Let me start by swooning. I've been waiting for Asunder since I devoured Incarnate in one sitting about this time last year. I loved Incarnate so much, I jumped on board with the street team for Asunder. And, of course, I pre-ordered it so that it would arrive on my Kindle and I could start right way.
Summary (From Jodi Meadows' website)
In this second book in the Incarnate trilogy, Ana discovers the truth
about reincarnation and will have to find a way to embrace love and make
her young life meaningful. Once again, Jodi Meadows explores the
extraordinary beauty and shadowed depths of the soul in a story equal
parts epic romance and captivating fantasy.
Spoilers in white.
Why I read it: Incarnate--the first book in the New Soul series--came out last year. As you may remember, I fell in love with it. Ana's growth as a character, the world building, and most of all the beautiful, beautiful prose. When I finished it, I wanted to know more. I was curious to see where Jodi would take the story--how she would build the romance, how she would continue to grow Ana. I was not disappointed.
ZOMG Yes: The most exciting part of this story for me (other than the kissing--the kissing is so good and so everywhere and so...sorry, swooning again) was the focus it put on the Sylph. For those of you who haven't read Incarnate, Sylph are these dark creatures that burn you if they touch you. They're pretty much feared by everyone in Heart. In the spirit of a lover of fantasy, I wanted to learn more. And I did. But my favorite thing? Spoiler: She didn't actually tell us what the Sylph were. She left us with this little gem of a mystery to mull over until the next book comes out.
While Asunder was obviously a part of the New Soul series, it stands alone. I always worry when reading a series that the second book just isn't going to be as good as the first. I especially worry about this with a trilogy--that the middle book will just be filler. Not the case with Asunder, it was just as wonderful as Incarnate, maybe even better.
I love the romance in this story, in case you couldn't tell. And I love that Jodi always leaves it with somewhere to go. It never feels forced or too fast or too slow. It's just right. And with the way both Ana and Sam love music, something in me wonders if Ana wasn't supposed to end up with Sam--if they were soul mates kept apart by reincarnation.
Speaking of reincarnation...Spoiler (HUGE spoiler. Like, much bigger than the last): The whole inside the temple seen at the end? Creepy as hell but also awesome. I never, ever expected that the people of Heart knew about the whole devouring thing (still trying to not be too spoilery in case you couldn't stop yourself from highlighting). But my favorite thing about this, is that when Ana discovers the truth, it doesn't destroy her love for Sam or for her friends.
Kthxbai: This book was beautiful, and well worth the read. If you haven't read Incarnate, you really should. Especially if you like kissing. Oh, my. The kissing.
I'm excited to see where Jodi goes with the third book--what new secrets she has to reveal, what climax she has in mind (totally didn't see the Asunder climax coming). I'm really interested in watching Stef grow as a character, perhaps more than anything else (other than the Sylph thing I mentioned earlier).
Five chiweenies to Jodi Meadows.