Incarnate by Jodi Meadows
Series: Newsoul #1
Published by HarperCollins on January 31st 2012
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.
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 afraid of what her presence means. When dragons and sylph attack the city, is Ana to blame?
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.
What is a soul? How do we really know we have one? What happens to us after we die? Are we reborn or do we simply disappear? Questions like this have been around for centuries… and even plague me every once in a while. At first glance, Incarnate seems to be a different kind of reincarnation tale. And I was excited to dive in.
Incarnate, on the surface, appears to be an altogether new type of reincarnation tale. Instead of two lovers being born again to find one another, our MC, Ana, is brought into this world with no past.. no history to bind her to the world like our other characters. She is a newsoul. A mystery that confounds the rest of the society. What happened to the previous soul? Where did Ana come from? No one really knows. But this difference makes her stand out. She is alienated. Shunned from the family who should love her… the society who should accept her.
I loved Ana pretty much from the get go. While her character could have gone down a few different paths, Meadows, thankfully, chose to make Ana a strong character. No woe-is-mes here. Yes, there is a vulnerability to Ana's character. But a strength too. Despite all that has been done to her, she still holds her head up high and embraces her differences. You go, girl!
The world of Incarnate was quite impressive. A vast world filled with multi-faceted characters and a belief in this reincarnation system that both left me awed and scratching my head. Meadows lays the religious aspect a little thick to explain the reincarnation system, but here, I think it may have been needed. It lays the foundation for this society and works pretty darn well to explain many of the questions that the book presented.
Unlike many reincarnation novels, our romance here is a new one. Ana and Sam have not fallen in love for countless new lives. They do not have the memories of old love to make things run smoother in the relationship. And I was completely swept away by this. Their love was sweet… touching… refreshing. I was head over heels with this romance.
Meadows has a winner on her hands with Incarnate. A completely fresh outlook on a topic that I adore. Unforgettable characters. A romance that will make you swoon. This was definitely a book that I was up till the wee hours with… and I loved every minute.
Kate is the co-blog owner of The Book Monsters. I am a twenty-something year old who is passionate about reading. I currently hold a B.A. in English and am married to my high school sweetheart. We have two (cat) children, Gracie and Kit, who are total divas. I have an insane and possibly unhealthy passion for reading. You can usually find me with my nose buried in a book.
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