Today on Fab Book Reviews, I am featuring a review of Every Word, the second book in the Every series from author Ellie Marney!
Review: Every Word (Every Breath #2) by Ellie Marney
Source: Hardcopy courtesy of Tundra Books. Thank you!
Publication: September 18, 2015
Verdict: Very Good
James Mycroft has just left for London to investigate a car accident similar to the one that killed his parents … without saying goodbye to Rachel Watts, his ‘partner in crime’.
Rachel is furious and worried about his strange behavior – not that Mycroft’s ever exactly normal, but London is the scene of so many of his nightmares. So Rachel jumps on a plane to follow him … and lands straight in a whole storm of trouble.
The theft of a copy of Shakespeare’s First Folio, the possible murder of a rare books conservator, and the deaths of Mycroft’s parents…. Can Watts help Mycroft make sense of the three events – or will she lose him forever?
Sparks fly when Watts and Mycroft reunite in this second sophisticated thriller about the teen sleuthing duo.
Warning: There will be some spoilers from book one here!
In book one of Marney’s Every Breath series (the author’s debut), we are introduced to James Mycroft and Rachel Watts, two very different teens, from two disparate backgrounds, who have ended up neighbors in an Australian suburb; they are close friends, with an intense and never-talked-about undercurrent of attraction. Mycroft and Watts, through their closeness in spending every day and late night together, find themselves involved in a homicide investigation of a homeless friend that leads to some deadly events…and leads the two to face their feelings for one another.
At the start of book two, it seems as though certain aspects of their lives are under control. While Mycroft can be thorny and distant, his excellence (and obsession) with forensics has started to serve him well and he is asked to travel to England to assist an investigation of a carjacking and death of an Australian national. But. Rachel immediately recognizes the potential danger in Mycroft’s involvement with this case: at a young age, Mycroft’s parents were killed in similar circumstances in England. An unsolved tragedy in which Mycroft- a passenger in a the car- survived… but not without unspeakably horrible memories permanently looped into his brain. And a obsession with solving his parent’s murders. So, even while knowing she will likely be facing an unpleasant, reticent and hurting James in England, Rachel prepares herself to help Mycroft and the investigation in any way that she can.
Uncomfortable, dark and somber for large portions of the novel, Marney doesn’t hold back in writing and describing situations that bring about visceral reactions. This seems to be an author who, as much as you can feel a tremendous love for Rachel and Mycroft (as individual characters and as love interests), is not afraid of placing them in the most stressful, dire of circumstances. I must admit that, at certain points, I almost became weary by the constant state of distress our protagonists were in, and kept hoping that happier, frothier times would follow. But with a third (and final book) and holes yet to be filled, it would seem as though not all on the horizon is calm and quiet…
Overall, I found Every Word to be a more than worthy second book in what is shaping up to be an accomplished and exciting series. The action and investigation surrounding the Folio was tight and well-plotted; my minor quibbles regarding tone aside, the action and investigation in this novel read as more compelling (though sometimes too extraordinary?) than the mystery presented in book one. Marney’s writing is interestingly and refreshingly both clean and poetic. Through Rachel’s strong and reflective first-person narrative, we get some wonderfully expressive passages that touch upon the senses, memories of childhood and sibling love. When it needs to be for the romance, the dialogue and description are searing and tender (but never saccharine); for the intense and more action-based sequences, things are fluid and fast, but all keeping in line with Rachel’s distinct voice. The author manages, rather impressively, to balance the daunting task of bringing readers an urgent and aching teen romance with terrific and interesting leads while not compromising on the clever and intriguing components of the suspense.
For readers looking for taut, raw and romantic new contemporary YA novels to dive into, I would recommend trying out Ellie Marney’s Every Breath series.
Don’t forget to take a look at some of the great posts coming out tomorrow, the final day of the tour!
I received a copy of this book courtesy of Tundra Books as part of the Every Word blog tour, in exchange for an honest review. All opinions and comments are my own.