Published by Kensington Books on 12/29/15
Genres: Young Adult, Paranormal, Mysteries
My content rating: YA (Some kissing that heads toward something else but doesn't go further, Some violence)
On his own
Thomas Bellweather hasn’t been in town long. Just long enough for his newlywed mother to be murdered, and for his new stepdad’s cop colleagues to decide Thomas is the primary suspect.
Not that there’s any evidence. But before Thomas got to Garretts Mill there had just been one other murder in twenty years.
The only person who believes him is Charlotte Rooker, little sister to three cops and, with her soft hands and sweet curves, straight-up dangerous to Thomas. Her best friend was the other murder vic. And she’d like a couple answers.
Answers that could get them both killed, and reveal a truth Thomas would die to keep hidden…
This book could almost be a YA contemporary romance and mystery, but there are hints of paranormal that become much more than hints toward the end of the book. If you enjoy both contemporary and paranormal, this book is for you!
I’m not going to spend time recapping the book because I don’t want to say much more than the synopsis says, so I’ll just jump straight into my review.
What I enjoyed:
- The mystery. I was definitely drawn into the mystery of who killed Thomas’s mother. There were several possibilities, but when the truth came out I was completely shocked and eager to learn more!
- Charlotte and Thomas. Thomas reminded me of Kemmerer’s Merrick brothers (who I LOVED), so that was a definite plus for me. He was a bit of an outsider with a touch of bad boy to him, but he wasn’t a jerk by any means – especially when it came to Charlotte (he did have a bit of an issue with authority). And Charlotte started out kind of weak, but she really came into her own as the book went on.
- The romance. I was a fan of the romance in this one. Even though there were moments when I wondered what Charlotte was thinking (after all, she didn’t really know Thomas all that well), and she started out a bit too much like a damsel in distress, there’s actually an explanation for a lot of the things I was concerned about – but I can’t tell you what that is, of course.
- Wanted more paranormal earlier. For a good portion of the book there were just the tiniest hints of the paranormal aspect of the book. I wanted more!! Plus, this way, once the paranormal elements introduced, it just didn’t feel like there was enough time to completely do it justice. It seems like there will be future books where we’ll get to learn more, so …
This book gave us a satisfying end to the mystery but definitely left room for a series. (NOTE: I tweeted Kemmerer about this, and she says that this is hopefully not a standalone. I’m guessing that means it depends on how this one sells, so I hope it does well so I can read more!!) If you’re a fan of Kemmerer’s Elemental series, I think you’ll enjoy this one as well. If you haven’t read Kemmerer yet – what are you waiting for? I give this book 4/5 stars.
***Disclosure: I received this book from NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given and all opinions are my own.***
About the Author
Brigid Kemmerer was born in Omaha, Nebraska, though her parents quickly moved her all over the United States, from the desert in Albuquerque, New Mexico, to the lakeside in Cleveland, Ohio, and several stops in between, eventually settling near Annapolis, Maryland. Brigid started writing in high school, and her first real “novel” was about four vampire brothers causing a ruckus in the suburbs. Those four brothers are the same boys living in the pages of The Elemental Series, so Brigid likes to say she’s had four teenage boys taking up space in her head for the last seventeen years. (Though sometimes that just makes her sound nuts.)
Brigid writes anywhere she can find a place to sit down (and she’s embarrassed to say a great many pages of The Elemental Series were written while sitting on the floor in the basement of a hotel while she was attending a writers’ conference). Most writers enjoy peace and quiet while writing, but Brigid prefers pandemonium. A good thing, considering she has three boys in the house, ranging in age from an infant to a teenager.
While writing STORM, it’s ironic to note that Brigid’s personal life was plagued by water problems: her basement flooded three times, her roof leaked, her kitchen faucet broke, causing the cabinet underneath to be destroyed by water, the wall in her son’s room had to be torn down because water had crept into the wall, and her bedroom wall recently developed a minor leak. Considering SPARK, book 2 in the series, is about the brother who controls fire, Brigid is currently making sure all the smoke detectors in her house have batteries.
Brigid loves hearing from people, and she probably won’t refer to herself in the third person like this if you actually correspond with her. She has a smartphone
surgically attached to her person nearby at all times, and email is the best way to reach her. Her email address is email@example.com.
This was one of my more anticipated reads, and it sounds like a winner. I can’t wait to check it out! Thanks for the review!
I love Kemmerer – she always delivers, as far as I’m concerned.
I felt similarly about the book. I was really enjoying the book, especially Thomas’ voice, until the paranormal twist. I would have either preferred if it hadn’t been there or maybe if it had come up earlier.
I’m really hoping we get to see more of these characters in the future though. Crossing all my fingers that it’s a series!
Lovely review, Nicole!
Yeah, I think it should have come earlier – more than the tiny hints – it would have been more of a smooth transition that way.
Well, I want to read more contemporaries, I love a good mystery and you know I enjoy paranormal elements….so I think I need to read this book. Especially seeing as how you enjoyed it so much Nicole! I also still need to read her Elemental series, which sounds brilliant! Lovely review as always my friend and I wish you all the best for 2016 – bookish and otherwise <3
This one definitely reads like a contemporary for the first three quarters of the book at least, but it’s got a paranormal twist for sure!
Brigid is a great writer! I’m glad to hear you enjoyed this book!
I have this one coming of soon. I will admit I love the merrick brothers too. Who doesn’t. Sad to see the paranormal isn’t really til the end but I do still love a good mystery. So I am excited.
I don’t think I had heard of it before, but I see where the paranormal element so late in the book could be confusing/underdeveloped. I’m curious about the explanation for some of the things she did now, but I don’t reaaally read mystery that much, so we’ll see. I’m glad you enjoyed the book!
I am definitely intrigued. I will have to check it out. Great review!!
I was shocked to learn about the killer and I was also contemplating what Charlotte was thinking too. But Thomas….ohhh he was my favorite thing about this book! She created a male that heavily affected me and just his character alone made me so excited to read her Elemental Series. I can’t wait to see the other male characters she has created. And thank you so much for finding out about a possible second book. I’ll keep my fingers crossed that there is one in the future!
I would not have guessed by the premise that there would be paranormal elements to this book. I will need to check this one out. I didn’t request it because I wanted to reduce my ARC requests. We’ll see how long I can last with that. Ha. Great review.
Not gonna lie, there were so many negative reviews for this book – even from her fans – but I’m glad you enjoyed it, because it gives me hope that I might. I just might like it. 😀
Most people who have read and reviewed this one mention wanting more paranormal earlier into the story! But that aside this one sounds great for me! I already have it on my TBR and am really eager to dive into it myself. Especially because the romance sounds good 🙂