DNF Review: The Weight of Souls – Bryony Pearce

Pearce_Bryony-WeightOfSoulsTitle: The Weight of Souls
Author: Bryony Pearce
Strange Chemistry
Rating: DNF

Sixteen year old Taylor Oh is cursed: if she is touched by the ghost of a murder victim then they pass a mark beneath her skin. She has three weeks to find their murderer and pass the mark to them – letting justice take place and sending them into the Darkness. And if she doesn’t make it in time? The Darkness will come for her…

She spends her life trying to avoid ghosts, make it through school where she’s bullied by popular Justin and his cronies, keep her one remaining friend, and persuade her father that this is real and that she’s not going crazy.

But then Justin is murdered and everything gets a whole lot worse. Justin doesn’t know who killed him, so there’s no obvious person for Taylor to go after. The clues she has lead her to the V Club, a vicious secret society at her school where no one is allowed to leave… and where Justin was dared to do the stunt which led to his death.

Can she find out who was responsible for his murder before the Darkness comes for her? Can she put aside her hatred for her former bully to truly help him?

And what happens if she starts to fall for him?

I tried with this one. I really did. I started reading it, and it took me so long to get to just 100 pages that I finally gave up.

Truthfully, it isn’t a bad book. The characterization is typical of a teenager in high school, and for some reason, I just couldn’t get into it. Normally, teenagers acting like teenagers doesn’t bother me. This time, it just slowed down my progress with the book. I wasn’t invested in the characters, and as a result, I didn’t care what happened to them.

Part of my problem, I think, was the brief journal entries from Taylor Oh’s ancestor, an archeologist who was part of a team that broke into a tomb and, apparently, pissed of Anubis. The family becomes cursed as a result.

I’m actually unsure whether the backstory is necessary (I gave up reading at about 146 of 225 pages), but for me it felt extraneous. While it was nice to know how Oh’s family became cursed, it wasn’t necessary for me to know the step-by-step process; simply knowing the curse existed, along with some minor details like how it worked, would have sufficed.

The pace of the story was, while fairly consistent, somewhat slow, at least for me. I went into it expecting a much faster pace. For the first 60 or 70 pages, not much happened, and this contributed to my inability to really become invested in the book.

Eventually, I’ll probably pick the book up and try again, but for now, this is a DNF. At the time I read it, it wasn’t a fast enough pace for me, and I couldn’t become invested in the characters. I’m hoping upon a future re-read that I will enjoy the book more.

I received this book via the publisher via Netgalley. This has not influenced my opinion in any way.