Author: Arwen Elys Dayton
Series: Seeker, #1
**I received a copy of this book through NetGalley which does not affect my review**
Since she was young Quin Kincaid has been training to be a Seeker, protectors of the world who pledge to rid it of evil. Quin, along with two other apprentices, John and Shinobu, must prove themselves worthy of taking the oath to become Seekers. Despite their strong desire, only Quin and Shinobu are allowed to take the oath. But John is desperate, not just because he is in love with Quin, but because he is hiding his real purpose for wanting to become a Seeker. Quin believes becoming a Seeker is the highest honor until she discovers that her father has been lying to her, for becoming a Seeker does not mean saving the world at all.
Let me start off by saying this is not going to be a positive review. I’m mostly very confused when it comes to Arwen Elys Dayton’s Seeker. The cover itself is misleading. My first thought was that this was a fantasy book, perhaps set in a fantastical land. I think it’s set in modern times, but from various contradictory descriptions, I can’t be completely sure. In some scenes there are people dressed in cloaks and riding horses, but in others there are eye-scanners and headphones. This is my first issue with Seeker, the world-building is incomplete and confusing.
I also had an issue with the storyline. Everything is very mysterious, so much so that I, as a reader, was left in the dark for a large portion of the book. Even when the characters themselves learn the true nature of being a Seeker, the author doesn’t explain it. We get time-jumps in which Quin, the protagonist, goes from eager to shell-shocked after taking her oath. Something happens to her, but that something is left unsaid. In fact, what Quin is forced to do is only vaguely hinted at for the majority of the book. We don’t actually find out until 3/4 through the story.
Character arcs are an important way for authors to draw readers in and make them care about the characters. Instead of allowing the reader to experience some of the emotionally heavy scenes, the book passes over them. Consequently, I didn’t feel a connection to the protagonist because of this. Shinobu’s character arc revolves around the fact that he has feelings for Quin, despite the fact that they are cousins, though Shinobu would like to remind himself that they are distant cousins. This felt completely inappropriate. John’s character arc is riddle with too many mysteries. We are told he knows more than he lets on, but instead of using this to bring to light the mysteries surrounding Seekers, we are left in the dark far too long.