Author: Megan Miranda
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Childrens, 368 pages
Expected Publication Date: February 3, 2015
*ARC received by publisher via NetGalley
Alina Chase has been contained on an island for the last 17 years—whether that’s for the crimes of her past life, or for her own protection, well, that depends on whom you ask. With soul-fingerprinting a reality, science can now screen for the soul, and everyone knows that Alina’s soul had once belonged to notorious criminal, June Calahan, though that information is supposed to be private. June had accomplished the impossible: hacking into the soul-database, ruining countless lives in the process.
Now, there are whispers that June has left something behind for her next life—something that would allow Alina to access the information in the soul-database again. A way to finish the crimes she started.
Aided by three people with their own secret motivations, Alina escapes, only to discover that she may have just traded one prison for another. And there are clues. Clues only Alina can see and decipher, clues that make it apparent that June is leading her to something. While everyone believes Alina is trying to continue in June’s footsteps, Alina believes June is trying to show her something more. Something bigger. Something that gets at the heart of who they all are—about the past and the present. Something about the nature of their souls.
Alina doesn’t know who to trust, or what June intends for her to know, and the closer she gets to the answers, the more she wonders who June was, who she is, whether she’s destined to repeat the past, whether there are truths best kept hidden—and what one life is really worth.
I really liked Soulprint and here's why:
1. Interesting premise. The idea for this, that there's a test and you can find out the history of your soul, is absolutely fascinating. Very thought-provoking, as it brings up nurture versus nature, faith and religion, etc (the religion is mentioned more in passing, with the focus on DNA, experiences, if you're always the same basic person, etc.). Basically, in this world, the government has decided that the information should be kept private and you shouldn't be judged for who you were in a past life, but you can find out the information when you turn eighteen. It's up to you. And, in fact, some people leave their money to their next selves so if you check and find out who you were, you may have been left with a fortune. Fascinating, right?
2. Fast-paced. The book starts with Alina escaping and she is on the run the whole book so there's a lot of action, but there is some down time which allows for the reader to get to know the characters.
3. Alina is a strong main character. She's been sheltered her whole life and trying to be a different person than her previous soul, June. For example, studies show that one thing that passes down from soul to soul is whether you are right or left handed. June was right handed so Alina forced herself to be left handed. But at the same time, she's not sure whether she really is just a different version of June. Is she drawn to the same things? The same people? Making the same mistakes? The questions and worries she has ring true.
What didn't quite work for me was the fact that Alina is the only one who is locked up. I just didn't understand how that happened and how it was allowed to happen. There's an explanation, but I didn't necessarily buy it. It would have made more sense if everyone who was a criminal in their past was locked up in some form or fashion, rather than just her. (the usual evil government type of story, although in a way it was refreshing that it wasn't). By the way, there was a study done that showed that there was a .80 correlation between being a criminal in your past life and current life.
Soulprint is a fast-paced, entertaining novel with a unique and compelling premise. I enjoyed it!
Posted by: Pam