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Catwoman: Soulstealer

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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. Mea 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.


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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. Mea 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.

30 review for Catwoman: Soulstealer

  1. 4 out of 5

    Cait • A Page with a View

    How many times do you guys bet Maas is going to have Catwoman purr her dialogue... EDIT: I say this affectionately btw! It's possible to laugh at something you love.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Emily May

    Let Gotham City enjoy its final days of Summer. This book has journeyed with me across two continents and five different countries while I've been travelling the last few weeks. I don't normally read books this slowly, but it was a strangely positive experience. I enjoyed slipping in and out of Selina's plotting and thieving, and I eventually found myself trying (and failing) not to cry on a train to Prague. Yes. Catwoman + Sarah J. Maas does not exactly sound like a recipe for tears, but this b Let Gotham City enjoy its final days of Summer. This book has journeyed with me across two continents and five different countries while I've been travelling the last few weeks. I don't normally read books this slowly, but it was a strangely positive experience. I enjoyed slipping in and out of Selina's plotting and thieving, and I eventually found myself trying (and failing) not to cry on a train to Prague. Yes. Catwoman + Sarah J. Maas does not exactly sound like a recipe for tears, but this book got me good. I do have to issue a couple of warnings - 1) I'm not a typical Maas fan. I have something of a love/hate relationship with her books, but I often complain about them. 2) I know some people will hate what Maas has done with Selina Kyle here. Catwoman is traditionally a much stronger, sassier character than Maas's Selina, who is frequently weak and is driven by her love for others. I don't recommend this book for those who like strict adherence to the canon. But I actually really enjoyed it. I like how tough Selina is, but how human she is too. I thought this version of the character was extremely refreshing. I think there is room for the exciting villainous Selinas of the past and for this more sensitive, emotionally-complex version. Honestly, it seemed like a strength to me. In this book, we begin with a younger Selina trying everything to pay her sister's hospital bills for her cystic fibrosis and keep the social services from finding out about their missing mother. When things don't exactly go to plan, Selina cuts a deal to protect her sister-- and completely changes her own life in the process, taking her away to Europe. A couple of years later and Selina is back with multiple secret identities and assassins on her tail. She teams up with Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy (who is the shining star of the novel) and causes chaos. But why? What happened in the years in between and why is Selina back? I, for one, really enjoyed finding out. Unfortunately, we also have the obligatory romance and it's a shame that Luke (AKA "Batwing") never really becomes as fully fleshed-out as the other characters. I'm glad for a non-white love interest who is also dealing with PTSD, but it's dampened by the sense that he's just there because Selina needs some dude to fall for her. That is literally his only role in this book. The lesbian/bi rep with Harley Quinn and Ivy is awesome, though. There's girls being badass together, heists and bloody fights, and the looming threat/promise of the Joker, but it wasn't until near the end that this book became more than fun and thrills and actually punched me in the feelings. Hell, call me hormonal, but the novel's climax pretty much destroyed me. What can I say? It worked for me. Probably not one for hardcore Gotham fans, but dabblers and newbies might enjoy it. I don't think you need to be familiar with the Batman universe to enjoy or understand the story. CW: PTSD; abuse (off-page); drug use. Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Youtube

  3. 4 out of 5

    Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin

    Update: Here's all 3 books I just had to get and I got some goodies for pre-ordering =) The picture is a little blurry. I don't know what I was doing! Listened to my audio edition this morning. The special editions will be coming later. I will add pics when I feel like getting on the computer again. With these wonderful cancer treatments over the past few months, I haven't been on the computer. And I only really care about sharing pretty pictures any more. Not wasting time on a lot of things tha Update: Here's all 3 books I just had to get and I got some goodies for pre-ordering =) The picture is a little blurry. I don't know what I was doing! Listened to my audio edition this morning. The special editions will be coming later. I will add pics when I feel like getting on the computer again. With these wonderful cancer treatments over the past few months, I haven't been on the computer. And I only really care about sharing pretty pictures any more. Not wasting time on a lot of things that really don't matter. Cancer changed everything and woke me up Mel ❤️ Thank you to those that are still around.

  4. 5 out of 5

    brekkersbutt

    *high pitched voice* graphic design is my passion ____ Maas better remember that Selina Kyle is canonically bisexual. She better not hyper-sexualize her. She better not let Catwoman fucking purr her dialogue.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Khurram

    SJM writing Catwoman what could be more awesome? Was expecting this book to be great and it was better than anything I could have though it would be. This incarnation of Selina Kyle is brilliant. I just have one complaint/request can SJM please write a Batman book!!!! Please!!! All the elements I love of the Batman character including his will, intelligence, toughness, use of identities, tactics and all round [email protected]$$ery are present in Catwoman. Every chapter I read in this book I could not wait t SJM writing Catwoman what could be more awesome? Was expecting this book to be great and it was better than anything I could have though it would be. This incarnation of Selina Kyle is brilliant. I just have one complaint/request can SJM please write a Batman book!!!! Please!!! All the elements I love of the Batman character including his will, intelligence, toughness, use of identities, tactics and all round [email protected]$$ery are present in Catwoman. Every chapter I read in this book I could not wait to see what happen next and the last 60 pages I just could not put the book down. Street fighter Selina Kyle was force to leave what little she had left in Gotham City. Now she is back older wiser, deadlier and with a purpose. Nothing in this book is there just to fill space, everything links together. I also like the way the relationships between the characters developed. The book is fast paced but definitely not rushed. I also like the conflict in Selina, though she did had not love for the richer citizens of Gotham, some earned her respect with the genuine good they had done, making her think about what she was doing. SJM not only did a great job on Catwoman/Selina/Holly but used other classic Gotham villains and side characters perfectly. She also used the new member of the Bat-family brilliantly. I think having Catwoman running circles around the new kid of the Bat family was a great idea, as we Batman fans know this would never happen to the man himself. Who is on a private mission during this book that we are not told about really. The perfect setup for another book right? Hint hint. This is a great book. This is definitely the best of the DC Icons books so far, and I cannot think of a better incarnation of Catwoman. I would give this 10 stars if I could. After she finishes the Throne of Glass series can someone please get SJM to write Batman.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Solomon ~ TheBookishKing

