Thursday, June 7, 2012

STORM by Brigid Kemmerer

Brigid Kemmerer

Rating: A+
Synopsis from
Earth, Fire, Air, Water – they have more power than you dream.

Ever since her ex-boyfriend spread those lies about her, Becca Chandler is suddenly getting all the guys—all the ones she doesn't want. Then she saves Chris Merrick from a beating in the school parking lot. Chris is different. Way different: he can control water—just like his brothers can control fire, wind, and earth. They’re powerful. Dangerous. Marked for death.

And now that she knows the truth, so is Becca.

Secrets are hard to keep when your life’s at stake. When Hunter, the mysterious new kid around school, turns up with a talent for being in the wrong place at the right time, Becca thinks she can trust him. But then Hunter goes head-to-head with Chris, and Becca wonders who’s hiding the most dangerous truth of all.

The storm is coming . . .

My thoughts on the book:
Brigid Kemmerer is a refreshing new voice in YA literature. Storm has a lot going on, and all of it is fantastic. The plot is intriguing, action-packed, and unique. The characters are wonderfully flawed, fully developed, and easy to relate to and care about. Storm is one of those books that I could not put down. I read it all in one sitting, and my only thought at the end was, "it can't be over! I want more!" This is one of the best debuts I've read all year, and I cannot wait to read Spark, the sequel. This is a book that cannot be missed. 

Becca, the female lead, has had a rough life. Because of this, she is extremely paranoid around people, especially males. Her reactions may seem a bit extreme at first, but as her story unfolds, the things she does start to make sense. She just wants to protect herself, but she feels like she'll never be safe again. Her past and the fact that she always wants to help others, even though she can't help herself, make her a character who is easy to care about. I connected with her almost instantly, and I was rooting for her the entire time. Also, she is a strong character. She has been through a lot, but she is able to continue facing adversity. She rarely complains, too, which is nice. 

Chris, the male lead, has also had a rough life, but in a different way. The poor guy is also socially stupid at times, and I wanted to smack him on more than one occasion for saying something stupid. However, it's clear that he has a good heart and he doesn't want to hurt anyone. He just wants to be able to live his life without people constantly threatening him and wanting to kill him and his brothers. I have no idea what it would be like to live like that, but I still found myself sympathizing with him. He is a likable, albeit socially clueless, character. 

The secondary characters are also extremely well-developed, though I can't wait to learn more about Gabriel in Spark. I felt like I knew Michael already from the novella, and Nick and Hunter are also two characters I want to see more of. I wasn't a huge fan of Quinn, Becca's best friend, but I didn't hate her either. She is just more typical and generic than the others. There is nothing special about her, at least nothing I could see. 

The plot is action-packed from the beginning, and as the book progresses, the situations escalate and become more dire. By the end of the novel, I was white-knuckling my Kindle, furiously clicking the "next page" button in order to see what would happen next. Also, the plot is unique. I've never heard of an idea quite like this one, where people can control the elements in the way that these kids do. The reasoning behind who has power and who doesn't is also interesting. I hope to learn more about it in the following installments. 

Another thing that I loved is the fact that there is no insta-love between Becca and any of the male characters. Everything develops naturally from friendships. That's a nice change from how most YA novels operate. There is a love triangle, but it's not that dramatic. It's just enough to keep you guessing. And Becca has a good reason for choosing who she chooses. There is none of this, "oh, but I love you both," crap. I respected her for that. 

Additionally, the pacing is perfect. Nothing felt rushed, and nothing dragged. Furthermore, I loved the alternating POVs in this novel.The POV is third person limited, and it switches between Becca and Chris. Sometimes I don't like that, but for this novel, it worked. I really enjoyed being able to see things from both Becca's and Chris' perspective. It helped me get to know them better. I felt like I understood both of them more clearly than I would have had the novel just focused on one character. 

It was also interesting to me how Kemmerer seemed to weave messages into the story without being obvious about it. I'm not sure if this was intentional or if it was just how the story played out. The entire thing was natural. There seemed to be an anti-bullying undercurrent within this novel, as well as the "don't judge what you don't understand," and "you never know what someone else has been through" philosophies. Kemmerer did not use a character as a mouthpiece against these things, in fact, these issues were barely mentioned. However, the novel shows what happens when people judge, hate, and bully for no good reason. It shows how things like that affect entire communities and not just specific people, and it shows how much damage is truly done when things like that occur. It also illustrates how bullying can get out of hand and become extremely dangerous. Again, I'm not sure if she intended for this to happen, or if this is just how the story played out, but it was all extremely realistic. Nothing felt forced, and nothing felt preachy. Whether or not these messages were intended, I am glad they are in there. People need to be more aware of how they treat others, and I feel that art, literature, media, and music are places that can draw attention to these problems and make a difference, especially when the situation is handled in a subtle and classy manner. 

Overall, I would recommend this book to anyone. The plot is fantastic, the writing is top notch, the characters are amazing, and the messages within the story are inspiring. If you haven't read Storm yet, you are missing out. 

Want to buy Storm?


  1. I just got this book in the mail. I've heard amazing things about it and I'm so glad you enjoyed it! Great review :)

    Jennifer @ Dream Reads

  2. I really didn't think I was missing out by not having read this book yet, I thought maybe it was just getting a lot of hype but you've convinced me, I'll try get a copy soon!

  3. Ooooo "A+" is right!!!! I love this book!!! It's easily one fo my favorite reads of 2012!!! I'm really hoping that Becca ends up with Chris and NOT Hunter, but I'm not sure how that's looking up because the last book is supposedly in Hunter's point of view. But I'm really happy that Spark is sort of in Gabriel's!!! That should be good. Thanks for the review!!!

    Alyssa Susanna


I love getting comments, and I also try to always return the favor! Thanks for stopping by!