March 15, 2015

Ignite by Lily Paradis

Series: Ignite #1

Publication: August 26, 2014 by Empire Books

Source: A paperback copy was provided by the publisher and author in return for my honest review. Thank you!

Summary:
After her father’s untimely demise in a mining accident and her mother’s abandonment, Lauren Lindsay is no stranger to loss. She’s used to living life for one person: herself. That is, until another family tragedy thrusts three children into her care and uproots her life in ways she could never imagine.

Lauren's first instinct is to run, until she meets their striking, mysterious neighbor Dean Powell. Their immediate chemistry and his connection with her late father just might be enough to keep her in town long enough to uncover pieces of her past that she never had answers to. Dean’s shady past and her reluctance to trust him could cost her the life she's always been searching for, but will she run back to her old life? Or will she choose to stay and live the life her father always imagined for her?


Ignite is a fast-paced, fun, and entertaining read. I like the characters and the storyline is different than any other new adult/contemporary book I have read.

The story touches on many different topics, including romance, grief, family relationships, mystery, accepting one's past, and growing up. While this made for a potentially touching and gripping story, it ultimately led to a busy plot that lacked the development needed.

Lauren is a likable character that is easy to relate to. She does have her faults and makes some wrong choices, but she feels like a real person. She is put into an unimaginably tough situation, and while I think she could have made some better choices, she handles things as best as she can.

Dean Powell is an intriguing and charming love interest. I like his mysterious vibe. However, I did not fall madly in love with him along with Lauren. I just didn't understand many of his actions and he felt TOO perfect at times (I know there will be another book from his perspective, so maybe that will give some insight). I liked him overall, but was not captivated by him.

The children that are now in Lauren's care are the highlight of the book. They each have their own distinct personality and I grew to love them. I loved seeing Lauren form a connection with each kid.
I do wish the story focused more on the children and Lauren's relationship with them instead of the romance. The romance is okay, but it feels rushed almost. It just did not click with me. While I like Lauren and Dean and the bond they started to form, I did not buy into their desperate need for each other.

The plot is also weird for me. Like I said before, there are a lot of things going on and each one is developed minimally. It might have been better to just focus on a few things instead.
I did like the mystery aspect. It really intrigued me, and I enjoyed seeing the plot lines come together in the end.
Either the book should have been longer or taken place over a longer period of time to adequately work out and expand each element.

The writing did make the book feel fast-paced and easy to read, but it's almost too easy to read. The writing is very basic and simplistic without a lot of flourishes. Maybe that is why I had a hard time really connecting to the story. There are quite a few pop culture references that I enjoyed, but, to me, the writing lacked richness.

The author said that she had a lot of problems with the editing of the book, and that is evident in the writing. She did a blog post about it, here is the link: http://lilyparadis.com/?p=893
I think it is important to mention this because it explains a lot.

This book has a great foundation and premise, but I do not think it was developed to its full potential. I can tell that Lily Paradis has talent and put a lot of work into this story. There is something special here, I just wish it really had the chance to shine.




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