    Buddy Read with my Fave: William! This Review Can Be Found on my Blog: Catwoman - Soulstealer Dora: "Can you say trash?" Me: "Catwoman! Dora: "Louder" Me: "CATWOMAN SOULSTEALER!' Dora: "Good job! This is easily the biggest piece of trash I've ever read. Who let this book be published. WHO?! Who thought "Oh yeah this book is top notch DC, top-notch storytelling, top-notch EVERYthing." If the cover alone isn't a Capital Offense then SURELY the insides of this book is an Offense. As a majority of everyone Buddy Read with my Fave: William! This Review Can Be Found on my Blog: Catwoman - Soulstealer Dora: "Can you say trash?" Me: "Catwoman! Dora: "Louder" Me: "CATWOMAN SOULSTEALER!' Dora: "Good job! This is easily the biggest piece of trash I've ever read. Who let this book be published. WHO?! Who thought "Oh yeah this book is top notch DC, top-notch storytelling, top-notch EVERYthing." If the cover alone isn't a Capital Offense then SURELY the insides of this book is an Offense. As a majority of everyone knows I am one of the Largest SJM Stan out there. So obviously this book was High on my Anticipated Reads of 2018. And of course, everyone knows that she has some issues with her writing. NOW I don't necessarily understand all the hate (okay I do I do, I just stan her work hard okay.) But right off the bat this book just sucks. We have two main characters in this book, Selina Kyle (who I just kept pronouncing as Celaena and Selina is just everything Celaena tries to be) and Luke Fox. Now, of course, Selina is white and blond and tan and waxed (she said her legs were waxed at least twice I promise) and a perfect assassin. But Luke is a black male Main Character! From SJM! I was baffled! And also CRAZY EXCITED ! ... and then the excitement lasted about 5 pages because SJM tries to act like she knows what it's like to be black and oppressed in Gotham City at least 10 times. But Luke and his family are RICH so honestly they hang out with rich people and never in the East Side where all the cops are down at. Like okay SJM I get it, you're trying to be strong and talk about oppression but You're Doing It Completely Wrong. AND THEN Selina tries to talk about what it's like to be Black and Oppressed, but it can't be that bad cause he's rich. YIKES. So here I am texting Amber and yelling at her violently because I'm High Key ANNOYED with SJM and I'm not even 100 pages into the book. But okay LET me split Selina and Lukes stories up. S E L I N A: Selina in the first two chapters is younger than she is in the rest of the book. It's her prologue, her story about how she's in a gang to learn to protect her sister who has a severe chronic illness. And she has to protect her sister because her mom is abusive and always on alcohol/drugs. But okay something bad happens and Selina goes to the Leopard Training something Zoo to learn to be an assassin and her sister goes to a foster home since their mother is incompetent to take care of her. And then once Selina is back in Gotham SHE NEVER TALKS ABOUT HER SISTER. EVER. This girl who she protected for years and went away to protect her is NEVER TALKED ABOUT. Please, how does this make sense? It doesn't but anyways! Selina is crazy bland, boring, and her sexuality is NOT talked at all and I know how a lot of y'all were expecting it. Selina is crazy boring I can't begin to explain to it to you. L U K E: Luke is a character that I would have really liked if it wasn't for the fact that he was terribly bland as well. And I know a lot of Xxtra Die Hard SJM Fans are going to praise her so hard for having a POC Main Character. But like okay SJM is just reaching for Diversity at this point and I need to talk about Luke not SJM. I also want to say that when you have a POC character their whole existence shouldn’t be about oppression. Okay so, Luke is Batman's sidekick, the knock-off version whose name is Batwing. He's rich, he's spoiled, and he’s a Marine. He also has War Veteran PTSD, in which Amber had to explain to me because I only thought he got in a car crash and not was in a war?! The book seriously talked about it for 2 sentences. That’s all Luke is. My Issues with SJM: Aha so yeah I love both of her series, I really do. Do I recommend them to people?Yeah I do even though I probably shouldn’t. They have so many issues and just I do always issue caution when reading because some things are problematic. But in this book I thought, aha no way can SJM ruin a book about superheroes and Feminism and action. Yeah aha aha aHA she did though, she actually butchered it so bad. She like tries to be SO HIP and cool with the TIMES and being diverse. No just stop. I would rather read a book with an all white cast because that’s what she knows how to write instead of a book where she tries to be cool with DIVERSE and butcher it and make me uncomfortable. SO BEFORE I had said that Sarah should stop writing books. That was really wrong and rude to say tbh no one should every stop doing what they love. That wasn't cool and I apologize BUT after this book and after Kingdom of Ash I think I’m just going to cancel SJM because I just can’t anymore. ~ SPOILERS BUT THIS REALLY NEEDS TO BE READ BECAUSE SOME OF THE STUFF COULD BE VERY HARMFUL TO YOU~ Issue One: Selina and Luke both have PTSD. Luke has War Veteran PTSD and Selina has Abusive PTSD. And of course knowing SJM, the romance is going to be between these two characters. But what is SO wrong about this whole Romance is that the PTSD is used as a plot point to move the ROMANCE further instead of focusing on healing like she normally does. WHICH was a shocker for me because ACOMAF and TOD were both about healing through illness and not using it as a plot point for romance. So I was so mad and this is so harmful and insensitive!? LIKE HOW could you even do this?! Issue Two: The storyline. Was there a storline?! NOT FOR THE FIRST 200 pages at least. It’s just robbing banks and Selina thinking she’s cool as she tries to live a double life?! But then Luke is all like wow gotta help these Poor Kids OH WAIT Catwoman is stealing again I need to save the day. But Luke actually sucks at being a superhero and Catwoman just laughs at him and then Luke is all like “wow am I ATTRACTED to Catwoman this evil woman?” Please kill me. Essentially Sarah tries to jam a whole intricate plot into about 20 pages and I think the ending is supposed to be a shocker but it reality I laughed the whole time. Issue Three: How in the heck are you going to advertise Poison Ivy and my Queen Harley Quinn and then not put them in the book until about HALFWAY THROUGH ?! Also how are you going to include Suicide Squad Harley and Not Original Harley. NOT ONCE did she call Joker Puddin. Not once. OVER this fact alone I could one star this book. Poison Ivy I loved, don’t get me wrong, she is the main LGBT character in this book (yes there is LGBT rep and it’s actually good!) and it wasn’t a poor me story like ACOWAR. And Harley I loved because it’s freaking Harley Quinn how can I not love her?? I’m just triggered at the fact that they weren’t really necessary to the story (until the last 20 pages.) Issue Four: The writing. Now Sarah does write good, really well, I love the way she weaves words. BUT in the beginning of the book I was getting to mad because EVERY chance she got she talked about how WHITE Selina was. “Selina moved her white wrist.” “Selina moved her waxed tan leg.” “Selina’s white finger knuckle was white.” LIKE YES I GET SHE’S WHITE PLEASE WRITE ABOUT WHAT SHE’S DOING. And then when it got to Luke she was like “he is black.” AND that’s all I know about him besides he has brown eyes and is ripped. But with Selina Sarah talks about about her white waxed body that’s lithe and lethal and beautiful and amazing dyed blonde hair. I just was so mad about this, I can’t begin to explain to you. AND OKAY HERE IS AN ACTUAL QUOTE FROM THE BOOK THAT I LAUGHED AT. Poison Ivy says this at the end after everything happened with the story: “Ivy blew out a breath and whistled. ‘Well, that’s certainly one hell of a story.” LIKE SARAH IS SAYING HER BOOK IS SO GOOD?! WHAT. WHat. WHAHahldkfasdlk;f jal;ksdfj l;askjfI. I am so done. I’ve had enough of this book. I don’t even want to think about it anymore. The story sucked, the characters sucked, even the one thing I liked I’m not even going to mention because it’s not relevant. If you want to read this, GOOD LUCK. Because this is by far an injustice to the DC Universe. Catwoman. You deserved better my dear. // Sidekicks : P O I S O N I V Y & H A R L E Y Q U I N N I'm so beyond excited for this. I just really pray there's no smut. Please, just no smut.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    4 popular YA writers each writing a Superhero novel??? HELL YES, TAKE MY MONEY!!!!!!! Publishing in 2017: Wonder Woman by Leigh Bardugo Batman by Marie Lu Superman by Matt de la Pena Catwoman by Sarah J Maas

  8. 4 out of 5

    Hamad

    This review and other non-spoilery reviews can be found @The Book Prescription Actual Rating: 3.25 stars “Cat-woman was a good way to describe her. The ears on the dark helmet, the oversized lenses, the claws that she’d just retracted after that spectacular jump… Even her steps toward him oozed feline grace.” 🌟 Sarah J. Maas books are always controversial, you will find extreme love and hate for all her books. And although I know that her writing is not perfect, but people have been judging and hat This review and other non-spoilery reviews can be found @The Book Prescription Actual Rating: 3.25 stars “Cat-woman was a good way to describe her. The ears on the dark helmet, the oversized lenses, the claws that she’d just retracted after that spectacular jump… Even her steps toward him oozed feline grace.” 🌟 Sarah J. Maas books are always controversial, you will find extreme love and hate for all her books. And although I know that her writing is not perfect, but people have been judging and hating her without actually reading the book which is sad. I will try to answer all questions and explain my feelings here. This is a spoiler free review! 🌟 I want to start with the cover, I personally like it and it almost matches the other covers so that is good. 🌟 To give you a quick idea about this book in this series, then Wonderwoman was my favorite, this is second and Batman is the least favorite one. I believe Superman will be good and I hope so. Speaking of those authors, they are all big names in the industry and they all were below their average in this series. 🌟 If you have read SJM other books then you know that she has a good writing style but there are sometimes many repetitions and it sometimes gets on my nerves, but what I like about Sarah is that she listens to the readers. There were expectations of hot steamy scenes, a thousand Purrs and holding breaths. The good thing is that the romance in this one was not so steamy, there are only 14 Purrs and some of them are actually and literally from cats so that is good. And I didn’t find repetitions, the writing flowed easily. 🌟 The characters: Now this may be the most controversial thing here. Selina was cool and I like that Catwoman was kind of a morally gray character. She was not all good or all devil which reminds me of both the side characters Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn which were both shown in a new light and I understood their backstories and sympathized with them. SJM kept them as LGBT characters, for those who hate Sarah for not including this type of characters, well she finally did. And notice that I said she kept them and not made them because she was following the comics. She didn’t add LGBT characters for the sake of selling books or being relevant which many authors do and are praised for. 🌟 She made Batwing brown, is she trying so hard? 🌟She isn’t trying, she is following the comics, sue and hate DC for creating a “Rich Brown” character and not Sarah. Her description was near to the original character including the suit. I even liked that she mentioned him doing boxing and in the marine and daily working out which explains his physique, rather than her usual perfect-male-body-characters for no reason. 🌟 There was mental illness rep including PTSD which I don’t think was quite well done -as I mentioned this is not prefect after all- and it didn’t resolve in a good way too. I don’t even think it was a necessary addition to the story. 🌟 But there was also mention of Cystic Fibrosis (CF) which was good, I saw some cases as someone in the medical field and it was good enough for this book. But there were futuristic features in the book and many scientific advancements but no cure for CF. Probably this book was written before 2018 were a new drug was approved by the FDA and it treats the underlying cause, not only the symptoms. It is for only 4% of the patients now but she kept writing that it was incurable an that is not 100% accurate. 🌟 The story did not blow my mind but it was far more entertaining than Batman (And I am a Marie Lu stan) which was very boring and did not even have Batman as we know him!! 🌟 So as you can see -I salute you if you have read the whole thing- this is not a perfect book but it is also not the worst. I liked many parts of the stories and that Sarah is trying to improve her writing.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Ana

