The weather in Alorria is perfect. There is no such season as winter. Every day is sunny and temperate, and it rains only when the farmers request it. Everything is kept this way by storm beasts, bound to their human guardians, who together work the weather and make it perfect for all the land.
Twelve-year-old Mina has been waiting for the day when her storm beast will hatch. She cares for her egg every day, letting the unborn creature absorb her personality through the shell of the egg as all storm beasts do, so when it is born, beast and guardian will be perfectly matched in temperament.
But when Mina’s beast hatches, everyone believes there must have been a mistake. A fiery, unpredictable lightning beast is the last creature anyone would associate with quiet, timid Mina. But Mina and her lightning beast, Pixit, are sure there’s no mistake. They only have to show everyone else that it’s true.
Mina and Pixit are enrolled at Mytris Lightning School, where she learns how to become a storm guardian. But as she learns more about her country and about its history, she realizes Alorria’s flawless weather comes with a cost. And the more she discovers, the more she is determined to make her voice heard.
Spark is an exciting, fast-paced fantasy with an intriguing world full of mysterious creatures and deep secrets. Mina is a sympathetic heroine learning her place in the world, and attempting to change a way of life which has been in place for generations. I would highly recommend this well-developed, unique fantasy to readers ages ten and up.
Note: Check out our interview with Sarah Beth Durst, author of Spark!