Thursday, April 7, 2011

Review: The Soulkeepers by G.P. Ching

Book: The Soulkeepers by G.P. Ching
Stand Alone or Series:  The Soulkeepers Trilogy #1
Pages:  341

Genre:  Young Adult / Fantasy
Available Formats: Ebook & Paperback 
Publication Date: March 10th, 2011
How Did I Get This Book: From Author, For Review
First Line: “Death lived up to Jacob's expectations."
Preview Book: Chapters 1-3
Description: There are no accidents.
When fifteen-year-old Jacob Lau is pulled from the crumpled remains of his mother's car, no one can explain why he was driving or why the police can't find his mother's body. Made a ward of his uncle and thousands of miles from home, a beautiful and mysterious neighbor, Dr. Abigail Silva, offers to use her unique abilities to help him find his mom. In exchange, she requires Jacob to train as a Soulkeeper, a biologically gifted warrior charged with protecting human souls. He agrees to her demands, desperate for any clue to the mystery of his mother's disappearance. But soon Jacob finds himself trapped in a web of half-truths, and questions Dr. Silva's motives for helping him.

The Soulkeepers by G.P. Ching is one of those rare stories that seizes your attention from the start and never lets it go. You quickly become wrapped up in this imaginative story and are  transported into Jacob's world. You experience all of his confusion and frustration first hand and you simply must know what happens next.

There is so much packed into this story; it is incredibly easy to get swept up into it. I found myself gobbling up pages, desperate to know more about this new, exciting and terrifying world that Jacob is thrust into. The Soulkeepers has one of the most well-developed plots I've seen in a long time; Ching does an incredible job crafting the different story elements so that they fit and flow together. While there are definitely plot lines that are left open, the story does a great job pushing forward. Often times with series, the first book is basically just glorified world-building. While the author does put a great deal of time and effort into this, the story does actually move along at a decent pace.

It is obvious that Ching also put a great deal of care into the creation of the characters. Every single one of them is extremely dimensional - they all have their strengths and weaknesses; their flaws and attributes. Jacob has gone through a lot in his short life and it has left him jaded. He has a hard time seeing the entire picture and finds it difficult to place his faith and trust in others. This brings me to the character of Malini. Malini is Jacob's one true friend in Paris and she helps him work through his issues. What I love best about their relationship is that they both bring something to the table. They balance each other out beautifully; she is often the voice of reason when he wants to act on impulse.

The rest of the characters in the story are, like Jacob, dealing with their flaws. The book really emphasizes the point that nobody is perfect; it's what you do after your mistakes that matters. I thought this was an interesting theme and it made the characters a great deal more lifelike and easier to connect with.

The Soulkeepers by G.P.Ching is an intelligent, exciting and adventurous story that keeps you on your toes.We are treated to a new sort of young adult fantasy story that does not involve werewolves, faeries or vampires - Ching creates a new breed of heroes that readers are sure to love. The characters, although some possess fantastic qualities, are all incredibly realistic. This is a book that will surprise you; it roots itself in your mind and asks some very intriguing questions about forgiveness, trust and what it means to be a good person. I would highly recommend The Soulkeepers, it has everything a reader could ever want.

Favorite Quotes
"Do you think a person is only as good as the worst thing they've ever done?"
"It is very easy to do evil deeds when you are trying to do good."
"It wasn't the weirdest thing he'd seen since coming to Paris but a vegetarian cat definitely made the top ten."
"His arm wrapped around her back in a way that was instinctual for him now. She felt like a puzzle piece, fitting into his side where there had always been an empty space."
"Darkness is a relative term. There is the darkness of an evening with a full moon, or of a candlelit room. There is the inky blackness of a bedroom at midnight where the only light comes between shadows that dance in the space beneath the door. But the darkness that Jacob experienced as he followed his captor, hitched to her wings with sweaty palms, was not like that at all. It was a darkness that had perhaps never experienced real light, a black hole absorbing any flicker into his depths. It was the darkness of the bottom of the ocean, or the cold blackness of a grave. Jacob hoped it would not be his grave."
"Malini rewarded him with a smile he knew was exclusively his."


Midnyte Reader said...

Oh goody! I love great plots. I'll definitely have to check this out.

Unknown said...

Ooh this sounds awesome! I'll have to try and get a copy...

E.J. Stevens said...

I love characters with depth. Adding to my tbr wish list. Great review!
Paranormal Author E.J. Stevens
From the Shadows

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