posted at Thursday, October 2nd, 2014 at 12:00 AM | Audiobook Reviews, Young Adult
Narrator: Amanda Ronconi
Length: 11 hrs, 47 mins
Series: Soul Screamers #7
Published by Harlequin Enterprises on March 26, 2013
Genres: Paranormal, Romance
Source: Gifted, Library
Amazon • The Book Depository • Audible
What does it mean when your school is voted the most dangerous in America? It's time to kick some hellion butt...
After not really surviving her junior year (does "undead" count as survival?), Kaylee Cavanaugh has vowed to take back her school from the hellions causing all the trouble. She's going to find a way to turn the incarnations of Avarice, Envy and Vanity against one another in order to protect her friends and finish this war, once and forever.
But then she meets Wrath and understands that she's closer to the edge than she's ever been. And when one more person close to her is taken, Kaylee realizes she can't save everyone she loves without risking everything she has....
Binge read successfully completed on time! Sadly, I had to switch to audio for the last book View Spoiler »for judging purposes « Hide Spoiler, which would not have been my preference, but YAY for binge reads. On the whole I’ve really enjoyed this series, particularly towards the end. Though Soul Screamers never entered the feelsy range, I think that at their best these books are really good. In fact, I’d go so far as to say that Rachel Vincent’s Soul Screamers series is among the best paranormal YA in existence.
I know a lot of people weren’t huge fans of the series conclusion, at least compared to the awesomeness of books five and six, but I largely really like what Vincent did with it. Further, I think my main complaint may be people’s favorite part, but I’ll tell you about that later. On the whole, With All My Soul was, though still relatively fluffy, a good, fairly dark conclusion to the Soul Screamers series, with enough of a happy ending to make the readers not too grumpy. It IS a paranormal romance after all, so only I would want it to end with everyone’s dreams crushed.
Oh, also, With All My Soul is the first book in the series where the pretty dress cover makes sense. Kaylee does actually wear a fluffy golden dress! The other 9 covers (since these got bound into omnibuses as well as the original covers), though, don’t make a lick of sense. Ah well. Enjoy this one, the only honest cover.
Without getting too deep into the plot, at first I found it really annoying. Kaylee kept doing her thing where she puts herself in danger to save others and keeps things from them for the same reason. This girl drives me bonkers, because the main thing others seem to want is for Kaylee not to sacrifice herself but that is ALL she wants to do. However, the way things resolved made all of that kind of worth it, because girl is clever.
In terms of the romance, I’m fairly okay with what happened, but still kind of on the fence about it. Kaylee and Tod are good together, but they’re TOO good. They’re so perfect for one another it’s kind of nauseating. You’re probably thinking I’m such a Scrooge or whatever, but hear me out. They basically never fight. When they get angry at one another for totally legitimate reasons, it only lasts for a brief period before they resolve that and start spouting totally cheesy lines at one another again. Their banter is pathetically saccharine.
Also, the switch to audiobook set me back a bit too. Ronconi is a skilled narrator, but not personally to my tastes. Her voice is reminiscent of most of the women who narrate paranormal romance (both teen and adult) in a way I can’t qualify but which I generally find grating. She does a really good job making the different characters’ voices distinct. However, I also REALLY didn’t like a lot of the voices. Tod’s for instance is sort of growly like he smokes two packs a day and no. And she applies a southern twang to characters at random, when, in fact, most of them would probably have a bit of an accent, since I think they live in Texas? I should know this by now, but I’m not super setting focused. Either way, the application of the accent felt random.
The Soul Screamers series has been a really fun read and I recommend it to others like me who like paranormal YA in theory but have generally been disappointed in practice.
Tl;dr – Review in a GIFfy: