BOOK REVIEW: Fable (Fable #1) by Adrienne Young

BOOK REVIEW: Fable (Fable #1) by Adrienne YoungFable (Fable #1)
by Adrienne Young
Purchase on: Amazon
Add to: Goodreads


As the daughter of the most powerful trader in the Narrows, the sea is the only home seventeen-year-old Fable has ever known. It’s been four years since the night she watched her mother drown during an unforgiving storm. The next day her father abandoned her on a legendary island filled with thieves and little food. To survive she must keep to herself, learn to trust no one and rely on the unique skills her mother taught her. The only thing that keeps her going is the goal of getting off the island, finding her father and demanding her rightful place beside him and his crew. To do so Fable enlists the help of a young trader named West to get her off the island and across the Narrows to her father.

But her father’s rivalries and the dangers of his trading enterprise have only multiplied since she last saw him and Fable soon finds that West isn't who he seems. Together, they will have to survive more than the treacherous storms that haunt the Narrows if they're going to stay alive.

Welcome to a world made dangerous by the sea and by those who wish to profit from it. Where a young girl must find her place and her family while trying to survive in a world built for men.


Never, under any circumstances, reveal who or what matters to you.

In the land of ever-changing Young Adult Fantasy, the newest (as far as I know) trend is Pirates and the like. Anything to do with the sea, really-and I can’t believe how deeply it resonates with me. This is only the third or fourth story set at sea (exclusively) that I’ve read, but it easily catapulted to the top of the pile with grace.

I don’t need much to make me happy-a tortured-or loyal (or both)-hero, a feisty or fierce or witty heroine, and a fantasy that takes me away. That has a deeply rooted foundation capable of carrying a story even when things are slow, or only day to day fillers. They don’t need to be action packed from beginning to end. And, as a seasoned reader and reviewer, I’ve learned I don’t even like that. Back when I was a little less sure of what worked for me, I always thought that action meant good and the more there was, surely the better the book would be.

This crew had already been in trouble when I stepped onto their ship, but I couldn’t help but wonder if I was going to be the storm that finally sank them.

After countless series crashing and burning (in my humble opinion) because of this exact reason, I learned that action does not equal plot, and action does not equal a story that resonates deeply in your soul-it can’t possibly reside there, because what really was there to grasp onto? What did the characters say or do that stuck with you? The answer is convoluted and a whole lot of nothing. But, with master storytellers such as Young? There’s something special there that can’t be won with flash and flare-it’s won with quiet, fierce storytelling and a few perilous battles here and there. THAT is how a good fantasy is told, and it’s how it becomes a permanent resident in my heart.

I was standing in the breezeway with my heart in my throat, trying to figure out how to say goodbye, and West couldn’t wait to be rid of me.

Character driven stories are really the bread and butter of my all-time favorite books in my most recent, wiser years, and this story-while there was plenty of action for my taste-is no exception. Fable is an AMAZING heroine, one that I rarely see anymore. I don’t get to read like I used to, but I still know a good heroine when I see one. I have always been about the book boys, but I have a soft spot in my heart when a fierce female comes along and steals the show.

Fable is made of tougher skin having been raised under the Narrows trade leader, Saint, and after being left on an unforgivable island where she had to fight for her life every single day, she’s not one to be messed with. One goal in mind, she dredged day after day, morning to night, to make coin when the Marigold came every couple weeks looking for what only she could deliver. She’d trade what she had dredged, and she was finally close enough to get off the life-threatening island she was left on four years prior…until she attracted the attention of every other dredger trying to find the same HEA fate as she, and instead it became about fighting for her life not silently and intently as before, but kicking and screaming, striking a deal with the only trader she could halfway trust-West.

Which…this brings me to the crux of everything, doesn’t it? West was a beyond amazing character, for me. I love when the heroes (and the heroines) are morally gray and you can’t quite pinpoint who they are, what their intentions may be, and how they want the pieces to fall. West was just that. He is a perfect example of the heroes I continually fall hard for, because he keeps his emotions close to his chest-He doesn’t betray what he’s really thinking. But, his actions continually speak louder than his words (or lack thereof) and he is always waiting in the wings, rushing to help Fable even when he can’t trust her.

And though West had said again and again that he didn’t do favors and that he didn’t take chances, he’d done both. Over and over.
For me.

This was the slowest of slow burn romances and it was EVERYTHING I hoped it would be. I don’t need book long, flashy romances. I need that build, that something to look forward to-the hoping, the praying, the what-if of how it will-or won’t-happen. And, ultimately, I love waiting for that horrible end we just know is coming. I’m sorry, but it gets my perilistic, masochistic heart pumping and my blood buzzing. It simmers under my skin just WAITING to see what obstacles the hero and heroine will face and…I’m done sounding [exactly like who I am] psycho.

Fable honestly took me by surprise. I knew I wanted to read it; I was excited about it. But, it wasn’t until I started the book that I felt my soul leave my body and my heart begin pounding, butterflies erupt in my stomach, and a giddiness erupt that is unparalleled since having my little boy. It was an escape, a world to look forward to after a long day with two small children, a sickness that just now seems to be finally going away, and a reprieve from my ‘I must always be on’ duties. I haven’t felt like that in over a year. For that, I will always have a soft spot in my heart for Fable.

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  1. Meg

    You had me at girl pirates! Character-driven YA is always solid.
    Meg recently posted…The Four WindsMy Profile

  2. Theresa Hernandez

    Ooooo, I NEED this!
    Theresa Hernandez recently posted…Blog Tour – Excerpt – WHEN THE EARL MET HIS MATCH (Wedded by Scandal Series) by Stacy ReidMy Profile

  3. Lex

    Based on past experience, any book that you’ve rated as 5 stars has always been reliably great. So although I’ve been on the fence about reading Fable, your review changed my mind. 🙂
    Lex recently posted…Dublin Murders, Season 1 (2019): Should you watch?My Profile

  4. Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

    You have convinced me that I need to read this one!
    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction recently posted…September 2020 Wrap-Up & Best of the BunchMy Profile

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