Word Spelunking

Soul Catcher (The Soulkeepers, #4) - G.P. Ching When you get to the fourth book in a series, it can get quite hard to write helpful, coherent reviews without getting repetitive and spoilery, so I apologize if this review is vague and brief. But, the great thing about reviewing Soul Catcher, the fourth book in G.P. Ching's excellent The Soulkeeper's series, is that I can gush about how this series only gets better and better!Like books one through three in The Soulkeepers series, Soul Catcher focuses mostly on a select few characters, and in this book Dane is given the chance to really shine. Malini, Jacob, and the other Soulkeepers find themselves continuing to train in Eden, trying to figure out Lucifer's next move, while desperately in search of Cheveyo, a new Soulkeeper who has gone missing. When the Soulkeepers embark on a mission to find Cheveyo, Malini insists that Dane not only be a part of the mission, but is an integral part. Meanwhile, Dane must sort through his confusing and exciting feelings for Ethan, the telekinetic Soulkeeper.This series and author G.P. Ching continue to amaze and enthrall me! Soul Catcher proves that this series hasn't slowed down or suffered one bit. The angels and demons mythology is still incredibly fresh and captivating, the characters still intrigue and feel like old friends, while Ching's storytelling still rocks!I've stated in earlier reviews that I love Ching's take on angels and demons, Heaven and Hell, and the humans caught between them, and she really takes her mythology to some unexpected and wild places. What I really appreciate about this series' Good vs Evil premise, is that it's not all black and white, and it certainly isn't cliché. Ching has created a premise that is smartly complex and refreshing, while still being relatable and believable. Like books 1-3, the world-building in Soul Catcher is great. Ching continues to develop and paint the physical worlds of Hell and Eden, while the history of the mythological world is deftly expanded.I want to mention, like I do in my other reviews of this series, that even though there are different religious elements in these books, they are in no way preachy. The author does not throw any religious beliefs, values, or practices in the faces of readers. To me (a non-religious person), these books are simply awesome supernatural/fantasy reads with intriguing religious aspects.The storylines, world-building, and storytelling are all fantastic in this series, but it's the characters that really sparkle! And in Soul Catcher Malini, Dane, and Ethan are brought center stage and given a chance to show what layered, lovable, and well-developed characters they are. Malini continues to be such a strong, admirable heroine with so much depth and heart. And Dane! Oh, how far this guy has come, from bully to compassionate hero, and how much I've grown to love him! And Dane and Ethan?! Be still my beating heart...Ok, I'm gonna get all fangirly here because I ADORE the friendship and blossoming relationship between Dane and Ethan. We see far too little LGBT characters in YA, especially in YA books that aren't contemporaries, so I'm so glad Ching has written about an out and proud gay character (Ethan) and a questioning character (Dane). The genuine friendship and romantic feelings between these two feel so real and breathtaking. I love that Ching has taken the time to effectively explore Dane's confusion and excitement over his questioning sexuality and feelings for Ethan amidst all the supernatural elements and action in Soul Catcher.And the baddest baddie of them all, Lucifer, continues to be one of my fave characters in this series. I just love what Ching has done with him and how devilishly charismatic and charming she's made him. What can I say? I have a strange fascination with the fallen angel.Soul Catcher ends in a terrifically cliffhanger-ly way that has me so excited for book five!MY FINAL THOUGHTS: Soul Catcher is an awesome addition to an already superb series! Fans of the series will love where G.P. Ching takes her story and characters, and those just starting the series have a fantastic book four to look forward to. A MUST read book in a MUST read series!

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