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review 2014-01-23 09:42
My Soul to Steal (Soul Screamers #4)
My Soul to Steal - Rachel Vincent

Okay. I'm going to give you some friendly advice, Kaylee, because I like you. I really, really do. But I also want to slap you. Hard.

Yes, your ex-boyfriend did something horrible. Yes, he treated you badly. Yes, he lied, he kept secrets and tried his Influence on you. I get that you are pissed.

But when his hot ex-girlfriend comes into town, and tries every possible way to get into your ex-boyfriend's pants, who you still love like crazy, you just don't sit there and complain about it. Would it hurt to at least try and make things right? To try to forgive him and see what a great guy you have there, just waiting for you? Cause that's exactly what he's doing. 

You left him to rot for 2 weeks straight, while he was trying to fight his addiction FOR YOU. He was trying to get better FOR YOU. He was working so damn hard to keep himself together FOR YOU. And what did you do? Right, ignore the shit out of him.

Then the ex pops up, openly declaring a war. And what do you do? You try to hurt Nash as much as possible, you throw back everything in his face AND assume he'll just go back to Sabine. You almost want him to fuck up. I cannot understand why you are trying to push him away when all he's trying to do it get close to you, EVEN WITH SABINE BREATHING DOWN BOTH YOUR NECKS. 

It's not like he hasn't have girls lining up to be with him. The fact that he's sticking around, even while he can get some someplace else, SHOULD BE ENOUGH TO PROVE HIS LOYALTY. GOD. GET A CLUE.

It's your turn now, Sabine. You are beyond pathetic. Yes, you didn't have an amazing life. Boohoo. I understand that Nash is the only 'good' thing you've ever had in your life (at least that's so in your delusional mind), but for god's sake, it was just sex. Lots and lots of it, apparently, but still. Your insecurities and your attempts at trying to scare Kaylee away are just hilarious. I reached for the popcorn several times while watching you in action.

And now you, Tod. WTF? Are you that desperate for Kaylee's attention or do you secretly hate your brother that much? GOD. I don't even understand what your deal is. You try to make Kaylee see the nature of the relationship between Nash and Sabine, and then a few chapters later you are telling Kaylee to let Nash go if she really cares about him. I'm really not in the mood to deal with you right now.

And last but not least: Nash. I love you. Never stop being awesome. 

The ending was weird, with the puppy-ish things etc. I can't wait to find out their names for some reason XD


"Whoever said it is better to have loved and lost than never to have loved was full of crap."

I cannot believe I finally caved in. After the drama of the third book and what it did to my state of mind I declared it unsafe and potentially harmful to myself to read this book. But I am weak. So so weak. *hangs head*

See, I am absolutely crazy about this series. Just how crazy I am might become obvious after I have given you a glimpse into my twisted little mind. Even while my review and status updates might convince you otherwise, let me be clear about something right from the start. I am Team Nash. All the way. I know he messed up pretty badly in book 3 and, well, also in book 4, IMO, but nevertheless, I love that guy. Now there are people who think Kaylee should end up with Tod in the end - I will come back to that again later on - but I strongly disagree. And do you know what I think whenever I see people mentioning how they want Kay and Nash to break up? I wish they would just shut up -

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- and hope that Rachel Vincent doesn’t read these reviews and take it to heart that there are so many people who obviously prefer Tod over Nash and I’m afraid that because of this she's going to let Kay end up with Tod instead and OMG that would just about kill me. Does that make you understand how far gone I am? I am turning into a freakin’ troll. But admitting your problem is the first step on the road to recovery, right? RIGHT?

Oh and just for the record: There is no Kaylee-Nash-Tod love triangle. Dammit!

So, why am I this obsessed? For one thing, I like the whole banshee concept. It’s a breath of fresh air, at least I haven’t seen anything like this in YA before but even while I think the concept is refreshing, I also feel like the existence of banshees is kinda pointless. I mean, what good is a banshee? They can tell when somebody’s about to die, big deal, but what’s the use? It’s not like they’re getting anything out of it, right? Or can do anything about it, for that matter. Because whenever they interfere, somebody else has to die instead. And let’s not even talk about the male banshees. They are utterly useless. I know what they can do with their abilities but still, I don’t really see the point. Nevertheless, the banshees, the reaper, the Netherworld, the whole borrowed time thing...it’s all pretty cool, IMO.

