Author: Panos Nomikos
Genre: Suspense / Thriller
My Copy: Review Copy via Author
Add to: Goodreads
Synopsis: Fateful Eyes is a story about a life spent searching for love, accomplishments, and true fulfillment, within the world upheavals that, unfortunately, characterize the beginning of the new millennium. In his own life, Panos Nomikos (the author) has traveled in many continents, has been acquainted with many different people from different cultures, and he has also humbly attempted to comprehend the dizzying pace of events that are unfolding in such a frenetic tempo around us.
Panos aspires to share those experiences by narrating the story of “Peter”, a cosmopolitan who is traveling around the world at several exotic places, trying to solve a great puzzle, trying to locate a mysterious lady who came from his distant, youthful, and lustful past, and upset his life and his relationship with his affectionate lover. All the while, she is trying to fend-off by the threat posed by that mysterious rival in his heart.
Yet, the puzzle itself is not the essence of this novel. The puzzle is only a “pretext” to justify the exposure of Peter’s tortuous and twisted path in life, as well as to narrate the lives of everyone around him, as they all become unwittingly entangled into the rolling thunder of the world’s current upheavals, terrorism, wars, and economic crises. Like a modern Odyssey, the real essence of this novel is Peter’s long and tormenting journey towards his destination, towards the completion of his mission. Notwithstanding the mystery, the problems, and the upheavals, this story also celebrates love, affection, optimism, and the enthralling beauty of marvelous life.
Panos Nomikos’s Fateful Eyes is about self discovery. Peter is going about his normal business and out of the blue receives a mysterious message. Someone wants to meet with him and he has no idea why. Through a series of flashbacks between 2005 and 2001, we learn Peter is looking for a woman who claims to be his daughter. As he attempts to uncover her identity, Peter goes through his own personal journey to find his place in the world. He’s experienced success, but he’s also had a series of setbacks. When someone claims to be his daughter, questions are raised if it could be true or if it’s someone trying to blackmail him. Unfortunately, Peter doesn’t believe the young lady and by the time he comes to grip with his reality, she disappears. Will Peter be able to find her and unravel the mystery or will he find out it was all a ruse?
I liked Nomiko’s Fateful Eyes. As far as characterization, we get to know Peter very well. After all, this is his story and it’s no surprise that Nomikos focuses primarily on Peter’s career as well as his life in Greece. Leila is the big mystery because I don’t feel like we know entirely who she is. Several characters question her motives and I feel that she’s a questionable character. Then there’s the mysterious daughter. Is she who she claims to be or is this a scheme to fleece Peter? Plot development is good; however, at times I felt the amount of back story given to Peter’s past and his career was overwhelming. By the time we got to the central part of the story and Peter’s journey, I lost interest, but it quickly picked up once again during Peter’s search. The suspense leading up to Peter questioning key characters as to who the mother of his daughter could be was well done. There are more questions than answers and even though Peter discounts 3 out of the 4 women, I kept wondering why he discounted Helen quickly and when he kept focusing on Marina I wanted to shake him. I keep insisting Helen is the answer to this mystery, but alas I could be wrong.
The writing is good, but as I’ve stated I felt overwhelmed at times. I understand the reason why Nomikos gives us so much history, but at the same time I felt I could have done without a few scenes. Nomikos does a great job with rich descriptions. His account of 9/11 and a character’s narrow escape, made me feel as if I were there. Peter’s time in Greece was lovely to read and I could picture myself walking alongside Peter. Every time his heart would break because Sofia or Helen didn’t return his feelings, I could feel his heartache and his desperation. A reviewer brought up an interesting concept, Peter falling in the love with the idea of love and it makes sense. At no time does he give his relationships time to fully develop before he’s smitten. Look at how quickly he and Leila got together! I also feel that Peter isn’t 100% in love with Leila, but he’s at the point in his life that he’s dedicated so much time with her and she’s supported him, that he needs to be with her as a form of payment perhaps. Nomikos also weaves a bit of humor. I loved Peter’s reaction to Greece becoming “modernized” when he sees Greece accept the Euro. In one scene, he’s just arrived in Greece and he notices the queue for a taxi is like any other normal European city and he remarks “A civilized queue! Has this country been transformed so radically already?”
I debated heavily with the rating between a three and four. Ultimately I decided on a four due to the rich descriptions and for keeping me on my toes regarding the identity of his daughter and who her mother is. It ends in a cliffhanger and there are a lot of questions to be answered. Why was Peter being questioned by the police and why were they asking him about Leila’s political leanings? Who is the woman in the picture? Ultimately, will Peter find out who his daughter really is? I look forward to reading the second portion of his series and see if my assumption is proven right or wrong.
Today’s our stop on the Fateful Eyes Blog Tour! Click on the banner above for the full schedule and the next tour stop! Also located below Nomikos’ bio, is an opportunity to enter a contest that includes a trip!
I am Panos Nomikos and I was born in 1961 in Athens, Greece, this beautiful country that has become lately the epicenter of the raging global financial crisis. During my carefree, youthful years, I roamed the idyllic islands of my home country having fun on the golden beaches under the sun with my friends and lovers. Later on, I studied for a Ph.D. in the UK and I started a career in Information Technology in the maritime sector, roaming again across the world on intercontinental business trips in faraway places in Asia, Europe and America. In the course of my career I have authored numerous essays and articles in professional publications.
I maintain a blog at http://panosnomikos.wordpress.com to write about my favorite themes related to my beautiful home country, Greece, its position within the world-wide socioeconomic transformations, and its current upheaval in the midst of the worst financial crisis that we are experiencing here. I am especially writing to talk about ordinary Greeks, those living within the country, but also those who live and distinguish themselves around the world, trying to understand their vivid pulse and their feelings of belonging to the world-wide Greek diaspora.
Similarly, I have always aspired to share all those views and experiences and my quests to discover my own ‘true meaning of life’ by writing books. My first novel, ‘Fateful Eyes’, narrates the story of Peter, a busy professional who travels constantly around the world trying to solve a perplexing puzzle that has upset his life, whereas his affectionate lover tries to fend-off the threat posed by a mysterious antagonist in his heart.
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Panos is hosting an amazing contest! If you read Fateful Eyes, try to guess the solution of the puzzle (that will be finally revealed in the forthcoming 2nd volume) and win a trip for two persons, for one week, all expenses paid, to the beautiful country that is the final destination of the protagonist in this story, and also win books and other prizes. Click on the banner below for more information on how to submit your entry!