Since they were kids, Elias Kline and Brayelle Bates have been inseparable. When Bray moves to South Carolina, separating the two for the first time, they both at last realize that their innocent childhood friendship has developed into something much more. So when Bray finally returns to Georgia—and to Elias—things between them couldn’t be more perfect…until one fateful night changes everything.
Desperate not to go to prison for a terrible accident, Elias and Bray decide to run. As they try to make the most of their freedom, the two find themselves relying on a rebellious group of people who tempt the duo into a wild and daring new life. But they can’t run from their troubles forever.
As the consequences of their past catch up to them, the couple must finally face reality. Even if they can make it through the unimaginable, Elias knows the truth about Bray’s painful history, and in the end he may not be able to save Bray from herself…
A fair warning. You need to know a few things before you choose to read SONG OF THE FIREFLIES.
If you’re reading it because you LOVED Camryn and Andrew in THE EDGE OF NEVER and THE EDGE OF ALWAYS, you may struggle with this book. This book is NOT written in the same vein. Not at all.
Andrew and Camryn do make an appearance when they cross paths with Bray and Elias in the infamous beach scene in THE EDGE OF ALWAYS. You know the one…with the cups. Bray and Elias are in that crew. That should tell you something about the couple and the situations they keep finding themselves in, just in case you were assuming this was a true spin-off of the previous series.
If reading about young, working class people making destructive choices due to drug use and mental illness isn’t your thing, you may struggle with this book.
If you’re expecting to root for the main characters, I’ll warn you that it’s hard sometimes. There is a Thelma and Louise vibe that runs through this book and you will find yourself questioning Bray and Elias’ choices right from the start. At times, neither of them are all that easy to love or forgive.
I had to take several steps back from this book before reviewing it, because I was judging Bray and Elias very harshly and it was getting in the way of me seeing their story. The wrongs committed were so wrong. The destructive choices were so destructive. The characters’ needs were so needy. Why couldn’t they just get it together already?
The novel is written in the present tense, flash forwards, and flashbacks. This structure makes the reader an expert on the characters but leaves them in the dark about turns of events. Again, lean into the discomfort of this style because the resolution will make you glad the timeline unfolded as it did.
Bray and Elias have serious sexual chemistry and their scenes are both very romantic and highly explicit. Some scenes depict acts not typically portrayed in New Adult novels.
SONG OF THE FIREFLIES is most definitely a Happily Ever After, but it’s not a traditional NA one. J.A. Redmerski’s deft handling of the story is unchanged from her previous works. Just don’t compare them. Read this book on its own merits and stay until the last page. You are welcome to put the book in Time Out…but finish it. The last chapter is worth its weight in gold.
Find J.A. Redmerski on the interwebs
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- A DIY Firefly Jar
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