Welcome to today’s stop on the
Pyxis/Airel/Arson Blog Tour!
I am SO HAPPY for you to be here!
When I found out my part of this tour,
I got super excited and did a flailing dance.
Y’all, I’m so fortunate to be able to share my thoughts on
Arson by Estevan Vega!
|Arson (Arson #1) by Estevan Vega
Published by StoneHouse Ink
Publish Date: May 25, 2011
My Source: review copy from the author
Arson Gable feels like a freak. He can create fire. He never asked for it. He never wanted it. But he can’t shut it off. Before now, three things were true: he both loved and despised his grandmother; his life was going nowhere; and he was alone. But when a strange girl—who feels more normal behind a mask than inside her own skin—moves in next door, Arson hopes to find something he’s never had: purpose. Using what he fears most about himself, Arson must face his consuming past and confront the nightmare that is his present as he walks the fine line between boy and monster. Dark, moody, and breathtakingly relevant, Arson, the chilling chronicle of an isolated boy with unimaginable ability, is sure to ignite the hearts and minds of a new generation. -(summary from Goodreads.com)
Arson by Estevan Vega
My Thoughts: Arson has to have the coolest cover I’ve ever seen, so naturally – me being me – I wanted to read it. You guys, Arson Gable completely won me over in the biggest way possible. I absolutely loved his story and thought he was a wonderful character…and he became even better when his friend Emery showed up. Here…let me back up a little bit…
Why you need to read Arson as soon as possible. Like, right NOW:
1. The Characters. Excellent characters. Some of them I loved and some of them I didn’t love so much…but I think that was the point. The main focus, for me, was Arson and Emery…and they stole my heart.
- Arson. Can start fires with his mind, but doesn’t understand how or why he can do this. Because of this
awesome awful ability, Arson feels like a freak. He hates it. A loner, he rarely interacts with anyone other than his Grandma and his interaction with her is not all that great. Reading Arson (the character) was so hard because it is not easy to watch someone hate himself so much. It becomes much easier to read him when Emery shows up.
- Emery. Moves with her parents into the vacant house near Arson. A bit of a freak herself, Emery always wears a mask to cover some disfiguring facial scars. Emery seems very sure of herself but really she has a very crumbly life, with her parents fighting all the time and all of her dad’s other problems. Arson is enamored with her, and slowly these two become interesting friends.
Arson’s Grandma is another interesting character. She’s just plain awful, but I’m not sure that she means to be. In the beginning of the book, she seems to be downright evil…almost gaining a sick pleasure from punishing Arson harshly for seemingly very negligent things. As the story progresses, however, we learn more about Grandma and we realize why she acts the way she does. Arson’s relationship with her is so tortured – on the one hand, he loves her very much. She’s raised him since the death of his mother (even though she blames him for her death). On the other hand, he hates her because she is so cruel to him.
There are also Emery’s parents, Joel and Aimee. These two are tough to read because they are in a marriage-gone-bad. Joel and Aimee are written perfectly…still married but estranged and barely hanging by a thread, even to the point where Aimee is repulsed by Joel because he still loves her so much. Their story is fascinating and heartbreaking and very true to life.
ALL of these characters are developed slowly throughout the story, almost nugget by nugget. It was my job as the reader to put all of the pieces together so that by the end of the book I knew fleshy, three-dimensional characters. It did take the whole book for the most of them, but I really enjoyed it that way. By the end of the story, I really felt like I knew all of these characters.
2. Mystery. Good gracious, there are little pieces of mystery around every corner in this book! Arson deals with horrible guilt over some event from his past that we are allowed only brief glimpses into a few times…Emery wears her mask to hide scars that result from some event that changed her life forever…Grandma acts super strange and goes from making perfect sense in one breath to making no sense whatsoever in the next breath…and What is going on with Joel and Aimee?…What is the deal with all of these people? The great thing about these scenarios is that – like with the characters – details are revealed in bits and pieces, so that by the end of the book we get the bigger picture. By the end of the story, most of the mysteries are solved…although there are some that are left open to (hopefully!) flow into the next book, Ashes.
3. Paranormal. Okay, yes, there are obviously paranormal aspects to this book. I mean, Arson starts fires with his mind. But like most everything else, the details of this ability are revealed bit-by-bit, in glimpses. But BOY OH BOY the paranormal comes full circle in a big, raging way at the end! WHOA. And there is fire involved. And it is awesome. That’s all I’m saying…
4. The Structure. Alternating POV: not only between Arson and Emery, but it seems like everyone has a little bit of this story to tell. While Arson and Emery are the main storytellers (and yay for this!), it is nice to hear from everyone. After all, there is a lot going on in this book and the stories are almost layered…so this narrative structure is nice and flows very easily. The pacing is good – not too fast, not too slow. This is important in a book like this where there is so much story and it is handed out slowly…I was never lost and it never lost my interest. I was admittedly a teensy bit confused in the first few pages, but this very quickly resolved and once it did, it was non-stop from there until the end!
