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Soul Weaver by Hailey Edwards

Soul Weaver

by Hailey Edwards

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4.5 stars

Archangels, fallen angels, demons... *le sigh* That's basically what my brain picked up when I first read the blurb to Soul Weaver. That is, after I stopped drooling at the cover. Seriously, that is one hawt cover!

One thing I loved about this book, besides the paranormal theme, was Chloe's agoraphobia. Wait, that sounds bad, I know. I didn't love that she had it, I loved the way it was portrayed. It was extremely accurate and for a few moments, as I was reading about Chloe's episodes, I was sucked in, almost feeling her fears as if they were my own. It was very vivid and frightening and it showed how debilitating it was for Chloe to have it, how scary. I think everyone that has a phobia or at least a great fear of something can probably relate to how Chloe is feeling (I know I do).

Then there's Nathaniel. There's just something about him, you know? Besides the fact that he's a fallen angel, besides the aura of danger that surrounds him, there's something incredibly hot about him. I mean really, what guy (or angel guy) can work his ass off on a porch and be sexy? Well, Nathaniel does it.

Chloe was interesting. Besides her "small" problem, she seems like a normal person. I liked the fact that you can see how by the end of the book she's a totally different person. She seemed more confident and stronger than when the book started. And I liked her, despite being a heroine who couldn't do much because of her phobia. Maybe that's why I liked her? I mean she was unique in that way, I don't think I've ever read about a character with agoraphobia before.

Soul Weaver was a good start for a series and I liked the mythology used in this series. And it was really fast paced without feeling rushed. I'm curious what happens next. I'd definitely recommend this book ;) ( )
  Rubys.books | Oct 15, 2016 |
The idea of this book was really good, I just didn't connect with it the way that I'd like to. Don't get me wrong it wasn't a bad story, there were some parts that I really liked, it just wasn't as engaging as I'd like it to be.

Chloe is agoraphobic, and doesn't leave the house anymore since her car accident, in which unbeknownst to her Nathaniel saved her life. Their souls have formed a connection to one another, and she experiences Nathaniel's soul collecting in her dreams. While Chloe does seem to get braver by the end of the book, for most of it I felt she was just weak and I like my heroines a lot stronger.

Nathaniel's character was really interesting. He is a fallen angel, who fell by helping his brother and nephew. Now he collects the souls of the most undesirable criminals of our world. He is a really good being, and is starting to feel a bit burnt-out from his work.

The relationship moves really fast between the two and although there is a soul connection between the two, I don't think that it was believable that it progressed as quickly as it did.

***Review Copy provided by NetGalley for an honest review*** ( )
  Chrystina.Williams | Dec 4, 2015 |
This book started a little slow, but once it starts moving you better hold on to your seat! You will not want to put it down. Nathaniel was a very sympathetic figure, and remained that way throughout, however don’t make the mistake of pitying him, he is one big bad alpha hero willing to take care of business and get down and dirty to do it.

Chloe on the other hand seems a little pale in comparison especially in the beginning. Chloe definitely started to come into her own and towards the end you're definitely rooting for her. Unfortunately, her Agoraphobia seemed more like a forced plot point and felt contrived.

The bad guys were seriously evil and all you could ever wish for in a bad guy. They definitely gave me the heeby jeebies, and I can’t wait to find out how they’re defeated in following books. When you really understand how twisted one of the bad guys is, it’s shocking how far he’s fallen and how deluded he is. It definitely pulls you farther into the story because on the one hand you want him defeated but on the other you want someone to shatter his delusion so he can see how insane he is and be consumed in guilt and horror.

This book was very well written overall and very evocative; I give it a 4 out of 5 stars, and highly recommend it to those looking for a book with angelic tendencies that isn’t your usual angelic or fallen angel romance.
( )
  LaCello | Sep 21, 2013 |
Review courtesy of Dark Faerie Tales.

