Storm by Brigid Kemmerer

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Elementals. Allen and Unwin, 2012. ISBN 9781743310663.
(Age 14+) Paranormal. Becca Chandler is having a hard time. Her boyfriend has spread lies about her to the whole school and then she is confronted with the sight of Chris Merrick being beaten up in a parking lot. Chris is different to the boys that she knows and after helping to rescue him she finds that he and his brothers are Elementals. Chris can control water, and his brothers can control fire, wind and earth. Then there is Hunter, a mysterious boy who keeps popping up. Can he be trusted?
I really enjoyed this novel on two levels. The paranormal aspects of the Merrick brothers' powers was interesting, and the fact that they were in danger kept me glued to the page. Kemmerer's dialogue sounded very authentic and brought the relationships between the brothers alive for me. They argued and fought just as many family members do, but were steadfast in their loyalty to each other. However, it was Becca's back-story that fascinated me the most. She had to go to school, day after day, knowing that vicious lies had been told about her and fighting off the advances and comments of other boys who thought she was easy. Her plight and the decisions she had to make about her reputation added a depth to what could have been an ordinary paranormal story. Teens will relate to Becca's story and will be forced to think about reputations and how they can be made.
There was plenty of action and suspense to keep the story going and the inevitable love triangle of Becca, Chris and Hunter was handled adroitly, and left the reader wondering what was going to happen.
This was an entertaining read and I know that I will pick up the next volume in the series when it is published.
Pat Pledger