Review Blog

Nov 03 2014

Sacrifice by Brigid Kemmerer

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Elementals Bk 5. Allen and Unwin, 2014. ISBN 9781743318621
(Age 14+) Highly recommended. Paranormal. Earth. Fire. Air. Water. Michael Merrick has been looking after his brothers for years after the death of his parents. He is an Elemental, who has the power to control Earth, but who can also destroy if he doesn't get it right. He has needed to be the steady brother, the one in charge, the one who takes care of things. Hannah his girlfriend, is a single mum, and her job as a firefighter puts her at risk as well. When an Elemental Guide comes to town hoping to kill the Merricks, Michael is put under enormous pressure.
Michael has been my favourite of the brothers in this very good series. His sense of responsibility and fairness, his ability to help and communicate with his siblings has made him a standout character and Sacrifice is his story as well as the final in the series. The reader is taken on a roller coaster ride as the unknown Guide creates havoc and death all around the Merricks, who are separated by the chaos. Michael seems to lose everything, but still manages to retain his sense of justice and right under very difficult circumstances. Hannah's sense of self too is tried as she watches what is happening around Michael, and her relationship with her father becomes even more difficult as he carries out his job as Fire Marshal. Michael gradually comes to realise that the people around him are there to help and that it is not always his job to be strong.
Sacrifice is a very poignant final book in the series and its title says it all. Michael has sacrificed his life as a young man, giving up what others would have had: study, college, a job, parties and girlfriends, all to look after his brothers. But others make sacrifices too, and there are a few tears to be shed in this book as Kemmerer brings the series to a close.
Fans of the previous books won't be disappointed. I read this is a single sitting and was engrossed for all of it.
Pat Pledger

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