Something is wrong with Kaylee Cavanaugh...
She can sense when someone near her is about to die. And when that happens, a force beyond her control compels her to scream bloody murder. Literally. Kaylee just wants to enjoy having caught the attention of the hottest boy in school. But a normal date is hard to come by when Nash seems to know more about the dark forces behind Kaylee's power than she does.
And when classmates start dropping dead for no apparent reason, and only Kaylee knows who'll be next, she realises that finding a boyfriend is the least of her worries!
- ISBN10 0373210035
- ISBN13 9780373210039
- Publish Date 28 July 2009 (first published 1 January 2009)
- Publish Status Active
- Imprint Harlequin Teen
- Edition Original ed.
- Format Paperback (US Trade)
- Pages 288
- Language English
After the re-read, more like 3.5 stars (was originally 5). This is a pretty good story, but just... I don't know, the second read really showed all its flaws.
To read more reviews and fun things go to my blog; Drugs Called Books!
Kaylee is just a normal teenager... or is she? Apparently not, if the screams wailing in her throat--the ones that she can't stop, which come side by side with the sight of certain people surrounded by shadows and the morbid but absolute knowledge they are going to die, and soon--are any indication.
She is bent on keeping her abilities--or insanity?--hidden, shutting and never letting the screams - but fate has something else in store. Like making her encounter such shadowed, doomed person in the middle of a bar, right next to the hottest guy in school - Nash Hudson. She thinks everything is lost after Nash sees her breakdown (thankfully, she thinks, she managed not to scream) – public humiliation, isolation, mental facility, you name it and it will happen. Except… it doesn't.
That Nash person? He doesn't laugh at her, doesn't call her crazy… he calms her down, as unbelievable as it sounds – something no one and nothing, not even the medications doctor tried to give her – did.
And he seems to know something, something about who, or rather what she is. And when young, beautiful women started dropping dead—literally—with no apparent reason, Kaylee will have to learn and face the truth, because she can stop whatever it is that happens. All she has to do is…
Okay, now to the real review of the book:
I loved it. Ahem, Ahem… okay, that's not my best review yet, I guess, but it gets better!
I loved this book for plenty reasons. First, it was full of suspense and action. I mean, even when it wasn't packed with it, there was never a dull moment, and things moved swiftly and quickly. You couldn't just put it down, because every time you turned the page over, you found out more intriguing information or saw that something had happened, and you just had to find out what it was, find more. More, more, more.
Second, I loved the romance. Nash and Kaylee are so sweet, and the author wasn't afraid to make them kiss. A lot. Their instant connection and relationship nearly made me forget how quickly it all happened… nearly. It always bothers me how quickly the relationship evolves, but I guess in Nash and Kaylee's case I have not many complaints – I just loved their romance, and was itching to see more of it.
The death, reapers (as in, grim reapers) and the rest of the supernatural stuff added to everything, and fit nicely and perfectly.
This book literally filled all my favorite genres, I think.
I was a bit (okay, much) sad with the ending. It was truly tragic in a way, and I hated to find out who was the killer, in the end. I was screaming "No!" in my head. I didn't really see it coming, too. Sure, there were the signs. Thinking back on it I could clearly see them, but I really didn't want her to be it.
Now, I am dreading what I have to do next. I've decided before reading this novel that I'll have to put at least a month between reading each book, if I wanted to survive the waiting for the last one. I could see, when I reached the middle of My Soul to Take, that this will become one of this series I'm addicted to, and if so, the wait will be painful. It's better to wait between books, knowing that I could, if I wanted to, go and buy the books, than gulp them all in a week like I'm used to and wait, knowing I had no choice but waiting to the final installment. The choice thing makes all the difference, I guess. Must be a psychological thing.
So now, I have to wait. I want to see more Nash hotness (I mean read, of course), but I won't. Because I'm strong willed like that, I guess.
In My Soul to Take Kaylee thinks she's going crazy. She can see dark shrouds around people that are going to die, and when teenage girls around her start dropping like flies she starts doubting her mental health. But Nash, the school's hottie, suddenly has interest in her, and he seems to know more about what's going on with her than he's willing to let on.