Quick & Dirty: A strange romance and a different take on soul reapers may either leave you shaking your head or enjoying the romance for what it is.

Opening Sentence: Soft snores carried from the darkness on Nathaniel’s right.

The Review:

Soul Weaver offers up a different take on the grim/soul collector mythology. The story begins with Nathaniel as he is collecting a soul. It is not an entirely pretty process with the victim pleading to live. When he leaves he comes across an accident involving a woman with a beautiful soul. The only problem is he only takes bad/damned souls and no angels are coming for the woman’s soul. She has developed no attachments to the world so her soul is blind to them. So Nathan does the only thing he can think of – save her life – even though he risks his own in the process.

Chloe knows she should have died in the car wreck. Soon after she begins to have debilitating nightmares of a strange man ripping souls from people. She is oblivious to the fight for her own soul. These nightmares and the accident have triggered Chloe’s agoraphobia. She no longer leaves home and she has trust issues. Chloe also really needs help running the bookstore her parents owned – conveniently run below her apartment – so she seeks help. Neve answers the help wanted ad. She is a strong willed young woman with secrets of her own and she helps Chloe in ways that Chloe never would have thought possible. And then another mysterious stranger shows up at her door offering help that she just can’t refuse.

Nathaniel didn’t realize the damage he would cause Chloe and her now damned soul. He was hoping an attachment with Neve would help Chloe’s soul ascend to heaven. Chloe and Nathan each feel an attraction for the other but believe that acting on it would go nowhere. Chloe doesn’t want to burden him with her phobias and Nathan has been forbidden from human love and attraction.

Soul Weaver is told from Nathan, Chloe and few other soul collectors’ third person point of views. The grim/soul collectors in Soul Weaver are quite different. They only take damned souls while angels come to take the pure and attached souls. There is a hierarchy of jobs and an interesting take on their wings hence the “weaver” title. I will say that I am a little confused as to why soul collecting was the way it is, how come Chloe’s soul was unattached when she had parents even though they had already passed on?.

This novel is an interesting paranormal romance with some good and bad parts. If you don’t mind a virgin love interest in a self-imposed cage, then you may like Chloe. She does knock down some walls in her psyche as the story goes and she is definitely not the same person that she starts out as. There is some action but most of the tension in this novel involves Chloe working through her misgivings and Nathan figuring out how to save her. There was one thing that did baffle me about the story. I figured Chloe was dreaming of Nathan, since she had a part of his soul in her but she didn’t react to him when she first saw him. I thought she had either been dreaming about his past exploits or she could see him as he was now when he collected. I was quite surprised when that wasn’t the case.

Overall, if you like your novels a little different then you may want to give Soul Weaver a try. I enjoyed the otherworld mythology enough that I would give a second novel in this series a try.

Notable Scene:

The skin covering her palms and knees hissed and crackled. The ground burned so hot, she jumped to her feet and cried out as she blistered. The stench of flesh roasting on her bones made her gorge rise.

White light brought her head around in time to see Saul tumble through the portal after her.

“Clever girl.” His teeth flashed in the darkness. “I underestimated you.”

Vicious snarls rang out from below at the sound of his voice. She had the sick feeling wherever they were was very, very high and whatever made those sounds was very, very hungry.

He lunged forward and Chloe dove aside as the portal’s light flickered. She skidded across the scorched ground as a scream rose in her throat, met with the heated air, and dissolved.

Saul lunged a second time and she rolled away, blinking back tears as her forearms burned. The pain blinded her senses until a split-second’s relief cooled her flesh as her body whistled through air and she fell. Their portal closed and took the faint light with it.

Impact stole her breath when she hit the ground. She gasped as Saul straddled her waist. Wind stirred by his wings blew sweltering sand into her eyes as his rough hands cupped her jaw.

