Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Review: My Soul to Steal

My Soul to Steal
Rachel Vincent
Young Adult/Fantasy
Soul Screamers/Book 4
Harlequin Teen/January 1, 2011

From the author's website ~


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.


Rachel Vincent's Soul Screamer series is one of my favorite young adult series to date. Vincent's style of writing captures the demeanor of the teens - coming across as genuine, with that teen angst and logic that can defy reason.

Kaylee has had a lot of hard choices to make in recent months. One of the hardest was to distance herself from her boyfriend Nash when he made some seriously bad decisions that not only affected him but her as well. With Kaylee spending little time with Nash, this give Sabine the perfect opportunity to spend time with Nash in her attempt to get him back. But thankfully, Kaylee isn't a complete pushover. She fights back, letting Sabine know that she won't give up Nash without a fight. I've always liked Kaylee and that hasn't changed. I do think she should have started spending time with Nash once Sabine showed up and not have continued to keep such a distance from him. It's hard to fight for your boyfriend when you're not there but the competition is.

Nash - oh, brother. By the middle of the book, Nash was really getting on my last nerve. He tells Kaylee how he needs a friend right now and that's all Sabine is, a friend. Yeah, someone needs to tell Sabine that and then get her believe it! He spends time alone with Sabine, in his bedroom, knowing that her agenda includes getting him back as her boyfriend. He continues to tell Kaylee that nothing has happened or will happen with Sabine because he still loves Kaylee and wants her back. I do think Nash's heart was in the right place. He's trying to help Sabine, still considers her a good friend, but he trusted her a little too much to not hurt Kaylee in the process. I wish Nash had gotten tough with Sabine a lot sooner than he did and stopped making excuses for her actions.

What can I say about Sabine that is nice? Oh - she was honest about her feeling for Nash and that she would do anything to get him back. I do have to give her credit for that. She was also a bitch and a half when it came to Kaylee and how she rubbed Kaylee's face in the fact that she was Nash's first and they had a history that Kaylee and Nash didn't. Then Sabine asks Kaylee to help her when Nash finally decides to stop seeing Sabine. WTH!!! Yes, Sabine had the guts to ask Kaylee for help in getting Nash to talk to her again. All the while telling Kaylee that she still had every intention of trying to get Nash back as her boyfriend. She also told Kaylee to lay off Nash so she would have a chance with him. Seriously, this girl's logic was dangerously skewed. The odd part is, by the end of the book, she didn't bother me as much. I can't go so far to say that I liked her but. . . my dislike for her wasn't as intense.

The drama with Sabine isn't the only thing Kaylee has to contend with. Something very bad is going on at school. Plus, Kaylee is having some painfully bad dreams, Freddy Krueger's got nothing on these. Kaylee thinks Sabine is behind the dreams and the deaths but can't prove Sabine had anything to do with the deaths. Nash denies Sabine would have anything to do with it, no surprise there. Kaylee does ask Tod for help and while I've always liked Tod, I did have to question his motives when giving Kaylee advice about Sabine and Nash. Strange alliances are formed both here and in the Netherworld. The showdown between good and evil was filled tension, high emotions and possibly the ultimate sacrifice.

My Soul to Steal once again shows why I love this series so much! There were a lot of intense emotions, danger and mystery. It was all woven together to form an addictive story line. The next book, If I Die is due out this fall and I can not wait to find out what these characters are up to next!

Rating: A-

Books in this series ~

My Soul to Lose (prequel novella)
MY Soul to Take
My Soul to Save
My Soul to Keep
Reaper (MStS prequel novella)
My Soul to Steal


  1. I've still have to read the first book. I know Tabs and you enjoy this series so much, but I'm blocking ^_^;

  2. Nath ~ Did you read the free prequel, My Soul to Lose? You can download it here -

    Tabs has good taste. :)

  3. I took a leap of faith that you don't include spoilers in your review... thank you! LOL.

    I think I'm going to have to buy this one.. I've borrowed all the others from the library, but not one library in the entire county has this book yet? What the heck? I can ask my library to buy it, but (1) budget cuts so it may not happen and (2) the last time I did that I had to wait 3+ months and I REALLY want to find out what's going to happen next! Anyway....

    I am not at all surprised by Sabine's character and intention per your review. I thought she was like that in the short story I read about her in the Kiss Me Deadly anthology. And Nash made promises to her in that book that made me go, "Uh oh... shit." And I wanted him to take them back. AND that story happened before he even MET Kaylee. It was right before the car accident, I'm pretty sure. *stressful sigh* ...

    I'll let you know my thoughts when I get to this one, Leslie. Thanks for the review!

  4. Christine ~ I try to remember to post spoiler warnings. :)

    I was lucky and got it from the library. Otherwise I would have been using my Borders coupon for it. Really love this series!

    I read that short story and wasn't happy about Sabine joining the cast. She provides plenty of conflict, maybe too much...

  5. I FINALLY got this at the library and recently finished reading it. I agree with your grade AND all of your comments. It was a really intense read--on both the typical teenage drama AND the soul stealing drama.

    I continue to like Kaylee a ton, too. Like you, I thought she should be spending more time with Nash since she truly does still love him--especially once Sabine came on the scene. At the same time, I thought Nash should have made greater efforts to put Sabine in her place and NOT spend time with her in his bedroom! That made me mad, too. Also, there was more of an explanation of how Nash could help Sabine with her mara abilities in the short story I read from the Kiss Me Deadly anthology that I expected to be further explained or explored in this book. I was so surprised it wasn't brought up here! Kind of odd. Maybe it will be spelled out a little more in the next book. WHICH, by the way... I'm DYING to read!!!!! But cannot find it anywhere. AGAIN. Will have to wait for the libraries to catch up... GRRRR! Did you read If I Die yet??