Storm (Elemental #1)
A surprise hit.
I don't remember what it was that caught my attention more, the four intense looking guys on this cover or the summary itself, but I thought I'd give this book a try. It's part of an entire series and thought it best to start from the beginning. (If you purchase Storm on Nook, it gives you the first book, Elemental (#0.5) which is a novella, for free.)
OMGoodness! I couldn't put these books down! They both were a surprise hit for me for several reasons...1) The series centers round the Merrick brothers and while I don't mind reading male POV's, I AM surrounded by living, breathing male POV's 24/7 and sometimes, reading about them can be testosterone overload, yanno? 2) The characters all have certain powers that they get from the elements, earth, wind, fire, water and honestly, the first image that popped into my head was "The Last Avatar". (I don't pretend to understand the bizarre workings of my brain, I just go with the flow.) I was a afraid the story would be cheesey but I didn't need to be because it's actually made of awesome!
This story is full of action, adventure, suspense, and let's not forget about the guys. Yeah, they're hot but they're good too and hilariously funny at times. There's also a swoon-worthy romance to balance out all of that "maleness". I enjoyed the alternating POV's which were easy to keep track of and flowed nicely from one chapter to the next and on a personal note, the author nailed the setting. How do I know? Because it's where I grew up! Old Mill High School was a rival of ours, and I've driven on Ritchie Highway a bazillion times and Annapolis Mall was thee place to shop. (It still is.)
The characters were relateable and in fact, Becca and Quinn are strong females who also are a great example of true friendship. And when I think about those Merrick brothers, I feel like this: I loved Gabriel, LOVED.HIM. I totally wanna hang out with him, exchange snarky jabs and blow stuff up. He is the one I would be BFF's with, I would've crushed on Nick, dated Chris and punched Michael in the face (or at least fantasized about it). Basically, I want them to adopt me.
Then there's New Kid aka Hunter. *sighs* He's completely swoon worthy with just the right amount of danger mixed in.
My only complaint is that I wish this series was competed (and available) already because the books end in a cliffhanger and I want to know what happens RIGHT NOW! (is very impatient). I'm really looking forward to Spark, book 2, because it's Gabriel's story...need I say more? ;)
With a certain addictive quality to it, Storm grabbed my attention from the first few lines, keeping me glued to its fast-paced and intense plot until I had turned the last page. While it wasn’t without its issues, I was able to mostly forget that they existed thanks to Storm’s great characterization and humorous dialogue.
I loved Storm’s characters. I can’t even fully express how much I adored each one of the Merrick brothers. Brigid managed to give each one of them a distinctive enough voice that I was able to easily keep them distinguished from each other, while simultaneously making them similar enough for me to fully believe that they were siblings. The sarcastic banter and witty jabs had me literally laughing out loud, often, while some of their tenser moments had me wanting to play mediator: can’t we all just get along boys? Don’t you see that you’re hurting Michael with your awfulness? Somehow, Storm made me fall in love with this broken family while also making me want to give a few of them a good shake – why don’t boys just talk about their feelings instead of building up all of this aggression towards one another!? I loved how their familiarity made me feel like I was a part of the family, and that their teasing of Chris and his feelings for Becca became something that I blushed about.
And I loved Becca. She was so kick-ass sometimes, running of some guys with her car in order to rescue Chris, but also so vulnerable at the same time; it made her such a relatable protagonist! I loved watching her struggle to figure out Chris and Hunters’ motivations and her big secret kept me in suspense for much of Storm’s 300+ pages. Her relationship with Quinn reminded me a lot of my relationship with my girlfriends in high school; it was the type of friendship where you could royally mess up and then reunite over something ridiculous, never concerning yourself with if you would be friends again, only when.
Shockingly, I loved the love triangle. While I was always suspicious of Hunter, he was such a gentlemen I found it hard to keep being so guarded with him. His honesty with Becca was refreshing for a YA love interest, as was his chivalry despite the fact that that’s the reason I suspected him of foul play. Not shocking then, was the fact that I was cheering for Chris the whole time. He’s just so broken and I wanted to see him happy! I thought Storm did a really good job of making both guys huge sweethearts, in their own ways, but giving them both a slightly dangerous and addictive edge that I found insanely attractive.
I loved so much of Storm, but as I said, it wasn’t without its issues. While the idea of Elementals was one I loved, and we learned a lot about their history, I was still hoping for more answers: is this something that has always happened? Why don’t more people know about them? I also had a hard time understanding Gabriel’s aggression, and the younger Merrick boys’ anger towards Michael; I would have appreciated some answers a little earlier. I hated how Becca’s issue (avoiding spoilers) was handled towards the end of the book, how unaffected she seemed by it in what I would consider triggering situations, and it’s use as a plot device was NOT COOL. I also found the plot, while action-packed and suspenseful, to be quite predictable. I was disappointed when a lot of my theories were proven right.
Sidenote: I loved learning, piece-by-piece, what had happened with Michael and Emma. It tied in so smoothly with Elemental, and it kept my curiosity piqued for so long, that I had to take a moment to appreciate how well thought-out this series obviously was!
Despite my few reservations, one of which really bothered me but I’m choosing to overlook because of how much I enjoyed everything else, I loved Storm. The characters were fantastic, the dialogue was witty and fun, and the plot kept my attention despite being slightly predictable.
The idea of a group of people being able to control elements was a pretty new idea to me (I've only read one other book series where characters had control over the elements and that was Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead) and I have to say it was very interesting and I was pretty impressed. I liked that beside the fact that they had these powers they were completely normal humans.
The story had me drawn in from the very first page and I stayed up late reading this because I had to know what happened next. This was one of those books where I had to know what happened and yet at the same time I didn't want it to be over. After I finished the last page I almost turned back to the beginning and read it over again (though I had to restrain myself since other books needed to get read).
