Summary: He makes good girls…bad.
Dante Walker is flippin’ awesome, and he knows it. His good looks, killer charm, and stellar confidence have made him one of hell’s best—a soul collector. His job is simple: weed through humanity and label those round rears with a big red good or bad stamp. Old Saint Nick gets the good guys, and he gets the fun ones. Bag-and-tag.
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.
I’m so lucky that I snagged an ARC of this book and was able to read it early. I’ve been sitting here for five minutes trying to come up with a single word to describe THE COLLECTOR, and I can’t. I just love it too much. Dante Walker is a bad boy and knows it, and he’s used to getting his way no matter what. he’s the Boss Man’s right hand, and he’s sealed more souls than the other five collectors combined—which is why the Boss Man wants to give him a promotion. The only catch: Charlie Cooper is his polar opposite. Dante is smooth and mischievous; Charlie is klutzy and awkward. Dante’s the life of the party, the snap-your-fingers-and-get-any-girl-he-wants guy. Charlie? Well, she’s the picked-last-for-dodgeball girl. So naturally, when the two cross paths, Dante assumes Charlie will be quick and easy to corrupt, and that he’ll be on his way to that promotion in no time flat.
The only problem? Charlie’s not the weak-willed girl she seems on the surface. As Dante gets to know his assignment, he soon realizes that he’ll have to work harder than ever if he wants to seal the deal. And to make matters worse, he thinks someone’s watching him, trying to keep tabs on his situation so the Boss Man knows what’s going on.
There are so many wonderful things to say about this book. It’s author Victoria Scott’s first YA novel, and I really think she nails it. THE COLLECTOR is a unique story that touches on the supernatural (there are soul sealers and collectors, after all), and the loveable, true-to-teenage-life characters deal with everyday high school pressures on both sides of the popularity line. The novel is fast-paced, which makes it very easy to sit down and lose yourself in. (Ahem … I may or may not have read the entire book minus the first three chapters in one sitting. Okay, I did. I won’t lie.) As I read, I picked out people I knew from my own high school days in each of the characters, and I’m sure all other readers will be able to do the same. I can’t wait to see more from this author.
About the author: Victoria Scott is a YA writer with a die-hard affection for dark and humorous books. Her work is represented by Sara Crowe of Harvey Klinger literary agency. She has a master’s degree in marketing, and currently lives in Dallas with her husband, Ryan.
Her first YA book, THE COLLECTOR, will be published by Entangled Teen, April 2013. It is the first book in a trilogy. Her second YA series will begin with THE BRIMSTONE BLEED and is being published by Scholastic in spring 2014.