Monday, April 1, 2013

Erin Kelly's The Burning Air

            The Burning Air is a good book.  It tackles an interesting challenge…that of how an author can use a back story to drive a thriller.  Doing so can be very difficult as you’re melding two very different requirements for success.  How did Kelly do?

            The story revolves around a scholarship.  Should it have been given to a boy who doesn’t win it/was it given unfairly to a boy who only wins based on family connections and priviledge?  What results from the lack of clarity when a bitter disadvantaged youth blames his mother’s death on the winning family?

            Obviously, we have a mess at hand.
            A backstory requires work, depth and time to unfold.  A thriller needs to move forward.  Kelly’s book accomplishes both well; she ties them together less well.

            This book is very much worth a read.  Compelling and vivid, I can still see the story and the characters.  But I will state that I expect more of the author next time…leave a little back story behind to move the action forward.  Still, my complaints are minimal.  This book is a fun, engaging and compelling read.

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