    I want this in my life. I need this in my life. Shut up and take my money. *throws dollar bills at Sarah Maas* Catwoman is my absolute favorite female comic character. She is my queen. I've never read anything by this author, but I am willing to give her the benefit of the doubt. Not so sure about Batwing though. Catwoman belongs with Batman. Don't even argue with me on this. I guess we will have to wait and see.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Therese

    sELINA SWEETIE I AM SO SORRY I HATE THIS Okay. Let me explain. I love Selina Kyle. Like, I'm basically in love with her. She's literally my role model- rich, smart, strong, a woman who built herself up from nothing. Who doesn't want to be her? She's essentially my favorite character in DC comics, and one of my all-time favorites ever. I've read countless comics of hers, and have watched every one of her appearances on television. I've even watched game-plays with her in them. I am dedicated. So sELINA SWEETIE I AM SO SORRY I HATE THIS Okay. Let me explain. I love Selina Kyle. Like, I'm basically in love with her. She's literally my role model- rich, smart, strong, a woman who built herself up from nothing. Who doesn't want to be her? She's essentially my favorite character in DC comics, and one of my all-time favorites ever. I've read countless comics of hers, and have watched every one of her appearances on television. I've even watched game-plays with her in them. I am dedicated. So even though this book is written by Sarah J. Maas, an author whom I just dislike on principle, I had to pick it up. I just had to. I thought to myself, you know, maybe you'll be happily surprised. Maybe it won't be so bad. Yeah..... I was wrong. This book reads as though SJM skimmed Selina's wikipedia page and was like, "all right. Let's write this thing!" Seriously. I'm so offended that Selina's name is attached to this novel, I want to scream. She's so OOC it's unbearable. I had to have alcohol on hand just to finish this book. I'm not kidding. So, I'll break this down. SELINA KYLE AKA CATWOMAN AKA SHE REALLY DOESN'T EVEN MAKE AN APPEARANCE IN THIS BOOK ONLY HER NAME IS USED My beautiful mother. She deserves so much better.... sigh.... As I said above, Selina CAME. FROM. NOTHING. She rose up herself. She did everything all on her own. Selina was forced into prostitution when she was young and left orphaned, making a name for herself by learning how to fight and steal. (view spoiler)[In the book, she joins the League of Assassins (something I'll talk about soon) and they train her in everything. Yeah she was a decent fighter beforehand, but they teach her everything else. (hide spoiler)] This totally takes away from who Selina is; it leaves me seething. Selina learned everything herself! She's a loner, that's her thing. SJM does not understand Selina. At all. Selina does have a sister in comics, but they're estranged. This book really plays Maggie up, as she is Selina's entire driving force. Selina does everything for Maggie, which completely destroys her whole independent loner thing that she's had going on in the comics since, oh, forever. Selina wouldn't even steal in the beginning of the novel because she "didn't want to risk jail" like,,, did SJM just make up her own OC or Selina isn't even called Catwoman because she's a cat burglar in this!!! It's because some people were mean to her and called her 'kitty' or 'kitten' and she decided to reclaim the name sjknsdjkfn stopppppppp To add insult to injury, Selina uses an alias when she comes to Gotham City for the second time. Okay, that's reasonable. However, the alias she uses is Holly Vanderhees. And she dyes her hair blonde. Holly.... blonde hair....hmmmm, who does that remind me of? Oh yeah. Holly Robinson. Basically Catwoman II, temporarily. I see what SJM did, and I hate it. Guess what? Holly is a canon lesbian. And she's completely erased from this universe just so Selina can have a clever alias to use. I'm not impressed. Far from it. Holly is always being done so dirty and I am so, so, so sick and tired of it. This isn't funny. Oh, and guess what else is erased? Selina's bisexuality. SJM can pretend that she cares about LGBT representation all she wants, but her actions show otherwise. So she added in two married men who had maybe a page of 'screen-time'. Wow. (Yes, Ivy and Harley are not straight in this, but their rep is so bad it's almost laughable. Hold on; I'm getting there). Back to Selina's character. She has this helmet that is way too Iron-Man-esque for my liking that just tells her everything she needs to know. I've no idea why this is even included. Furthermore, she's so perfect it's annoying. I love Selina because she is imperfect. Not in this book, though. She's the best at everything and basically unbeatable. Perfect characters are boring, and Selina isn't some Mary-Sue. She has so much depth that SJM just completely failed to grasp and it makes me very upset. (view spoiler)[And that ending!!! WHAT IS THAT...Selina basically becomes a superhero-Luke Fox AKA Batwing's partner, nonetheless-and vows to keep crime off of the streets???? I am sooooo done (hide spoiler)] PAMELA ISLEY AKA POISON IVY AKA DARE I SAY SHE'S DONE WORSE THAN SELINA IS The best villain ever. My Queen. Why did they do this to you? Why?? I don't know who's characterization is worse; Selina's or Ivy's. Seriously. Ivy is that bad. I'll try to explain this sans-spoilers. At one point, both Ivy and Selina want to steal a painting. They bicker about it, and Selina ends up grabbing the painting. Which, like....come on. I love Selina more than Ivy (though not by too much, as Ivy is another one of my all-time favorites) but Ivy could beat Selina in a fight so easily. She's tied up Selina before, and she sure as hell will do it again. She can even control people!!! That isn't even my biggest gripe with the scene. So Selina and Ivy nearly get caught, and they both make a run for it. They're running, and they see the superhero Batwing. What does Ivy do upon noticing him? She runs off. AS IF IVY WOULD RUN OFF ? SHE COULD FCK HIM UP SO EASILY!! Later on Ivy begs Selina to team-up with her. What the hell???? Ivy really does not need Selina, and would never ever ever ever ever beg someone to work with her. Ever. Selina, during this conversation, ends up mentioning the Joker. She talks about potentially releasing him from Arkham, and Ivy's hands literally start trembling, an indication that she's scared of the Joker. Poison Ivy? Scared of the Joker's pasty ass? Please! She wants to beat him to a pulp so badly, she's up there with Jason Todd!!!! If she saw him she'd ruin him! Furthermore, Ivy isn't some save-the-world environmentalist like she's made out to be here! She loves plants and she'd die for them, yes. However, she would (and has) also kill a man for them. She thinks they're better than people. She doesn't want to save the world so that people can live in peace or whatever. She has zero (0) qualms about killing. Meanwhile, on page 170 Ivy was like "Harley!! Don't kill people!!" and I wanted to scream. (view spoiler)[At the end Ivy just brushes Selina's betrayal off and is like "i know you used harley and i to save your sister selina but it's ok!!!! i get it :)" LIKE WHAT IVY WOULD KILL HER DEADASS (hide spoiler)] Ivy is so meek in this novel. She's entirely weakened. It's maddening. HARLEY AND IVY'S RELATIONSHIP In comics, they're one of my main OTPs. Harley is basically the only human that Ivy cares about and vice-versa. They're adorable and I'd give my life for them. I'm so glad that they're canon, it makes my heart so happy. In this book, though.... yikes. Yes, both Ivy and Harley are LGBT. However, the rep is extremely poor. Ivy is in love with Harley, who doesn't realize this and simply just wants to hook-up. Harley is caught up on the Joker and Ivy refuses to talk about it. Ivy is constantly seen giving Harley sad glances and Selina "pities her". This is the extent of their 'relationship' in this novel. No cute moments, no real WLW romance. Just Ivy pining and Harley brushing her off. It infuriates me so much that I can barely talk about it. Let's move on before I lose my mind. TALIA AL GHUL / THE LEAGUE OF ASSASSINS Okay, so Selina gets arrested, Talia randomly shows up and recruits her to the league. It's really never explained how or why Talia decides to recruit Selina. I don't get it; like, number one, the League doesn't belong to Talia anyway. Her father, Ra's al Ghul, is the leader. Even if she was, why on earth would she be recruiting some random 17 year old girl from the street???? It makes no sense and frankly, it's dumb. Talia has only trained two people: Jason Todd and Damian Wayne. She trains Jason as a sort of peace-offering to Bruce, AKA for her own personal gain. She trains Damian because he is her son, and honestly even his training serves a purpose for her. That's all. Talia would train Selina over her dead body. They despise each other in comics, and so I don't see why Talia was even used for this story. Selina was never apart of the League and doesn't need to be! Like I've stressed, she did everything ON HER OWN. Putting both Talia and the League in the story hinders her development and just makes Selina a shallow character. It's awful. I literally started laughing in the doctor's waiting room when I read that Talia recruited Selina at the police station. That's how ridiculous the arc is. LUKE FOX/THE ROMANCE I have absolutely nothing against Luke Fox. He's a decent character, even in this. However, who came up with the idea to pair him and Selina up? I just want to talk... Not only am I a huge Batman/Catwoman shipper, but they are like one of the most popular comic ships ever. I don't understand why they weren't a thing in this. I just don't. Luke and Selina felt so fake. I absolutely hated it. The romance also did not further the plot in any way, and really only served to sexualize Selina. Also, Luke has PTSD in this book. He can't handle fireworks going off (completely understandable) but decides to put on a suit and fight criminals in the night??????? So unrealistic I could die. Like...what.......... SJM also uses Luke's POV to discuss the issues he faces as a black man and how black people are targeted by the police. I completely agree, and think that this narrative needs to be spoken about as much as possible. However, this is not Sarah J. Maas' story to tell . She is white. As I am. Neither her nor I have any right to write about police brutality as if we know what it's like, as if we've experienced it. No right at all. EVERYTHING ELSE Take a shot every time SJM uses a "-". Or maybe don't, as you'd probably die from alcohol poisoning. The writing in this book is mediocre, bordering on bad. Everything is so convenient for Selina, too. For example, on page 144 Selina is getting attacked (view spoiler)[by an assassin from the League (hide spoiler)] and, "had three heartbeats to unsheathe the twin short swords artfully hidden in the back of her suit." These swords were never mentioned before but suddenly Selina has them and is able to use them in order to win the fight......okay.......... Sorry, but I don't see why SJM is such a popular author. Maybe her other books are more well written than this, I'm not sure. Judging by this book, though, I do not get the hype. I probably never will. I also had to read the line "Selina purred" as well as the head of Selina's og girl-gang (AS IF SHE WOULD EVER BE IN A GANG) being referred to as the 'alpha' and it made me want to die. TL;DR: Don't waste your money. Read a comic instead. I recommend Batman: Hush.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Warda

