Title: My Tethered Soul (Reaper’s Rite #2)
Author: Dorothy Dreyer
Publication Date: August 19, 2014
|It’s been months since Zadie faced her sister’s Reaper, months during which she’s been under her mentor’s magical protection. But now that she’s turning seventeen, that protection is about to run out.When dark forces lure Zadie to wander at night, she’s manipulated into committing unspeakable acts. With her friends and family at risk, Zadie must try to use her powers to break free from the Reaper’s grasp, or surrender to the Reaper’s Rite, which can only lead to death.
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My Tethered Soul is one of those books I find hard to put my thoughts into words. I really enjoyed reading My Sister’s Reaper (the first book in the series), so guess how excited I was when I finally got my hands on the second book! And indeed, it definitely exceeded all of my expectations; however there were some passages that were pretty predictable.
The story picks up a few days before Mara’s seventeenth birthday, a significant day for Vilas. After defeating Mara’s reaper Zadie now has to deal with her own one, which, on the other hand, has found some way to manipulate her and make her do terrible things. I was really fascinated by the reaper’s powers, or rather the mind game thing he was playing on Zadie: The way it influences Zadie’s emotions really intrigued me right from the beginning, or simply the fact it makes her lose control over her body at night. I could really feel her defenseleseness, but it also provided some great space for some “friends time” where her closest friends could actually show off their best sides. It was amazing to see how commited and supportive they are of her (especially her BFF Naomi and her boyfriend Gavin), and even volunteer to “babysit” Zadie at night (those passages, by the way, were also some of the most priceless and hilarious scenes in the whole book). Add to that Lilura’s dry humor that we have already met in the previous book — there is nothing I can complain about the secondary characters – at least those who we have already met in My Sister’s Reaper!
What is more, the setting turned out to be much darker and sombrer than in the first book in the series and much more fast-paced than the previous books. Seriously, there were so many creepy scenes and it still makes me shiver when I think about them!
The storyline was both intriguing and brilliant, however, it did not totally blow my mind. There were just too many scenes that were really predictable and follow that typical paranormal genre pattern. Nonetheless, there were so many things about the story I enjoyed about the book, making it a unique and fun read.
Such as the family dynamics, especially the relationship between Zadie and her sister. You see, having been haunted by a Reaper, it is not easy for Mara to open up to other people again, but for me, Dorothy Dryer did a great job in capturing her fears as well as depicting how she and her sister slowly find trust in each other again.
Also, I was really surprised the book picks up further on Zadie and Mara’s relationship(s) to their mom. For me, this aspect was especially well-elobaborated since I kind of could totally empathize with Mara’s mixed feelings and coldness — she never conceals her emotions, not even from her own family, and I really liked that honesty. Oh, and did I mention she does get a boyfriend in this book? Their relationship is priceless! (Hint: Clash between coldness + badass-ness = lots of fun time).
I think it’s exactly that black and white thing that makes the story interesting. Moreover, Dorothy Dreyer manages to complement the dark reaper/witch theme in the book with her quirky and humorous writing style, making it a real page-turner.
That being said, I do have to say there is one thing that was really bugging me while I read the book which is….well, the rising frustration throughout the book, which Zadie, of course, is facing as well. There were so many moments in this book where I literally jumped up and screamed at Zadie to please pleeeease break free from the reaper’s spell (okay, kind of), or basically, just to do something. This frustration, in a way, also affected her character development, which was a little bit too slow for my taste since she quickly finds herself at the end of her tether (title pun intended).
Then, on the other hand, there were moments where she acted just too rash for my taste; the reasons for some choices she made were too blurry even though it was quite clear the outcome of those certain actions would be…self-defeating I guess? But despite my complaints, I do feel Zadie had been an incredible character. With all the flaws and strengths she had, Dreyer definitely created a well-developed protagonist.
We also meet some new characters and most of them turned out to be really great characters, mostly because of their eccentricity (okay, that sentence sounds kind of strange..). However, I sometimes felt as if Dreyer tried to “squeeze” those characters into the book in order to (i) give the story some change and (ii) enable the whole main cast a Happily Ever After. For me, this, as well as quite a lot of scenes with them in it felt a little bit too imposed. It felt a bit like watching a play — as if there were some stage directions that say that one person has to be rebellious, one person has to hate Zadie and her friends, one person has to immediately be friends with them etc. In this way, the ending of the story was pretty predictable.
But overall, I really enjoyed reading My Tethered Soul, despite its flaws and predictability. It definitely does the awesomeness of the first book justice and it is a fantastic conclusion to My Sister’s Reaper. If you are a fan of paranormal books with a little horror twist in it, I can’t recommend you this book enough!
Giveaway Information: Winner will be drawn September 13, 2014
- Four (4) winners will receive a digital copy of My Tethered Soul by Dorothy Dreyer (INT)
- One (1) winner will receive a digital copy of My Tethered Soul by Dorothy Dreyer AND a $10 Amazon Gift Card or B&N Gift Card – Winner’s Choice (INT)
Dorothy Dreyer has always believed in magic. She loves reading, writing, movies, and spending time with her family and friends. Half-American and half-Filipino, Dorothy lives in Germany with her husband and two children.