WRONG SIDE OF THE STORM by Bryna Butler

WRONG SIDE OF THE STORM

From the "Mothman Mysteries" series, volume 2
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KIRKUS REVIEW

Someone controlling a fierce storm attacks a secret government agency that works with aliens in this second installment of a YA series.

Eric Jansen is an alien who’s lived on Earth for centuries. In his human form, he’s a mere teen, albeit a roguishly good-looking drummer in a rock band. But his true alien form is the catalyst for the Mothman legend in Point Pleasant, West Virginia. When his failed attempt to save a bridge jumper sparks yet another Mothman sighting, the Agency, Eric’s covert government employer, disciplines him. He’s an asset to the Agency, as he regularly snacks on vampires who, like Eric, are offworlders (excluding the humans turned into vampires). Eric knows he must follow the rules on the humans’ planet so he willingly heads to the Agency’s base for punishment. But once there, along with his human pals Bridget North and Alaire “Duey” Dupont and his handler, Agent Carey Warner, an icy storm aggressively targets the base. Eric manages to escape and tracks down his only clue: information on the dead bridge jumper, Dr. Henry Wallen, a storm scientist. Meanwhile, Bridget, Duey, and Warner try to combat the storm while stuck inside the base. Butler’s (Wrong Side of the Grave, 2015, etc.) delightful supernatural novel moves at a frantic pace with beaucoup action. While the titular storm is the focus, there are intermittent subplot teases throughout, some possibly for later series installments. For example, Eric has good reason to be fearful when Bridget’s estranged mother, Miranda, contacts her daughter. Character backstories are so comprehensive that numerous spinoffs are feasible. Duey, in particular, could carry his own series; after his death in the late 18th century, his consciousness lived inside computers before its present-day return to a 19-year-old body. Interactions between Eric and Bridget are endearing (romance is unquestionably brewing), even if the two characters are disappointingly separated for much of this volume. Their scenes are also quite funny, such as discussing the unintentionally misleading names of Bridget’s book review blog: “Stacked and Dangerous” and “Between the Covers with Bridget.”

An ardent supernatural tale with a bundle of appealing, electric characters.

Pub Date: March 25th, 2019
ISBN: 978-1-79530-087-2
Page count: 179pp
Publisher: Self
Program: Kirkus Indie
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