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My Soul to Take by Rachel Vincent - Review

Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal
Series: Soul Screamers Book 1
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Digital galley from netgalley.

Just having read STRAY by Rachel Vincent I marveled at how easily she transitions from a young adult voice to an adult voice. She does it very well, you can almost feel the age intrinsically. Kaylee being of a more younger and naive character than the other characters Vincent writes. I am very pleased with Vincent as an author, she has a very rich voice and she can tell a story like few others. I'm also very intrigued with the series, it was highly unique and compelling. I don't think I've read anything like this before and plan to read on in the series. What hindered me in my rating though was certain reactions that the different characters had. I thought Kaylee was too easily "inducted" into her supernatural world and the adults were too against everything, almost as if there were two pitting forces --- the teens vs. the adults. Which, yes this happens a lot in daily teen life, but I would think in a life or death situation there would be a bit of leeway. Because of these odd reactions in the characters the story felt forced at times and led to this not being a favorite of mine, even though I'm completely sucked in by the concept and the writing.

Kaylee Cavanaugh can sense impending death. She sees a shroud around the person that is about to die and her body says "scream." The one time that this happened it landed her in the psyche ward and a one week vacation from reality via happy pills. She doesn't plan on this happening again. Trying to live life to it's fullest, she sneaks into a bar with her best friend and is preening under the attention of one of the hottest guys in school when the sick feeling of impending death overtakes her and her new found companion has to rush her out of the club to avoid a very LOUD commotion. He is very understanding of her situation, almost too understanding. Nash seems to know more about Kaylee than she does.

When reports come out of the girl's death at that same club, and the coroner can't pinpoint the cause of death, Kaylee needs answers...especially when another girl drops dead and she too has no signs of trauma. Something is going on and Kaylee seems to be in the middle of it.

A richly detailed young adult fantasy novel with plenty of romance to feed the flowers and candy need, MY SOUL TO SCREAM definitely entertained. The storyline was so unique and original that Vincent needs kudos for standing out in a very saturated genre.  What I wished would have happened though was a little expansion on that world. I felt rushed and hurried through the entirety of the novel.  I felt Nash and Kaylee were thrown together and that their romance was almost a forced marched because of their shared heritage. (Kaylee remarked on this herself though). In my opinion the stances were almost too stereotypical - the cousin was too evil stepsister and the parents too distracted. The adults of the situation were so unbelieving (even though they were also a part of it) and too heavy handed when it came to Kaylee and Nash -- but in the end swooped in like they had known all along.

On top of that the murder mystery aspect of it just wasn't believable. Kaylee latched on and obsessed a little bit too early. I didn't feel a connection that was good enough for her sudden interest in the death of another teenager, especially one that she didn't witness herself. Then with their involvement with Tod - and his odd behavior and the fact that he just so happens to be able to hack into his boss' computer. Then the fact that bad guy just happens to reveal herself to Kaylee...and then, well more will lead to spoilers. It was just too quaint. Everything added up without it really adding up. It just played out too quickly and some was rather obvious. This sort of ruined the story for me and it was a shame because I have been really wanting to read this book for a long time.

This is a mature novel, that can be consumed by both teens and adult readers. There is nothing for parents to be wary of, just your usual teen behavior.


Savannah said...

I love this series, but it seriously make me want to pull my hair out! I love Ms. Vincents writing. She has a way with making the characters coming to life that you can feel the emotions. (well at least its like that for me) Nice review.

Rain Maiden said...

I enjoyed Vincent's Shifter series, but have yet to read this series. I'm a bit burned out on the teen scene.

Nicole MacDonald said...

I really enjoyed this book but avoided reading the rest in the series because of the love triangle. I just can't stomach them any more! I blame Twilight ;p

The Arrival, only .99c on Amazon

Marce said...

I have this one on my kindle, I am very intrigued even though it is out of my norm.

Great review, I enjoy reading the likes and dislikes of other bloggers.

Anonymous said...

I just read this last weekend...well actually I listened to it.. I thought Kaylee was clingy on Nash and the romance was just....weird....but it was an ok story..the mythology stuff was pretty good. I think your right though everything was so neat and tidy, dad comes back its all good...aunty was naughty naughty and Todd turn out to be...well you know another Vampire Diary drama!!!

Jessica said...

I haven't started this series yet, but plan to in the future. Not entirely sure what I am going to think of it, but the conept is intriguing.

Great review. : )

ParaJunkee said...

@Savannah - She does have great characters.

@Rain - The teen novels can get a little similar when you read too many of them.

@Nicole - That saddens me to hear that there is another love triangle. I haven't read the other synopsis…lemme guess Tod & Nash???

@Marce - Thanks!

@Tina - The romance was a bit weird, it was almost like she was all into him because he was…well just him and she hadn't had a real boyfriend before because of her problem and he was into her because she was a bansidhe and nothing more.

@Jessica - It is worth the read. Thanks!

Jen the bibliophile said...

I kinda felt the same way you did. I really turned me off of the Shift series. It just felt forced and it felt forced WAY too quickly. The characters didn't really stand out in my mind and we never got a good look at the banshee world or how it was existing like it did. Plus, I always thought it was weird about how fast she trusted Nash and how she so easily forgave everyone. I don't know, it wasn't my favorite. I haven't really been pushing to read the sequel. I've heard that her Shift series is really good though, so I think I'll give it a try.

In the Closet With a Bibliophile

Natalie (Mindful Musings) said...

Like you, I've also been wanting to read this book for a long time. I've never actually read Vincent before. Maybe I'll give it a shot if I can find it at the library!

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