Okay, so about a year and a half ago, at the Conestoga writers’ conference, I sat in on a panel with Rachel Vincent and her agent, Miriam Kriss. Rachel mentioned she was writing a book about a girl who finds out she’s a banshee. I thought Wow. What a cool idea. I HAVE to read that. So, when the first one, My Soul To Take, came out, I was all over it. Now, I love the Shifters books. A LOT. (Although I was not so happy with a couple of things that happened in the last one. I do have faith though, and am eagerly awaiting the next one in March.) I think Ms. Vincent is a talented writer, and she tells a dang good story, so her YA story about banshees was kind of a must-read for me.
If you haven’t read My Soul to Take, you should. Seriously. Teenager Kaylee thinks she’s going crazy when she starts having an uncontrollable urge to scream, and people drop dead around her. The second book, My Soul to Save, has Kaylee trying to figure out why teenage pop stars die in front of her, and she has no desire to wail. This means the dead girls don’t have a soul, and of course, Kaylee is determined to find out why these girls are trading their souls, which involves sneaking around and trips to the dangerous Netherworld.
There’s a lot of the typical teen angst in the books (Apparently, banshees aren’t exempt from this.), overbearing parents, and school drama. But Ms. Vincent captures these things so well you really feel like you’re the one going through it all. Since a lot of my writing is YA, I’m truly amazed by this (and hopeful that one day I might manage to capture some small part of it in my own work). If you like fast-paced YA books set in a truly original world (Or, in this case, the DFW area, which made me a tiny bit homesick.), you should definitely read both of these books.