Usually I start reviews pointing out the good. This time, however, I feel like starting with the bad. First off, the weird romance. I'm not sure what this was supposed to be. I'm glad Ms Vincent didn't make Nash the new kid at school (cause you know you've read THAT before) but once again, he's the popular kid that suddenly pays attention to Kaylee. Is it just me, or is being ignored for years and ALL of a sudden being the focal point of one's interest not romantic, and on top of that weird and suspicious. They almost instantly went into relationship mode without falling in love first, and they are terribly clingy. But hey, maybe that's just how teen romances are. I feel like I'm getting old.
There's one thing about Ms Vincent's writing that I noticed in Stray, and saw again in My Soul to Take. Her writing is, I don't know how to say this more politely, immature. And not all that great. She can describe things, she can write scenes, but that's about it. She resorts to expressions like "it felt sooo good", and when this happens two pages in a row, that's just bad writing. Luckily, it's not all that annoying in a young-adult book. It's still not good writing, but it's less annoying than having to put up with that kind of language in an adult book.
Now the good: there are different kinds of interesting supes! I enjoyed the plot, and the last part of the book was engaging and hard to put down. There is enough going on to keep you interested, but not too much that you're getting a headache from all the action.
My Soul to Take isn't the best written book and it has some common young-adult faults, but it's definitely not a bad addition to the genre, and I'm looking forward to the second book.
This book was pretty good. I enjoyed leaving behind vampires, werewolves, witches, etc for a refreshing new supernatural character. Kaylee is an endearing teenage girl with a terrible ability: she can see when someone's about to die. What makes this ability particularly unfortunate is that all Kaylee can do is scream, very loud and without control. She can't talk; she can't warn anyone. All she can do is appear absolutely crazy. I enjoyed getting to know her and watching her try to figure what's going on with her, all while dealing with her bratty cousin (who she deals with). Oh, and did I mention that young girls are dropping dead like flies?
The plot was also different, but unfortunately large parts of it were pretty predictable. Vincent did surprise me a couple of times, making the book a pleasant, but not gripping read. I'm going to continue with the series, in hopes that this book suffers from "first book syndrome" and the later books will be a lot more exciting and at least a little less predictable. The characters are endearing, and I'm interested to see them develop in later books as well. Overall I'd recommend it for a refreshing young adult read.
About the audiobook narration: This was my first book to listen to that was narrated by Amanda Ronconi. She is an incredible reader and really brings the different characters personalities to life. While I think I would have felt about the same about the book's negative points had I read it, my love for the characters probably was equal parts writing and narration. I highly recommend picking up this book on audio!
*Side note* That was really my only hang up with this book. Nash and Kaylee had been classmates for how long and he just figured out what was up? SMH.
They have an instant (though realistic - YAY) connection and I found myself rooting for them from the beginning. Kaylee is a typical teenage girl with typical teenage girl thoughts; "What if he is only with me for sex?" "Am I throwing myself at him?" Lord I am so glad I am not at that stage in my life anymore. (PS - I was crazy hormonal. Be glad you didn't know me, and if you did know me, my apologies)
So I 'got' Kaylee. She pretty much did and said everything I would have in her situation. Except for the family keeping a big secret. Like, huge, world-shifting-on-it's-axis, secret. She was livid, but I thought she got over that pretty fast. I thought the Irish were known for our their temper. I would most certainly hold a grudge, at least until I heard the whole story ... that was a whopper. With cheese. And bacon. (can you tell I am hungry?) I did kind of see it coming, but at the same time it felt like a punch to the gut.
So overall, I would say this is an easy quick read. Maybe I would call it quick because I did it in two marathon sessions, but hey, that's a good thing! It kept my interest and I didn't want to put it down. It is YA, but there is death, so it isn't "fluffy" like some YA. Definitely not for younger YA readers.
I was a big fan of the Twilight series and was recommended this book by Goodreads. I thought I would give it a go. After reading My Soul to Lose I quickly started this one. I remember being hooked and needing to read more and more. As I was a bit behind it meant that I could devour the series quite quickly (which I did). Rachel had me completely and utterly at her mercy for the entire of the month. As soon as I finished one I started the next. I just couldn't get enough of this series.
So if you don't know Kaylee is a bean sidhe (pronounced banshee). Except she doesn't know, and she doesn't know how to control her ability. That is until the High School hottie takes an interest in her and seems to know more about it than she did. It was great to watch their relationship develop throughout this book.
