The Soulkeepers (The Soulkeepers, #1)
by G.P. Ching
Genre: Fantasy/Paranormal Romance
Reading Grade: Young Adult
Publishing Type: self-published
Publication Date: March 17, 2011
Source: Kindle store purchase
Rated: Teen (13+)
The night sexy and mysterious Abigail Silva comes to Jacob Lau's bedroom window, he doesn't believe she's real let alone a supernatural force who lives just across the street. Abigail says she's his Helper sent to train him as a Soulkeeper, a gifted warrior responsible for protecting human souls. But Abigail has secrets, and as Jacob is pulled into her strange world, he learns those secrets could cost him his family, his girlfriend, and even his soul.
What a great story! The Soulkeepers revolves around half-Chinese/half-Caucasian Jacob Lau, a teenager living alone with his mother on the island of Oahu. He suddenly wakes up in a hospital after having a near-death experience, and afterward, his mother goes missing. Now apparently orphaned, an uncle he has never met takes young Jacob home to a rural town in Illinois called Paris (ironically nothing at all like the famous city in France).
Across the street from his uncle's house lives Dr. Abigail Silva, a strange, but uber beautiful woman who eventually tells Jacob all about his true identity. He is a Soulkeeper, a descendant of God who has special abilities to manipulate the elements in order to protect the souls of mankind on Earth.
I love how cleverly the Judeo-Christian mythos is weaved into the story to explain what Soulkeepers are and how they came to be. Jacob doesn't even believe in God, as he is a sort of atheist, but that which the Old Testament claims just keeps coming to pass all throughout the story in unique ways. All of the supernatural gets explained by what is contained mostly in the book of Genesis and it's all very fascinating.
Jacob is realistically written and easy to sympathize with, as is Malini, his best friend. I liked Dr. Silva, and discovering her back-story and that of her super intelligent cat, Gideon, helped turn both of them into some riveting characters. We discover the mystery surrounding Jacob's mother, but there is also a mystery surrounding his deceased father and his family. I get the feeling what little was explained in this volume is not the true extent of it. I'm sure there's more to the Laudner family than meets the eye, so I'm looking forward to the next book to see what will be revealed.
Besides having a winning cover (Jacob is gorgeous!), The Soulkeepers casts well-developed characters in a plot that naturally and gradually unfolds its mysteries over the course of the story just perfectly, leaving the reader wanting to uncover more and more. Book 2 is planned for a September 15, 2011 release.
My score: 4.5 out of 5 stars.