Soulswift by Megan Bannen (Book Review)

Publisher: Balzer+Bray
Page Count
: 480

Honest question: Why has no one told me about this book before!?!?

I’m definitely not the most up to date person when it comes to book releases, but after reading the marvel that is Soulswift, I can whole-heartedly say that this book deserves more attention. I’m going to do my very best to not spoil anything for you, while still trying to convince you to pick up this book in the near future!

First off, I want to point out that Soulswift is a standalone fantasy, which is a rare bird to come across anyway (pun fully intended). So very often, you have to brace yourself for multiple volumes to release over an extended period of time to get to your conclusion, but somehow Bannen managed to pack a fully formed story, neither rushed nor dragging, into this one single book. I am in awe of that woman’s writing!

Stories about faith, even made up ones, are never easy in my opinion. There is such a fine line between religious fanaticism that feels harmful and a naivete towards the world and other beliefs that might be frustrating and annoying at times (although it didn’t feel annoying to me here), but offers great potential for growth. Bannen allowed us to draw our own conclusions, hearing different aspects and exploring the various angles. It felt very natural for the world she created and I loved that I knew that there were always going to be three sides to the belief system: Gelya’s version, Tavik’s story and the truth.

Why should I worship something that cares so little for me, or for you?

As I moved through Soulswift, I found myself attached to Gelya and Tavik more and more. Their enemies to friends to lovers dynamic and banter was endearing like nothing else, but they were also great characters on their own accords. They both have to overcome a vast amount of prejudice and yet their bond is so strong and frankly beautiful. You will weep for these characters, without a shadow of a doubt, because they are so strong and dedicated and devoted. By the end, it’s just a question of who to.

Aside from really enjoying the religious aspect, the created world and the characters, it was the small things that made this novel stand out for me. It challenged gender norms and stereotypes without throwing it in your face, but rather letting the characters question their world view through dialogue and realistic situations. For example, I cannot recall another Fantasy novel where a character got her period while on the road, which wasn’t dismissed here, but also not made into this awkward big deal. I really appreciated that!

Life and Death
All things in balance.

Why wouldn’t this book be for you?

Aside from the topic of faith, which might not be everyone’s cup of tea, be it fictional or not, the ending isn’t something every reader will love either. I’m fully in the camp “a good ending doesn’t mean a happy ending”, but if you seek a story that will leave you warm and joyful, this is not it. I’m not saying it ends it utter devastation, because everything makes sense and is very beautiful in its own way, but also tragic. So very tragic and sad. I cried.

fly, little soulswift, fly

Fazit: 5/5 stars! 100% one of my new all-time favourites!!!


Could I convince you to take a look at Soulswift? Was it on your radar before? Let’s talk!

Mini Reviews: Comic Book Edition

Since the mini reviews were quite well received last month and I didn’t have the best of reading months in July, I just wanted to do a short round up of all the comic books I read. I hope you like reading those too!

Click on the covers to get redirected to Goodreads!

Deadly Class, Vol. 1+2

Deadly Class, Vol. 1: Reagan YouthDeadly Class, Vol. 2: Kids of the Black HoleI wanted to check out Deadly Class so bad before the show starts airing (check out the trailer here) and I got very lucky when a friend of mine decided to unhaul some of his comic books and I got them really cheap. I’ve heard so many people raving about this one, I wasn’t really sure what to expect. I can definitely see the appeal in terms of the storytelling and dialogue, because it’s more than kids just beating each other up. It’s about depression, anxiety, moral ambiguity, tough circumstances and even tougher choices and all of it in a high stakes setting.

“This isn’t a dress rehearsal Marcus, you only get the one turn. Life is a series of unique opportunities. It’s our job to find the happiness in each one.”

Still, as I read on, I just found that the art style and the violence weren’t for me in this type of format. I think I can still see myself enjoying the show a lot, but as soon as I realised I was skipping panels because I really didn’t want to read or see what was happening, I gathered I probably won’t be continuing with the comics, even though I would like to know what will happen in the overall story.

Fazit Vol. 1: 4/5 stars! It was a wild trip!

Fazit Vol. 2: 3/5 stars! This kind of proved to me that I probably won’t be reading this on the long run.

Faith, Vol. 1

Faith, Volume 1: Hollywood & VineI gravitated towards this story because they want to adapt Faith for the big screen and I really wanted to check out what her character was all about. I can’t say that Valiant comics are what I usually strive for, so I kind of missed Faith’s origin story (which was in a previous series and not in this one) but I didn’t feel too disoriented.

