A Monster Like Me (Heart of Darkness #2) by Pamela Sparkman – Review by Liz Vrchota

A Monster Like Me (Heart of Darkness, #2)A Monster Like Me by Pamela Sparkman
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

“A monster like me deserves no mercy.”

I had several preconceptions of what type of novel this was going to be when I dove right in. Surely, it would have some dark and luminous magic, adventure, and mystery, otherworldly creatures, and sci-fi a plenty. I was so wrong. Now, there was a lot of the above, but this book exceeded my expectations and was so much more than a tale of fantasy and lore. It was a touching story of love and loss, the impact that the desire for revenge can cause a person, endless life lessons woven into a fast paced story line that will keep you gripped from beginning to end. My only critique would be one of myself for not reading the first book, The Moon Shines Red, before this one. It was a tad confusing in minor areas, but I still immensely enjoyed the book, and now have another to go back and devour. I would recommend that you read about Pamela Sparkman’s character breakdowns at the end. She shines some light on who these characters where to her, how they grew within her mind and helped her create this amazing novel full of their story.

Zeph has not had the ideal life, in fact it has been quite terrifying at times. When he was just a child he was kidnapped! After he finally was able to return home, he was a completely different person. Cold inside and out. He believes that he doesn’t deserve love, friends, or anyone really around him. His chrysalis of darkness envelopes him helping create that barrier.

‘He had only ever brought pain to those he cared about. He didn’t deserve to be here. He would end this now.’

Arwyn has always been drawn to Zeph. She can sense his pain and understands it, but she wants to heal him before what little light that is left in him fades out to black forever. They must work through the demons plaguing Zeph together.

“I am nowhere…I exist. But I do not live. I am nowhere.”

The plots and the lessons hidden within are penned so smoothly and with such beauty that you don’t even realize the world passing around you as you read. You are transported to the world of Zeph and walk along beside him as his chrysalis slowly begins to crack with the patience, loyalty, and undivided love and attention of family and friends. Especially, as he discovers more and more about his past and demons. I love this next quote, and the implication it portrays. It makes me think of the thing I tell my mini every day on the way to school, a tradition passed amongst the women in the family. “Remember, just find one little thing in today that made you happy for one second. Anything, a butterfly flew by you, you didn’t fail that test… etc.” It is the tiniest of things that can make our day. Then pay that forward. Every afternoon we discuss. Even in the darkness, or the darkest of days, there is some happiness/ beauty to be found. It only takes a moment to look for it, and pass it on. I would like to see more of these characters. I know, it’s the conclusion, but I really loved Zeph and Arwyn. I will be sad when I finish book one. Thank you for the gorgeous gem of a novel Pamela Sparkman.

“It is only at night that we can see the stars, Zeph. Darkness doesn’t have to be scary. It can be beautiful. You have just forgotten.”

Review by @lizaileen
View all my reviews

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