Release Date: August 20th, 2013
Series: Cold Fury (bk. 2)
Genera: Action-Adventure Thriller/Sci-fi
Subjects: Chicago, Illinois, mafia/mob, mystery, missing persons.
Age/Grade Level: Teen 12+
Length: 352 pgs.
List Price: $17.99
Publisher: Penguin: Putnam
Summary/ product description: “Sara Jane Rispoli is still searching for her missing family, but instead of fighting off a turncoat uncle and crooked cops, this time she finds herself on the run from creepy beings with red, pulsing eyes and pale white skin chasing her through the streets in ice cream trucks; they can only be described as Ice Cream Creatures. They're terrifying and hell bent on killing her, but they're also a link to her family, a clue to where they might be and who has them. While she battles these new pursuers, she's also discovering more about her own cold fury and more about the Chicago Outfit, how the past misdeeds--old murders and vendettas--might just be connected to her present and the disappearance of her family. But connecting the dots is tough and time-consuming and may finally be the undoing of her relationship with the handsome Max--who's now her boyfriend. But for his own safety, Sara Jane may have to end this relationship before it even really starts. Her pursuers who've shown her her mother's amputated finger and the head of the Chicago Outfit who's just whistled her in for a sit-down make a romance unthinkable. The only thing that matters is finding her family and keeping everyone she loves alive.”
The story feels kind of like a diary because there a lot of telling rather than showing, but it works pretty well. I usually prefer more dialogue and descriptions of actions and no info dumping. There’s a lot of stories and anecdote, almost like Sara Jane is writing it, or summarizing it. The author does a good job of making background stories for each of his characters. Since this is a mafia story, it works.
There’s more paranormal-ish stuff (that’s probably more sci-fi than anything else) in this book than the first one. There’s these “Ice Cream Creatures” as Sara Jane calls them. They have red eyes. They seem very odd, and I wondered what they were, in the beginning. And Sara Jane learns more about the Cold Fury, and how it works. I wish there was a paranormal explanation for it. Sadly, the Rispoli’s are not descended from a god or are witches, or anything like that.
The characters are still pretty awesome. Sara Jane is a tough heroine, a real kick-butt girl. Doug, her overweight side kick is funny as ever and begins to act even more ridiculous as the story moves along. Max is a great guy, and there are some very romantic scenes in parts, but the romance doesn’t ply a super huge role in the book. We also get to meet some new characters: Heather, who’s a relative, and a few other relatives. But if I told you too much about them, I’d spoil the surprises.
There were definitely a lot of twists, and the plot was great. I can’t wait to see how it all ends in the final book. Hopefully I can get an ARC of it like I got of Cold Fury and this book. Met the author a prepub event and this is also for another prepub. Anyways, if you’re looking for a YA book worthy of an action-thriller movie, then I recommend this series.
Cover Art Review: I liked the old cover for Cold Fury better. They had to change the cover to something less interesting. Sure, it may have Chicago on it now, but the fire doesn’t look that great on the title. I suggested to the author that he should call the sequel Heat Wave, but Flicker & Burn is nice too.