19 April 2013

(ARC) Book Review: The Collector by Victoria Scott

Title: The Collector (Dante Walker #1)
Author: Victoria Scott
Genre: Young Adult Paranormal
Published: March 25th 2013 by Entangled Teen
Format Acquired: ARC from publisher via NetGalley (Thanks!)

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.

Ah yes, another one of my most anticipated books. I love being part of the VMafia (represent!) and I simply couldn't wait to get my hands on this book. Everything about it intrigued me: how does "sealing souls" work? A demon book boyfriend? Female MC's a nerd? Sounds freaking awesome, right? Right.

This isn't just one of those books where the guy's impossibly hot and you'll immediately like him just for that. In fact, Dante's a douche - from start to finish. The only difference is he gradually focused his douchebaggery elsewhere as the story moved forward so he actually becomes less of a douche. But what's so likable about him if he's such a bad guy? His sense of humor.
I've never been average. I look like a movie star and move like an athlete. That didn't change when I kicked the bucket. It's okay to be jealous, to covet me. It's a delicious sin - tastes like chicken.
When I read that line it took me a while to get over it. Heck I'm still not over it. Dante was so funny that all the mean things he said didn't sound that mean. But he was still mean, let's not forget. Him being a demon and all.

I never got bored with the story because of Dante's narration that was both entertaining and witty. I also liked his whole transformation. Dante remained his funny self when he decided to go against the grain so I didn't feel like anything was rushed or unreasonable. It was inevitable but it didn't appear all too dramatic (I thought it would). It was just right.

Then we have Charlie. I honestly didn't expect Charlie to be... well, an ugly nerd. I thought she'd at least be passable-but-quirky-cute and Dante would just fall head over heels for her. But he didn't... at least not right away. It took a long while. A makeover became all too inevitable once Dante kept commenting on everything he finds physically unattractive about Charlie. Just to give you just how unattractive Charlie is, here's how Dante described her:
This is the girl Boss Man is after? She looks like a porcelain doll... beat three times with an ugly stick.
Douchebag, right? But Charlie still saw through all that and he liked him for him. That's the most attractive thing about Charlie - her heart (cue "awwww"). Oh man that's cheesy! I'm serious though. She's so sweet and forgiving despite going through a lot of crap. I liked how quirky she was and how simple it was to like her.

Insta love. Here's what I liked about the love story: Dante didn't fall in love instantly. I often characterize insta love by the span of time the leads spend together that I forget to consider how or why their feelings developed. It was clear that Dante saw the good in Charlie and she affected him greatly. He's a demon after all. It's like he got an intervention when he started spending time with Charlie. So I get that he fell madly in love with her. What I didn't get and like though was how Charlie was able to reciprocate the feelings. I know she's got a really good heart and she saw through Dante's mask from day one (day one!) but I didn't understand how she could return the same kind of love Dante felt. I just didn't. In fact, when Charlie started ignoring Dante and was being overly dramatic, I got super annoyed. It was just so confusing! She obviously has feelings for him but she's acting all weird. It was so not her. I'm just glad the book's written in Dante's POV. The love story made sense from his side. Charlie's? Not so much. I'm hoping for more insight from Charlie in the next book though. 

Now the thing I wasn't so hot about was the big twist in the story that turned everything upside down. The story just blew up into a bigger thing that I don't think really fits well with how the story was going through the first half. Everything was all light in the beginning but when the conflict came it sort of gave the book a different feel. Plus, it was weird. Charlie becoming the light of the world who's going to bring peace for hundreds (I think) of years? A bit far-fetched if you ask me.

Anyhoo. I'm eager to see how the next book will turn out. There were so many things left hanging and we need lots of explanations! And Dante! Lots of Dante. ;) ---the creepy winky face. 

I really liked it as a whole because there was never a dull moment for me. Even though I didn't quite like a few things here and there, what matters is The Collector kept me entertained. 4 stars for Dante and the awesome Victoria Scott!

My Rating
(Refer to rating system)


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About the author
Victoria Scott

Victoria Scott is a teen fiction writer represented by Sara Crowe. She's the author of THE COLLECTOR trilogy (Entangled Teen) and the FLOOD AND FIRE trilogy (Scholastic). Victoria lives in Dallas with her husband and hearts cotton candy something fierce.



  1. Yay! I've heard good things about this book. I think I'll totally get my hands on it when I can. :)

    1. Hurray! I hope you get it! And that you like it too :)

  2. Here's what I understood: Charlie fell in love with Dante at first sight. That's what one of the best friends told Dante, and I think this love stems from how she suddenly felt wanted and seen by somebody aside from her two sidekicks. She was an outcast, she didn't fit in with the rest of the people, and here comes Dante, a hot guy who could be the next top model, who also gave her a chance to let loose, who stayed by her, who decided to go all the way with her volunteer program, etc. etc. For us, it may seem fickle, but for someone who was shunned by other people, it must have been like having a knight in shining armor.

    That's my two cents, anyway :)

    1. Even if. To me it still screams infatuation, not love. But I get what you're saying and how that could possibly be the reason. It just doesn't seem right to me. Thanks for your insight Faye! I can't wait for The Liberator to come out! :D

    2. Maybe at first, it was. But you can see how both of them developed and got to know each other. That's the most important part.

    3. Right! :)

      You're very passionate about this book :))