BETWEEN THE SPARK AND THE BURN

“People like you don’t go mad, Vi. They’re quiet on the outside and loud on the inside and sane as the day is long”  

My Rating: PG-13, for some language, sexual content, and horror elements

Official Summary: Freddie once told me that the Devil created all the fear in the world.
But then, the Devil once told me that it’s easier to forgive someone for scaring you than for making you cry.
The problem with River West Redding was that he’d done both to me.

The crooked-smiling liar River West Redding, who drove into Violet’s life one summer day and shook her world to pieces, is gone. Violet and Neely, River’s other brother, are left to worry—until they catch a two a.m. radio program about strange events in a distant mountain town. They take off in search of River but are always a step behind, finding instead frenzied towns, witch hunts, and a wind-whipped island with the thrum of something strange and dangerous just under the surface. It isn’t long before Violet begins to wonder if Neely, the one Redding brother she thought trustworthy, has been hiding a secret of his own . . .

My Thoughts: (SPOILER ALERT) Basically this whole post is a spoiler, because this book is a sequel.

I hated this one. Book one was a fantastic roller coaster of romance, thrills, and mystery, and in book one, ‘Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea’, you fall in love, along with Violet, with River Redding, the enigmatic hotshot. And in book two, River goes to find his evil brother and Violet falls in love with his brother, Neely. Even though you already love River. The idea is that she parallels her grandmother, who was also in love with two boys in her day, but it ends up just being frustrating and you lose respect for Violet and even Neely with his ‘kisses full of sunshine.’ Which makes me sad, because everything has to be a love triangle. And then they find River, and he’s crazy. That’s right, an absolute loon, sparked to the brim with his brother’s mind control to make him think he’s the sea king of a little island. But, enough of my hatred. Here’s what to watch in this book:

There is some cursing, not too much, but Violet gets pretty angry sometimes. And the sexual content- well, there’s a love triangle, and River, with his mind control and in his sleep, gets Violet to do things she thinks she’s dreaming about. So, to prevent her from having sex with River first (because even she admits that she wants to) she does it with Neely. Nothing graphic, just subtle hints that “later, much later” there’s some bare skin and some ‘feels’ moments that no one feels because you’re just angry that suddenly she’s in love with Neely.

But the big issue is that you don’t know where Neely, River, and their brother Brodie get their powers (the glow, the spark, the burn). You get the feeling that it’s just a genetic mutation that gave the family these different powers, but even so often you wonder if it’s something more sinister. Violet even speculates that these boys are descendants of the devil. Which is not a good thing. I prefer to choose that the powers are a result of a genetic thing, like the X-Men, but some more conservative readers may choose otherwise.  It’s up to you.

The first book (unreviewed) was awesome, but if you read it, stick to it, because this one was a sore disappointment. But then, that could just be my love of River pouring into my disappointment that the mind-blowing writing was wasted on a love triangle when a couple had already been established.

Questions? Comments? Have a book you’d like me to review? Post a comment below and tell me what you think!

 

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