Friday, March 15, 2013

Review: First Visions by Heather Topham Wood (and Giveaway)

From Goodreads: Two years ago, 21-year-old Kate Edwards became deathly ill and slipped into a coma. While unconscious, she crept into the mind of a missing boy and awoke with the knowledge of his location. Friends and family were skeptical and wary of her new ability to see into the minds of others. Their fears prompted Kate to keep her psychic powers a secret. Feeling alienated, she dropped out of college and spent most of her days holed up at her mother’s home. Now another child has been abducted. Police detective Jared Corbett seeks out Kate for her help in solving the case. Reluctantly, Kate agrees and they must work together to bring 8-year-old Cori Preston home to her family. Although attracted to one another, Jared has a girlfriend with ties to the abduction case and Kate is sarcastic and guarded since her coma. With visions she can’t control and an uncontrollable attraction to the detective, she wonders if she can leave the past behind and finally stop hiding from the world. Otherwise, Cori may be lost forever.

My Rating: 3.5 hearts 

Thoughts on the Novel: For a self-published novel, Heather Topham Wood’s First Visions was a well-written mystery. The book, however, lost some stars when it came to the main character of Kate and the romance.

After contracting meningitis, Kate emerges out of a coma with a vision about an abduction case. Having seen her family’s and friends’ reactions to her newfound ability, Kate now pretends that she can no longer see visions of people’s past. Hiding her true self though has led to Kate becoming very defensive and being more or less a loner. When Jared shows up on her doorstep asking for assistance with his case, Kate initially continues the charade, but is eventually convinced by her mother to help.

Jared was a nice guy, and I thought he and Kate would have made good friends. But, the romantic tension between them felt very forced to me. I mean, how convenient that the first guy Kate started to fall for after becoming a psychic also happened to have an eccentric aunt who brought him up and therefore was very open to ideas like people being psychic. Of course he got bonus points for being attractive and a good listener.

Another reason I wasn’t a fan of the romance was because Kate just seemed so immature in comparison to Jared. For example, Kate crosses professional boundaries soon after meeting Jared by Googling his address and showing up at his apartment after a fight with her mom. Later in the book, she gets him to pick her up from a club and tries to seduce him while drunk.

Finally, I didn’t like the romance because I didn’t approve of Kate going after a guy that was already taken (even if he was sending some mixed signals). I think Wood tried her best to convince readers that Kate was the better option for Jared, but she unfortunately did so by depicting Nikki as a stereotypical mean girl.

The relationship I did like however was that of Kate and her mother. It was just so normal, and I liked how close they were with each other.

First Visions was released in April 2012 by CreateSpace. 

Comments About the Cover: It kind of screams “self-published” and doesn’t really relate to the story.

In exchange for an honest review, this book was received from the author for free via Xpresso Book Tours. 

First Visions can be bought from: [Amazon] [Barnes and Noble] [Book Depository]


  1. Thank you so much for reading and reviewing First Visions! I really appreciate it =)

  2. Hmmm. Kate does sound like a bit of a tricky character, and I don't at all love that Jared is with someone else when Kate goes after him, even if his girlfriend is a complete nightmare. Cheating is a hot button topic for me, I can't deal with it:) Still, sounds like this book definitely shows some promise!!!

  3. This premise sounds so fascinating! Glad you enjoyed it even though the romance didn't call to you. Thanks for being on the tour, doll! <3

  4. Great review. But if it falls down on the main character and the romance, then I don't feel it would be for me. Great review Z :)

  5. The current girlfriend is always the mean girl, isn't she? It happens far too often, and I'm honestly not a fan. Still, romance aside, I'm glad you enjoyed this! I haven't heard of it before, so thanks for putting it on my radar. Great review as always! :)

  6. Hmmm, yeah I don't think I could deal with that romance either. It doesn't sound swoon worthy in the slightest! And I know I would have a problem with Kate and her immaturity. Oh well, it's a bummer this one had a few issues, but I appreciate your honest and well written review anyways!

  7. Yeah, the romance in this book does sounds off. Who does that? (Google someone's address & then go to him after a fight) That's kind of messed up.

  8. Lately, convenient romances have become a pet peeve of mine. Somehow, the fact that the protagonists have no options for some reason, lessens the value of the romance and always ends up being disappointing to me.
    Otherwise, this sounds very lovely.
    Great review.


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