Sparks by Ashley C. Harris

Sparks by Ashley C. HarrisSparks by Ashley C. Harris

Series: #2 Shock Me
Genres: Sci-Fi Romance, Young Adult Romance
Published by Indie/Self Published on September 30, 2014
Pages: 216
Format: eARC
Source: Book Tour Provided
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four-half-stars  

I was pleasantly astonished by the first book in this YA Sci-Fi series that also stirred in some thriller and romance to make it extra delightful. It just built and built to a big finish and left me wanting the next book with eagerness. Well, I’ve gotta say that I’m sensing a pattern here after reading this second installment since I’m left on one huge cliff wanting the next installment STAT.

This is more like reading a serial or volumes in the same book so it very much needs to be read in order. In fact, it might not be a good idea to read this review if you’re the type who likes to go in with no expectations. Not that I plan to share spoilers, but series spoilers will be inevitable.

The story opens with the small band of friends: Donna, Spencer and Rebecca left reeling after the final events of the last book. They have more questions than answers about the dark doings going on at the power plant and the super soldier killers that are hiding in plain sight and posing as members of the community. Donna is hit really hard to know her one-time best friend who stopped being her friend in Jr. High, Ryan Applegate, tried to killer her in her own other form and the group he works for did kill another friend. Donna just wants to stay far and away from it all and hope they leave her alone to grieve, to maybe date the normal hot football player at the cross town school and have a regular life with her dad who never stops searching for her lost brother.

But that is not to be when Paul’s iPad sets in motion a new chain of events that he orchestrated from beyond the grave. A virus is uploaded at the holding facility and two other gifted kids like Donna escape, but one gets re-captured and they need her help. She is also more and more convinced that maybe this secret group took her brother and that David never actually ran away. Was David like her and what is she? So many questions even while she attempts to elude Applegate and his minions. And just when she thinks things can’t get more dangerous, Paul’s computer uploads another virus and something that shouldn’t be free escapes.

Like the first book, this one has a slightly different rhythm and writing style, but it just takes a moment to get into sync.

It is told first person from multiple points of view so the reader has a bigger picture of the story than the characters do as individuals. Instead of feeling like things are redundant or that it lessens the tension, this choice of storytelling heightens it.

Everyone suspects everyone else, secrets slowly come out, but trust me, there are plenty more waiting their chance to pop out and put yet another twist to the story. Some things come out and are revealed in this installment. It just added to the excitement. Donna really seems to be the center of this maelstrom and she’s floundering because nothing is really what it seems. Ryan, Randy and even mean girl Lynn all have sympathetic perspectives. Truthfully, the only one I really can’t stand and finger for a villain is Mr.Applegate and I’m not even entirely sure what he’s up to. Okay and maybe those shadow agents of the Government that harass the gifted types like Donna.

YA warnings are no sex, mild language and moderate violence so probably alright for mid-older teens.

So, this ends right when something awful happens and I can’t wait to snatch up book three. I recommend this one to those who enjoy thriller government cover up stuff with X-Men like superhumans hidden amongst the regular people.

My thanks to Barclay Publicity for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.

About Ashley C. Harris

Author and film director Ashley C. Harris resides in Florida. Ashley was first recognized for her edgy writing and unique film work when she wrote and directed the teenage film Lines. Lines was the first feature film in the world captured using only Mac Laptops.. In 2013 Ashley teamed up with Barclay Publicity to release the first title in a new young adult series Shock Me. Ashley then went on to release the first of a new NA series, One Night In Heated Snapshots, that quickly reached Amazon’s Best Selling top ten list for sports romances. It has remained a top ten bestseller ever since. When she is not dreaming up new books and working on film sets, she loves to spend time with her friends and family.Keep a close watch for Ashley’s newest young adult books releases!

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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.
  • Lola R

    I haven’t read your whole review as I don’t want to be spoiled, but this sounds like a nice series. I started reading more sci-fi last year and so far really enjoy the genre. Cliffhanger endings can be so annoying sometimes, although they can be done well and make you more excited for the next book.

    • The first book in the series was probably one of my biggest surprise reads last year for how much I loved it.
      I am not generally a fan of the cliffhanger and this author has done it twice now. She does it in a way that doesn’t annoy me. She finishes out the current plot arc for the most part and the cliffhanger is more an intro to what is to come like a teaser. I don’t end up minding b/c the current book arc is finished and not lacking.

  • sounds like a really good series so far and I like the sci-fi aspect of the story. Great review Sophia!

    • It’s really cool if you like x-men type stories with gov’t conspiracy and cover up stuff. There is always that anticipation for what is coming that you can’t even guess at. Very fun for a change!

  • I love the mixing o genres and glad to see book two delivered. I will add them to my wishlist. *unrolls giant scroll*

  • I wasn’t sure what to expect when I first saw that cover. Wasn’t sure what genre the book would be after seeing that. I tried to get into a YA book but just haven’t found one I liked yet.

    • Yeah! The girl has the ability to turn into pure electricity so they try to show that on the cover and it doesn’t quite come across that way.
      I’m hit or miss with YA. If it has a strong suspense, paranormal or sci-fi plot and the kids are on the mature side I do okay. Not for everyone though, I know.