Now about this particular installment of the Soul Screamers series...(it might get a little spoilery now but if you have seen my status updates you are already "spoiled" so no need to worry...)

I am so unbelievably pissed off that I really don’t know how to rate this. On the one hand, I should give it 5 stars for making me scream, for making me cry and for basically driving me insane but on the other hand, I should only give it 1 star because of the exact same reasons. That was just a bit too much drama for me. No wait, drama is not the right word. This was torture. I was dragged in so many different directions, emotionally speaking, that I felt like I would tear. Rachel Vincent stretched me to, and beyond my personal breaking point. I went from feeling sorry for Nash, to hating him, to loving him, to wanting to rip his balls off and ending up feeling betrayed, hurt, sad, angry and being totally confused. Same with Kaylee and Tod. Not with Sabine, though. I just plain hate her. She can go drown somewhere for all I care. It’s like Kaylee said. "Nash and I were like the wreckage of two cars that had hit head-on. We were tangled up in each other so thoroughly that I could no longer tell which parts of us were him and which were me. We could probably never be truly untangled – not after what we’d been through together – but I had serious doubts we could ever really recapture what we’d had." The whole situation is such a big stinking mess and it just hurts So.Fucking.Much. And you know what the worst part is? Rachel Vincent took away my hope because I honestly don’t see how Kaylee and Nash will ever make this work again. And I am very unhappy with Rachel because of that. 

Now it’s getting really spoilery so stay away if you haven't read the other books!

Alright, I need to get back again to that Tod business. What is all this talk about him and Kaylee ending up together? That’s bullshit, IMO. I mean, he is a reaper, He.Is.Dead., so why on earth would it be better for Kaylee to be with him? Furthermore, he’s losing touch with his humanity. Just look at how differently he’s behaving in this book from how he was behaving in Reaper. He’s becoming less and less human. But back to what’s actually said in the book. What’s all this crap about how Kaylee doesn’t need Nash but Sabine does? What kind of argument is that? Nash LOVES Kaylee and she LOVES him and just because some people think it would be better if they were with someone else instead they should just end their relationship now? Kaylee should just send Nash back to Sabine? What the hell?

It doesn’t work like that! But ok, for the sake of argument let’s say Nash and Sabine really should be together because they both need each other and because they’re equally messed up. So, could someone please explain to me why Kaylee would need Tod? Or Alec, for that matter? She doesn’t need any of the three. This argument is ridiculous. You know, I was pretty pissed off at Kaylee in this book, I think she let Nash down and I hated how she just kept pushing him away and into Sabine’s arms but at the end of the day, I am on her side and first and foremost, I am Team Kaylee. So screw you Nash, screw you Sabine and screw you Tod.

What also annoyed me was how everybody kept using the fact that Nash only gave away memories of his time with Kaylee, to prove that he doesn’t love her all that much. Well, Avari wasn’t interested in any other memories. He specifically asked for those because in the long run, he wanted to hurt Kaylee and I honestly believe that Nash wasn’t aware of the consequences. As he said, he didn’t realize that the memories would be worthless if he couldn’t feel them anymore. The only thing that’s really inexcusable IMO is the fact that he let Avari possess Kaylee on a regular basis. 

*sigh* I could go on like this forever but I really need to put this behind me now. I'm already afraid that I need to get therapy because of this book...So, altogether I found this rather unsatisfying and the ending was not worth the torture. This was just too much relationship drama for me. 

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review 2014-01-23 09:40
If I Die (Soul Screamers #5)
If I Die - Rachel Vincent

*Happy happy dance.* For fans the Soul Screamers series, this book will either be everything you want...or everything you feared most. I fall firmly into the "incoherently happy" camp after reading it.

