Claire Daly: Reluctant Soul Saver by Michele Brouder, e-book, 180 pages, published in 2015.
Claire Daly has just finished school and has dreams of becoming a librarian. She is tall with flaming red hair and is in love with her best friend, Chas, who is completely clueless. She is just an average teenager, living with her Mam and her brother, getting dragged to Mass and Holy sites by her Gran. That is until an extraordinary thing happens when she spills holy water on her hands, and suddenly her whole life changes. She is an Illuminata, a soul saver, it is her destiny and now she is in danger. It’s a lot to cope with, but there are more family secrets waiting to emerge, and a handsome young man called Ari keeps appearing.
This is a captivating paranormal novel with a fast plot, and a number of twists. I enjoyed it greatly, reading it quickly and staying up late because I had to know how it ended! Given the subject matter, there are plenty of references to God, Hell, demons, holy sites and souls. However, there is no need to be religious to understand or enjoy this story, everything was explained and described well. It was easy to follow and quite exciting, with some good action sequences.
The setting in Ireland sounds lovely. It must be so beautiful out on the peninsula and along the coast. The description of the landscape made me want to visit there some day.
Claire is a wonderful character! She is extremely reluctant to take on the job of an Illuminata. She wants to choose her own life path, which is fair enough, but her destiny just won’t allow it for the time being. So she is stuck spending her summer learning to utilise and control her newfound powers with her severe aunt, a much more experienced Illuminata. This leaves Claire grumpy, sarcastic and difficult, just as I picture an adolescent when they are not getting their own way. I got to know Claire quite well through the story, and I liked her a lot. Julia is quite different to Claire, and though she was very strict and unyielding, I came to like and admire her. Claire’s interaction with Ari was intriguing and exciting too.
Claire Daly: Reluctant Soul Saver entertained me. There was a bit of romance and some violence, making it more suitable for middle high school students and up. This is only the start of the Soul Saver series, and I am very much looking forward to Claire’s next challenge.
*I received this book as a digital copy from the author, who asked me for an honest review of this book. I did not receive any other remuneration, and the review is composed entirely of my own opinions.