    05/08/2018 — My child has been dispatched and should be ready to collect from the store any day now. I can’t wait to hold her! 😭 •20/11/2017 — HOLY SYNOPSIS! I AM IN NEED!!! •Let's be real: Sarah J Maas is going to fuckin deliver with this book! I AM READY GIVE IT TO ME! 😍

  12. 4 out of 5

    Nenia ✨ Queen of Literary Trash, Protector of Out-of-Print Gems, Khaleesi of Bodice Rippers, Mother of Smut, the Unrepentant, Breaker of Convention ✨ Campbell

    Instagram || Twitter || Facebook || Amazon || Pinterest Lmao, I seem to have lost a few friends over this review already. On to the books-that-made-me-lose-friends shelf it goes! #YOLO #UMadBro #WhateverIReadWhatIWant DNF @ p. 121 I get into a lot of trouble with people when I tell them, in all seriousness, that Batman & Robin is my favorite Batman movie. I know it's bad in the same way that the Super Mario Bros. movie is bad, and I love that movie too. Some of the people I tell this to try t Instagram || Twitter || Facebook || Amazon || Pinterest Lmao, I seem to have lost a few friends over this review already. On to the books-that-made-me-lose-friends shelf it goes! #YOLO #UMadBro #WhateverIReadWhatIWant DNF @ p. 121 I get into a lot of trouble with people when I tell them, in all seriousness, that Batman & Robin is my favorite Batman movie. I know it's bad in the same way that the Super Mario Bros. movie is bad, and I love that movie too. Some of the people I tell this to try to give me an out and say, "You mean the Val Kilmer Batman movie?" And I'm just like, "No. I mean the one with George Clooney and Arnold Schwarzenegger." At that point they usually looked pained and sometimes even say aloud, "Oh god no..." and I'm like, "BITCH, I WILL FIGHT YOU." I bring this up because people often say that Batman & Robin is one of the WORST adaptations of the Batman franchise - when they're not pointing the finger at Halle Barry's Catwoman, that is. To those people, I say, only, "Read this book." Sarah J. Maas is an author that I have a LOT of problems with. It's not that I hate romance - I love romance. It's not that I hate fantasy - I love fantasy. It's not that I hate YA, or camp, or strong heroines. It's that she does them all INCREDIBLY BADLY, and yet her fans hype her up like she's a dual act of the second coming of Jesus AND a free Taylor Swift concert. And I literally don't understand why, because I think that everything she writes is awful. To her credit, I've been able to finish everything she wrote before. With heavy skimming, especially with some of the longer books, but I could get to the end. With CATWOMAN: SOULSTEALER, I could not even do that. It was bad. Worse than that garbage, EMPIRE OF STORMS, even. Maas turned CATWOMAN into one of those broken women who become bad-assed because they're damaged (she's literally implied to be a teen prostitute on welfare who fights in a street gang and steals to help her sick sister). Then she goes to an al Ghul assassin school - which Maas skips over because that might be interesting - and comes back gloating about her physical prowess and how awesome her makeup looks, which if that sounds familiar - GUESS WHAT? That's every heroine Maas writes in a nutshell. Sometimes it felt like I was literally reading about goddamn Celaena in a fancy Iron Manesque cat suit. "Look at these fancy data readouts... also, do my nails look okay?" Like, fucking spare me. Maas also totally ruins Harley Quinn AND Poison Ivy. Poison Ivy was always so seductive and independent, and say what you like about the Batman & Robin movie (just remember: I will fight you), but Uma Thurman TOTALLY nailed that vampy, bad-ass role. When she comes out of that smokey pit of demon plants in her Jane-from-Tarzan outfit and kills the heck out of that guy, it was ~a moment.~ She makes Batman and Robin fight over her in a bidding war at a Definitely Not a Sex Auction. It was over the top and so was she, but you never for a moment doubted that she was in control. Here, Poison Ivy is this super clingy character who desperately NEEDS Catwoman's help and is super jealous and insecure over Harley Quinn. I have always liked Harley and Ivy's friendship but I did not like this relationship between them. Not because I don't ship them as a couple, but because it was so toxic - and Ivy has always been a positive influence in Harley's life to counteract the Joker's poisonous influence. And this Harley is super whiny and childlike, a punk-ass bitch version of Harley, and it was gross and I wanted no part of it. I am totally willing to ship Harley and Ivy but not as some pathetic co-dependent relationship. #Nope Then there's Luke Fox who could be interesting if his character couldn't be boiled down to three words: PTSD, black, too rich to function. All of these things are handled very badly, and while I get that black people of ALL economic stations face tons of BS for their skin color, it felt very transparently off for Maas, an arguably well-off white woman, to make him a black character who is as rich as Croesus (probably 2nd only to the Waynes), neatly side-stepping the issue of talking about serious disparity or inequality (even though I'm pretty sure that the people in Catwoman's childhood girl gang were implied to be people of color). Bravo, how deep. Good job being woke. Between the fact that this felt like a THRONE OF GLASS/Batman crossover fanfic that was written over the course of several days with no editing, and the utter lack of solid characterization or witty (I mean witty, not sarcastic little shits trading playground insults a la Celaena "I'm So Great and You're Not" Sardothien) that I expect from DC, this felt like a lame attempt to cash in on Maas's success and the DC/Marvel superheroes craze. The only way this could be more of a cash cow is if it mooed actual $100 bills. 1 star

  13. 4 out of 5

    Wendy Darling

    So you know Sarah's Catwoman is going to have great outfits. (I had a smirky emoji here but GOODREADS WILL NOT ALLOW IT.) It'll also be good to see her write a standalone.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Kaylin (The Re-Read Queen)

    Yes hello, I'm not here to debate the author or anything I just want to know what the fuck is going on with that cover. IT LOOKS LIKE WORD ART

  15. 5 out of 5

    Ashwood (애쉬 우드).