As a character, I really loved Faith! It’s not often that you get to see a plus-size female superhero and such a funny, geeky and badass one at that. (The pop culture references were on point!) She charms you even when the story is only meh and you want to know more about her regular life, romantic entanglements and alliances.

On a side note, I am also very curious about the casting should they go forward with the movie! I can’t think of anyone from the top of my mind, which is sad if you think about it.

Fazit: 4.5/5 stars! I can see myself really following this character for a while.

Magritte: Ceci n’est pas une biographie

Magritte: This is Not a BiographyI don’t know if any of you know this about me, but René Magritte is one of my all time favourite artists. It’s not even all his paintings or themes, but he was one of the first artists I really discovered for myself and quickly learned to distinguish in exhibitions (Seriously, I can spot a Magritte a mile away). I don’t remember why, but we learned a lot about him when I was around the age of 10 and his life story just sort of stuck with me. I won this book and to get a whole graphic novel that’s basically a homage to his life, art and shortcomings as well as accomplishments was really great.

It’s a weird story for sure, but so was Magritte’s art. I liked that they kept the surrealist approach while making it their own and also educating people on parts of his life some might not have known about. It was really fun and with a certain unexpected ending.

Fazit: 4/5 stars! Such a nice short homage to Magritte!

That’s it for today! Have you read any of these or do you have thoughts on them? Let’s chat in the comments below!

Doctor Who Christmas Special 2014

Before I start this post: I wish all of you readers happy holidays! It’s been a great year and I am thankful for all the support I’ve got from you. I’m truly happy about every visit to my page, like and comment! Thanks!

Now, on to Doctor Who! Despite the fact that the episode was named after the single most terrible Christmas song ever produced, meaning Last Christmas, the episode wasn’t nearly as bad. Beware of Spoilers ahead!

Last Christmas … I don’t even know where to start. This was definitely the most Inception-like plot ever, because there were just so many dreams in dreams and technically we still don’t know if they woke up (just like in the movie). There were parts I really liked and others I didn’t like so much. So, without further ado, here are my thoughts on this years’ Christmas Special of Doctor Who:

  • Nick Frost as Santa together with his elves was simply hilarious. Also I was very happy to see Nathan McMullen, who I first encountered on Misfits, in this episode. I like the way they incorporated Santa and left it open as to whether he truly exists or not, even though we don’t actually have Santa in my country and I never believed in him, the thought of him is quite nice. And just fyi: I like getting tangerines. They are totally yummy!
  • Leave it to Steven Moffat to make dreaming unsafe. I generally didn’t dislike the episode, but it was really confusing and even repetitive at times. A very interesting concept, but at times copied from Inception (as I mentioned above).
  • Unfortunately I didn’t care that much about the other dreamers. The only thing that was a bit interesting to see was where and how they woke up.
  • A lot of people wondered why the episode was called “Last Christmas” because there were so many rumours about Jenna Coleman leaving. In truth though, it was Clara‘s and Danny‘s last Christmas together. It was heartbreaking to see them part yet again. Danny is just too perfect, even if he was just a projection in a dream.
  • Well, Jenna Coleman didn’t leave, although I read somewhere that she had a change of heart at the last minute and that they had to rewrite the ending of the episode. (This information was never actually confirmed though) It was originally planned that Clara would die at old age with the Doctor visiting her for the last time. It doesn’t really matter now that that didn’t happen, although that part of was brilliant. The prosthetics didn’t look as terrible as they sometimes tend to look and I just loved the whole scene. The way the Doctor still saw her the way she looked like when she was young and Clara telling him that there was only one other man than Danny, but that he was impossible. In the end, I am very happy though to see her for at least another half-season. We’ll see if she still stays after that.
  • Clara and the Doctor on the sleigh was so cute and lovely. Another one of my favourite moments!
  • I’m not exactly sure I can pinpoint it, but a lot of this episode reminded me of Donna. The way Clara dreamt about her life with Danny, made me think of Donna while she was saved in the library and the Dream Crabs really reminded me of that thing on Donna’s back during Turn Left.
  • While we still don’t know when Series 9 will continue, we have a title for the first episode: The Magician’s Apprentice. Sounds interesting.

It may still not rank as one of my favourite Christmas Specials, but it wasn’t bad at all. I quite liked it, what about you? What are your thoughts?