Book Review: Soul Ties (Soul Ties #1) by Lisa Swallow
On an English university campus, Ava is hunting Keir. She needs his Nephilim soul to trade for her freedom.
But Ava didn’t expect to find terrible secrets about the fate of the souls she takes. Or fall in love.
Soul-hunter Ava has retrieved hundreds of souls from demons but has never been assigned the dangerous mission for a Nephilim soul. When she arrives on campus and meets Keir, she discovers he has secrets more valuable than his Nephilim soul – secrets she could trade for the life she wants. She also meets Dahlia, the human girl with an inexplicable hold over Keir, and secrets of her own.
When she uncovers the true fate of the souls she takes back to her superiors, and what Keir is doing to try and prevent it, Ava’s world is turned upside down.
Forced into a battle where the lines between good and evil are blurred, Ava is faced with the choice between saving herself by betraying those around her, or helping Keir and risking her life.
Ava’s ultimate choice: retrieve Keir’s soul and live, or join his battle and risk going to Hell.
*Full disclosure we were provided an ARC by the author in exchange for an honest review.
Within the ever expanding YA/NA universe there are many genres and sub-genres. I will let you in on a little secret, I am a sucker for a good old fashioned angel/nephilim book. I don’t know what it is but I fall for those winged warriors every time. The problem with this genre is there is a propensity for it to be the same story over and over. That is why Soul Ties was such a breath of fresh air. This was not a typical angel/human love story, no far from it. This story was about a bad ass soul hunter set out to capture the soul of a nephilim in exchange for her freedom. Keir, the nephilim in question, isn’t having any of that. What plays out is an opposites attract story on a whole other level. Splice that in with suspense, romance and mystery and you have one helluva book. Ava is an interesting protagonist.
She possessed a unique look (can I get a hell yes on the pink hair) and sassy attitude, but there were times that I wasn’t even sure if I liked her as she constantly wavered in her loyalties. However, it struck me that I as the reader was realizing the myriad of emotions that Ava had to go through being bound by her duty and her burgeoning love for Keir.
She had kind of a bitchy personality and while I liked her saucy mouth and witty comebacks, at times she acted in ways that had me not being sympathetic to her character (the fact that she saved human souls but was so down on everything about being around humans was very confusing). Ava was flawed but she grew on me. Keir, was interesting, there was one scene in the beginning where he was kind of a jerk, ok in his defense, Ava had interrupted him killing demon and releasing a soul, but as time went on you begin to realize the burden this angel is shouldering. His mission to save souls made him an admirable character, and his piercing blue eyes didn’t hurt either. The romance had a lot of sizzle but if I’m being honest some of the scenes with Keir and Ava didn’t have the emotion I wanted because Ava would end up literally running away at key moments. However, it was entertaining reading about Ava’s struggle with her feelings for the scorchingly hot Keir.
And I am just going to say this without spoiling anything but there is one scene between Keir and Ava in her dorm room that was a 4 alarm blaze. Seriously, smoking hot. Dahlia was another interesting character in this story. At times she was painted as a bit of a shrew, and I found her overprotectiveness of Keir a bit grating, so I am hoping in book two (focusing on her and love interest Jack) she softens just a bit as her own side story is just as intriguing. I did have some issues with the plotting of the book, I wish that the Calestia and the Will thing was delved into a bit more. I appreciate that there wasn’t a large info dump in the beginning of the book as some authors are prone to do but I would have liked a bit more meat in that area.
Also the ending was good and satisfying but I just wanted a bit more from it. All in all this is a different and unique take on the angel genre, and as an author debut it was fantastic.
I was thoroughly entertained and I am excited to see where this series goes. Torn Souls (Soul Ties #2) will be out sometime this year. We will keep you posted on any updates as they become available.
I do this thing where I try and cast the books after I read them. Let me know in the comments what you think!
Ava to me was model Charlotte Free
Keir was Joshua Brand
Follow author Lisa Swallow for future releases including her latest New Adult Release: Because of Lucy out now