Catwoman: Soulstealer by Sarah J. Maas
Publisher: Penguin Random House Books for Young Readers (Aug 7, 2018)
When the Bat’s away, the Cat will play. It’s time to see how many lives this cat really has..
Two years after escaping Gotham City’s slums, Selina Kyle returns as the mysterious and wealthy Holly Vanderhees. She quickly discovers that with Batman off on a vital mission, Batwing is left to hold back the tide of notorious criminals. Gotham City is ripe for the taking.
Meanwhile, Luke Fox wants to prove he has what it takes to help people in his role as Batwing. He targets a new thief on the prowl who seems cleverer than most. She has teamed up with Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn, and together they are wreaking havoc. This Catwoman may be Batwing’s undoing.
I’d like to thank Times Reads for sending me a copy of Catwoman: Soulstealer for review.
It has been forever since I blogged and I am finally, finally feeling the mojo to blog and what better way to get back into blogging than to write a review of a book I recently enjoyed? After the lukewarm feeling I got from reading Maas’s A Court of Frost and Starlight, I decided to put it in the past and looked forward to reading the next DC Icons book which was written by Sarah J. Maas: Catwoman: Soulstealer.
The hype was real when Sarah J. Maas and the other prolific writers announced the series, but I was most excited for Soulstealer. I mean, come on, as someone who would devour anything written by Sarah J. Maas, being “excited” barely described my feelings when I held the book in my hand.
Similar to the other books in the DC Icons series, the story of Selina Kyle written by Sarah J. Maas explores her backstory, right before she became the feline menace who has a penchant for diamonds and thrilling thieving who seemed to take an enjoyment in terrorising a certain caped crusader. However, in Sarah J. Maas’s version of Catwoman, we find that Selina Kyle comes face-to-face with Luke Fox, the masked hero who has taken the helm as the protector of Gotham City while Batman is on a super-secret mission and can’t be disturbed!
Right from the start, I knew that Sarah J. Maas would nail Catwoman’s story because there’s no denying that she is an amazing storyteller who can fling clever twists and misguide her readers as well as promising a scintillating ending. As a fan of her fantasy novels, I could very well tell that Soulstealer was going to be a thrilling ride right from the beginning. From the fast-paced action sequences to the cat-and-mouse play between Selina and Luke, I was definitely kept entertained from start to finish.
I felt like Sarah J. Maas gave Selina Kyle a strong backstory, as a ruthless street fighter who was forced to take multiple beatings in order to provide for her ill sister to becoming a confident, morally-conflicted antiheroine. As it is made clear that Catwoman can be seen as an antiheroine who is torn between doing the wrong things for good, I liked that Selina had a moral compass in which she knows that whatever she’s doing, might affect lives of the upper echelons in Gotham City, but realises the sacrifices she has to make to save her sister. All of this, despite her being a villain, it was great to see a different side of the story, especially when it is told from the POV of a “villain”.
Adding on to that, the book is told from a dual narration and as much as I enjoyed reading Batwing’s chapters, I can’t help but be more drawn and intrigued by Catwoman’s. Granted, a dual narration could add more depth to the story and layer it with a different narrative, but I felt like Catwoman: Soulstealer would have stolen my undivided attention if it were only narrated by Selina.
It came as a bit of a surprise for me, but I found myself really cheering for the Gotham City Sirens, which consist of Catwoman herself and her squad girls: Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn. Talk about girls about town, creating trouble and slaying. If you’re reading this, Sarah, or anyone from Penguin Random House for that matter, it would be spectacular to have a novel based on Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn’s relationship. 11/10 would suggest!
As expected from a Sarah J. Maas book, I had an inkling that Selina had a grand scheme behind all of her actions and decisions, manoeuvring through the intricate relations she’d built since returning to Gotham City. Reading Soulstealer was definitely a fun-filled ride, trying to anticipate what Selina would do and I think Sarah J. Maas did an excellent job in stringing the reader along for the big revelation.
Although it has been a little over a week since I read and devoured Catwoman: Soulstealer, I can’t help but keep thinking about Selina Kyle’s story. I adored how Sarah J. Maas wrote Selina as a strong-willed and badass (anti)heroine and the witty banter between Selina and Luke was very entertaining. Side note: there were fewer instances of purring than I anticipated and I say this with love! Catwoman: Soulstealer will definitely take you on a joyride across the dark, gritty underbelly as well as the sparkling heights of Gotham City. Even though I wasn’t used to Sarah J. Maas writing a standalone but come on, I can’t help but keep wanting more. Please, another novel focusing on Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn. Please.