Written by Brigid Kemmerer
Published August, 2012 by Allen & Unwin
Genres: Elemental, Romance, Urban Fantasy
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Gabriel Merrick plays with fire. Literally. Sometimes he can even control it. And sometimes he can’t.
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. And no one seems to believe him. Except a shy sophomore named Layne, a brainiac who dresses in turtlenecks and jeans and keeps him totally off balance. Because Layne has a few secrets of her own…
What a wonderful follow up book to Brigid Kemmerer’s Storm! Spark is, dare I say it, even better than the first. Gabriel Merrick’s chapter in the series is heart-pounding, sexy and completely engaging read. If you haven’t picked up this series yet, what are you waiting for?
I read the first book in the Elementals series back in April of last year and absolutely adored it. That being said, I had to re-read it before digging into Spark as I wanted to go into the second book completely involved with the characters and refreshed on all the plot points, as Spark picks up exactly where it’s predecessor leaves off. If you’re interested in reading my review of Storm, check it out here. I still stand by my old review in most regards.
Spark was fantastic from the word ‘go’. Although I was never a Gabriel Merrick fangirl, I enjoyed his narrative much more than I did Chris’s in the first book. Gabriel just had a clearer voice and it was easy to get a hold on what type of character he was. Chris was a bit wishy-washy (even more so in this book, I think) whereas Gabe was always strong and demanding attention just by being in a scene.
Gabriel’s relationship with Layne was also fantastic. I felt that Becca and Chris never got a chance to shine in Storm, so seeing Layne and Gabriel actually develop as a couple was such a relief. They worked so well together and I enjoyed their story from start to finish – from insults to kisses. To date they are my favourite couple in this series, although I look forward to reading about Michael and Hannah (how exciting!)
Layne was also a strong character, despite being completely different from any other heroine I’ve read about. Layne embraces her geekiness and actually has a purpose. Her background is not what you expect, either. I haven’t read about a leading lady with glasses in YA for the longest time… and although she is insecure about her body, I got the feeling that she never wanted to change and I admired that about her.
Brigid Kemmerer also made sure there were no overlaps in her stories. What we got with Becca and Chris, we didn’t get with Gabriel and Layne. And vice versa. For instance; Becca and Chris had the whole ‘revelation’ scene, where Chris divulged his secret to her. That is where Layne and Gabriel leave off. Their relationship worked backwards this time. They were a couple BEFORE she found out about his abilities. I loved that Brigid decided to do things this way – making sure each brother’s story and it’s partnering romance doesn’t become stale and boring by the third, or even second, book.
The third book, Spirit, is next on my ‘to-read’ pile. I’m so glad I have it right here to dive into. It’s about Hunter this time around, and although he’s not one of my favourites, I’m looking forward to getting back into the world of the Merrick brothers. I just can’t wait for my favourite brother’s (NICK!!) book after that one!
Recommended to: Readers who loved the first book will CONSUME Spark… If you’re still on the fence about reading this series, you should really jump in. A sexy twin in a fireman’s outfit? It’s got you covered right there.