GIVEAWAY and REVIEW: Song of the Fireflies by JA Redmerski
SONG OF THE FIREFLIES
Published on February 4, 2014 Genres: Adult, Adult Suspense, Contemporary, Romance, Romantic Suspense
THE TRUTH WILL SET THEM FREE
Brayelle Bates has always been a force of nature. Even as a child, Bray's wild and carefree spirit intimidated everyone around her. The only person who's ever truly understood her is her best friend, Elias Kline. Though every fiber of her being wants to stay with Elias forever, Bray can't bear the thought of him discovering her agonizing history. She's done everything she can to keep him at arm's length, including moving away. But their undying bond was too strong a pull to deny, and Bray couldn't survive without him. Now she's back home with Elias, and things have never felt more right-until one night changes everything.
Elias vowed never to be separated from Bray again. So when she decides to flee in a desperate attempt to escape her fate, Elias knows he must go with her. As the two try to make the most of their circumstance, taking up with a reckless group of new friends, Elias soon realizes there's a darkness driving Bray he can't ignore. Now in order to save her, he'll have to convince Bray to accept the consequences of their reality-even if it means losing her.
I have to admit, I was very, very doubtful, almost until the very end, that this story would have a HEA. And normally I wouldn’t tell you that in a book that runs off despair and hopelessness, but I think it’s warranted in this case. It was very easy for me to slip into Bray’s depression and Elias’ desperate attempts to save her from herself, I really got caught up in it. So I’d just like you to know going in, this one has a HEA.
But the struggle – damn. It’s quite the struggle.
At first I thought the struggle was the crime ‘spree’ these two main characters are involved in. The book opens with them holed up in a convenience store, surrounded by cops. It then flashes back to their childhood, how they met, how their friendship progressed, the adult problems that they face. But always there’s this little nagging in the back of your brain telling you that no matter how good things look now, they are just going to get worse.
Bray is a victim of many things out of her control. In fact, pretty much everything that happens in this book is beyond her control, even when she’s calling the shots. Because Bray has bi-polar disorder. It’s a severe imbalance in the brain that causes drastic mood swings that range from mania to deep depression.
Elias is like Bray’s exact opposite. If her parents are distant, his are smothering. If her life is vacant and void of good, his is full, almost overflowing. Elias is everything Bray wants to be. And best of all, they are soulmates, so he’s willing to do anything—and I do mean anything—to get her safely to her HEA.
JA Redmerski is known for her NA book The Edge of Never. I loved that book,. One of my personal favorites. And this book is really not directed at that audience (even though Camryn and Andrew make a guest appearance!).
This book is about adults with adult problems. Not new adult trying to figure things out as they get their first taste of the world. This book is about mistakes, what it takes to make them right. How far you’re willing to go for that one true love. What you’re willing to do to set things right again.
Elias wins all the best boyfriend awards. He is pretty perfect once he hooks back up with Bray. And he never strays.
This book truly kept me guessing, even when I knew the twists, it was not predictable. And the people they meet up with on the run are just as unpredictable as Bray and Elias. Are they good? They don’t seem good. At all. Are they bad? Well, they’re not quite bad either. They’re a bit on the “different” side, and they do a lot of partying. But in the end, they play a huge role in the healing and acceptance that Bray requires.
I’ve read a few negative reviews of this book and I think the problem is—this book is not for everyone. It’s a deep story about a sad journey. I enjoyed it—not as much as The Edge of Never, but definitely a 4 from me.
When I made my way back to the top, I found Bray wasn’t sitting near the edge of the ridge where I had left her I moved farther out into the clearing with our blankets draped over one shoulder.
“Bray?” I said, looking around.
I brushed it off for a second, thinking she was probably just taking a piss behind a tree somewhere, and I set our blankets on the ground.
But then I got a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach.
I walked quickly toward the edge and looked over. My heart started to bang against my rib cage. I peered down as far as my sight could penetrate the darkness, but took a step back upon realizing that if she had fallen there was no way I’d be able to see from way up here.
She had to be somewhere around close by. She had to be.
“Bray?” I called out again. “Where the hell did you go?”
Still no answer.
Panic set in quickly. I stood there as still and as quiet as I could for several long seconds in case she was coming through the woods, but I heard nothing. I arranged both hands around my mouth and shouted, “BRAY!” and my voice echoed through the wide-open space. But still nothing. I felt sick to my stomach. She wouldn’t have left like that way out here. And if she did, I would’ve seen her on the path coming down as I was making my way back up.
I ran toward the tree line, searching for any sign of her, for another path she might have taken. I refused to believe that she had fallen off the edge.
Just as I noticed another path through the woods that seemed to head south and I started to go toward it, I heard footfalls in the leaves. I didn’t wait to see if it was her, I ran blindly straight into the woods. A skinny branch slapped me across the forehead on my way, but I didn’t stop.
Bray and I nearly crashed into each other.
“Shit, baby! Where the hell did you go? Scared the hell out of me!” I started to pull her into a hug, but something about her was off and I stopped. She didn’t respond or even raise her head to look at me.
“Are you all right?”
I took her hands into mine. Hers were shaking. Her whole body was shaking.
I cupped her face in my palms and raised her head so that she’d look at me. She was crying, and something in her eyes…I couldn’t place it, but it haunted me. I wondered if she even knew I was standing right in front of her. Her hair was messy, with pieces of leaves stuck within a mass of strands. Dirt was smeared across her left cheek. She looked like she’d been in a fight.
I touched her split lip, where a thin line of blood glistened near the corner. “Bray, you’re scaring me. What happened to you?” I shook her gently and then more aggressively when she still didn’t respond. “What happened? Talk to me!”
Her lips trembled and more tears seeped from the corners of her eyes. And then as if a floodgate had been opened, she started screaming through her tears, “It was my fault! Elias! Oh my God!”
“What happened?” I roared, scared for her and for myself, my heart about to burst through my chest.
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