates and Furies series. After Megan gets into another fight, she knows this means another move. This time her mom drags her off to a run-down house in Maine where she's expected to attend the prestigious Girderon Academy. Her mom disappearing in the night is the last thing Megan expects, but she's not surprised. Who wants to stay with a daughter that constantly fights? Her life gets even weirder when she meets a few of the locals. A charming boy takes an interest in her, despite the disapproval from his pack of followers. A mysterious stranger lands in her yard and soon takes upon the role of her protector. Soon she discovers she can't leave the town until she graduates, and her new school is filled with strange beings. She knows they made a mistake, because she doesn't belong here. Life starts looking up when she makes a new friend, that is until she finds a dead body in her yard and the local sheriff decides she's the killer. To prove her innocence, she'll have to discover her true origins and learn how to control her anger.

Megan has a strong voice, and though she has anger issues, she's also thoughtful and protective. Her friendship with Eliana is my favorite aspect of the story. It's sweet and genuine, as Megan has found someone that's a true grounding factor for her. They find a commonality in how they're each struggling with their identities and abilities, but they end up balancing each other out and empower each other. Eliana is a bit socially awkward and shy with a wallflower personality, which contrasts with her succubus origins. As Megan constantly struggles with her anger, Eliana struggles with certain aspects of being a succubus that she isn't okay with. Eliana chooses for herself who she wants to be, and this really resonates with the message of the story. Megan's journey is a personal one as she learns that she doesn't have to be defined by her anger; instead she can embrace it and choose who she wants to be. Melissa Haag explores growing up, taking these supernatural beings and showing them as teenagers struggling with identity, choices, bullying, and acceptance.

Romance is a light subplot throughout, blossoming from two very different friendships Megan forms. The reserved Oanen who is serious and protective has an otherworldly quality about him that makes him charming and easily likable. The flirty Fenris has a playful personality and quieter moments where it's easy to sympathize and connect with him. Both characters add a fun spark to the story as they integrate Megan into this new world, while also bringing out different sides to her personality. Fury Frayed blends a coming of age story with romance, supernatural beings, a hero's quest, and a murder mystery.

Caitlin Lyle Farley

In Fury Frayed: Of Fates and Furies Book 1 by Melissa Haag, Megan doesn’t have a hot temper; it’s more like an unstable volcano of rage. When she gets into yet another fight at school, her mom decides it’s time for them to move again. It is only Tuesday, after all. Megan reluctantly packs up her possessions and travels to Maine with her mom. The new town doesn’t even have a horse and Megan’s new home is one hearty sneeze away from becoming rubble, but at least she can study from home through Girderon, an exclusive school for beings like her. Megan isn’t human, something her mother has neglected to tell her, but what Megan is exactly is something she’ll have to discover on her own.

Megan is outspoken, caustic, and prone to violence. These personality traits could’ve made her annoying, but instead she is a thoroughly entertaining character. The romance that develops between Megan and one of the shifter boys hits just the right spot between sexy and sweet. Thankfully, Melissa Haag eschews the overbearing, abusive behaviour too many authors try to pass off as romance where shifters are concerned. I loved the idea of a town entirely for supernatural beings, as well as there being a school where they learn to blend in with humans. The students of the Girderon school are a feast for the imagination. Megan’s abilities and her true nature are both well-conceived and original. Fury Frayed is a light, entertaining read and I’m eager to see how the story develops in the next book of this series.