Kaylee is a pretty average high school girl. She's not in the popular crowd but she's not in the geeky unpopular crowd she surfs somewhere inbetween. She's a pretty likeable character and you feel pretty sorry for her when she can't control all this screaming.
I love Nash. I always imagine him to look a bit like Nate from Gossip Girl aka Chase Crawford. He plays sports, he's the most popular guy in the school, who wouldn't love him?
Then you throw in his 'dead' brother. Except he's still around. How does that work you ask? Well Tod is a reaper, you know a Grim Reaper with the black cloak and the scythe. Well they don't really have black cloaks and scythe's but you get the idea. I can already tell that Tod is going to be trouble.
This was a great read and I as soon as I finished this I started My Soul to Save. A fantastic YA fantasy/paranormal book.
Original review: http://onabookbender.com/2012/07/02/review-my-soul-to-take-by-rachel-vincent/
I was very very intrigued by the premise of this world. While I did read the short prequel before starting this book, I’m not sure that it is absolutely vital to read first, as it really only created more questions than it answered. However, I definitely think it gave Kaylee’s struggle with the screaming more validity, since we knew exactly why she didn’t want to be considered crazy, and what that would all entail if she was locked up “again”.
Kaylee was a pretty typical YA heroine for me, and other than her few repeated references to wishing she weren’t so flat-chested/not curvy (and on further reflection, perhaps this was completely intended given the subject matter), I neither disliked nor fell in love. Don’t get me wrong — this was a solid beginning to what I have been assured will be a good series. But there is a part of me that feels just as shell-shocked as Kaylee, and I need to see how she settles into her new role before I can make a strong attachment.
Speaking of making strong attachments (or not making them, as the case may be), I have decided not to get attached to Nash. Partly because his sudden appearance in Kaylee’s life seems too good to be true, and partly because I know THINGS ARE COMING. I have no idea what these things are, only that they happen in book 3. THINGS! I did particularly like the rest of the cast of characters with Kaylee’s family. They were… interesting. I feel like saying anything more might reveal a little too much. So I won’t say anything else!
Back to the world. For a good portion of the book, Kaylee thinks she’s a normal teenager with a tendency to get “panic attacks.” Considering this is a paranormal book, you know that that isn’t the case, but, like Kaylee, we are clueless as to why Kaylee is the way she is. I think it’s well documented that I need a certain number of answers throughout a book in order to get a grip on which end is up in the world. While it did take awhile to get some answers, I liked that it was generally pretty clear that Kaylee’s aunt and uncle had the answers — they just weren’t sharing. To me, that’s more forgivable (from an information whore’s perspective) than being left dangling for no particular reason.
I don’t know that I was necessarily blown away by My Soul to Take but it was a good start, and I intend to dive straight into the next book soon. Books 3, 4, 5, and 6 are now all on my wishlist (and as I write this review at the end of May, it’s certainly possible that I will have bought/read all these books by the time this review actually publishes).
Kaylee is great and believable. She's honest, and determined even when things aren't exactly going according to plan. She's a (mostly) normal teenage girl, flies under the radar, and is just trying to keep a grip on some normalcy. However, it's hard to appear normal when you start wailing at the top of your lungs as someone is about to die. She's able to hold it in even though it's a struggle, and her best friend, Emma just thinks she's having a panic attack. That is, until girls start dropping dead all around them.
Enter Nash! The super hot, popular guy, who pays Kaylee no attention until he witnesses one of her "panic attacks." He should be freaked out, or think she's a freak, but instead, two days later they start dating. Yep, that's fast! I could understand him taking an interest in her due to her weirdness (especially when we learn something later in the book), but romantically? I wish that could have had more development. It was very rushed and very unbelievable, but it didn't keep from enjoying the story as a whole. In fact, once the mystery of random girls dying from unknown causes really gets going, I forgot all about the rushed romance. I was completely intrigued by the idea of banshees and grim reapers, and engaged in the story. I just wanted to know what the heck is going on, what Kaylee has to do with it, and how Nash is going to help her!
My Soul to Take is a fun read, and it moves at a fairly fast pace once the plot gets going. I loved learning about bean sidhes and the other otherworldly creatures right along side Kaylee. Thankfully, I have the next three books right here, and I'll be jumping right into the second one!
Read more of my reviews at Pinkindle Reads & Reviews.