Summer on Fire – Kevin Craig

15 Nov

“Zach Carson is a loyal friend. But is loyalty enough to keep best friends together when one of them sets fire to the rural barn they use as the local hangout?
Zach, Jeff Barsell and Arnie Wilson struggle to pick up the pieces when news spreads that a body was discovered in the burnt out shell of the neighbouring home. When the word murder is used by the local police, the stakes grow even higher. When the police start searching for their most likely suspect-none other than Jeff’s older brother, and nemesis, Marty Barsell-the boys decide to join forces and come up with a way to prove his innocence.
But just how innocent is Marty Barsell? When Marty admits to being at the scene of the crime, the three friends enlist the help of Zach’s annoying sister, Sherry, as well as the sympathetic town eccentric, Ms. Halverton. But can they keep it together long enough to save Marty, and themselves, from imminent catastrophe? Summer on Fire is the story of friendships, and the lines we are asked to cross in order to keep them.”

I don’t real a lot of what is considered “boy books”. But when I come across a book like Kevin Craig’s Summer on Fire, it makes me want to head to the bookstore and grab all the boy-centered YA books I can find.

I think what I loved most about this book was the tone. It was very reminiscent of Stand by Me. It had that coming-of-age-with-your-buds kinda feel to it. Throw in the whole trying to figure out what really happened with the fire angle and you have the perfect YA mystery read.

While I enjoyed the mystery of the fire and the murder angle, what really struck a cord with me was the relationship between Zach and his friends. The dynamic with Zach, Jeff and Arnie changes throughout the book and the boys each have some pretty tough decisions to make. It was a realistic portrayal of a friendship stressed by some pretty big events.

Kevin’s writing really drew me into the story, and his dialogue (from what I can remember being a teen and hanging with boys) was dead on.

*side note* Kevin and I “met” on Twitter. He was looking for reviewers and I asked to be included. This is one of the things I LOVE about Twitter. Getting introduced to new authors.

Thanks so much to Kevin for sending me a review copy.

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