Review: Sacrifice by Brigid Kemmerer

by Brigid Kemmerer
Series: Elementals, #5
Released on: September 30, 2014
Publisher: Allen & Unwin (AUS)/ Kensington Teen (US)
Rating: 2 stars
Word Rating: Why you disappoint me?
Reviewed by: Mel

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Earth. Fire. Air. Water.

One misstep and they lose it all. For the last time.

Michael Merrick understands pressure. He's the only parent his three brothers have had for years. His power to control Earth could kill someone if he miscalculates. Now an Elemental Guide has it in for his family, and he's all that stands in the way.

His girlfriend, Hannah, understands pressure too. She's got a child of her own, and a job as a firefighter that could put her life in danger at any moment.

But there are people who have had enough of Michael's defiance, his family's 'bad luck'. Before he knows it, Michael's enemies have turned into the Merricks' enemies, and they're armed for war.

They're not interested in surrender. But Michael isn't the white flag type anyway. Everything is set for the final showdown.

Four elements, one family. Will they hold together, or be torn apart?

I've been thinking about Sacrifice for a while now, and I honestly don't know how to write down how disappointed I am with the finale for Kemmerer's Elementals series. This was also the most anticipated addition to the series for me, because I've always wanted to read Michael's POV. I really only have one question: what happened here?

Sacrifice is Michael's story, and like all its predecessors, it was told in dual POV. As expected, the other person who we follow in this book is Hannah. I've always admired Michael, he has been through so much on  and carries such a large burden between keeping an eye out for his brothers and trying to hide from the Guide. It was nice to finally see into his head, I really felt for Michael. He's always trying to do the right thing--even though sometimes the poor guy doesn't even know what that is at times. Unfortunately, Hannah's character barely scratched the surface. Sure, she's a tough one, with a baby and a job as a firefighter, but I never could sympathise for her because her narration constantly put me on edge. I just didn't like her as I did in the previous novels--she came off a little childish here.

The romance in here was surprisingly switched to low--mainly because Michael was avoiding Hannah for half the novel but the moments that they did share were very sweet. I just wish we got to see them be together more.

My main gripe with Sacrifice is the plot. Half the time, I felt like there was no plot--because there really wasn't. It's just this constant suspension but never much progression or development in it. I got pretty bored after half-way, which was a real shame because the previous books were full of action and movement. There was too much playing around with the mystery, is what I'm saying.

Furthermore, what kind of ending was that? I was expecting something much grander and conclusive, but instead we got something that left me feel dissatisfied. I've seen a few Goodreads reviews asking if there's a sequel, and I must agree, this felt like a book where there's another sequel following, if anything. This book didn't feel like a series ender at all, and that disappoints me.

In all, I'm incredibly shocked by how lacking Sacrifice was. The plot and action was merely here, and Hannah turned out to be a pretty annoying protagonist; along with that kind of ending? Yeah, very disappointed. I'll still read whatever Kemmerer has planned next, of course, because I know she can do way better than this. 


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