Monday, January 19, 2015

Review: Soulprint

SOULPRINT
Megan Miranda
Young Adult/Sci-Fi/Mystery
368 pages
Bloomsbury
Available February 3rd
Source: ARC from publisher for review

THE STORY (from Amazon)
Seventeen-year-old Alina Chase has spent her entire life imprisoned on a secluded island—not for a crime she committed in this lifetime, but one done by her past self. Her very soul is like a fingerprint, carried from one life to the next—and Alina is sick of being guilty.

Aided by three teens with their own ulterior motives, Alina manages to escape. Although she’s not sure she can trust any of them, she soon finds herself drawn to Cameron, the most enigmatic and alluring of the trio. But when she uncovers clues from her past life, secrets begin to unravel and Alina must figure out whether she’s more than the soul she inherited, or if she’s fated to repeat history.

This stunning “new world” romance from acclaimed author Megan Miranda will leave readers wondering how far they would go to escape the past.

MY THOUGHTS
Soulprint has a horrifyingly fascinating premise, the idea that a current incarnation of our soul could be punished for the sins of a prior life the type of thing that keeps the gears in our minds turning from beginning to end. We thankfully learn early on what crime June–the soul our protagonist Alina now carries–committed that was serious enough to warrant the imprisonment (or “containment” as those watching Alina call it) of her future self despite that self having never stepped a single toe out of line, thereby satisfying enough of our curiosity to fully ground us in Alina's story. Once we have solid footing and a basic understanding of the level of fear surrounding June's actions, Ms. Miranda kicks the tension and mystery up a notch and we find ourselves as desperate to uncover the secrets June left behind as Alina is.

Alina is a young woman it's nearly impossibly not to feel for, her entire life defined by the actions of someone else as she pays for the mistakes of the girl who came before her. It would certainly be understandable if she were to let her circumstances get the better of her, existing in a melancholic state of "why me"type questions, but instead the Alina we first meet is someone who uses her time wisely. She teaches herself how to build things that might come in useful in any type of escape attempt and, once on the run, approaching her rescuers with an appropriate level of wariness. She makes smart decisions despite her limited dealings with people other than the guards tasked with watching her, observing the interactions between Cameron, Casey and Dominic and quickly deducing what she needs to do to gain and keep her freedom.

The synopsis puts emphasis on the romance between Cameron and Alina, but that aspect is relatively subtle, taking a definite back seat to the mystery surrounding June's crime and subsequent death seventeen years prior. It's present enough so as to not feel like an afterthought, the build-up of trust between them both beautiful and believable, but not so prominent as to overshadow the dozens of questions we have about the concept of tracking a soul from one lifetime to the next. When we reach the last page we are nothing short of blissfully satisfied, June's motivations all those years ago made clear and majority of our nagging questions answered, allowing us to revel in what the future might hold for Cameron and Alina.

Rating: 4/5

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This book was sent to me by the publisher free of charge for the purpose of a review
I received no other compensation and the above is my honest opinion.

27 comments:

  1. It's the first time I hear about this one but it sounds complex, riche and original. I don't think I've read something with this idea yet and it's always intriguing. Thanks for the discovery!

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  2. Bitchy, so I could do bad things but my future self gets the punishment, not cool

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  3. Damn it, I just took this off my wishlist. Now I have to go put it back on.

    I mean... thanks for the excellent review! :)

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  4. Oh wow, that sounds like a most intriguing read for sure! And one full of mysteries and tension!
    I had been rather in the fence about this one, but now I feel like I really must add it to the wish list for sure!

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  5. You know, I read the first 2 chapters of this and loved it, but then promptly forgot about it for some reason. I really need to go back and finish this because it sounds awesome!

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  6. This is definitely the kind of book that makes you think, and I'm relieved that the romance ended up being a secondary thread instead of the primary one as the blurb suggests.

