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Vapor Point Paperback – July 30, 2014
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Semper fi Top!
By shifting perspective between characters, the plot is not only propelled forward at a nice clip, it allows you get to know many of the characters very well. Jenna, the heroine, is a good woman and a soldier damaged by her experiences in battle. We get to know her as she works rebuild her life in the civilian world. Other major characters we get to know are her Uncle Ted and Morgan (the love interest), as well has a host of secondary characters. Indeed, one of Scott's strongest talents as a writer is her ability to develop characters that become real people to the reader.
One character is especially interesting and complex. This character almost, but not quite, meets the standard for a classic tragic hero, a good person, someone we can relate to but who has a fatal flaw leading to their devastating downfall. However, this character's downfall, unlike that of Othello or Oedipus, is not a tragedy.
Through her characters and their relationships Scott explores one of her favorite themes, the effect of service in the military on an individual. A core topic of the book is the exploration of the comradeship that develops among those who have served in the military. Military service creates an almost familial bond between many of the characters in the book.
Jenna's relationship with her biological family is another important element of the book. With Jenna's mother Karen, Scott effectively draws the chilling portrait of a woman so driven by self-interest that rises to the level of true evil. The fraught dynamic between Jenna and Karen is the emotional core of the book. Yes, she has a romantic interest in Morgan (he-of-the-crinkly-eyes), but the driving emotional force in the novel is Jenna's touching quest for a relationship with her mother.
Another important bond explored by Scott is that between the living and the dead. The dead in "Vapor Point" are not lounging about on clouds in heaven looking for nifty ways to help the living. No way! These dead, propelled by lives cut tragically short, ricochet through dreams wreaking nightly havoc on the living. Even with oceans of alcohol, these dead cannot be silenced. The dead seductively call to one character who, too weak to ignore them, plots revenge of the worse sort. How effectively characters deal with the dead is just as important as how they deal with the living in this book.
In conclusion, the one problem I had was that I felt that the end was a little rushed and cut short. I would have liked to have read just a little more but maybe it was just hard to say goodbye to people I got to know and respect.
Morgan loves his life and his job as a deputy. Things have turned out a little dangerous for him though, and there are some very mean guys out to take him down. Having just been informed he has a new partner to work with, he’s surprised to find it’s the beautiful Jenna he met just a few nights ago in Salt Lake City.
Together these two work to make the world a better place. In the process they find love.
What I liked:
I loved this book! It was wonderful to see Jenna overcome all the heartache and pain, and find her way back to a normal life, and to also find love in the process. I loved that Morgan wasn’t perfect, and that he had flaws too. Yet he was so strong and seemed perfect for Jenna.
One of the most fascinating things to me from this book was the proving grounds. This is something I know nothing about, but after reading this book, it leaves me with a strong desire to know more. To me this is a very good indication of a good book – when I’m left wanting to know more. This book definitely left me wanting to know more about the proving grounds.
What I didn’t like:
I wish there had been a little more action, and that it would have been played out more - rather than us just being told about it. Example: When they finally get Mr. Crane and his bad guys, we are told how that happens, but not enough action. The scene at the end though, where they get the other really bad guy – that was awesome, and brought the story back to 4.5 stars for me.
Overall it was a 4.5 star read for me. This was my first Lynne Scott book, but it will definitely not be my last. Thank you for a wonderful story, Ms. Scott!
This book was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.
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