Tuesday, August 14

Spark: Book Review

Elementals #2
Brigid Kemmerer
August 28th 2012
Young Adult | Paranormal

Official Blurb -
Gabriel Merrick plays with fire. Literally.

Sometimes he can even control it. And sometimes he can’t. Like the fire that killed his parents.

Gabriel has always had his brothers to rely on, especially his twin, Nick. But when an arsonist starts wreaking havoc on their town, all the signs point to Gabriel. Only he’s not doing it.

More than Gabriel’s pride is at stake -- this could cost him his family, maybe his life. And no one seems to hear him. Except a shy sophomore named Layne, a brainiac who dresses in turtlenecks and jeans and keeps him totally off balance. Layne understands family problems, and she understands secrets. She has a few of her own.

Gabriel can’t let her guess about his brothers, about his abilities, about the danger that’s right at his heels. But there are some risks he can’t help taking.

The fuse is lit…

I wasn't expecting Spark to be from a different viewpoint. I never bothered to read the synopsis but had I taken a second to consider the name of the book I might have figured it out. It was a huge adjustment switching to Gabriel's point of view. He has such a different outlook on the other characters and the world than Chris. Through his eyes characters that were firmly established in Storm seem different. It was also hard to accept how unimportant characters now were, almost like reading an entirely different story.

Gabriel has a bit lower grasp on the English language than his youngest brother and uses a fair bit of swearing to fill the gaps.

It was nice to get to know Gabriel. The experience was gritty, raw, painful, and tender. Once you get past his exterior and constant stance of aggression you can't help but feel for him. So very alone and lost and so deep in trouble. He is buried in so much guilt it is suffocating.

The relationship between Layne and Gabriel really is life saving. Like fresh air or a promise of another day or chance. Very precious and so fragile. There is a real change in the family's relationship dynamic through this book. So much miscommunication really causes trouble at first.

Much more emotional depth than Storm. The first was more fist and power driven. This is all about being crapped on by the world. Then deciding if you want to get back up and try to forge a future for yourself or just give up and accept defeat.

There did seem to be a disconnect from the danger posed in the first novel. It seems it should be all the more problematic in this book. Blatant use of forbidden powers doesn't seem to elicit so much as a peep other than from Becca's father. Perhaps all of that is being saved for the next book. I did miss Chris and Becca. They hardly existed in this book.

The book was a bit rougher but that has everything to do with the character narrating and not the writing. Even with all the swearing I still had a hard time putting it down.

Sexual: Moderate
Language: Heavy
Violence: Moderate

Moment Divine:
"A girl on the cheer squad had once asked Gabriel if having a twin was like looking in a mirror all the time. He'd asked her if being a cheerleader was like being an idiot all the time--but really, it was a good question."