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I think this is literally the lowest I’ve ever rated a SJM book, and it really pains me to do it now but this book deserves what it gets, sadly😕 I really really wanted to be wowed by this one, seriously but I don’t know what happened... it just missed the mark for me, big time. From the cage fights (and her fighting with a whip..), to the love interest NOT being Batman (seriously, wth??), and the fact that many many other things were significantly changed from what I originally knew about Catwoma I think this is literally the lowest I’ve ever rated a SJM book, and it really pains me to do it now but this book deserves what it gets, sadly😕 I really really wanted to be wowed by this one, seriously but I don’t know what happened... it just missed the mark for me, big time. From the cage fights (and her fighting with a whip..), to the love interest NOT being Batman (seriously, wth??), and the fact that many many other things were significantly changed from what I originally knew about Catwoman (which kinda made this a confusing read), all that adds up to it being a major fail for me. So, yea.. this was a bit disappointing😩 I tried really hard to like this book, even rereading it didn’t help. Now, I’m just hoping Superman turns out okay because these DC icons aren’t turning out to be my favorites😓

  16. 5 out of 5

    Bibi

    *Pirouttes while clasping book kindle to bosoms* This book was su-purr-b! *Spoilers* Listen, I'm a Marvel girl through and through; however, I've always been intrigued by Catwoman and while I really wanted to read this, I was unconvinced that SJM could adequately convey Selina's essence. So, suffice to say, it was a pleasant surprise that she knocked this out of the park because her interpretation of all things Gotham, including all secondary characters, was absolutely thrilling. Moreover, we not *Pirouttes while clasping book kindle to bosoms* This book was su-purr-b! *Spoilers* Listen, I'm a Marvel girl through and through; however, I've always been intrigued by Catwoman and while I really wanted to read this, I was unconvinced that SJM could adequately convey Selina's essence. So, suffice to say, it was a pleasant surprise that she knocked this out of the park because her interpretation of all things Gotham, including all secondary characters, was absolutely thrilling. Moreover, we not only get Selina Kyle but appearances by Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn as well. So, yay! On to the plot. The story opens with Selina at 17 years, working as a Leopard in Gotham's underbelly, she's also fully responsible for, Maggie, her younger sister, who is terminally ill. Things take a turn for worse when authorities swoop in, insisting both minors had to move into the foster care system; a catalyst that culminates in Selina becoming a member of the League of Assasins (LoA). Fast forward three years and Selina is back in Gotham posing as, Holly Vanderhees, a wealthy heiress, and fortunately (or not), her new neighbour is none other than Luke Fox (aka Batwing). She then embarks on a spate of robberies, working in consort with the aforementioned women; in addition, it seems she may have stolen a vital piece of intel from the LoA, putting her in the crosshairs of three groups. Batwing, the Gotham underbelly, and the LoA. The rest of the narrative is SJM taking us on a journey to discover the motivation behind Selina's actions. Overall, with the exception of Luke Fox, the characters were fully nuanced, the plot had a steady and ultimately satisfactory progression and conclusion. Further, Selina was portrayed as not only strong but intelligent, and thankfully, she wasn't a simpering female ruled mainly by hormones (thank God). Luke, on the other hand, needs to turn in his Batwings!

  17. 4 out of 5

    may ❀

    im not even gonna pretend to be an objective reviewer who dissects and rates books according to the elements of the book hell nah, im gonna review this purely on how it made me feel which was effing fantastic. catwoman is an evil queen, i absolutely adore her character. luke is an adorable baby. IVY AND HARLEY IM SCREAMING WHAT A TRIO OF ICONS this book wasn't perfect but goodness i loved every fast paced, well-built moment of it. im actual trash

  18. 4 out of 5

    Cody

    Catwoman? Sarah J. Maas? Puuuuuuuuurrrrrrrfect ;) Sorry, I had to.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Mizuki

    A Young Adult novel version of Catwoman, written by Sarah J. Maas? And Maas has dragged Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn into her mess too...? Fuck. This. Shit! Leave those badass girls alone!!! (Link: https://giphy.com/gifs/catwoman-RO6yV...) Just for the record: at this point, I only want to cry for poor Catwoman. Now, I must also cry for Ivy and Harley. *goes to sit in a dark corner and cries* PS: more bad news is rolling in! Last week I also found out according to the premise of the upcoming Batman YA n A Young Adult novel version of Catwoman, written by Sarah J. Maas? And Maas has dragged Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn into her mess too...? Fuck. This. Shit! Leave those badass girls alone!!! (Link: https://giphy.com/gifs/catwoman-RO6yV...) Just for the record: at this point, I only want to cry for poor Catwoman. Now, I must also cry for Ivy and Harley. *goes to sit in a dark corner and cries* PS: more bad news is rolling in! Last week I also found out according to the premise of the upcoming Batman YA novel (by Marie Lu), the barely-18-years-old-Bruce Wayne is going to do community service in the mother freaking Arkham Asylum! (Source: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/2...) PSS: even more bad news is rolling in! For some stupid reason Talia al Ghul and the Joker are also in the story! *facepalms* (link: https://giphy.com/gifs/wetv-no-facepa...)

  20. 5 out of 5

    ambsreads

    buddy read w/ my fave boyo in the world THIS REVIEW WAS FIRST FEATURED ON MY BLOG. CICK HERE TO SEE IT Trigger Warnings: PTSD, war flashbacks, mentions of parental abuse, mentions of drugs, mentions of cystic fibrosis Catwoman: Soulstealer was everything most people predicted it would be. A straight up disappointment. This book didn’t have anything going for it. A book that promised feminism and a kickass plotline was flat and used PTSD and abuse as a plot device to push forward the weak story. I buddy read w/ my fave boyo in the world THIS REVIEW WAS FIRST FEATURED ON MY BLOG. CICK HERE TO SEE IT Trigger Warnings: PTSD, war flashbacks, mentions of parental abuse, mentions of drugs, mentions of cystic fibrosis Catwoman: Soulstealer was everything most people predicted it would be. A straight up disappointment. This book didn’t have anything going for it. A book that promised feminism and a kickass plotline was flat and used PTSD and abuse as a plot device to push forward the weak story. I don’t agree with those two things being used as a plot device, and I speak from experience when I say they were poorly executed throughout this story. Sarah J Maas was unable to create a new world within the pre-existing DC universe. This story came across as lacklustre and simply as a first draft of a book rather than the final edition. This particular story in the DC universe is told from two perspectives: Selina Kyle and Luke Fox. Selina Kyle didn’t have the easiest life. With an abusive drug addict mother (badly done) who had had a series of abusive ex-boyfriends, she has been left to care for her younger sister alone. Considering she is not 18 yet and has immersed herself in a well-known gang in the city this is not okay in the eyes of the law. Ultimately, Selina Kyle left Gotham City two years ago, on an adventure to train as an assassin and with a promise that her younger sister who had cystic fibrosis would be taken care of. She’s now returned to the city and is ready to wreak havoc in her path. Luke Fox was a marine. Now retired after an explosion? A car accident? It’s never really explained, I think it was mentioned in passing. Luke has returned to Gotham and it is there that he has found that he is battling the effects of PTSD. I can not speak on the PTSD that a war veteran experiences, I will never try to do so. I experience PTSD due to different reasons and my triggers are not the same as someone else’s. I will talk more about why I think this PTSD rep is piss poor later in this review, so keep an eye out. Luke now trains with Bruce Wayne, aka Batman, and has even adopted the fun title of Batwing. I cringed a little when I read it in the book honestly. I’m not sure if there is actually a character called Batwing in the DC universe, but honestly what a weak name. I want some creativity, folks. Batwing obviously fits for the good of Gotham City and Catwoman is obviously fighting for herself. The pair comes to blows several times throughout the story, so trigger warning for violence. However, the plot of this book is lacking. Almost nothing happens for 200 pages. Catwoman robs banks with Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy and Batwing does his best to defeat them but fails every time (which is kind of embarrassing and unrealistic, he should have at least one once). The story really doesn’t pick up until the last 50 odd pages of this book and it honestly isn’t even worth it. It is weak and poorly executed, which had my eyes rolling towards the back of my head. I was thankful when I finished this book. So, my positive for this book. I only have one, so strap on your seatbelt folks. I liked the fact that Poison Ivy was very much a lesbian on the page. She states that all she wanted was to kiss a girl and even states that she and Harley hook up. I just liked Poison Ivy’s character, actually. She was definitely the best part about this train wreck of a book. Additionally, Selina Kyle’s sexuality is completely erased. I have seen people asking if Selina is bisexual in this novel and honestly, I don’t know. It is never mentioned, which to me counts as erasing. Throughout this novel, Selina expresses the only thing she has desire for is money, which is cool. Except there is a romance forced into the plot that had me wanting to pull my eyes out with hot pokers. Oh, the other thing I did like about this book was that there was a trio of three girls who took the centre of the book. Poison Ivy, Harley Quinn and Catwoman all had their moment in the sunshine. I don’t think the friendships created between these characters were well done, which was frustrating, but they were there and I guess there was an attempt made. My least favourite about this book, if you had no idea yet, was the PTSD. I would say that only Luke experiences PTSD throughout this book, but in an underlying way, you could also say that Selina does as well. Again, Luke’s PTSD stems from being in the marines and seeing people he loves dies. I can’t speak on this. I will say that the PTSD is used to further both the plot and relationship between Selina and Luke, something I find disgusting. There is even a part where Luke tells Selina that he has PTSD, and she says she understands because her mother was abusive. That whole scene rubbed me the wrong way. The topic switches instantly to Selina’s backstory and Luke is simply put to the side, despite the fact this scene could have brought attention to what veterans go through. The way Sarah J Maas dealt with PTSD throughout Catwoman: Soulstealer kind of made me feel like she had no idea what she was doing. Which shocked me because of her PTSD representations in Tower of Dawn and A Court of Mist and Fury always spoke to me. It was simply used as a plot device in this novel and I am not okay with that. Hell, I would say the poor representation and way of dealing with PTSD in this book would rival Zenith by Sasha Albserg and Lindsay Cummings (review here). I mentioned before that Selina Kyle had a younger sister she cared for. This little girl is Selina’s whole life at the beginning of the book. Selina does anything she can to make sure her little sister is eating and not going to die. However, after Selina returns from where she has trained to be an assassin, to the same city that Maggie lives in, the younger sister is only mentioned in passing. Which is incredibly frustrating considering the ‘twist’ in the plot. I really felt that Maggie should have been allowed more page time, at least in Selina’s thoughts. It honestly made the book feel disjointed and like Sarah hadn’t worked on the plot enough at all. It was as if several ideas had been rammed together in hopes that it would work, with no thought as to how they would flow into each other. I think the biggest downfall of Catwoman: Soulstealer was the bland characters. They were so bloody boring. No one had a personality. They all virtually read the same. They just bored me to utter tears. I wish I could pluck this book from my brain because I wasted so much time reading it. Sarah J Maas wasn’t able to give these already loved characters their moment in the sunshine. She was trying to push so much into them and it ultimately resulted in them being one-dimensional characters that were boring to read about. Not only that, but this book really did have no plot. So, bland characters and lack of plot? There’s absolutely nothing going for this book. Another thing, since I’m on a roll. Some people shouldn’t write about diversity. I think Sarah J Maas is one of them. Everyone has called her out on her lack of diversity, and they’re not wrong, and she clearly tried to do something in this book but damn it was lacking. Luke Fox is a black male in this book and Sarah J Maas spends so much time talking about how he is oppressed despite being an incredibly rich man all his life. There were massive sections to Selina thinking about the oppression Luke must face as well, which just rubbed me the wrong way. It was as if Sarah was trying way too hard and not letting these characters come organically. The dialogue also sucked. Not a single interaction sounded realistic or as if the characters were real people. I understand it is a book but at least give the characters some kind of realistic traits. Overall, this book was blander than white bread. There was no spark, there was no great moment, there was simply nothing. The characters were lacking and the world building itself relied on what you already know about the DC universe. Sarah truly didn’t try at all with this book. I don’t know if maybe I am being too judgemental of Sarah’s writing, but if you’re an NYT bestselling author you should expect it. The writing in this book is comparable to Throne of Glass, her worst book in existence. I can say it was lacking that weird toxic masculinity that usually filters through her books and there was no smut. Overall, a terrible book and one I do not recommend.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Maggie