The whole time I kept praying Chris and Becca would get together. I definitely didn't see a couple things coming in this one but I won't mention them here since they are major spoilers. The action had me on the edge of my seat and when the revelations started I couldn't believe I didn't see these things coming.
I loved the Merrick brothers, each of them was so different. Michael was very caring and protective of his younger brothers even if they didn't see it that way. Gabriel was fiery, he did things before he thought about them and didn't really care about the consequences. Nick was the peacekeeper, he was calm and collected and seemed to be the most logical and rational out of all of them. Chris seemed to be torn between losing control and staying logical. He had moments of both where he didn't think and then other moments where he thought everything through and was very logical. Becca was an interesting character, she was vulnerable and yet at the same time she had a inner strength that really came out as the book went on.
I think everybody should at least give this book a try. It has a lot of action and fighting plus some pretty sweet romance. These characters all have flaws and struggles that make them easy to relate to and I can't wait to continue with this series to see what the characters have to deal with next.
Hobbitsies Reviews: Took me by surprise
Storm by Brigid Kemmerer is one of those books that I thought looked interesting, that I thought I would like, but totally took me by surprise not only in story but also without how much I genuinely loved it.
Storm starts off with a bang. There's enough so I can get a sense of Becca and what her character is like, but then there's action almost immediately and I was immediately sucked into the story because I had to know what was going on in Storm.
I was initially concerned by the fact that there might be some sort of love square or love pentagon or something, because all of the brothers in Storm are smoking. I would have been happy to see Becca with any of them. Luckily, I guess, that of course was just my imagination and it sorted itself out. But man, these brothers. Love them all.
And the story that goes down in Storm? Loved it. Storm is the only real elemental focused book that I can think of off the top of my head, so it was all original and interesting to me. I loved the lore Brigid Kemmerer built up around the brothers - the backstory and lore was definitely well crafted.
I loved the way certain bits of information were revealed. There's some pretty important pieces to the whole Storm puzzle that are only revealed a little at a time and I loved it. Sure, I was a little confused in certain parts, but I loved the guessing and I was shocked when I finally figured it all out.
Storm by Brigid Kemmerer hooked me, you guys. I picked it up yesterday and read half and literally could not stop thinking about it until I was able to pick it up again and finish. The story is exciting, the characters are smoking, and I cannot wait for the second book, Spark! Definitely do not miss Storm - it's an absolutely amazing debut!
Holy awesomeness! This book was amazing from start to finish. What's not to like about a book with four hot brothers who control the elements?
Becca has been labeled the town slut at school, all because her ex boyfriend spread rumors about her. But her whole world changes when she saves Chris Merrick from being beaten in the school parking lot. I couldn't help but fall in love with Chris. Chris and his brothers Michael and the twins, Nick and Gabriel can control the elements, earth, air, fire and water. These brothers fight like your typical brothers but they also really care about each other and are there for each other. There parents are dead and they are all each other has.
Becca goes on a real journey throughout this story. She learns a lot about who she really is. She seems to have real chemistry with Chris but then the new guy Hunter enters the picture and she seems to have some chemistry with him as well. There is a big love triangle in this book and I loved every minute of it. Usually I find myself only wanting the character with one guy. In this book though I couldn't really decided between Hunter and Chris. I really liked them both.
The characters are so well written and seem so real. There wasn't a dull moment with these characters either. They fight with each other, they fight for their lives and some fight to find out who they really are. I cannot wait to read more books in this series. I am addicted to the Merrick brothers and you will be too.
Review originally posted on my blog: http://www.ramblingsofabooknerd.com/2013/03/review-storm-by-brigid-kemmerer.html
One of my favorite 2012 debuts so far.
Storm isn't just about the hot boys. It's full of petty high school rumors, some evil guys, and some boys who show you that the good guys really do exist.
Chris and his brothers can control the elements. And that's something no one is supposed to be able to do. While I sometimes felt like the danger could have seemed a little more threatening, the suspense is kept throughout the entire book. It's something Brigid Kemmerer really knows how to write.
Another thing she really knows how to write are likable, three-dimensional characters. Even in third person, it's easy to get a feel for all of the characters. Becca is perfectly ordinary, just like most girls. She worries about grades and boys, but at the same time, she's tough. She does her best to ignore the terrible rumors about her. And in the end, maybe she's not so ordinary after all. Becca is just a very easy character to relate to, but she's also admirable.
Chris can control water. His personality isn't extraordinary, but maybe that's why I liked him so much. He's not a sex-crazed teenage boy, he's not the sweetest guy you'll ever meet . . . he's ordinary. Kind of a breath of fresh air. He's caring and kind, (and even kind of a hero) but at the same time, he's not perfect. He gets angry. His relationships with his brothers aren't full of sunshine and unicorns.
And, let's face it. I think it's kind of kick-ass that he can basically control the tide when he wants.
Another thing that's done perfectly? The way the relationship between Becca and Chris develops. There's usually a bit of tension, but romance doesn't even come into the mix for quite awhile.
Even the secondary characters are amazing. Chris's brothers - Nick, Gabriel, and Michael - are all people you get strong personalities from, but at the same time, you don't learn everything. You get to be curious for the next books.
Is it weird to say I love the Guild? Because I do. They're the kind of bad guys I love most - the kind that think they're protecting the world from monsters when they're the monsters themselves.
Overall: The characters in Storm are some of the best characters I've ever read. There's suspense and action and even some romance. (And a really cool dog.) Storm isn't anything like the normal paranormal books. (Although to be honest I'm not even sure if it's classified as paranormal. I've been getting my genres confused lately. It's probably more sci-fi. Maybe.) 5 stars.