Books: The Cheapest Vacation You Can Buy

{September 13, 2012}   {Review} Spark by Brigid Kemmerer (Elemental #2)

From Goodreads: 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…


Gabe is my absolute favorite.  I thought Chris was my guy, but having now read a book focusing all on Gabe, resident bad boy with a fetish for fire and blowing things up… Chris has fallen by the wayside.  He was a little young for me, anyway.  Lol. No, but in all seriousness, Gabe has stolen the show in this second novel in the Elemental Series, and I loved every minute of it.

I believe that the Merrick boys’ temperament is really decided by their element, and since Gabe plays with fire, as you can imagine, he runs a bit hot.  Losing his head in many a situation, Gabe struggles to connect with those around him and control his anger, especially as fire constantly calls to him. What’s not to love?

While Chris, Becca, and the whole rest of the clan are a major part of the story that’s still unwinding after the climax of Storm, I loved having a new character to get to know in Layne.  She’s completely different from all the other characters and I really enjoyed her, especially as she morphed and grew into herself, as did her relationship with Gabe.  Ah, Gabe.  Of course, he lands himself in more trouble than usual in this novel, and I loved watching him come to grips with his past as the story unfolded.  I also loved watching his friends and family really be there for him, standing behind him even when they were concerned about his exploits… I definitely cried a few times while reading this book—I wouldn’t say it’s epically emotional, but some of the situations really got to me; they were so beautiful.

Kemmerer is a very gifted writer and so far, I’ve loved every single book I’ve read of hers.  She really knows how to create and flesh out characters, and her stories flow so seamlessly that they pull you in and don’t let go until the very end.  And even then, I found myself sitting there in Merrick withdrawal, wanting to read them all over again, especially as May can’t get here fast enough, and I need more!!!  Five stars.

5 stars

I received a signed ARC of this novel from the author and I also purchased it from Amazon (don’t want to ruin the signed copy!!! Gotta have one for the Kindle, too!).


[…] of him I hadn’t seen before, changing my overall perspective.  Then, in the second full novel, Spark, Gabriel Merrick stole my heart, and I was forever transfixed by his brooding nature as his […]

Denise Z says:

I am reading so many good things about this series, I really must get started. Thank you for sharing, I am looking forward to meeting the gang and joining in on the adventures :)

They are AMAZING adventures!!! Amazing! I started with Elemental, and I think it was only 99 cents on Amazon. The other books are really inexpensive, too! I adore this series! :D

DeeDee Griffin says:

Thanks for the review! I’m loving this series and am excited this one is about Gabe. Yay fire!

It is HOT! (No pun intended)

I always enjoy “elemental” type books and I too think it is awesome that their personalities are decided by their element! Great Review!!!

Thanks! It’s such a great series! If you haven’t read Storm, the first book in the series, or the novella Elemental, that takes place prior to the books, you really should! You won’t be disappointed!!!

Vivien says:

I’m really excited to read this one. I enjoyed the first book and have wanted to start this sequel for a few months now. Sounds like I’ll enjoy it!

Fantastic. I’m glad you loved this one too!

Brigid is AMAZING!!!

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