    i marked this as 'currently reading' but never actually started it, since i haven't had time, but now im actually starting it. wow i wish myself luck cause this book's reviews are not...looking...good. my copy has arrived and all i’ve been hearing is that this book truly just sucks so i wanna read it even more to see how much of a trashy book this is but idk if i have to read wonder woman and batman before??? someone please tell me 5/22/16 I NEVER KNEW I WANTED THIS

  22. 5 out of 5

    Melody Boggs

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. This review can also be found on my blog, Where the Words Take Me . I won this ARC of Catwoman: Soulstealer from a giveaway on Tumblr, but I still want to thank the publisher for providing this for early-ish reviews. The bad cover aside, I think some part of me was still hoping that Sarah J. Maas could at least pull off a standalone book, especially since it was a book featuring characters that aren’t her own. That being said, DC is my preferred comic book universe, and Batman especially means so This review can also be found on my blog, Where the Words Take Me . I won this ARC of Catwoman: Soulstealer from a giveaway on Tumblr, but I still want to thank the publisher for providing this for early-ish reviews. The bad cover aside, I think some part of me was still hoping that Sarah J. Maas could at least pull off a standalone book, especially since it was a book featuring characters that aren’t her own. That being said, DC is my preferred comic book universe, and Batman especially means so much to me, so Maas was really going to have to work to impress me. To put it simply, she did not. Maas exhibits the same flaws and bad writing quirks here that she does in her two main series. The repetitive sentence fragments, the exposition of backstory and actions to retroactively explain why present actions are possible, the attempts to manipulate the reader toward her Perfect Ending–she truly hasn’t grown as a writer at all, and no one on her team seems inclined to push her towards trying, which is super disappointing to say the least. I wish I could say that this book gradually declined, but the truth is, it failed from the start. Selina Kyle is represented here, not as an independent, quick-witted jewel thief, but as a young woman whose agency is at the mercy of others and whose identity as Catwoman is solely created by everyone except herself. First, she’s part of the Leopards, a girl-gang who operates under the behest of Carmine Falcone and who fights those who are in Falcone’s debt arena-style. This set-up reeked of a deleted scene from Throne of Glass that was modified and slapped into Gotham City, and Selina sounded like Celaena 2.0 the entire time. “Let the bloodying begin,” was so laughably bad, I almost put the book down then and there. Maas couldn’t even resist making Selina have a weak stomach (she throws up no less than three times in this book, an extreme reaction that Maas overuses and that I don’t understand why she’s so stuck on). Selina even has some trashy tattoos, just like Celaena and Feyre before her: leopard spots up and down both arms, one for every victory she’s ever had, and of course, she’s undefeated. (Yep, you guessed it. She’s a leopard earning her spots… Gag me, please.) A few things: 1. Selina Kyle would never let herself look that way, especially since it means she has to wear long-sleeves to hide them all the time, so what’s the point? 2. Selina’s supposed to be killing the people she fights, but she only knocks them unconscious. However, she does it so well that somehow no one has ever noticed that she’s not exactly following orders and getting her hands dirty. You see where I’m going with this? Having tattoos to mark kills makes sense. Having them just because you won a backyard brawl is ridiculous. 3. Selina Kyle is one of the most notorious, morally-gray characters in existence, but here she’s been thoroughly declawed. If she was this desperate to save her sister, she would have killed those men, no question. In popular canon, it’s Batman that even convinces her to adopt a no-kill rule, which she does stick to until Black Mask tortures her sister, and then it’s no more rule. Do you understand what I’m saying? Selina doesn’t mindlessly kill people and does try to avoid it, but she’ll do it if push comes to shove, especially in regards to her life or her family’s lives. So you see, the only thing about this set-up that rings true is that Selina is doing all this to earn money to try to save her sister, Maggie, who is afflicted with cystic fibrosis. Selina would absolutely do anything, would cross any lines if it meant saving someone she loves. Which is why her not following Falcone’s orders to kill her opponents doesn’t fly; Selina would not risk Falcone’s displeasure if it meant losing the only means to care for her sister, but Maas has given Selina the easiest, most convenient out, so that she never has to face consequences for her disobedience. (I won't even get into how laughable it is to picture Selina working for Falcone in the first place as one of his glorified cronies instead of just taking what she wants, but I digress.) That was strike one. The only thing about the first part I liked was Maggie and Selina’s relationship. It was actually a functional sibling relationship for once from Maas, but it quickly fizzled out once it became the typical “older sister has to protect fragile younger sister” trope, which of course means Selina has to lie and keep secrets from Maggie to protect her. Fortunately, Maggie was written smart enough to know something was up, and the two sisters did have some tender moments between them. However, it was cut off far too soon, and then Maggie became a motive and nothing else. Strike two was the utter narrative and character inconsistencies, especially from Selina’s POV, throughout the book. Maybe those will have been caught by publication, but given how I know past books have gone for Maas, I doubt the bulk of them will. I could have possibly gotten behind this Selina if she stayed constant and if her thoughts even tried to match her actions, but they didn’t. The first inconsistency was in Selina’s character design itself. Ignoring the tattoos, this book couldn’t keep straight what Selina it was giving me. To be fair, Selina’s character design has and still is changing from adaptation to adaptation, but I still expect there to be consistencies within a single given adaptation for things to make sense. Maas did keep Selina’s more recent half-Latina heritage, but instead of her knowing she is Cuban through her mother’s side, Selina doesn’t know her ethnicity because her father is an unknown, which I thought was fairly stereotypical. Selina also shows no outward signs of being Latina as she does in certain recent comics with her dark hair and olive skin. Instead, I’m told she has “golden-brown” hair, which in Maas language means “blonde,” then “ridiculous fake blonde hair” because she dyed it, and then it changes “back to her dark hair” that it never was to begin with. Meanwhile, the cover says she’s a younger Anne Hathaway version, which is funny because Maas does rip off lines straight from the Dark Knight trilogy. The second inconsistency lies in her motive for stealing. Constantly, we’re told how all her actions are geared toward her “mission,” that she wants to protect the poor and innocent of Gotham who have been taken advantage of by the corrupt rich elite. Selina wants to get back at them because they wear jewelry, and go to parties, and live in penthouses while not giving a damn about anyone else. So what does Selina do when she returns to Gotham? Wears jewelry, goes to parties, lives in a penthouse, and doesn’t give a damn about anyone else. Sure, it’s all a “front” for her to learn about the rich and steal from them, but then where does all of that money go? Maas tries to explain, but it doesn’t add up, especially once Selina starts thinking she wants to upend Gotham society and let the supervillains know that Batwing can’t measure up now that Batman is away. But how does letting a bunch of murderous supervillains run loose in the streets of Gotham help the poor and the innocent? Part of the reason why it doesn’t make sense is because Selina’s reasons for doing anything are shrouded from even the reader from day one. Her actions are then retroactively explained through lazy, patchwork exposition that Maas uses often to manipulate the reader where she wants them to go. It didn’t work this time, and honestly, it just made the narrative extremely sloppy and Selina look like a complete catastrophe of a character. (Sorry, had to do it.) Strike three, however, was the most important: Selina wasn’t given a shred of permission to create her own persona once in this novel. For instance, making her discover her supervillain identity through having to be rescued and trained by Talia al Ghul and the League of Assassins was such an insult to Selina’s independence and