Series: Soul Screamers #6
Author: Rachel Vincent
Publishing Date: June 26, 2012
I died on a Thursday—killed by a monster intent on stealing my soul. The good news? He didn't get it.
The bad news? Turns out not even death will get you out of high school
Covering up her own murder was one thing, but faking life is much harder than Kaylee Cavanaugh expected. After weeks spent "recovering," she's back in school, fighting to stay visible to the human world, struggling to fit in with her friends and planning time alone with her new reaper boyfriend.
But to earn her keep in the human world, Kaylee must reclaim stolen souls, and when her first assignment brings her face-to-face with an old foe, she knows the game has changed. Her immortal status won't keep her safe. And this time Kaylee isn't just gambling with her own life .
Oh my! It's the fourth day of September and I haven't posted a single review. Oops! Not because I haven't read anything, or because I haven't written any reviews...I have, they're all scheduled though.
Anyway, I just finished Before I Wake this afternoon. I love the Soul Screamer Series so so so much. And Tod...major swoon. I'm still not sure if anything can beat out the 5th book, If I Die. I mean what can top a starstruck lover giving up his afterlife for the girl he loved, then she turns around and bargains with the powers that be to bring Tod back as a Reaper and free Nash of all false murder charges. Kaylee is quite the bargainer...I want her on my side in the end.
The sixth installment had me giggling at Kaylee's and Tod's witty banter, Sabine's complete insanity, and Sophie's uncomfortable acceptance of her, now, not-crazy cousin. After all, Luca and Sofie visited the Netherworld in a little novella, Never to Sleep. But...tears also made an appearance while watching Kaylee struggle to "live," her dad learn to let go, and seeing Nash hurt. Regardless of the scenario, everyone in this little group has made their mistakes, from drug addiction to actually trying to auction off someone to the evil Avari so she can get to the boy she loves. What I admired most about this book, is Kaylee's refusal to leave a single one of her friends without protection, no matter how messed up they were.
Kaylee is everything I wish I could be and, at the same time, everything I am. She's loyal, strong, and take charge. She's also scared, a tad bit depressed, and completely lost at times. I mean, I think about the next ten years and freak out, can you imagine looking forward to eternity? No thank you. She has also found her true love, someone that can remain by her side for all of eternity - assuming neither of them break any rules that will end their afterlives or get re-killed by Avari and his band of hellions.
Rachel is one of few authors who make you care about the side characters just as much as you care about Kaylee, Tod, and Nash. While there are times I would like to strangle Sabine, Before I Wake gives you some insight into her lover for Nash and her fears. Who knew the mara had fears, she's a living, breathing nightmare after all. She's waiting for Nash to get over Kaylee, which absolutely cannot be easy. Nash is struggling through his love and hatred for Kaylee - slowly and awkwardly. His dependence on mind-altering substances poses some major issues.
Emma's finally found a boyfriend, a human boyfriend. I love the way Emma's character is written because she's not the "weak little human" among her group of friends. She's strong in her own ways and a totally kick ass friend to Kaylee. She never runs screaming when Kaylee tells her about Avari's newest endeavor - the ability to physically cross over from the Netherworld to the human plane. Stealing souls from everyday normal humans and Reapers and Extractors.
Avari's plan culminates at the end of the book, leaving us with another cliffhanger. I can't imagine waiting on the final story.
Many things are resolved in Before I Wake but others remain unknown and uncharted. My heart quickened with excitement, slowed with Kaylee's desperation, and stilled in terror. If you haven't started this series, I recommend you do so soon. And...never fear, the times Kaylee's story seems slow or uncomfortable all rebound, leaving readers wondering WTH?!