    Carmel @ Rabid Reads

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  7. Oh wow, this sounds like a really awesome book! Haven't really heard of the premise used anywhere else (that or I'm just not well-read enough) and thinking about it if it does happen in real life sends me chills... who would want to be responsible for something you had no control over? D: Maaaan, I wish I had a copy of this now! I could just eat it up!! I'm adding it to my TBR :)

    Faye at The Social Potato

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  8. Gorgeous review, Jenny! I think I'm going to really enjoy this one. I love the unique idea behind the book and Alina sounds fantastic. I dismissed this because I wasn't the biggest fan of the author's debut novel, but I'll definitely be checking this out now.

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  10. Sorry about that- I think I logged in wrong and accidentally deleted my comment :(
    The whole mystery aspect sounds well done. This made me very curious about Juna "Ms. Miranda kicks the tension and mystery up a notch and we find ourselves as desperate to uncover the secrets June left behind as Alina is." Gah, what did she leave behind, lol. Wonderful review as always Jenny:)

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  11. I haven't read any of Miranda's novels and didn't know she had a new one out but the premise of this story is incredibly unique. I really haven't come across anything like it before and the fact that it is executed well and that the characters really stand out... I definitely need to pick this up! Thanks for putting this on my radar, Jenny! :)

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  12. I haven't read any of her books yet but I know I have two of them. This ones sounds pretty excellent though and might need to go higher up the list than her previous books!

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  13. Who needs hell when you can be punished in your present reincarnation? Or maybe hell doesn't exist at all? I like the premise of this book!

    Great review, Jenny. :)

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  14. Is this a standalone? It sounds like it from your review. What a chilling premise. I am totally intriuged.

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  15. This was quite the read wasn't it? At times I couldn't tell if I liked it or hated it because of how crazy the concept was!

    Wonderful review Jenny!

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  16. Oh, this sounds quite interesting! I'm glad you enjoyed it, Jenny. I love when we can really feel for the protagonist, and I'm definitely keeping this in mind. Lovely review!

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  17. This sounds so interesting! I love that premise. I also can see me getting frustrated b/c of that same premise. LOL Oh I'm so curious about this one and I do think I need to read it for myself. I love that the ending was so satisfying. Totally sold me!

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  18. That actually sounds really good! I would probably be slightly annoyed but I love the premise!

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  19. You know how we can have weird book hang ups? The premise of this sounds AWESOME, but... my brother's name is Cameron and... yeah.

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  20. Never heard of this one before but WOAH that premise!! Definitely never heard of anything like it before and that's huge for me because I hate it when books I read start to blend together because of lack of originality. I'm also loving that cool cover! I'll have to add this one to my tbr now - thanks for the excellent review, Jenny!

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  21. I keep hearing fantastic things about this one! I can't wait to get a copy when it comes out. You're right, the set up is fascinating and also frightening. I'm all about these slow burn romances, especially if there's a strong mystery focus to the story. I'm even more excited to read this one now!

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  22. I started this one but put it aside (not the book's fault -- I've been in a terrible reading slump!). I really need to pick this one back up.

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  23. I was actually not the biggest fan of this one. For the majority, I found myself really confused. I was also really bored because it wasn't as action-y as I wanted to be. I didn't mind the characters but they didn't make an impact on me. Glad you liked it, though!

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  24. I tried two books by this author and totally struck out with both off them so I was reluctant to pick this one up. I do like the chilling premise- a nice twist on the whole Minority Report vibe. I might check the library and see if they have this one.

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  25. Ooh this sounds like a fascinating premise! I hadn't heard of this but I definitely have to add this to my TBR pile now. I'm already feeling for Alina and so curious as to what really happened with June. Lovely review!

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  26. Awesome review. I only read one other book by this author and I would totally pick this one up as well.

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  27. This sounds like a pretty awesome book! Your review is the second one I have seen for it, actually. I like the sound of the premise and it makes me think of a question we wrote an essay for at school: Can we really be to blame for our actions or is it already imprinted in our DNA and childhood?

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