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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sparks by R. S. McCoy
This story is told through Lark's eyes, a boy who was only trying to improve his lot in life. When he is chosen to go to the Myxini School for Children, he feels a lot of guilt over leaving his father and sick mother behind. He is a good kid and has problems adapting to school life. His mentor, Avis, is a thorn in his side and does everything he can to get Lark to give up...
Published 11 months ago by ?wazithinkin

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars A bit padded out, but an interesting idea
This book started well, but then I felt it was a bit dragged out and repetitive. It picked
up again about 70% through, but I felt the ending was weak and the final outcome really
implausible.

The idea of some people having sparks was interesting. A spark is a particular magical
ability - tracking, making fire, controlling the wind or water,...
Published 3 months ago by Mrs. Bruce


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sparks by R. S. McCoy, 20 Mar. 2014
This review is from: Sparks (Kindle Edition)
This story is told through Lark's eyes, a boy who was only trying to improve his lot in life. When he is chosen to go to the Myxini School for Children, he feels a lot of guilt over leaving his father and sick mother behind. He is a good kid and has problems adapting to school life. His mentor, Avis, is a thorn in his side and does everything he can to get Lark to give up and go home. Lark, however, is determined to give his best no matter the circumstances.

Chimalma, a city in the Nakbe Islands, was a barbaric place where religious figures performed human sacrifices to the dog god Chichiton. There was a time or two I wanted to slap Lark up-side his head when he didn't grab the long knives, spears, and copper bracelets from his defeated victims as he and his small band tried to avoid recapture. I was completely drawn into the story and cared about their mission, as misguided as it was. The plot was well developed and flowed smoothly. Also, I noticed no inconsistencies in the many locations or any of the characters' attributes, although a couple of puzzling story points were glossed over and could have used more details.

I enjoyed the idea of the sparks some people had and the different rates the sparks were given. Ms. McCoy's concept is unique and the story was engaging. Lark and his classmates' interactions were pretty typical for their ages and entertaining. The political intrigue that develops later in the story was captivating as the misinformation was sorted out. Lark could never have anticipated the skills of those in power.

This story has an epic climax that is horrific and devastating to most of the characters, but we are given a small ray of hope for a better future. Sparks are growing stronger and still developing, but certain people have not been dealt with yet. It will be interesting to see what the future of this world holds.

Format/Typo Issues: My review is based on a pre-release copy of the book, so I'm unable to evaluate this area.

**Originally written for "Books and Pals" book blog. May have received a free review copy.** March 14, 2014
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good read, 28 Jun. 2014
This review is from: Sparks (Kindle Edition)
This is not the genre of book that I would usually read, but I am so glad that I did as I thoroughly enjoyed it. The descriptions of the scenery, the people, and their lives had me drawn in from the start and throughout the book my imagination was filled with untouched rich and beautiful landscapes.
The characters were easy to relate to as the author draws you in, making you feel empathy towards them from the very start and I can imagine anyone from the age of 10 to 100 loving this book as it would appeal to all ages.
With lots of suspense, I found I was desperate to find time to read so that I could be absorbed back into the story.
The concept is original and really works, as I found it to be a believable read, which to me is the sign of a well written book.
The story has so many elements and I don’t want to give too much away, but I will say that the relationship between Lark and Khea is handled in a way that it is both touching and passionate and I loved reading about the intensity of their connection.
Overall, a great read. I will certainly be looking out from more books from this author.
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3.0 out of 5 stars A bit padded out, but an interesting idea, 6 Nov. 2014
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This review is from: Sparks (Kindle Edition)
This book started well, but then I felt it was a bit dragged out and repetitive. It picked
up again about 70% through, but I felt the ending was weak and the final outcome really
implausible.

The idea of some people having sparks was interesting. A spark is a particular magical
ability - tracking, making fire, controlling the wind or water, healing or - a very rare gift - reading
minds. Lark has this gift and he and a younger girl, Khea, are enrolled in a school to learn how
to enhance their powers. This part I thought was too long-winded as each pupil had to master
various skills before moving on to the next "lesson". Sometimes it took Lark a year or more to do
this and I would have liked a bit more action and less eating in the dining room and trying to control
his thoughts.

At the end I was surprised there wasn't any feeling of urgency on the part of Lark for revenge on
those people who had shamelessly used him and his skills to further their own ends, not caring
if he was killed in the process. Perhaps that is explored in book two? However, having read the synopsis
of it, I will not be buying it.
This book was an o.k. read for fantasy lovers, but nothing special.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Original and intriguing, 12 Jun. 2014
This review is from: Sparks (Kindle Edition)
I was looking for something original in the fantasy genre and this was highly recommended on one of the review sites I'm a member of. It really is highly original and the idea that there is a spark in each of us was quite intriguing. It certainly made a change from the usual boy wizard tales that seem to be ten a penny these days. I am looking forward to the next one coming out!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant read, 14 Sept. 2014
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This review is from: Sparks (Kindle Edition)
I literally read this from start to finish in one reading. I couldn't put it down and didn't want the story to end.
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