Soul Screamers as a whole is kind of a funny animal. The mythology is pretty unusual and I really like the unique world that Rachel Vincent creates with her banshees, maras, grim reapers, and demon breath. The stories are admittedly fairly straightforward (think Morganville rather than Chicagoland or Vampire Academy) and Kaylee Cavanaugh sometimes seemed very young in the beginning. But as Kaylee's problems became bigger and her relationships with her best friend and her family and her boyfriend became more involved, this somehow became a series that I really, really enjoy. She makes plenty of mistakes, particularly in that last agonizing book My Soul to Steal, but they are ones that you completely understand and sympathize with. 

If I Die presents Kaylee with the biggest challenges she's ever faced in her life--she suspects that attractive new math teacher may not be everything he appears to be, she's still fighting her complicated feelings for her possibly irredeemable boyfriend Nash, and to top it off, she receives world-changing news that gives her only a matter of days to put everything right.

I really love Kaylee after this book. One of the things that surprised me is that she meets all of her problems with admirable maturity and sensitivity. There are a number of really difficult situations she has to resolve before time runs out, but instead of being self-pitying or railing against fate, she immediately takes action to help the people around her, all the while remaining true to her emotional self; that's no small feat under the best of circumstances. I'm impressed by the author's frank handling of teen sexuality, which is very um, enthusiastically present in this book but written with exactly the right amount of excitement and humor and gravity. Most importantly, it's also included in the right context of Kaylee's life.

I'm also really happy with the way the author handled the tricky situation with Kaylee's relationship with her boyfriend. Nash was previously hooked on demon breath and his ex-girlfriend the evil Sabine complicated things further. Nash's behavior, particularly [how he dealt with his ex and the terrible, terrible thing he did to compel Kaylee ], changed Kaylee's perception of him irrevocably, and the author does a terrific job of showing how agonizing and sad it is when feelings and priorities change with time. Anyone who read the excellent Soul Screamers short Reaper also knows the complicated story behind what Nash's brother Tod has done for him and will be thrilled to see Tod finally being present in the book in a big way. Fangirl moment: [Yaaaay! At last at last at last. I'm so happy with where this story went. :D

If you haven't read the series, it's one that is extremely entertaining and matures in surprising ways with its protagonist. And if you're already a fan of the series, well...this latest installment hooks you from the very first chapter. It's important to read this as quickly as possible so that major plot developments aren't accidentally spoiled for you, since this is a game-changing book--so don't wait too long! You're in for an awesome ride.

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2014-01-23 09:37
My Soul to Take (Soul Screamers #1)
My Soul to Take - Rachel Vincent


Okay, normally I really don't like books where a guy and a girl eye-hump each other for 5 minutes and then decide they're the ones that Kiss song was written for. This book is no different. 

At first I was a bit suspicious, because well... it's not like Nash noticed Kaylee before, so I didn't really know where the sudden interest comes from. But my suspicion faded pretty quickly, ahem. 

But of course, Kaylee is beautiful, but doesn't know it... And I can see where this thing with Tod is going... (I'm so effing smart, I scare myself and for those who don't know me, again, YES, that was loaded with heavy sarcasm) But... My god, I enjoyed this book so much! I had tons of fun, what a great way to start off 2011! 

Kaylee is a great girl, I like spending time with her. And I like it even more when she spends time with Nash (who is basically sex with on a stick), wink wink, nudge nudge. UNF.

I'm so excited to read the next book, but also a tad scared because of some comments my friends posted... I have all of them on my Kindle, so I don't think I'll be able to wait.

So.... heartbreak, here I come? *frowns*
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review 2011-03-17 00:00
Mr. Hudson's Diaries - Michael Hardwick This delightful and heartwarming book offers the reader a rare view (by way of scattered diary entries) into the life of Mr. Hudson, the steadfast, devoted, and nigh-well faultless butler for the Bellamy family in Edwardian London, who began life as the son of a gamekeeper in Scotland.

Fans of the TV series "UPSTAIRS, DOWNSTAIRS" will love this book.
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