Series: The Vespertine #2
Published by Harcourt Children's Books
Pub Date: April 17th 2012
Format: ARC | Source: Borrowed
Genres: Historical, Paranormal, Romance, Young Adult
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Heartbroken over the tragic death of her fiancé, seventeen-year-old Zora Stewart leaves Baltimore for the frontier town of West Glory, Oklahoma, to help her young widowed aunt keep her homestead going. There she discovers that she possesses the astonishing ability to sense water under the parched earth. When her aunt hires her out as a “springsweet” to advise other settlers where to dig their wells, Zora feels the burden of holding the key to something so essential to survival in this unforgiving land. Even more, she finds herself longing for love the way the prairie thirsts for water. Maybe, in the wildness of the territories, Zora can finally move beyond simply surviving and start living.
The Vespertine was one of my favorite books last year, and with that ending, of course I was dying for a sequel! It completely stole my heart…and trampled it. I was incredibly heartbroken! In The Springsweet, Saundra Mitchell has redeemed my heart by mending our Zora’s.
The most stand-out quality I’ve come to love about Saundra Mitchell’s writing is the vividly realized atmospheres. In The Vespertine, I could see myself sitting around with the girls, getting ready for the ball and talking about the boys they would dance with in Baltimore. In The Springsweet, I could feel the hot winds of Oklahoma blowing on my face!! I could see the sparse, dry countryside for miles on end. I was there, next to Zora, seeing and feeling everything she was, so vividly. I absolutely love that. If any book can transport me like that, it’s a winner in my book.
We first meet Zora in The Vespertine. She is Amelia’s cousin and gets her heart shredded in that book. I mean, absolutely destroyed! Blown to pieces. Her whole world crashes down. So you can imagine how this book in no way starts with the best of tones. It’s rather depressing at first, and many times I wanted to curl up with it and cry because it made me so sad for her. It isn’t until and unfortunate 3rd meeting with the very handsome and rich Mr. Theo de la Croix that things start to turn around. Then she gets sent to Oklahoma…where she meets the rugged, sexy Emerson Birch and things really start to get interesting! Ms. Zora Stewart now has to make a choice between the two, but I think there’s never really a contest.
Zora’s ability was unique and I can see now how all the elements — earth, water, fire, air — come into play in this series. I just can’t imagine how it will all come into play in the final book, Aetherborne, but I’m extremely excited to find out.