Author: Raymond Rose
Summary: Ten years ago, Jack and Bruce barely survived a battle royale between good and evil that left half of their city destroyed. Over the years, they've drifted apart--their lives going separate paths. Now Bruce is back in town looking for Jack's help. Because what's about to happen is worse than anything they could imagine.
Disclaimer: A copy of the ebook was provided by the author, and I received no compensation for my honest review of this novel.
The Dish: It’s always interesting to find authors willing or brave enough to start out in two different genres at the same time. I had read Rose’s Better Together and enjoyed the warmth created by his charming, small-town setting and characters pulling together in a time of personal crisis. To be honest, I didn’t know what to expect with his second novel, but I found instead of warmth, there was an undercurrent of heat that flowed throughout The Fire Inside.
Meet Jack King, bookseller and part-time photographer...and former teen superhero sidekick, Sparks. After the great Battle between dozens of superheroes and villains, he along with many other heroes chose to disappear, allowing the public to think they had died alongside others. Ten years later, when his friend Bruce, former superhero Osprey, comes asking for his help, Jack is hesitant to join. Given that his power is one of destruction without proper control, it’s easy to see Jack’s reluctance to come out of retirement. But as Jack learns, when you’re a superhero it’s tough as nails to avoid your past forever.
With such a diverse cavalcade of heroes and villains, I’m sure Rose had his hands full keeping tabs on everyone involved, including the minor characters. Seeing the points of view of several key characters helped to move the plot in a fairly smooth manner that kept my curiosity piqued. I just had to know who was behind this great plot against the investigation of this “ragtag” team of superheroes. There were several clues that I thought helped in identifying the one responsible, but then Rose would throw in another question that made me second-guess my original assessment. Personally, I like those added elements in a story since they help keep the reader on their toes.
Although the pace did feel a bit slow in the first portion of the book, once the action started, it kept coming at a rapid pace. There were pauses in the storyline where breathing room was needed, and then it would pick right back up, making the story flow more naturally. I have to say my only question now is will Mr. Rose give his readers another story featuring these sidekicks-turned-hero? And how soon that will be.