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My Soul to Keep (African Immortals series) Paperback – April 8, 1998
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Tananarive Due is intrigued by how unfolding timelines and alternate destinies impinge on people's lives. "How frightening it is," she writes, "when fate is at liberty to take over what will has begun." As in her absorbing first novel, The Between, My Soul to Keep is about what happens when the domestic joy of a middle-class African American family (in this story, he's a jazz scholar, she's a reporter, and they have a 5-year-old daughter) is shattered by supernatural forces and memories of events long past. The story is deeply involving because of the characters' appeal, and suspenseful because the loving husband (who turns out to be a 500-year-old immortal) is so alien, he's utterly unpredictable. The passages recalling the husband's experiences as a slave in the American South in the 1800s are especially gripping. It's a melodramatic approach to dark fantasy, but it works well. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From School Library Journal
YA?From the beginning, Jessica knows that David is different, but life with him seems perfect. With the birth of their daughter, life should be blissful. However, his ageless face and his perfect skin cause her investigative-reporter instincts to start questioning. Also, his lack of interest in the events of her life and work cause her to doubt the completeness of their marriage. By chance, a newspaper story Jessica writes on elder care evolves into a book proposal. Research into one of the cases leads mysteriously to David?her David. As the story develops, Jessica learns the truth about her husband and the choice he made so many centuries ago. David sold his soul for eternal life on Earth. He tells her he is not David, but Dawit, an immortal. Now he is offering her the same choice, against the doctrine of this secret society of believers. Readers are introduced to their world before Jessica discovers the truth. Present-day human interaction and the ways of the immortals are woven together with imagination and suspense. Traditional religious values, exhibited by Jessica's family, add another dimension to the plot and impact on the woman's reaction when she learns the truth. Those familiar with Anne Rice's novels will be instantly drawn into the world of Dawit and the society created by the immortals.?Beth Devers, Elmhurst Public Library, IL
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top customer reviews
Definitely recommend for those who love Octavia!
David goes through extreme meausres to ensure the safety of his family, while at times appearing selfish Due does a brillant job of demonstrating David's seedy past and strong love for his family. When a friend shows up uninvited he makes a decision that will alter the very fabricate of his relationship w/ his wife.
I also became frustrated wtih Jessica, her undying support and love for her husband was just tiring. She ignored her journalist instincts several times because she did not want to end up alone. However, her horror about the situations she was thrown into echos the readers pain and freustration with a seemingly wonderful man.
Due pulls the readers in with the first sentence and while the pace does seem a bit uneven at times it definitely picks up towards the middle of the novel when everyones actions comes to a head.
Dawat is a 500-year-old immortal, so his POV is decidedly different from anyone else’s. There is not much of the world – bad or good – he hasn’t already seen, participated in, and dealt with emotionally. His complexity and backstory are undeniably rich with material, much of which Ms. Due weaves magically throughout the entire book. In this plot, he is married to Jessica and they have a daughter Kira. Dawat struggles with his inability to share his secret with his wife or provide a workable solution to his desire to spend the rest of his life with his family. Jessica is a rich character in her own right made so significantly by her association with a man she loves deeply but doesn’t really understand. Jessica is a character I could and many other readers will be able to identify with but she is also the person who has the most metamorphic arc in the book. Seeing the story unfold from her perspective is exciting and often suspenseful.
I’ve searched my mind and can find no points to criticize how Ms. Due relayed this story to her readers. The paranormal and fantastical aspects of the story will not be everyone’s cup of tea and I suspect will become even more out of the box as the series continues. However, I’m enjoyed this book so much from beginning to end that I’m looking forward to anything and everything Ms. Due chooses to throw at me, especially if Dawat is anywhere nearby.
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