Author: Victoria Scott
Series: Dante Walker #1
Genre: Young Adult, Romance, Fantasy
Release Date: April 2, 2013
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Sealing souls is nothing personal. Dante’s an equal-opportunity collector and doesn’t want it any other way. But he’ll have to adjust, because Boss Man has given him a new assignment:
Collect Charlie Cooper’s soul within ten days.
Dante doesn’t know why Boss Man wants Charlie, nor does he care. This assignment means only one thing to him, and that’s a permanent ticket out of Hell. But after Dante meets the quirky Nerd Alert chick he’s come to collect, he realizes this assignment will test his abilities as a collector…and uncover emotions deeply buried.
First Sentence: I’m in a slump, off my game, throwing up bricks, swinging and missing.
I received an eARC through NetGalley. Thank you!
I wanted to love The Collector. I really did.
I first heard about The Collector from the huge hype it was getting; how Dante was so awesome and smart and sexy and just basically, everything. I immediately got my hopes up because he sounded like someone who I would find very entertaining to read about and make me laugh like crazy. Instead of The Collector being a fast and amazing read that I couldn’t get enough of, I really struggled to get through the first two-thirds of the book. The Collector is probably one of the books that took me the longest to read this year: two entire weeks with only 352 pages in the ARC. On the first two days, I read half of The Collector, and then dropped it for awhile. To be honest, I wanted to DNF it so badly, but I couldn’t because I have to write a proper review for Netgalley because, let’s face it, they deserve a proper review for letting me read The Collector for free.
Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed reading about Dante. Kind of. I mean, he hates cats like I do and described my feelings about them perfectly. I couldn’t have done it any better.
At the end of the walkway is a cat. It struts with arrogance. You’d think it just won the Nobel Prize. But it didn’t. Know why? Because it’s a freakin’ cat. (ARC 15)
I just had to put that line there.
Anyway, back to the original topic; throughout the book, I felt nothing for Dante; I didn’t hate him or dislike him like I was supposed to, I basically felt nothing towards him. I was just reading about him. In fact, I didn’t even judge him at all, which is completely out of character for me when I’m reading. The only reason I can think of why I felt nothing towards Dante is because the entire first two-thirds of The Collector bored me to death. The only important things we learned about Dante was his job, what he does and how he does it, Boss Man, and heaven and hell. The real action doesn’t start until the last two-thirds of the book.
My main problem with The Collector is that in certain parts of the book, it’s too unrealistic and too good to be true. No, when I say “unrealistic,” I’m not talking about Dante being a soul collector, I mean, that could really happen, who knows? I’m talking about the natural stuff: What kind of parent will let someone (a guy in this case) they don’t know hang out in their house alone with their teenage daughter? I don’t know about you, but that just screams TEENAGE SEX EQUALS BABIES to me. I mean, sure, Dante’s false excuse of “My mom’s Lisa Walker. You guys met at church, I think?…She said you’d remember her,” might be acceptable at first, but as Dante is continuing to hang out in their house, Charlie’s grandmother should
Also, what kind of parent would believe that their teenage boy (Blue in this case) is staying over at another teenage boy’s house because he felt sorry of him? I mean sure, that might happen (although it’s highly unlikely), but wouldn’t Blue’s parents call the guy’s parents first to double-check that what their son is saying is really true? I know I would, especially if I have a teenage son/daughter. It just doesn’t make any sense; I doubt any parents are really that gullible in real life. (If they are, they need a lesson about teenagers and drugs and sex.)
Blue’s turn. “Blue, call you mommy. You’re staying the night with Dante Walker. I’m the new kid in town, and you feel sorry for me. (ARC 160)
The Collector also made me realize that I also have a new pet peeve: Why do every single time I read a book, a person who dies while driving dies because they were trying to avoid hitting a deer? I don’t know how many times I’ve read about this in books (and not to mention seen it in movies); how hard is it to actually hit the deer and survive, and maybe even save your own family while doing it? The Collector is one of those books where someone(s) dies while driving just to avoid hitting a deer. (I’m trying to be as non-specific as I can because if I go in depth, this deer scene would be a huge spoiler for those who haven’t read the book yet.)
Memories of that night wash over me. The sound of rap music pounding through the speakers of his Beamer. The way he sang out of tune to Jay-Z in an attempt to show me he was with it. Later, the screech of tires as the deer stepped out into the road. My head rattling as the car flipped twice and slid to a stop. (ARC 229, 230)
One thing I really enjoyed reading about is when Dante goes through a huge character development in The Collector, and it really shows. It was slow, subtle, and I’ll have to admit, a bit sweet as I watched him slowly change from that cocky conceited self-interested jerk to a caring person that accepts people for who they are. The best part was when Dante acknowledged that he had changed. It made me smile and finally want to cheer for him after about two hundred and fifty pages into the book.
But for me, I’ll always remember what I was.
I was the center of the universe.
I was the king of the world. (ARC 248)
Victoria Scott threw so many twists and turns at me in the last few chapters of The Collector that I was so not expecting; I was just gaping at the book in shock. Honestly, the last two-thirds of The Collector was the only part of the book that completely captured my attention and made me want to read on more. If the entire book was like that, The Collector would definitely get a higher rating from me than a 2.5, but sadly, it wasn’t.
Overall, I would definitely, sadly, not be reading the next book in the Dante Walker series, The Liberator. I just don’t think that the Dante Walker series is my type of book (even though he’s the first person that I’ve read about who hates cats as much as I do for the exact same reasons).