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Review: Incarnate by Jodi Meadows

Monday, January 2, 2012
5 Stars: Incredible
Series: Newsoul #1
Hardback: 374 Pages
Publication: January 31, 2012  by Katherine Tegan Books

NEWSOUL
Ana is new. For thousands of years in Range, a million souls have been reincarnated over and over, keeping their memories and experiences from previous lifetimes. When Ana was born, another soul vanished, and no one knows why.

NOSOUL
Even Ana’s own mother thinks she’s a nosoul, an omen of worse things to come, and has kept her away from society. To escape her seclusion and learn whether she’ll be reincarnated, Ana travels to the city of Heart, but its citizens are suspicious and afraid of what her presence means. When dragons and sylph attack the city, is Ana to blame?

HEART
Sam believes Ana’s new soul is good and worthwhile. When he stands up for her, their relationship blooms. But can he love someone who may live only once, and will Ana’s enemies—human and creature alike—let them be together? Ana needs to uncover the mistake that gave her someone else’s life, but will her quest threaten the peace of Heart and destroy the promise of reincarnation for all?

Jodi Meadows expertly weaves soul-deep romance, fantasy, and danger into an extraordinary tale of new life.

Heartbreaking and mesmerizing, Incarnate is the story of a new soul born into an ancient civilization where everyone else has been reincarnated for thousands of years. Before reading Incarnate, I never thought about what life would be like if my soul were to be reincarnated life after life and what I would do if the cycle of reincarnation were threatened. Upon leaving her mother for the first time in her eighteen years, Ana is about to find out what people will do when their utopian life is jeopardized.

It was interesting to see science fiction blend with fantasy in the sense that humans have advanced technology from lasers to SED's and Heart is set in a fantastical realm with mystical creatures. Nevertheless, the heart of the story lies with the character development, an area in which Jodi Meadows excels.

Ana is a sweet girl, insecure because her own mother mistreats her, believing that she is a mistake. In spite her introverted nature, however, Ana is a gutsy girl. She doesn't give into despair. Instead, she fights to find a reason for her existence and for a meaning to life, and she expresses the same attitude when faced with physical danger. It is because of this determination that she is able to meet Sam and other people who believe in her.

Sam.  He is a beautiful, beautiful soul. From the beginning, he accepts Ana for who she is, goes at her pace, and takes a stand for her. The romance develops at a realistic pace, with both sides having their own doubts and hesitations. When it does bloom, it is impossibly sweet and passionate. I love how the two come to fit together, as though they're destined to be together.

Angry souls. Sylphs. Dragons seeking the destruction of an ancient temple. Danger looms over Heart even as Ana searches through records to find the reason behind her birth and another soul's death. I'm looking forward to were Jodi Meadows takes the Newsoul trilogy next!

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An ARC was provided by the publisher for review purposes

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