Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Cold Fury ~ T.M. Goeglein (arc) review

Cold Fury (Cold Fury trilogy #1)
Putnam Juvenile
July 24, 2012
313 pages
add to Goodreads/buy from TBD/or Amazon

Sara Jane Rispoli knows that it's only looking back that you remember the warning signs. The little things, the thoughts and feelings that should would have told you something was wrong. And it's only in hindsight that she wishes she'd waved goodbye to her father.

Sixteen-year-old Sara Jane's life changed in an instant.

One minute she was just a teenage girl, with a loving family - two parents and a cute (if somewhat eccentric) younger brother - plans to attend the school dance and hopes she might actually keep her classic movie club alive.

The next she's on the run from assassins, (seemingly) dishonest cops, and maybe even her uncle; learning things she never expected to about her family - and that maybe the bakery they ran wasn't their only 'business.' Attacked, bruised and not knowing where to turn, Sara Jane has to adapt to this new life without her usual support system - all while school still hasn't let out for summer break yet.

As Sara Jane endeavors to find her family, a briefcase filled with nearly 100,000 thousand dollars, a .45 and a notebook full of decades of information and secrets will be her only protection (and possibly another liability).

Cold Fury is set in Chicago and I tend to have a weakness for at least picking up books set in Chicago (I used to live there and I miss it . . .) so there's a good possibility I would have picked this book up even without receiving it as an arc despite it being different from what I usually read.

There's an incredibly strong possibility - actually, it's definitive that I would not have been able to put it down if I had.

Though this is T.M. Goeglein's debut novel he's been a screenwriter and - also blogs for the Huffington Post (and you can read his guest blog and interview from my Spring Break Blog event here) - and that comes through in Cold Fury. I've read several novels where the back cover/jacket praised the novels 'cinematic' writing but never quite thought so myself, until now.

Despite Cold Fury not having a very linear story line, it was incredibly easy to picture the events playing out. Even with action sequences or things that all but (hopefully) a select few individuals are likely ever to experience, the writing writing was such that it was not at all hard to imagine Sara Jane doing them - or having them done to her. While the story jumps into and out of flashbacks, different times and scenes quite often, it's not the least bit confusing and adds to the story with giving not only different parts of Sara Jane's life at the current time, but glimpses into her (and her family's) past.

There are some fantastic secondary characters. Some that you would expect to be colorful, given either what they do or who they are - and others who are just well imagined characters. Sara Jane's brother is one who is particularly enjoyable as is another character who may not be in the next book but I do hope so.

Knowing Chicago, I caught most of the Chicago things that were referenced, but thought it was great that things were explained, mostly in appositives, for readers who might not.

This novel's tone is different than anything I've read lately, if not ever. I wasn't reminded of anyone elses's writing - and I mean that in the best way. Sara Jane has her own, unique voice that stays true until the end. Goeglein, it would follow, has a unique voice that I'm interested in hearing (reading) more of in future books - both the latter Cold Fury books and others.

Rating: 10/10

As a July YA new release, this eligible for my July New Release Giveaway Hop giveaway! (ends July 31)

arc received from Penguin/Putnam for review and SBBS - review not affected by the arc reception or author's participation (slash-general-awesomeness-with) SBBS

(First three chapters available online)

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