intelligence. I’m also really getting tired of Maas shoe-horning her heroines into being assassins–and then having them balk at actual assassin work. It’s such lazy morality, and I’m bored by it. What’s worse is that Selina obtains and creates all her gear via the League rather than coming by it her own way. Even her cat persona is created by the dumb tattoos the Leopards gave her and the taunts of “kitty” and “kitten” by other assassins, which she only embraces so they can’t be used to humiliate her anymore, rather than her just having a thing for cats and what they represent: agility, elegance, grace, sensuality, independence. She even shapes her dumb assassin’s Death Mask with the ears and lenses of a cat, but when she returns to Gotham, it’s Poison Ivy who names her Catwoman. Selina doesn’t even get to choose her own villainess name, didn’t even bother to think of one despite her cat motif and despite her wanting all of Gotham to know who she is. Y’all, this was maddening. And despite Poison Ivy naming her, she acts surprised when Selina pets a cat, claiming she didn’t think Selina would like animals. Y’all, this book was a train wreck. While I’m on the subject of Poison Ivy, let’s talk about her and Harley Quinn and their relationship to Selina here. Neither Poison Ivy or Harley Quinn were in character at all. I thought Harley was at first, but then I realized it only seemed that way because Maas doesn’t like her, so she was actually allowed to be a villain. However, so many times, I thought that Ivy’s and Harley’s reactions to things happening in the novel should have been swapped so they’d be closer to being real, in-character reactions. For some reason, the Ivy here cares for humanity when she’s historically never cared much for any human except Harley. She also gets visibly shaken whenever Harley kills someone or is violent, and I was just shaking my head at this point because who is this? Certainly, not my Pamela Isley. Meanwhile, Harley is written as dangerous as she should be, but the fun aspect of her personality was practically non-existent, and her character designs were yikes. You could tell Maas couldn’t be bothered to come up with anything good, much less a full clothing concept. I got extremely tired of hearing about how much Selina didn’t like her and could only take her in small doses. Harley and Ivy are acknowledged here as a complicated couple, but their “history” makes no sense given that Selina, Poison Ivy, and Harley have all just breached their twenties. Maas tried to establish Gotham City Sirens-level dynamics with three villainesses who, according to her, have just started their careers, and it just doesn’t work. Harley has somehow already done the Mad Love thing with the Joker, and they’ve broken up and she’s working solo, but she’s still sorta hung up on him? It’s really not done well, and it doesn’t make sense since she’s just twenty. This would be prime-time Mad Love years, if anything, or she’d still be getting her PhD in Psychology at this time. Pam also doesn’t have her PhD, not even going to grad school, but she, like every character in the novel, is a natural genius even though the narrative really doesn’t show it. If anything, though, I’d say Selina and Ivy had more of a relationship in this book than Ivy and Harley did, and sadly not a gay one. Of course, it was only done to achieve the narrative’s end goal, and it wasn’t in character on Ivy’s side at all, so I didn’t get to enjoy any of it. After awhile, too, the amount of times Selina “shoots Ivy a grateful look that the woman couldn’t see because of her helmet” became sickening because Selina only did it whenever Ivy was being a buffer between Selina and Harley. I wanted to read a book about these three becoming allies and friends and raising hell together, not a book where Selina is literally being catty to Harley, who is treated like the unwanted, unstable, red-headed step-child throughout. The worse part, though, was when Selina only wanted Harley to get therapy to get over the Joker so that Ivy could get the relationship out of Harley that she “deserves.” Like wow, way to make therapy and recovery a priority only for the sake of a romantic relationship, not because it’s good for the person or anything. The only blessing out of this mess was that Maas only had the Joker there for a second, and he said three lines, so she only got to ruin him for that brief amount of time. Still, though, having Harley only refer to him as “my ex” or “my man” was like hearing the opening notes of a song that never finish the chord it’s supposed to. Maas, the words you’re looking for are, “my puddin’.” Well, we’ve talked about the girls. Let’s talk about Luke Fox aka Batwing. For the record, I’ve liked Luke as a character since I saw him in Batman: Bad Blood. It was nice seeing a black teenager don the cowl and fight the good fight, and I thought he had a very interesting perspective on things. However, I don’t know what purpose he served in this book. Maas made up a marine backstory complete with PTSD, because of course she did, and then tried to pair him with Selina, and everything about it was so forced. I’m a hard Selina/Bruce shipper, so this was already an impossible sell, but this narrative did not help. One second, Luke is dodging his parents about dating and being firm on wanting to work on himself and not complicating his Batwing lifestyle. Then, suddenly all that goes out the window the second he spots “the knockout blonde walking down the hallway” and her green eyes and “tapered waist.” Gone is the professional, cool-headed Luke who’s just trying to get by, and here is the flirty, roguish Luke who’s a fool for a hot girl, and it was so painful to read. I got so much secondhand embarrassment. It seems Maas only created Luke’s PTSD just to bridge the romantic chasm between Luke and Selina, and her use of it throughout the book is further proof she doesn’t understand how PTSD works. She claims Luke’s was triggered from fireworks, and the way he copes with it is to go to PTSD therapy by day and to be Batwing by night because he’s saving people. Yet somehow, close-range gunfire from criminals actually firing at him does nothing except “trying to haul him back into his memories” that he can easily ward off with breathing and body movements. Instead, only massive explosions from a distance cued at the right time so Catwoman can ground him have any effect, and that was such bullshit. It’s his PTSD that allows Catwoman to figure out the link between Luke Fox and Batwing, but somehow Luke, despite being a genius, can’t figure out the link between his new socialite neighbor that no one’s ever heard of before and the sudden robberies that have broken out over Gotham. Luke was such a bumbling, ineffective hero who was five steps behind Catwoman the entire time that I didn’t even feel satisfied by Selina’s victories when it was all said and done. Everything was shallow, which is sad for me to say because I usually love it when the villain wins. I would’ve rather this had been a heist novel with Selina and her girls with how quickly Luke became just the battered, “damaged” love interest–oh, but he’s not as damaged and inhuman as Selina, because she has to one-up everyone on everything. According to Luke, even Batman, trained and lethal as he is, can’t compete with Catwoman’s animal stillness, “like she might blend into a shadow and never emerge.” Yeah. This was said about Batman, that he can’t do the elemental, animal thing and be still and blend into shadows. Even though that’s kind of his schtick. Even though that’s how he’s so successful at terrorizing Gotham’s criminals. Even though, in-canon, he’s managed to sneak up on Catwoman and vice versa (they do it to each other, that’s how it works). But no. Only Catwoman can do these things because she’s a League Assassin and Catwoman. Dear Bruce Wayne and Selina Kyle, neither of y’all deserved to be treated like this, and I’m so sorry. In the end, everything lines up for the trademark SJM Perfect Ending–and a lot of it mirrored Leigh Bardugo’s Wonder Woman: Warbringer ending, which was much better, and it’s kind of not great that things were so similar at the end of the day. It’s a shame that no one told Maas about the actual double-edged sword that comes with using a Lazarus Pit–that every use inflicts madness, which gets worse the more you use it–otherwise, we might have had a decent ending at least. But oh, well. Oh, why was the subtitle of this book called “Soulstealer,” you ask? No idea. Trying to link it to the Lazarus Pit would be a bit of a stretch, just saying. The only thing I can say with confidence is that this was my penultimate book I will be reading by this author. Once the last Throne of Glass book comes out, I’ll be quitting her forever, and I won’t regret a single aspect of that decision. TLDR; don’t read this book. Play the Arkham games or read Gotham City Sirens instead. You’ll be much happier.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Sandra

