Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Review: The Collector (Dante Walker #1) by Victoria Scott

Published: April 2, 2013 by Entangled Teen
Genre: YA, Paranormal Fantasy
Format: ebook
Source: purchased
Goodreads Summary

He makes good girls...bad.

Dante Walker is flippin’ awesome, and he knows it. His good looks, killer charm, and stellar confidence have made him one of hell’s best—a soul collector. His job is simple: weed through humanity and label those round rears with a big red good or bad stamp. Old Saint Nick gets the good guys, and he gets the fun ones. Bag-and-tag.

Sealing souls is nothing personal. Dante’s an equal-opportunity collector and doesn't want it any other way. But he’ll have to adjust, because Boss Man has given him a new assignment:

Collect Charlie Cooper’s soul within ten days.

Dante doesn't know why Boss Man wants Charlie, nor does he care. This assignment means only one thing to him, and that’s a permanent ticket out of hell. But after Dante meets the quirky Nerd Alert chick he’s come to collect, he realizes this assignment will test his abilities as a collector…and uncover emotions deeply buried.

"I am The Collector. It's not as bad as it sounds. I'm kinda like Santa Claus. We're both jolly guys with a passion for frosted cookies, the color red...and sorting souls."

I'm a little late to this gravy train, but I did enjoy it a lot. It was a step away from what we usually get in Parnormal YA.

The Good

My favorite thing about this story is the characters. I LOVE that it is told from the POV of Dante Walker, resident bad boy. We usually get the story from the girl swooning over said boy but pretending like she isn't. It was refreshing hearing his side of things first hand. I liked that Dante isn't a hero. Charlie is the hero of the story, and it's near impossible not to like her. She's got this whole Mother Teresa thing going on with her goodness, light, optimism, and generosity. Yes, she's basically the opposite of egotistical, out-for-himself demon Dante that collects souls for his Boss Man downstairs.

In addition to the two main characters, all the side characters were a pleasure as well. They also didn't fit in the cookie cutter mold of sidekick best friends. Blue ended up being my favorite out of Annabelle, Blue, and Max. There was a certain part that had me yelling, "You're my boy, Blue!"

I felt overall that this was a character driven book. Dante has a very large character growth journey just in The Collector. I'm looking forward to seeing what else is in store for his transition (or other characters for that matter) in future books.

The Bad

As far as the plot, it's an interesting concept, but there are holes. If you pick something apart because it's not logical, this one will have you scratching your head a bit. You kinda just have to go with it to enjoy it.

The Romance

In the beginning, I'm wondering to myself how it is possible that Charlie will be the ultimate love interest for Dante. He's constantly talking about how ugly she is and all the little flaws in her appearance, and I'm getting this image of a Quasimodo-like character from how much he goes on and on. Let's face it, you do have to be attracted to someone in order be in a relationship so I was thinking it was a lost cause. Then, things happen. While I don't feel Dante made up for all his actions regarding Charlie, in fact I'm not certain he deserves her, he did transition enough that it was believable.


The Collector was a cute story that was mainly character driven with an interesting concept. The characters, especially Dante, showed tremendous growth throughout the story. There was a good humor through his thoughts and the dialogue and it had me laughing. I thoroughly enjoyed that it was from his POV. The plot did have a few holes though, so if you are a stickler for logic, some parts may bother you a bit. Recommended.


Someone should have warned me about love's dark underbelly, about the rejection and despair.

Come on, get a clue. I knock again and clear my throat. The girl spins around. My eyes widen at the sight of her. This is the girl Boss Man is after? She looks like a porcelain doll...beat three times with an ugly stick. I take it all in: glasses, frizzy blond hair, a spray of pimples, and a stick figure so not attractive on a seventeen-year-old girl.

When Valery comes up for air, she giggles like a psych ward junkie. "Max," she coos, running her fingers down his cheek. "Baby," Max says, nuzzling her neck. "Not that this isn't terribly romantic and wildly coincidental," I say. "But I've got to find Charlie."

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