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I Belong


Early Review: Spark by Brigid Kemmerer

Title: Spark

Author: Brigid Kemmerer

Genre: YA Fantasy

Series: Elementals (Book 2)

Publication Date: August 28, 2012

Format: Paperback, 432 Pages

ISBN-10: 0758272820 (K-Teen)

ISBN-13: 978-0758272829 (K-Teen)

Reviewed by: Michelle

Synopsis:

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…

Quick & Dirty: A fierce sequel to the Elemental series, that tells us it’s not always a bad thing to play with fire.

Opening Sentence: Gabriel Merrick stared at the dead leaf in his palm and willed it to burn.

Excerpt: Yes

The Review:

Elementals roam the world, and in Storm, the first book by Brigid Kemmerer, we are introduced to the Merrick family. We have Chris, Michael, as well as Nick and Gabriel, the twins. Storm was a force to be reckoned with, pun intended, and Spark is no different. Kemmerer’s second installment in the series fulfills the promises of everyone who was a fan of Storm. I for one thoroughly enjoyed each moment, and I think you will as well.

As twins, Nick and Gabriel expected to come into their powers together, but that wasn’t the case. Nick was the first to manifest into his power in the first book, leaving Gabriel feeling helpless and only having his brothers to rely on. In Spark, we see Gabriel’s power manifest. There are fires wreaking havoc throughout the town, an all signs point to Gabriel.

Gabriel and Nick are two of the luckiest twins in the world. Nick is a math genius, a brainy type with a quick wit, and Gabriel is the sports champ, proving to also have a strong personality. They were targeted for their Elemental abilities, something they were all prepared for, but because of a deal struck by their parents, they were kept alive.

Unfortunately, that deal led to Nick and Gabriel’s parents death. With the help of Chris, their older brother, they were able to keep the deal into place, until a few weeks ago, when some of the weaker Elementals attacked him. They would have succeeded, if not for Nick calling the storms to protect them all. And afterwards, Nick paid the consequences, suffering a broken leg. But Gabriel couldn’t do anything to help his brother. But that all changes in Spark.

Gabriel was a favorite of mine ever since Storm. He has the gift to control fire. For an element, I’d say this one is the most dangerous, like a beastly roaring inferno. And funny enough, that describes Gabriel. It’s not a secret that Gabriel is the most ill-tempered out of his three brothers. And with the recent events, life just seems to test him, time and time again.

Layne was my favorite. She was written to be the underdog, but did she excel. She exceeded my expectations, and fortunately, Gabriel’s as well. I love when kismet plays a part in stories and when two good people are brought together. She’s shy, intelligent, and a perfect balance to Gabriel’s personality. She has many secrets, some she is ashamed of, but this is why she connected with Gabriel. Once they both let their guards down, they were perfect for each other.

Spark, as well as Storm, has a unique and interesting world. From the culture of the Elementals, to the dangers of the Guides, Kemmerer presents a world that showcases it in a beautiful and ugly nature. Kemmerer’s prose is wonderful, and continues in Spark. Her pages contain razor-sharp humor as well as well-thought out dialogue. The pacing was perfect and I never felt like there was a dull moment. Everything seemed effortless, and that is an amazing feat for an author.

Notable Scene:

Gabriel hesitated. He did—and he didn’t. It was addictive, drowning in fire every night.

And it was helping his control. He was getting stronger; he could feel it. But he eventually would kill someone if he couldn’t manage his element better than this. He was going to get caught.

He looked out the window. “I don’t know,” he ground out.

Hunter fell silent again, pulling his Jeep onto the main road. But after a while, he glanced over. “Maybe we’re going about this all wrong.”

“What does that mean?”

“You’re a sports guy. You don’t just go out and play a game—you practice, right?”

“This isn’t a game, Hunter.”

“Still. Practice makes perfect.”

The Elementals Series:

0.5. Elemental

1. Storm

1.5. Fearless

2. Spark

3. Spirit

FTC Advisory: Kensington Teen provided me with a copy of Spark.  No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

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