For What It's Worth

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Review: Arson by Estevan Vega

Arson Gable feels like a freak. He can create fire. He never asked for it. He never wanted it. But he can't shut it off. Before now, three things were true: he both loved and despised his grandmother; his life was going nowhere; and he was alone. But when a strange girl--who feels more normal behind a mask than inside her own skin--moves in next door, Arson hopes to find something he's never had: purpose. Using what he fears most about himself, Arson must face his consuming past and confront the nightmare that is his present as he walks the fine line between boy and monster. Dark, moody, and breathtakingly relevant, Arson, the chilling chronicle of an isolated boy with unimaginable ability, is sure to ignite the hearts and minds of a new generation. (YA-Paranormal)


Arson is a 17 year old boy who can create fire with his mind.
Strong emotions set him off and he has been trying to control his power. He lives with his mentally ill grandmother who treats him as an abomination and is quite cruel to him at times, so there isn’t much support or help for him at home. Other kids think he is a freak and avoid him so he lives a very lonely, isolated life.
Arson finally meets Emery, his new neighbor, during a very funny encounter. Emery wears a mask and has a few secrets of her own. Through their shared pain they form a tentative bond. I loved watching them slowly break down each other’s walls and learn to let someone in and trust another human being. Emery is smart, funny, guarded and vulnerable. Once she decides to trust Arson she goes all out and her honesty is refreshing. I’ve grown tired of reading about characters who won’t just say what their thinking.
Author Estevan Vega has a very unique way of looking at things. I felt he was channeling his inner Edgar Allen Poe. The story is often bleak and sometimes painful to read but for me that’s a good thing – I enjoy creepy.
One thing I didn’t like was how frequently and abruptly the story shifted to the other characters POV’s. Emery’s mother/father, Arson’s grandmother all get storylines and it often felt like I was reading three different books. All interesting, but not necessarily working well together or maybe I just wanted more of Emery and Arson.
By the end, the emotion, the action and the mysteries all come together and now I want to know what happens next. Arson ends on a cliffhanger but it’s not a frustrating one. I’m interested to see where the author takes this story and if it focuses more on Arson & Emery, Arson's powers, and if the different plot threads tie together.
Liked: The interactions between Arson and Emery are the high point. The ending left me very curious about Arson’s gift/curse. Loved the cover.
Nitpick: See above – I wished the story had stayed more focused on those two characters. Too many POV's .

Rating: 3 out of 4 This is a quirky tale but I enjoyed it and I’m looking forward to the sequel.

Estevan Vega signed my copy "Dysfunctional is the new normal". I think that sums the book up as well as anything I could come up with.

Source: I recieved the book from the author for my honest review. Thank you!
Authors website: Estevan Vega
Twitter: @EstevanVega
Buy the book: Arson


  1. This looks interesting. I'm about to start it so thanks for the review!

  2. I've got to tell you - that is by far the creepiest cover I've seen. I'd have to set it outside at night!

  3. Nice review!! It sounds like a nice read, I have seen this book around for a while and it really grabbed my attention!

    Welcome to Larissa's Bookish Life

  4. Nice review, sounds different, even if the cover is way too scary for me

  5. That's so funny how you guys commented on the cover! That's the reason I wanted to read the book - I love it. But as I said in the review - I like creepy. LOL
    After you read the book, the cover makes perfect sense.

  6. Thanks for the review! It's always nice to hear about someone channeling that Poe vibe. :-)

  7. I've seen the cover for this book all over the place but haven't read much about it, so I really enjoyed reading your review. The abrupt switch in POV would probably bother me as well, I would want to stay with the main two protagonists. Looking forward to reading this one now, thanks Karen!

  8. Sounds like a revamped and twisted version of 'Firestarter' by Stephen King and now I have that Prodigy song of the same name going through my head. Darn!

  9. This one looks soo good! I've seen the cover, but not really picked it up, but after this review - wow! I so want to read it now! Brilliant review.