Warning: The following review and/or blurb may contain or does contain spoilers for previous books in the series.
Author: Rachel Vincent
Series: Soul Screamers #3
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Published: April 2011
Source: Personal copy
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First SentenceThe whole thing started with a wasted jock and a totaled car.
Kaylee has one addiction: her very hot, very popular boyfriend, Nash. A banshee like Kaylee, Nash understands her like no one else. Nothing can come between them.Until something does.
“Demon breath.” No, not the toothpaste-challenged kind. The Netherworld kind. The kind that really “can” kill you. Somehow the super-addictive substance has made its way to the human world. But how? Kaylee and Nash have to cut off the source and protect their friends–one of whom is already hooked.
And so is someone else…
How do you write a review of a book that you read 5 months ago and since feel very differently towards? My notes are full of complaints about how tedious reading about teen angst is when you’re in an epic fantasy mood (well self, there’s your problem!), how I really don’t care about the teen perception of beauty and who’s curvy, who’s plain, etc.. But then I started talking about how the story livened up when Tod made his entrance and how Kaylee is finally confiding in adults, as I never did understand why she didn’t before, and how good this series is. So forgive me if I put my notes to one side and try to write a review of a book I read so long ago from memory because these really aren’t the things I want to say about My Soul to Keep.
Kaylee is a very insecure character and with the benefit of hindsight this doesn’t bother me quite as much as it evidently did while I was reading it back in June. She’s a teenage girl falling in love with her first boyfriend who just happens to be the most popular guy in school and a renowned player whilst also discovering that not only do bean sidhes exist but she is one. She can’t help but expect him to leave her for not “putting out”, though we know he wouldn’t do that, but it’s just the way teenage girl’s minds work so it actually makes Kaylee feel more real if anything. My Soul to Keep is the book in which we see her begin to grow into her confidence both as a bean sidhe and as a young woman and is very much the catalyst this series needed.
My Soul to Keep is also the book in which I started to doubt Nash as the right guy for Kaylee. He’s… well… kind of a jerk. He actually said this.. “If we go any slower, we’ll be moving back in time. You’ve been teasing me for months, Kaylee. Anyone else would have walked away.” Okay so there’s a reason Nash is acting this bad but really? I was very glad to see Kaylee backing away from him whenever he acted this way and let’s face it, this kind of attitude had to come from somewhere. Plus, forcing somebody to do something against their will is never okay whether you’re under the influence or not. It is rape. Nash came very close to raping Kaylee in My Soul to Keep so do excuse me if I quite loudly and prominently hate him forever, no matter how sorry he says he is.
And as for the story itself? Wow. We see humans getting high on Demon’s Breath, aka Frost, and if they don’t put a stop to it asap these humans will either die or go insane because here’s the kicker – Demon’s Breath corrodes the soul. Gulp! This is a very real and very dangerous Netherworld related problem affecting people very close to Kaylee. Emma and Sophie are both dating Frost addicts and Kaylee is terrified that they’re risking exposure and thus secondary addiction, so she takes it upon herself to find the source and stop it, which is only made more difficult with Nash insisting she doesn’t tell anybody about it. Hannah smash!
Sadly this book didn’t drag me back to the series like I hoped it would back when I read it but I’m absolutely positive that when I reread this series, and trust me when I say I absolutely will because I’d like to read the entire story without months-long gaps between books, My Soul to Keep will prove to be one of the better installments as it truly is a turning point for the series.
The Soul Screamers series: