Book Review of Sparked by Lily Cahill
Independence Falls, Colorado. 1954. It was the start of a perfect summer—until the fog rolled in and changed everything.
Clayton Briggs has always had it easy. The pampered second son of the prestigious Briggs clan, Clayton’s poised to take over the family business. His playboy days aren’t quite over, but his mother is on a campaign to match him with a woman suitable to his station.
When he meets a beautiful girl at the Firelight Festival, he’s instantly attracted—until he realizes she’s a member of the notorious Murphy family. The Murphys and Briggs have been feuding for decades, but Clayton can’t control his feelings for Cora. Will passion trump family responsibility?
Cora Murphy has always had it hard. When she isn’t scraping together pennies by baking for the town’s wealthy families, she’s all but a slave to her father and brother, who drink and gamble away most of her profits.
She could run, but Cora won’t leave her sister behind. All she needs a bit of luck, but luck has never sided with the Murphys. Then her entire life changes in one moment. When Cora is caught in a mysterious purple fog, she suddenly discovers powers beyond anything she’s ever imagined. And it seems Clayton might be the only man who understands … because he has powers of his own.
Lily Cahill calls this a sci-fi romance, but I think that sells this book short.
It was SO much more than that.
Going in I was expecting a simple sci-fi novel with a touch of romance and a plot driven by action sequences. I was thinking X-men meets Stepford Wives.
What I got instead was a romance colored with touches of the paranormal, taboo attraction, humour, angst, chemistry and some gasp-out-loud moments. I got 3-dimensional characters that had me on the verge of tears many times over and after I finished it, I put my Kindle down, looked at it and went: “Well, shit.”
Cora Murphy is from a poor family with a bad reputation and dreams of one day getting out of the stifling small town she grew up in. Clayton Briggs is the rich playboy trying to prove his worth to his father. One night Clayton spots Cora at a fair and he is immediately enamoured by her. There’s only one problem: the Briggs and Murphy families have been feuding for generations.
If their lives and the attraction they feel towards each aren’t complicated enough, they get caught in a mysterious purple fog and wake up with strange new powers.
The relationship between Cora and Clayton as star crossed lovers had the perfect balance between sizzling chemistry and heartfelt emotion. There was some drama here involving choices of their own as well as from their meddling families that only gave their romance more depth and amplified my feelings.
Nothing was rushed in this book and after watching these characters battle through their emotions, their family dynamics, finding their place in life and coming to terms with their powers, I felt as if I’ve lived a lifetime with them. I was sad to say goodbye to them but I certainly look forward to seeing them again and meeting new characters in the next volumes.
A truly great and surprising read that I would recommend to anyone, not just those who like paranormal or sci-fi romances.
The editor of The Readers Loft, and pursuer of relatively interesting information, Simon has a Masters Degree in Creative Writing and Journalism from the University of Wales, and is a photo-journalist and writer whose written and photographic work has been represented by the AFP news agency and appeared in newspapers across Europe and Asia.