Thursday, January 16, 2014

REVIEW: EXISTENCE (Existence, #1) by Abbi Glines

Title: Existence
Series: Existence, #1
Author: Abbi Glines
Publisher: Wild Child Publishing
Publication Date: December 13, 2011
Genres: YA, Paranormal Romance
Reviewed by: Angie Edwards
My rating: 3/5


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.



I’m seriously in two minds about this book. I enjoyed the story and finished it in one sitting, but I had several unexpected issues with it. This is the first Abbi Glines book I’ve read, and though I didn’t have any expectations going into it, I still wanted to be wowed by it. Everywhere I turn I see positive reviews of her many books, and thus I had a sliver of hope that it would, at the very least, be a surprisingly different read that would leave me eagerly anticipating reading any of her other books I already have in my possession.

Even though there was no instant love between Pagan and Leif, or Pagan and Dank, the romance developed lightning fast. I didn’t have an issue with that, but I felt the love-triangle wasn’t fresh or unique, and to be quite honest, I felt it was unnecessary. Pagan knew the entire time she wasn’t in love with Leif, but still she kept him on a leash while pining away for Dank. And speaking of which, what sort of a name is Dank? The synonyms for “dank” are: damp, chilly, moist, clammy, humid, soggy, wet. I have to admit it was hard for me to like a character whose name is the description of an “off” smell. I appreciate original character names as much as the next person, and if it was the name of a character with stringy hair, dirty nails, and smelly breath, it would’ve worked perfectly. But I just can’t imagine cries of passion in the heat of the moment going: “Dank, oh Dank, oooooohhhhh Daaaaaaannnkk!” Hear what I’m sayin’?

Anyway, the only character I really liked was Leif. It was easy to connect with him because he represented everything you’d want to see in the man of your dreams. Apart from his physical appearance and the fact that he’s – predictably - a jock, he’s considerate and extremely patient. I mean EXTREMELY patient because I can’t imagine another teenage boy putting up with his girlfriend’s mood swings while she’s pining away for another guy (even though Leif wasn’t aware that this is the reason for Pagan’s mood swings). So yeah, I liked Leif because I mainly felt sorry for him. Also, Pagan misses so much school it would be a miracle if she moves on to the next grade. Anything that happens at school which upsets her in the slightest, she runs home.

Pagan is one of those extremely annoyingly one-track-minded angst-filled characters. Her every thought is consumed by how much she needs, wants, or misses Dank. I knew this is a paranormal romance and all that, but it just felt like the second book in the Twilight series all over again where Bella pines away for Edward who left her high and dry. If that book irritated you with Bella’s dramatics and moping, then Existence will test the limits of your patience for sure. Where in your life have you heard of a teenager ending up in a mental institution because she can’t deal with her boyfriend leaving her? I guess it could happen; I’ve just never heard of it. Also, all the characters were kind of meh. None of them, except Leif and Gee, had me caring about them one bit.

My overall opinion is that this is an okay read if you don’t have anything better on your bookshelf or e-reader. Glines is a gifted writer, but I don’t think this is her best work. No, I haven’t read any of her other novels yet, but I have two more of her books on my reading list which I want to read, even though I’ve been disappointed by Existence. The storyline isn’t anything new and if I had to choose between recommending this book and recommending a book with a similar plot, I’d rather suggest The Collector by Victoria Scott which is a phenomenal five-star read through and through. I didn’t enjoy Existence as much as I hoped I would, but I am without a doubt going to read more books by Abbi Glines.


Existence by Abbi Glines has over 2200 reviews on Goodreads. Read it here.



Since publishing her first novel Breathe in May of 2011, Abbi has also released The New York Times bestselling Seabreeze Series which includes Breathe, Because of Low, While It Lasts, Just For Now and Sometimes It Last, The Existence Trilogy that includes the USA Today Bestseller Ceaseless. New York Times and USA TODAY bestsellers The Vincent Boys and The Vincent Brothers. Last but not least her most popular series to date, Rosemary Beach which includes The New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestsellers Fallen Too Far, Never Too Far, Forever Too Far, Twisted Perfection and Simple Perfection. Her newest book scheduled to be released on December 17th, 2013 is Misbehaving (Seabreeze).

When Abbi isn’t locked away in her office typing away she is hauling her kids to and from their many social activities. You could say her second job is the Glines Kids personal chauffeur. It’s a rather illustrious job.

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