“I never considered the side effects your bond with Nathaniel would have.” He studied the shears in her hand. “Whatever he did to bind your souls has enabled you to use his shears. They must recognize that part of him in you, which means they can feed off your soul as well.” His eyes glittered. “That means with your soul in my possession, the shears will obey me. I won’t need my brother’s cooperation.” He cast Chloe a pitying look. “I’m afraid I won’t be needing your body, either.”

FTC Advisory: Forever Yours/Grand Central Publishing/Hachette Book Group provided me with a copy of Soul Weaver. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review. ( )
  DarkFaerieTales | Apr 28, 2013 |

Nathaniel fell from Heaven for covering up his brother's romantic involvement with a human woman. As his punishment, he not only lost his wings, but he was forced to work for Delphi (ruler of Hell), and he's known as the Weaver of Souls. He collects corrupted souls, which he then weaves into cloth to make wings for the other harvesters. Nice way to recycle. Nathaniel knows better than to break the rules, but when he witnesses a car accident, he's pulled to the scene by a soul so pure, he can't ignore it. When his counterparts, angels, fail to heed the call and collect the dying woman's soul, it's because her soul has no (loving) ties. With no tether and no angels to escort her, her soul would linger or just be lost. He makes the split decision to save her by bonding a piece of his soul to hers, thus giving her a second chance to find love and build those ties. He doesn't realize that his seemingly selfless act will have far-reaching consequences for the both of them.

Chloe McCrea was supposed to die, but by a miracle, she lived. You'd think a near death experience would make anyone live the rest of their lives to the fullest. Not Chloe. Before her accident, she had always had social anxiety. Her accident only made her condition worse. Suffering from agoraphobia, she's holed herself up in the only place she feels safe – her apartment and her bookstore. And she's plagued by nightmares about a man she doesn't know. When Nathaniel shows up at her store nearly a year later offering his services as a handyman, she senses there's something a bit dangerous about him, but that doesn't stop her from succumbing to his charms. Just when she begins to live a little, death stares her down one more time. Will she be strong enough to escape fate one last time?

Soul Weaver is Book #1 in the Wicked Kin series, and my first read by author Hailey Edwards. The story got off to a good start, introducing Nathaniel and his struggle to do a job that he doesn't enjoy. The method of soul collecting was interesting and different from anything I've read thus far. We also get a good glimpse into his character – his devotion to his family and his tendency to play the martyr. Chloe was a mess. Not just because of her issues, but because she couldn't/wouldn't leave her home. I could only take so much about the running of a bookstore. I suppose it made a nice getaway for some Nathaniel/Chloe/Neve bonding, but I had hopes for a little bit more. I think I liked the secondary characters more than the hero and heroine. Neve was the yin to Chloe's yang. For a woman, who suffered at the hands of an abusive ex-husband, I thought Neve was surprisingly perky and forthcoming in her attempts to help Chloe with her love life. I liked Bran as well and often felt sorry for him and the way he was treated for being a Nephilim (half human, half angel). The villain of the story was so misguided, he was really creepy.

I can't say that I believed the falling in love part between Nathaniel and Chloe. When Nathaniel first encounters Chloe, he's drawn by her pure spirit, and finds her pretty (?). But there was no build-up to his growing attraction to her. What attracted a person like her to him? Was the soul bonding responsible or was it merely a catalyst to make him really “see” her? Then there were the changes in Chloe that just happened too quickly to be believable (considering she stayed a frightened woman for almost 80% of the book). But my most pressing question would have to be: The reason that angels didn't appear to take her soul at the very beginning was because she had no personal ties to loved ones. It begs the question “what about her deceased parents?” Do they not count?

All in all, I did like the story, and the story line has a lot of potential for an interesting and sensual series. Perhaps a few things weren't clear enough in this first in a series, but I would read the next book.

Thank you Grand Central Publishing via NetGalley for the ARC.

Disclaimer: A review in exchange for the ARC was not promised. The views and opinions expressed in this review are my own, and in no way represent the views or opinions of the publisher/distributor. ( )
  MsRomanticReads | Apr 12, 2013 |
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