Seeker (review)

Monday, February 9, 2015



Title: Seeker (Seeker #1)
Author: Arwen Elys Dayton
Rating: 2 Stars

“The night Quin Kincaid takes her Oath, she will become what she has trained to be her entire life. She will become a Seeker. This is her legacy, and it is an honor. As a Seeker, Quin will fight beside her two closest companions, Shinobu and John, to protect the weak and the wronged. Together they will stand for light in a shadowy world. And she'll be with the boy she loves--who's also her best friend.

But the night Quin takes her Oath, everything changes. Being a Seeker is not what she thought. Her family is not what she thought. Even the boy she loves is not who she thought.

And now it's too late to walk away.”
*Received a copy via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.*

I saw Seeker on Goodreads a while back and quickly added it to my TBR. The book sounded promising and I was curious. When I saw it on NetGalley, I requested it right away. My request was approved and I eagerly opened the ebook.

Quin wanted to be a Seeker. Her family has been Seekers for generations, even her love interest hoped to become one. A Seeker was a champion of justice, a protector of innocents: someone noble. But the thing is, being a Seeker was not what she is training to become. And on the night of her induction, her world was shattered, for the illusions were wiped away leaving only the truth no one wanted her to learn until there was no chance to go back.

On page one, I really liked Quin. Here she was fighting, possibly for her life, and she's making snarky comments in her thoughts. Only, as the story progressed, that girl with potential vanished. The Quin in the second and third parts of the story were not the same girl we met. And that was such a shame. While there were aspects of her character change that benefited her, I kind of hated her. She moped and dragged along. She was all goey over the badass John, and then over her cousin Shinobu.

John had the makings of a serial killer if denied one more time the one thing he's always wanted. Because the boy seriously lost his prospective being driven by his thoughts of revenge and his promise to his mother. When we first got a glimpse of him, I knew I wasn't going to love him, but I thought I might still like him. Then the tail end of act one happened and it kind of through me out of the book. I didn't hate his character, but I also didn't care about him anymore.
Shinobu, I honestly know the least about him. He pined for his cousin (they may be "distant" but they were raised in the roles you might expect from first cousins) so it was kind of disturbing on a psychological level. Then when things got bad, he headed for drugs. Any respect he might had won after the events of end of part one were destroyed in part two, leaving me with no characters I liked.

The book started out promising. We had these kids training to be Seekers. Any reader worth their library can see pretty quickly what they were really being trained for. We get hints and teases about this great big Seeker world that was apart from our own. (A futuristic world perhaps? It was so hard to figure this basic stuff out.) But then the focus of the novel turned from her oath and discovery, to romance. One is a push away from becoming evil, and the other is related by blood. I cannot ship these couples at all.

Now I love romance novels, but I want the book to have a plot beside the mushy bits. The closest I can say this story has as an overall storyline is who controls the Athame. Everyone wants it for their own reasons. But that's about it. Instead, the primary focus of the trio seems to be Quin and wanting her for their own, among a whole lot of nothing.

Seeker is told in three parts. Part one was by far the best. It was full of action, danger, mystery, and I liked the characters here.

But then we abandoned the promise of this great Seeker world and fall into part two. While I get why the characters end up where they are (Except for Shinobu, what the hell man? Really?) this part of the novel should have been massively condensed. It was way too long and too many pages were devoted to posturing, moping, and all around uselessness.

I was so confused. Things happened and explanations were made, but I just could not warp my head around it all. The promise of a badass heroine was abandoned. We got an additional POV character and jumped into her past. Things that could have been mentioned in passing, if they were indeed needed to move on, instead were detailed in long chapters that were not necessary. But there was no explanation for when the events happened, I was forced to assume because it was before she got her position. Then there were more chapters with John's past and his mother that were not necessary because things were already explained to us by then. A few quick details could have been given in a way that didn't drag the story down if we needed to learn more information.

Then, finally, we moved on to part three and move towards the climax. And I still don't know what they plot of the novel was aside from the romance and stopping a certain someone.

I really loved that we got to travel in this book. We spend a lot of time in Scotland, then a large portion of the book in Hong Kong. Then we spend sometime in London, and make a quick jaunt to France. Hong Kong was unexpected, and a nice change of pace for the YA world. As much as I love Scotland, I love the whole Hong King setting the author brought to life.


Words To Live By

"It would be nice to make it through alive. It'd be a shame if he split my head open now. I'm so close to success." (Quin 10%)

"I'm a seeker of the dark and hidden ways between. Evildoers beware..." (Quin 15%)

"When someone you love is take, you realized what's important. you don't want someone else deciding who lives and who dies. You'll never be safe." (John 29%)


Overall

This book had so much potential that was squandered on characters who failed to deliver. The author had promised a great world with characters who would right wrongs and champion the weak. Instead I was left more drama than in a high school cafeteria. Days later, I still find myself confused over several plot points and key details.

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