Reading Level: Young Adult
Length: 368 pages
Release Date: August 15, 2013
Stand Alone or Series: Stand Alone
Source: Arc from Amazon Vine
Rating: 4/5 stars
I got a copy of this book to review through the Amazon Vine program. This was an interesting novel that was a lot different from most young adult paranormal reads out there. I wasn’t blown away by it, but it was an intriguing read, that is written in an interesting way. THere will be another book in this series, Between the Spark and the Burn, which is scheduled for an August 2014 release date.
Violet and Luke are twins living in a run down mansion, their parents have been in Europe for their art for a long time now. Violet and Luke are left to fend for themselves with both money and supplies dwindling. That’s when they decide to put their guest house up for rental. When the mysterious and alluring River West shows up wanting to rent it, Violet jumps to accept his offer. However, that’s when things start getting creepy and start going very very wrong.
This book is part horror, part paranormal, and a lof of mystery. Violet has a serious case of insta-love when it comes to River and he seems to return that…kind of. As Violet spends more and more time with River and more and more bad things happen around him, she realizes he is pretty much pure evil.
Violet finds out that River can influence people and make them do and see things they normally wouldn’t. River seems to have no concerns about who he hurts, he genuinely does not seem to think he is doing wrong. But Violet knows better, she knows he is evil…but she just doesn’t care that much. River is good to her and is good company. Violet is lonely and her brother is kind of a jerk. Violet struggles with what to do with this beautiful boy who treats her with such love, yet is so very evil.
Things get even more complicated as we find out River isn’t the only one with powers like this. More and more bad things are happening, not just in Violet’s town…but other towns as well. Is River losing control of his powers? Or is there something else out there lurking?
This book is very creepy. Right in the beginning one of Violet’s friends sees the image of an old man eating children in a cave, then some children see an apparition of the Devil in the cemetery one night. People are dying in strange ways, committing suicide, and killing others. All of it seems to coincide with River’s arrival.
This was a uniquely done book. There is some magical realism and also some supernatural-type abilities that the characters have. The writing is very descriptive and beautifully done. Tucholke does a good job with imagery and really brings the scenes alive. The story wraps up decently but there are a couple major things left hanging for future books.
Overall I enjoyed reading this. It was a creepy read, with excellent description, and some well done mystery. The characters are all intriguing and the writing is beautiful. Definitely only for young adult and older, some of this is really really creepy. I plan on picking up the next book in the series, Between the Spark and Burn, when it releases. Recommended to fans of creepy YA paranormal reads.