Thursday, October 4, 2012

Review: Soul Weaver by Hailey Edwards

Title: Soul Weaver
Author: Hailey Edwards
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Release Date: 7 August 2012

Since the accident that nearly took her life, Chloe suffers from acute agoraphobia. Living alone above her family's bookstore, she spends restless nights terrified by strange visions . . . until a mysterious stranger appears and offers her salvation. Chloe is drawn to the ethereal, gorgeous Nathaniel-but her haunted soul warns her there is more to him than meets the eye.

An archangel who roams Earth collecting souls of the newly departed, Nathaniel is the sole witness to the accident that should have taken Chloe's life. Seduced by the purity of her soul, he defies Providence by saving her life. But his attempt at kindness marks Chloe for damnation, and makes her an unwitting pawn in a game of unholy ambition. Now together they must fight the demons of Hell itself-for a love that defies the boundaries of Heaven and Earth.

Angels seem to be the new it thing in paranormal romance, they're everywhere I turn. Luckily, there's nearly as many different takes on them – and their demon counterparts – as there are stars in the sky. Hailey Edwards once again enchants with her original world where "demons" are just angels doing what needs to be done to take the non-righteous where they need to be. Yes, they are fallen, but they're not evil and what they do is very necessary.

Nathianiel was incredibly interesting, not just a soul hunter but he then took those souls – from dark-hearted people – and wove them into wings for his brethren to replace the wings they'd lost since coming to earth. He's loyal, nearly to a fault, kind, and absolutely just. When Chloe's bright spirit is nearly lost he does the unforgiveable and binds her with a piece of his own sooty soul.

What he couldn't have known is the consequences this would bring. They say no good deed goes unpunished, and it's certainly true in this case. When he finds out the tainted soul he's supposed to collect is none other than Chloe's, and it's all his fault, Nathaniel is horrified and decides to do everything he can to help her. Maybe it's time a good deed is rewarded for him…

Chloe has nightmares every night, of someone taking her life, stealing her soul, the darkness surrounding her. Previously uneasy around strange places and people, Chloe retreated deeper into comfortable surroundings, becoming agoraphobic and alone. When the sexy carpenter shows up on her doorstep to fix her porch, he tempts her in ways she couldn't have possibly imagined.

It's not often that one reads about an agoraphobic heroine. After reading this book I could see why. Though I really enjoyed Chloe as a character, it just got to be a bit…well, boring. She's nice, and cares about other people, and loves her job as a bookseller, but reading about her, admittedly well-deserved, panic attacks and being frightened all the time got to be just a bit too much for me. Once Nathaniel started to pull her out of her shell, and she gained some security with the lack of nightmares, I started to like her a great deal more.

Seeing these two fall in love, and realize they both needed, and were needed by, the other was really heart-warming.

There are some secondary characters that round out the story and make for an interesting suspenseful plot, and I'm looking forward to reading more about what happens there. Overall, Hailey Edwards once again writes an engaging, unique world and characters that leaves me eager to come back and visit again, and again.

Grade: C+

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