Sparks (Anya Kalincyzk #2) by Laura Bickle

Released: August 31, 2010
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Pages: 358
Publisher: Pocket
ISBN-13: 987-1-4391-6768-7

Anya is an arson investigator for the Detroit Fire Department and also a Lantern, a psychic medium who can see and, if she feels the need, consume ghosts with the help of her salamander familiar, Sparky. Anya’s also a reluctant member of DAGR (Detroit Area Ghost Researchers), a ragtag group that investigates supernatural occurrences.

Sparks opens with Anya’s investigation into the death of Jasper Bernard, an elderly man who appears to have spontaneously combusted. She also talks to his ghost, who gets sucked up in a mysterious vessel yelling, “Don’t let her find the vessel.” Anya eventually digs up a connection to a celebrity psychic, Hope Solomon, who preys on the poor, offering miracles in exchange for the promise of a favour later. Anya also learns that Sparky can have babies, and has to deal with becoming a parent along with her salamander.

While I enjoyed Sparks, I felt it lacked a little something. Anya is still an interesting character with unique powers and I still adore Sparky but I found the plot of this novel a little flat. There weren’t many twists and turns and the main villain felt underdeveloped. I thought the basic concept of the book was fun but could have been a lot better. I did like that Anya is still wrestling with the issues arising from the last book, which seems realistic, and that her relationship with Bryan is developing, but the book still left me feeling a little meh. I hope that I will enjoy the next installment of Anya’s adventures a lot more.

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