Author: Brigid Kemmerer
Source: Personal Copy
Edition: Kindle, 345 Pages
Genre: Urban Fantasy, Elements
Published Date: August 28, 2012
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..
Dates Read: April 27 to 28th, 2013
Let me start by saying it took me way too long to pick this one up and read it, way too long. I’ll admit it was the price that threw me. I don’t like spending too much money on digital books, I’d rather save that for when I purchase the physical copy. And while I love these brothers and these books, unless I come into some money sometime soon (which is highly unlikely) I won’t be purchasing these for my shelf.
If you find yourself asking what caused me to finally purchase Spark, well I’ll tell you, it was entirely because I received Spirit for review (which I did not expect and I was so excited I told my husband who could not have cared less, literally, not even a sliver). I knew I needed to read Spark first, because I had gotten Breathless for review slightly before and I was so confused reading and reviewing that one. I couldn’t make the same mistake twice or else it would no longer be a mistake now would it? 🙂
Spark is EXACTLY as good as people are exclaiming it to be. Despite being the last person to read this one, I must say I am darn proud of myself for not spoiling anything and having the opportunity to enjoy this one as much as I did.
I think I highlighted half the book, there was entirely too much love for this one. NOTE: I’ll try to not over share on the fave quotes at the end.
Spark starts out with Nick knocking on the door to find out what color shirt Gabriel has on (they do this so they don’t dress the same cue: AWW!). Then some stuff happens on their way to school, then some stuff happens at school, then some more stuff happens at the mall food court. (Yes I just did that, this review will be way too long otherwise 😉 )
I loved how everything started, the pacing was perfect and I only have two complaints, really. I always seem to have an issue with pacing in YA. I don’t know what it is with this genre, but sometimes things take way too long to get interesting, or I lose my interest and I have to skip ahead to find a reason to keep reading, only to circle back when I finally find that special something.
One of my complaints was the tension between Nick and Gabriel for most of this book. I was suffocating from the misunderstandings and lack of actually speaking between the twins. My heart broke every time Gabriel entered the room, regardless of whether or not Nick was there.
The lack of communication between the twins was pivotal for this book and if they had been on good terms none of this book could have happened I don’t think. Both Nick and Gabriel grew tremendously in this installment; the character development for these two was phenomenal. I can’t say it enough.
My only other complaint was that there was not enough development with the over-arching story line. We see a bit of it in the beginning and a bit of it in the end, but for the most part Spark can be considered character-driven with the bulk of the story focused on Gabriel, obviously.
The only thing I can surmise is that it was this way because while Gabriel is an integral part to the Merrick family he isn’t as closely connected to the over-arching story as say Becca and Chris and Hunter are. So since we were in Gabriel’s head for this book it makes sense the focus would be elsewhere for the duration of his novel.
Gabriel, there really isn’t anything else to say about him. He grew up in this novel and not only did we get to see this happen very naturally, but we also were privileged to see him grow close to someone who wasn’t his family and see how that would influence his decisions.
Layne, is a good, unsuspecting match for Gabriel. They really do fit together perfectly. I don’t love Layne as much as I love Becca and that is a little difficult to explain. I suppose where Becca was confident, Layne was unsure.
The main supporting characters this go-around: Michael and Simon were amazing, as well. I really feel like as these novels progress we are getting a full story. Michael isn’t just the big brother, he’s their guardian and we see how important that role is to him and how crucial it is to him that his brothers each succeed. As for Simon, well he rocks and if you’ve read Spark you know why, if you haven’t, just know Simon is the best little brother ever. Brigid did an awesome job endearing Simon to us, his flaws don’t slow him down one bit and he is just as much a hero to us as the rest of them.
Spark is exactly as good as people are saying and now I can proudly enter into that group of folks who just ADORE Gabriel Merrick. If you haven’t given the Elemental Series by Brigid Kemmerer a second look, it is about time you re-think your decision. With the third of five novels to debut at the end of the month, now is as good a time as any to join in on the excitement!
I cannot recommend this series enough!
“God, it was like being dragged by a panicked bird.”
“Life would be so much easier if Michael was an idiot.”
“Dude. Seriously, if you start crying, people are going to think I’m breaking up with you.”
” “Your teacher called.”/ “She what?”/ “I don’t know why you guys are so surprised when the school calls me.”/ Gabriel couldn’t believe this. “God, I hate her.” “