Saturday, April 20, 2013

{Review} The Burning Air by Erin Kelly

ISBN #: 978-0670026722
Page Count: 336
Copyright: February 21, 2013
Publisher: Pamela Dorman Books

Book Summary:
(Taken from dustjacket flap)

The MacBrides lead a cozy life of upper-class privilege: good looks (more or less); a beautiful home; tuition-free education at the prestigious private school where their father, Rowan, is headmaster; an altruistic righteousness inherited from their mother, magistrate Lydia. But when Rowan and his three grown children gather for the first time since Lydia's passing at the family's weekend home - a restored barn in the secluded English countryside - years of secrets surface.

There, the MacBrides discover a stranger in their midst. A stranger who is convinced that Lydia was a murderer. A stranger who has been exacting vengeance upon the family for years without their ever knowing. A stranger who has been plotting a most spectacular revenge, one that will threaten the youngest MacBride, baby Edie, and the clan's memory of Lydia, shattering their world forever.

Mandy's Review:

It's difficult to know where to begin because the book starts in present day then reverts to the past then brings us back to the present to finish everything off. A novel set up this way can be enjoyable, if it's done correctly. I would say this novel is a success, but where to begin the review??!!!

The MacBrides exemplify the type of family who are so used to living the good life and having people like them that they cannot conceive of the possibility that someone may actually be holding a grudge towards them. Personally, I wish my life was that great but let's be honest ... who among you live that lifestyle? Of course you do run the risk of having certain types of people hold you accountable for their own miseries when you live such a blessed life. This is what happens to the MacBrides.

Darcy lived with his agoraphobic mother. She home-schooled him until she could teach him no more. She wanted him to finish his schooling at the Cath, a prestigious local school reserved mostly for the upper-class. Darcy, if he passed the interview and tests, would be able to go there by obtaining a scholarship. He did well in the interview and the testing, but still failed to win the lone scholarship the school offered every year. Instead, the scholarship was given to a musical savant. And, since the school's headmaster was Rowan MacBride (the head of the MacBride family), this instigates Darcy's mother's hatred towards the family, which in turn infects Darcy.

When the book begins, the reader is under the impression that the book is about the MacBrides and, in some ways, it is. However, I think the book is as much about Darcy and his twisted lifelong obsession. I want to be able to tell you more about the book, but I'm afraid if I do I'll give some essential part of the plot away. Just know that if you enjoy psychological thrillers that keep you guessing - then The Burning Air is right up your alley. Erin Kelly has earned a place on my bookshelf next to Dean Koontz and Stephen King (two of my most favorite authors).

*A hardcopy of the book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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