5. Romance. Come on, you guys! It was bound to happen, right? The two loners find comfort in each other and their differences. These two can be completely themselves around one another and not feel like freaks. Eventually, they let their walls down and their odd friendship turns into a comfortable friendship, and eventually that turns into a crush. Before we know it, these two are in love…and I’m not talking about a silly YA romance. I mean an I-would-do-anything-for-you kind of love. From the start to the last word of this book, this relationship – as quirky as it was – was perfect and amazing and written ridiculously well. I love it so much.
6. The End. Um, can somebody say CLIFFHANGER? Thankfully, the next book is already out or I would be beating down Estevan Vega’s door. I am as serious as I can be! I need Ashes THIS INSTANT.
7. The Cover. THE COOLEST cover I’ve ever seen on a book. Ever. Estevan Vega, you win the prize!
I don’t really know that my words can adequately tell you guys how much I love Arson Gable and his story. He is such a unique character with a freakishly weird ability and an interesting relationship with an equally odd girl next door. The people he comes in contact with are not nice to him and they are not nice to the girl he loves. And things happen because of this.
In this story, everyone has issues. It is one of the things that makes it so wonderful. Even the scenes that aren’t Arson-and-Emery-centered are important and well thought-out and amazing. This is honestly one of the most honest and brilliantly written books I’ve read in a very long time.
I want everyone to read Arson. I want extra copies so I can put them in the hands of people I know. And I want to know what happens next in this story as soon as possible. I need Ashes. Something tells me there are big things coming up in that book…and I want to know what they are.
Arson will appeal to fans of:
Slowly developing friendship-into-romance
Great pacing with multiple subplots
Mystery/Thriller with some Paranormal
Suitable for all-ages YA as well as adult readers
Arson by Estevan Vega is currently available for purchase.
(Do NOT be worried about the CLIFFHANGER ending,
as book two, Ashes, is currently available for purchase as well!)
|What’s up, Estevan?
**I received a review copy from the author, Estevan Vega, and StoneHouse Ink, in exchange for an honest opinion and review. I received no compensation for my thoughts. Thank you SO MUCH!
And now for the GIVEAWAY!!
Up for grabs is an
(Women’s Size Small)
You must be at least 13 years old to enter.
Deadline for entry is midnight Saturday, January 28, 2012.
This contest is open to US Only. (So International readers, I promise to have another giveaway for you VERY SOON!)
Following this blog is not required, but appreciated!
Leave me a comment and let me know you entered! I like it when people say Hi!
To enter, fill out this Form:
Form was removed when the T-Shirt Giveaway ended.
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Check out the KINDLE Giveaway by clicking HERE!
99c on Amazon.com | 86p on Amazon UK
Corinne lives an average teenage life working at her dad’s cafe, hanging out with her best friend, and trying to forget a falling-out with her almost-boyfriend Mason. Things take a strange turn when she uses her late grandmother’s food dyes for a bake sale, and her customers suddenly find her irresistibly alluring. Then she discovers she and Mason are haunted by the same dreams of a dark force that consumes everything in its path. Pursued by shadowy figures and a crazy woman with secrets from the past, Corinne must find out who her grandmother really was. In her quest to unravel her family’s history, she learns she is destined to protect this world–and the dark world of her dreams. She races to find the answers she seeks before her nightmares break free.
|I’m reading this now and
it is AMAZING. I love it!
Review to come soon!
Airel is a story about an angel who falls so deeply in love with a woman that he chooses to fall from heaven to be with her. She gives birth to a daughter in Arabia, 1250BC. The girl is pursued ferociously, relentlessly by an enemy in the deepest darkness. In present day Boise, Idaho is just a girl: Airel. She’s just your average high school student…who turns out to be anything but average. It’s because of who she is, because of her ancestry, because of her lineage. Past and present crash in on each other in the final pages as what has been twisted comes dangerously unraveled.
Arson Gable feels like a freak. He can create fire. He never asked for it. He never wanted it. But he can’t shut it off. Before now, three things were true: he both loved and despised his grandmother; his life was going nowhere; and he was alone. But when a strange girl–who feels more normal behind a mask than inside her own skin–moves in next door, Arson hopes to find something he’s never had: purpose. Using what he fears most about himself, Arson must face his consuming past and confront the nightmare that is his present as he walks the fine line between boy and monster.
A sincere thank you to
K.C. Neal, Aaron Patterson, Chris White, and Estevan Vega for allowing me to be a part of this tour!