When she meets Sam, I instantly liked him. He was kind and compassionate with her. I loved the interaction of Ana, flabbergasted that anyone would actually like her, and Sam, who's determined to break through her walls and get to know her, even if she's different. It was amazing to see his treatment of Ana contrasted with the way most of the people of Heart treated her. There were some who were accepting of her, like Sam, but many others whose reactions ranged from cautious to downright hostile. It was an interesting look at prejudice and preconception, especially in this society whose members have known each other for millennia. Obviously, as a reader I wanted everyone to be instantly accepting of Ana, but at the same time, I could see why they weren't. She had replaced their friend, an established member of society. Even though it wasn't her fault, it would be hard not to blame her.
One of my favorite aspects of the book was the use of music. I'm not sure how musical Jodi Meadows actually is, but she writes like someone who has a deep understanding of the joy of making music. She perfectly captured the feelings of sitting at a piano, creating a new melody, becoming lost in the notes. I loved the role it played in the development of Ana's character and her relationship with Sam. I haven't read a lot of YA where the characters who were musicians actually felt like musicians.
Then there's the fantasy elements -- dragons and enchanted stone and, of course, reincarnation. I thought this book was a really unique combo of fantasy elements with a distinctly sci-fi feel (although there's very little that would actually classify this book as sci-fi, it just had that vibe, if that makes any sense). It made me keep wanting to peek behind the curtain, as it's hinted over and over that there's an explanation for everything happening beyond "because it's magic" or "because that's the way it is." I can't wait to see what it is.
Incarnate was an original and romantic story that transported me to a beautifully unique new world. I loved the characters, the setting, and the many questions it posed about both its own fantasy world and our own, and I look forward to finding out what happens to Ana in Asunder.