May 7, 2012

Review: My Soul to Steal, by Rachel Vincent

Author: Rachel Vincent
Title: My Soul to Steal
Series: Soul Screamers (#4)
ISBN: 9780373210275
Publisher: Harlequin Teen (1st published December 21st 2010)

Buy your copy: Kindle | Paperback

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Trying to work things out with Nash—her maybe boyfriend—is hard enough for Kaylee Cavanaugh. She can't just pretend nothing happened. But "complicated" doesn't even begin to describe their relationship when his ex-girlfriend transfers to their school, determined to take Nash back.

See, Sabine isn't just an ordinary girl. She's a
mara, the living personification of a nightmare. She can read people's fears—and craft them into nightmares while her victims sleep. Feeding from human fear is how she survives.

And Sabine isn't above scaring Kaylee and the entire school to death to get whatever—and
whoever—she wants.” GoodReads’ blurb

Remember when I did my review of Reaper back here and told you that it was the turning point for the series? Well, I said that because I had already read this one. I had also gone and read If I Die and am currently biting my nails while waiting for book 6, but anyway. Let’s focus on My Soul to Steal.

This book does something very daring, very special, and I honestly can’t cheer any louder: it involves change, and consequences. (Major spoilers for book 3 ahead! Be warned).

Nash is supposed to be the picture perfect boyfriend. He’s Kaylee’s first real love, he taught her all she knows about being a Bean Sidhe. In today’s YA, that means that he can’t go wrong and that they’re destined to be together. But!

The truth is that a six-month relationship doesn’t allow you to know a person well enough. That there are mistakes, and some mistakes perhaps shouldn’t be forgiven. This is what Rachel Vincent has dared to write, and I applaud her for it.

At the end of book 3, Kaylee needed time. Nash had become a drug addict instead of trying to seek help from those who could provide it. His action had destroyed the lives of his two best friends. He had tried to Influency her into having sex, and had tried to make her doubt her sanity so that his supply wasn’t compromised. If that wasn’t enough, he had allowed Kaylee’s archnemesis to possess her without saying a word to her, and had done things with her body while someone else was in control.

Of course he was sorry. But would he have stopped, would he have been sorry if he hadn’t been caught? Should he be forgiven?

For me, Kaylee’s struggle to trust him again illustrates this point. On the one hand, she can’t just act as if nothing had happened, and she shouldn’t, either. On the other, letting go of the one we love, or have loved, is not easy, and she fights with herself through the whole book.

Sabine’s presence only serves to make the inner fight more interesting, because she is forced to choose, and to choose fast.

Frankly, Nash’s behaviur through the book made me part of the “let her keep him” team, because while this whole emotion conflict unravels there is, of course, so much more going on. There’s deaths, unexplainable and unscheduled. And, once more, Nash refuses to take Kaylee seriously.

This time, funnily enough, I had no issues with Kaylee’s hero complex. On the one hand, she didn’t blame herself. On the other, she acted smart—she asked for help to whomever could provide it, she listened to advice, she did her best to solve the situation. If she zeroed in certain suspects, she can’t be blamed, I think. With no other proof and no solid reasons behind Nash’s “not possible”, I’d have done the same thing.

In the end... Well, the end. Not going to spoil it. It could have been disappointing, but it wasn’t. Because it isn’t exactly what it looks like (relationship-wise). And, after having read If I Die, I have to say that I understand it, and can abide with Kaylee’s actions.

Now, if I have to be completely honest... I just can’t wait for the next book. If you have started the Soul Screamers series, push through until you get to this second leg of the series and you’ll see how it’s worth every minute of it.


  1. I'm glad that Kaylee didn't just pretend like nothing happened with Nash and take him back. She needed to take time to deal with everything that happened otherwise it wouldn't have felt believable to me. I'm really liking the direction these books are moving in.

    I can't wait to read Before I Wake but I'm also really anxious as to what is going to happen because then I'll have to wait forever for the last book to come out.

    1. Exactly! I've read some comments about people just pissed that she won't take Nash back right away, and about the developments at the end of If I Die... frankly, I think it's one of the best evolutions in a relationship ever, that it works... and that I can't wait to read the next installment.

      Bummer, I hadn't thought about how long it'll be until the last one comes out!

  2. Replies
    1. I started doing so, too! Tod is amazing! :) I loved him in this book. And it was so real, for a change!

      Thanks for the comment!

  3. Eeep this is a series I have been meaning to read for ages and the first book is still sitting unread on my shelf! It sounds like the series in a whole is fantastic I really have to start it soon! Great review!

    1. Yay! Yes, you really need to read it. Books 2 and 3 are slightly weaker (or so I thought) but all in all is a great series... I can't wait for before I wake!!

  4. Hehehe, glad to see that you enjoyed it as much as I have. Though for me, I was the "let Nash go" team. :) June 26th is taking forever to come...

    1. Me too!! Let go of Nash. Well, there's more on that on the If I Die review (coming up... sometime soon, I think) but yes, this series easily turned into a favorite for me!

    2. Agreed! I just read If I Die today and I can't wait to review it. It's my favorite in the entire series hehe, and I have to make it perfect or else I'll be dissatisfied with my review. And yes, I also agree that this series is one of my favorites as well!