Thursday, September 29, 2011

Review: Tommy Nightmare (The Paranormals #2) by J.L. Bryan

Synopsis (Goodreads):
While Fallen Oak recovers from the Jenny pox, someone new is hunting Jenny.

Like Jenny, Ashleigh Goodling belonged to a pair of opposites with powers that mirror each other.

Now Jenny and Seth must face the opposite of love...
**This review contains spoilers for book 1. Lots of spoilers. Lots of juicy spoilers.  But only for book 1. Just so you know.**

My Thoughts: I loved book 1 in this series.  I thought it was dark and creepy and that it perfectly captured the casual alienation that people can unwittingly be subjected to.  I'll admit that Jenny's ... let's call them 'issues'... Jenny's issues made her alienation less casual and more of a necessity.  It doesn't make it any easier for her to bear, however.  Maybe it even makes it worse because she knows that she'll never have a normal life as long as her touch brings the plague.

Now that I've gushed about book 1, what did I think of book 2?  In two words: LOVED IT!  We learned about opposites in book 1 but J.L. Bryan has given us a whole new set of variables with this book.  The introduction of complimentary powers opens up a huge world for Jenny.  It gives her options that she didn't have before.

As for the characters, we're also given a slew of new folks as well as the ones we'd already met.  Jenny, of course, is reeling from the plague she caused at the end of book 1.  Although her actions can be justified as self defense (hey, the town had already killed Seth and were hellbent on killing her), she feels guilt over what she did.  Seth, meanwhile, isn't very supportive of her.  His stance is that the town deserved it for what they had done to the two of them.  This bothers me because the town was under Ashleigh's power at the time.  She incited them to those acts.  She stirred them up with her love-whammy and made them do things that they wouldn't have done under normal circumstances.  The way Seth brushes off the fact that Jenny killed several hundred people makes him feel callous and uncaring.  Speaking of Seth... Dude, grow a backbone.  If you want a life with Jenny you're going to have to stop hiding her from your family.  No good can come from being ashamed of the person you're with.  I'm just sayin'.

We also get to meet Tommy, Ashleigh's opposite.  He's had a pretty craptastic life and Ashleigh's found a way to use him from beyond the grave.  Let's face it, that's sucktastic on so many levels.  We also get introduced to Esmerelda, who can speak to the dead... or listen to the dead, really.... and Alexander, who has control over the dead.  Alexander, of course, is the titular character for book 3 and with the way this book ended I'm dying to see what he's going to be up to.

Other reviews in this series:
Book 1: Jenny Pox

More books by J.L. Bryan

Reading challenges: The E-book Challenge, The Horror & Urban Fantasy Challenge, The Morbid Romantica Challenge, The YA Reading Challenge