Ashes by Estevan Vega

Estevan Vega has done it again with his new book simply called Ashes.  This new tale picks up where Arson left off, telling the story of a boy with the power to create flame with his hands and his dear friend who was horribly burned in a fire
when she was young.  The end of Arson left us breathless, wondering where he would take us, where Arson and Emery would be taken, on this next part of their epic journey.

Arson and Emery have literally been taken away, far away into a horrendous laboratory where their bodies and their minds are being tested to see where they get their abilities.  Tested with machines and by psychologists, all deep beneath a top-secret government facility.  How in the world will they ever get out much less survive?  Emery’s father begins his search to find her with much desperation.  His relationship with his wife is tested once again by the fires that he now faces.  Will they make it through all of this together?

The thing that is most striking to me in this story is the trials that each character faces, and must face alone.  They all begin to fight their own demons, hoping that by doing so they will find their way.  Most of the story each main character spends alone in some fashion, and so we see deep within the minds of the characters.  That is something that Estevan Vega is particularly accomplished at, helping us to see and hear the thoughts of his characters, seemingly bringing them to life before our eyes.  Reading this book is better than watching the movie, though a movie wouldn’t be a bad idea with all the trippy and crazy things going on in this story.

If Arson cranked it up to eleven, Ashes somehow managed to crank it up to twelve, and the nonstop action and thrills kept me up late into the night more than one time!  I certainly can’t wait for the follow-up to this amazing book, as Estevan decided once again to hang us high up on that cliff’s edge on the very last page.  I won’t spoil the story for you as you must read it for yourself, but all I will say is a Phoenix can do more than simply death by fire. Now go get the book already!


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