Photo from my library haul
A girl with a secret talent must save her village from the encroaching darkness in this haunting and deeply satisfying tale.
Alys was seven when the soul eaters came to her village.
These soul eaters, twin sisters who were abandoned by their father and slowly morphed into something not quite human, devour human souls. Alys, and all the other children, were spared—and they were sent to live in a neighboring village. There the devout people created a strict world where good and evil are as fundamental as the nursery rhymes children sing. Fear of the soul eaters—and of the Beast they believe guides them—rule village life. But the Beast is not what they think it is. And neither is Alys.
Inside, Alys feels connected to the soul eaters, and maybe even to the Beast itself. As she grows from a child to a teenager, she longs for the freedom of the forest. And she has a gift she can tell no one, for fear they will call her a witch. When disaster strikes, Alys finds herself on a journey to heal herself and her world. A journey that will take her through the darkest parts of the forest, where danger threatens her from the outside—and from within her own heart and soul.
An incredibly dark & bewitching fantasy that will hold you captivated until the end.
I’ve had my eye on The Beast Is An Animal for quite a while, so when I saw it in my local library I snapped it up. And I’m honestly so so glad that I did! This book was everything I wanted and more.
The prologue at the beginning is really what drew me in. I was so intrigued by the dark story of the soul eaters and instantly immersed in the book. I love it when a book can draw you in so quickly, it’s an immediate sign of what’s to come.
Alys is only seven when her world is turned upside down and she comes into contact with so much darkness and death. She’s such a strong person to cope with it and to try to understand why it happened and not crumble. She ends up dumped in the next village over and thrown into a new family immediately, as do the rest of the children.
We see Alys grow from a child to a teen and struggle to come to terms with her own feelings and desires. She tries to live life normally in the strange religious village, but ends up being drawn into the forest and to the beast.
The soul eaters hunger for blood and come for it frequently. They take many lives from the village and cause conspiracy theories within it. The villagers never trusted the orphaned children and blame their presence for the deaths. They end up using the children to guard the village from the beast and his soul eaters, which is rather sick and twisted.
I felt so much sorrow and sadness reading certain parts and coming to terms with heart breaking losses. It really eats you up inside and you can feel the darkness and despair.
Towards the end there was a small romance which was nice, but Alys really struggled within herself and had to control the darkest parts of her soul to reach the end.
This was such an interesting story with plenty of depth and twists to keep you intrigued. I loved how dark it was, even though it hurt at times, it was just enough.