Ревю: The Fortune Teller by Gwendolyn Womack

It’s fast-paced enough to hold your interest but ultimately it’s pointless. The multiple stories spanning some 200 years make it hard to follow the main plot and eat up the space of the supposedly major characters, so you never get to properly know them, and when one of them died, I couldn’t care less. It was just a name to me. And that’s bad because clearly that death was supposed to elicit a strong emotional reaction.

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The historical parts are half-baked. Famous historical figures like Cleopatra, Caesar, Ghiberti, Rasputin pop up pointlessly along to way, just so they can be there. They’re not a part of the fabric of the story, they’re celebrity cameos.

There’s a lot of telling and scarce showing. The cards are constantly mentioned as being powerful, then Semele or her ancestors touch them, they feel their power, etc., but they never actually do anything. At any point. All the Seeing is done through concentration or in dreams. The cards are basically useless.

The writing felt amateurish to me, like an ambitious high schooler trying to get into the big writing game. The plot twists lacked power because, as I mentioned, there’s not enough time to get to know and therefore care about the characters.

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