Welcome to my stop on the book tour for “Elemental Lies” by Elle Middaugh a young-adult fantasy series. Please note that as this is the second book in the series this can contained spoilers for the first one.
What is it about?
Valerie Moore is an Elemental, a person who commands one of the classical elements of wind, water, fire, or earth. She’s special, though. She controls two—fire and water—though sometimes it seems like they control her.
After the accidental exposure of Elementals to humanity, Valerie finds herself—and all of her kind—struggling to attain equality. Three different groups fight to secure leadership, and with all of their hidden agendas, she doesn’t know which side to choose. The balance between peaceful cohabitation and all-out war is precarious, at best.
When a chance meeting brings Val and earth Elemental Cade Landston back together, everything changes. She realizes what she knew in the beginning—that he’s the one she wants. Her desire to win him over draws her closer to him, and his vengeful mission to hunt down her murderous grandfather brings them both closer to trouble.
From mysterious doppelgangers to reckless rescue missions, scapegoat bombings, and evolving Elemental powers, Valerie strains to keep up.
All she knows is she must stop her grandfather at all costs. To do so, she has to figure out the truth, but how can she do so when almost everyone she knows has been telling lies?
This book starts a couple months after what happened in the first one. Valerie has run away with Elise after what happened and now is training in order to control her powers. After they returned home they find out that the elementals have been exposed to humans and the book develops on what happens from that onwards and how each faction of elementals wants to be in power.
“It’s a matter of experience, Valerie. The more you experience, the more it desensitizes you. Some people experience a lot of awful shit early on -they’re the cynics, the ones who learn right away that the world is evil and people are too. Others experience it over time. Most humans don’t’ have enough time to draw these conclusions, but Elementals do”
Unexpected and surprising plot twists
As the story continues I realized that I couldn’t trust what I thought I knew. Characters that I thought I had figured out turned out to be the other way around, which made the book more appealing to me.
In addition, I was shocked with some of the plot twists that I didn’t see coming.
I was a bit hesitant when I was going to start this book, mainly because in the first one I didn’t like Valerie at all. I just thought she was annoying and she focused too much on superficial stuff missing the important thing. In addition, there was not only a love triangle but a “square” one, which really got on my nerves. In this new installment I still got some trouble with Valerie in the beginning of the book. I still felt like she didn’t pay attention to the important things because she is so caught up with herself, but again this is especially in the beginning. Thankfully, she did improve and evolve as the story unravels, making up her mind, making decisions and taking sides and there isn’t any love triangle or “square” one anymore which was wonderful.
I liked that Valerie’s Dad is feature in this one, and how it seems like all of the characters had grown due to what happened before. I think that the character that surprised me the most in this aspect was Holden. He seemed so mature and so willing to do whatever it takes to assure a peaceful living between elementals and humans.
Realistic view of the world
“Humans are inherently evil. We’ve watched them wipe each other out every other century. We’ve seen them exploit their own people. Their inability to learn from their mistakes makes them no better than cattle, a herd of idiots in desperate need of a shepherd”.
One of my favorite parts of the book was the political aspect which was the main focused in this installment. Now that the elementals are known by humans there is this political campaign among elementals going on to see who will be the faction in power. I think that the author did a very well job explaining the motivations and actions behind each group, and the radicalization of some.
One of the aspects that was amazingly capture was the fear and hate between factions and the humans. How whenever humans don’t understand or don’t know something they react with violence and fear, or how when they think they have the reason and that they are correct they act in the same way. They don’t mind hurting people as long as they end up with what they want.
“Now, more than ever, we need to come together. We cannot allow prejudice to hinder our progress. Every day we come closer to peaceful human-Elemental cohabitation. Every day we come closer to acceptance and understanding”.
Elle Middaugh lives in the Allegheny Mountains outside of Clearfield, Pennsylvania, with her wonderful husband and three beautiful children. Most of her time is spent raising kids, writing stories, playing video games, reading, and attempting to keep a clean house.
She’s a proud Navy wife, a frazzle-brained mother, a fan of health and fitness, a lover of hot tea and iced tea, and a believer in happily ever afters.
This is one of those case were the second book is better than the first one. It is a very fast and enjoyable read. I am planning on reading the next one and see what happens.