    When I received this news, I died and went to YA heaven. Sarah J. Maas is probably my favourite YA author and Catwoman is one of my favourite comic women, so the mere thought of SJM writing about Selina Kyle made me the happiest person in the world. Just imagine the darkness, the worldbuilding, the baddassery and the feels we'll get from this!!! THANK YOU, YA GODS, THANK YOU.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Clemlucian (🏳️‍🌈the brooding reader)

    “There are good people in Gotham. Protect them.” 0/ 5 I mean... what? Is that book for real? *cracks fingers* Okay, let's try to write a review and make some sense out of this mess. Four days ago, I had the craziest idea I've had in quite some time: adventuring myself into doing something DC related. I have... history, with DC. I was mindblown with the Nolans' adaptations of Batman (who wasn't?) but the rest of the movies were just catastrophes after catastrophes. So you might think, but this is a “There are good people in Gotham. Protect them.” 0/ 5 I mean... what? Is that book for real? *cracks fingers* Okay, let's try to write a review and make some sense out of this mess. Four days ago, I had the craziest idea I've had in quite some time: adventuring myself into doing something DC related. I have... history, with DC. I was mindblown with the Nolans' adaptations of Batman (who wasn't?) but the rest of the movies were just catastrophes after catastrophes. So you might think, but this is a book and the book is always better than the movie so why are you even talking about DC movies? I'm setting the picture okay, chill, get some snacks because this... rant is gonna be quite long. Batman, Marie Lu: 0/5 stars, DNF at 70%, one of the worst book I've read in 2017, and I was heartbroken because I loved Lu's books until then. Wonderwoman, Leigh Bardugo: I didn't even try to read it because my thoughts were biased since I hated Wonderwoman's character (comics, show, movie...) And I'm not a fan of Bardugo. However, I tend to enjoy SJM's stories, and since I don't have anything against Catwoman, I thought I'd give it a shot. Boy oh boy, I was in for a treat. This book was terrible. I think I'm suffering from PTSD and some severe brain damage because I couldn't gather my thoughts for the past 3 days. But here we are, and this book almost came out a week ago so I thought it was time to bitter: The MC (can't even remember her name, that's how memorable she is) is just basic and sexist and mean, so your average YA main character. She hates people with money, thinks she's better than everyone, she's manipulative, and just a terrible person in general. I thought at first we'll get an anti-hero situation but no, no Catwoman is the hero, although she's saving her ass and her sister's even if she kills people along the way, it's totally worth it. She doesn't feel remorse, or justify herself on her reasons, 'for the greater good' type of things. She just does it. And no, not like the Joker -who is one of the best movie characters of all time, but in a non-developed character way. She's basically Celaena from Throne Of Glass. Every character from this book, and everything about this book really, is from Throne Of Glass but I'll get into that later. Batwing: at least, he was black. That's it. That's the only nice thing I have to say about his character, he's diverse. WHAT A LIST! Okay, so, he starts as a pompous army brat, just like any other YA male character, and ends up as -you guessed it- bad boy with a heart of gold. What a character development, I'm shook. But really though, this character is so paper-thin I can see through it. He apparently has friends, (where are they at) he ditches them and doesn't talk to them for two months and is only seen on his own because god forbid we introduce new characters in this book *takes a deep breath* AND what's up the convenient PTSD stuff that only appear when it's interesting plot-wise *cough* once *cough* did SJM forget about it mid draft? The two chicks so we get two info dump of character history to make up for the lack of well personality and ticks and human stuff. PLOT Well, that's a joke. We don't understand the plot until the very end, when Catwoman sort of saves the day, I mean, only in her narrow-minded point of view but still. There's this thing with SJM books that I've noticed, she doesn't just make a plot, like any competent writer, no. She writes a story spineless, then at the very end say that it was all part of the plan and TADA! WHAT A MASTERMIND! WRITING STYLE I mean it's still the same, if you didn't like the other books because of that then this one isn't going to be any different. Personally, that's the only thing I didn't really mind about Catwoman. So that's kind of it for the rant, if you want to read the full, more edited review, it's here on my blog it's still negative and stuff so I'll totally get it if you've had enough of my rant. Sorry for the typos, I'm too bitter to care. Hope you won't read it, but if you do, I'll pray to Castiel for you.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Kiran

    Catwoman sweetie you don't deserve this I'm sorry

  26. 5 out of 5

    Suzanne

    I seriously enjoyed this book! I’ve seen some mixed reviews but that happened with the other two books of the series and I enjoyed them also, so it did not stop me from reading. I am glad of that also because I actually liked this one more than the other two. The story was addicting and the characters were awesome to read about. I Loved it! My quick and simple overall: fun take on Catwoman!

  27. 5 out of 5

    Nina

    *** 4.5 STARS *** I'm still so incredibly happy about the fact that my copy came early because I really loved this book. Just like all of Sarah J. Maas's other books, "Catwoman: Soulstealer" was such a page turner and I just couldn't put it down anymore. I have to say that I had very high expectations for this story, but they were definitely met and now I can't wait for the last part of this series. So there are only really two very small reasons why I decided to deduct half a star. The first on *** 4.5 STARS *** I'm still so incredibly happy about the fact that my copy came early because I really loved this book. Just like all of Sarah J. Maas's other books, "Catwoman: Soulstealer" was such a page turner and I just couldn't put it down anymore. I have to say that I had very high expectations for this story, but they were definitely met and now I can't wait for the last part of this series. So there are only really two very small reasons why I decided to deduct half a star. The first one is that there is one scene in this book in which I think Batwing should've easily been able to figure out who Catwoman is and I just think it was a bit unrealistic that he didn't get it. The other reason is that I overall just still enjoyed "Wonderwoman: Warbringer" a tad bit more than this book. Nevertheless, this was one of the best books I've read in quite some time now and I really hope Maas will write a sequel at some point because the ending was a little too open for my liking and I definitely need to know what will happen next! instagram || my blog || twitter

  28. 5 out of 5

    Melanie

    Wonder Woman: Warbringer by Leigh Bardugo ★★★ Batman: Nightwalker by Marie Lu ★★★★ Blog | Instagram | Twitter | Tumblr | Youtube | Twitch

  29. 5 out of 5

    Alex ☣ Deranged KittyCat ☣

    Unlike with Bardugo's Wonder Woman: Warbringer, I hope for a more NA vibe from Sarah J. Maas. I put my faith in her.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Camile Souza (This Chamber of Books)

    Oh man my copy finally arrived but now I'm scared. What if I don't like it? What if I hate it? I'm not emotionally ready to possibly dislike a book that has my girl Harley in it. ------------------------------------------ I heard that my beloved and damaged Harley Quinn is in this book and I'm thrilled. She's just my favorite DC character of all time and I'll read this no matter what. But if Maas mess up with Harley I'll riot. ------------------------- Okay, this is not getting much love from my TL a Oh man my copy finally arrived but now I'm scared. What if I don't like it? What if I hate it? I'm not emotionally ready to possibly dislike a book that has my girl Harley in it. ------------------------------------------ I heard that my beloved and damaged Harley Quinn is in this book and I'm thrilled. She's just my favorite DC character of all time and I'll read this no matter what. But if Maas mess up with Harley I'll riot. ------------------------- Okay, this is not getting much love from my TL and now I'm officially scared this book will suck. I can only give so many chances to an author so Sarah better make this worth my time. It's all I ask. Don't suck, book. Just don't, PLEASE.

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