Second Opinion: Seeker (Seeker #1) by Arwen Elys Dayton

The night Quin Kincaid takes her Oath, she will become what she has trained to be her entire life. She will become a Seeker. This is her legacy, and it is an honor.

As a Seeker, Quin will fight beside her two closest companions, Shinobu and John, to protect the weak and the wronged. Together they will stand for light in a shadowy world.

And she'll be with the boy she loves--who's also her best friend.

But the night Quin takes her Oath, everything changes.

Being a Seeker is not what she thought. Her family is not what she thought. Even the boy she loves is not who she thought.

And now it's too late to walk away.

Release Date: February 10, 2015
Age Group: YA
Source: Review copy from publisher
Reviewed by: Madi B

I had really high expectations for this book. It already has film rights being optioned by Columbia Pictures, it has a glowing review by Tahereh Mafi, (TAHEREH MAFI! LIKE SHATTER ME) and it has soooo many promises that I'll fall in love with the characters and never be able to put the book down.
To be frank, the only part of the book that remotely resembled the reviews is the last 100 pages. Before that, I got confused on a lot of things (It wasnt my teenager brain either! I checked the reviews and other people were confused too!!) but I just assumed that if I just let it go and moved on, the question would be answered. Wrong. The book is about three teens training to become a Seeker.
What a Seeker actually is was never explained (And the title is Seeker!!!!!!). All we know is that it was supposed to be a noble occupation but it was corrupted and is currently bad? I think? Throughout the book, the characters are trying to protect and/or attain these mini dagger things called athames that are magic. You put in coordinates, draw a circle, jump through it, and then poof!--you have arrived at your desired destination. I read an entire book about the athames and that's the best I can explain them.
Theres a love triangle (groan) and four points of view in the book, Quin, John, Shinobu, and Maud. Quin is the main character, and at the end of the book, I felt like I knew her just as well as I did in the beginning. I never trusted John and honestly, I think he is on the path to be a mad scientist. Or maybe a psychopath. (More on that later.) Maud was a magical protector of the balance of the universe gal who had the charisma of a robot. And Im not talking about Wall-e robot. She was stiff and maybe even a tad feral. Her purpose in the book is not that significant, so I'm assuming maybe she gets important later in the series? Shinobu was basically a ghost in the first two-thirds of the book but once that third half hit, he was easily my favorite character. He was there only one I really felt that promised connection with.
The setting wasrandom to say the least. It starts out in Scotland and then jumps to Hong Kong in the second half. Scotland to Hong Kong! Am I the only one who finds that just a tad odd?
The plot changes drastically with that change in setting. In Scotland, Quin, John, and Shinobu are training to become Seekers but only Quin and Shinobu achieve that goal. With the Seeker title comes knowledge of the aforementioned athames. A secret that John is dying to know. Even though he and Quin are in love, he still is hurting her left and right, because she wont tell him the freakin secret. Psychopath!!!
Then Quin and Shinobu flee to Hong Kong where Shinobu becomes a drug addict and Quin loses her memory and becomes a healer. Im not making this up. My biggest problem with the book was that I felt like 80% of the book was John chasing Quin around and begging for her to tell him that secret. The problem is finally resolved at the end, but I feel like it should have been resolved at chapter 5.
Because the focus was completely on that wild goose chase, the questions of what a seeker is, how to properly use an athame, and what the heck these teenagers are going to do with this awesome knowledge were put on the back burner. The plot did eventually move on, (In the last 100 pages) and when it did the book was totally awesome! If Dayton had gotten to it faster, then I think the book would have been vastly improved. I would like to see some of these bigger problems resolved in the sequel (And some character development? Please?).


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