Book Review: Song of the Fireflies by J.A. Redmerski

Since they were kids, Elias Kline and Brayelle Bates have been inseparable. When Bray moves to South Carolina, separating the two for the first time, they both at last realize that their innocent childhood friendship has developed into something much more. So when Bray finally returns to Georgia—and to Elias—things between them couldn’t be more perfect…until one fateful night changes everything.

Desperate not to go to prison for a terrible accident, Elias and Bray decide to run. As they try to make the most of their freedom, the two find themselves relying on a rebellious group of people who tempt the duo into a wild and daring new life. But they can’t run from their troubles forever.

As the consequences of their past catch up to them, the couple must finally face reality. Even if they can make it through the unimaginable, Elias knows the truth about Bray’s painful history, and in the end he may not be able to save Bray from herself…

Release Date: February 4, 2014
Age Group: New Adult
Source: NetGalley
Reviewed By: Kelli
I'm a fan of J.A. Redmerski's The Edge of Never series and I was thrilled to get a review copy of Song of the Fireflies.  Redmerski's writing is engrossing and compulsively readable. 

I love that Song of the Fireflies is a stand-alone novel.  I'm all for series, but sometimes it's nice to have full closure after reading just one book, and this was definitely one of those times.  I don't know how I could have waited to find out how this story ended, had the story encompassed more than one novel.

I've always wondered what I would do if I were caught in a situation like Brayelle.  She's caught up in the middle of a terrible situation: one that was entirely accidental, yet the circumstances surrounding the accident make her look culpable.  Panicked, she and her longtime friend Elias (who she has coincidentally just started a romantic relationship with) go on the run. 

The element of Bray and Elias being on the run from the authorities lent the entire book an air of suspenseful anticipation.  It elevated the story from your average contemporary NA fiction to a thrilling page-turner. 

I loved so many things about this story, but one of my favorite small details was the cameo by Camryn and Andrew of the Edge of Never series.  They meet up with Bray and Elias by chance, and while the scene of their meeting was already described in The Edge of Never, it was neat to read it from another perspective.

Redmerski uses the dual first-person narrative to perfection in Song of the Fireflies.  This writing style really lets the reader into the characters' heads, and I loved knowing exactly what both Bray and Elias thought about everything they were going through. 

Redmerski's writing is emotional, passionate, and intense.  I was so pleased with the ending and how the conflict was resolved in a realistic and healthy way.  There was a great deal of character growth and change, and the fact that the story takes place over months in time lent it more weight and depth.  I read this book in a day, because I just couldn't put it down.  If you're new to J.A. Redmerski, I highly recommend her books!



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