Sparked by Helena Echlin & Malena Watrous

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Laurel, Ivy and their hippie-dippie mother live in an Airstream trailer on “the edge of civilization.” When Ivy goes missing, fifteen-year-old Laurel has recurrent nightmares about her sister being tortured. Her mother and local police believe Ivy has run off to the big city of Portland, so Laurel must assume the burden of finding her sister. Jasper, a new kid in town, believes Laurel and helps her search for Ivy. The two uncover secrets, super powers, and a mysterious ancient prophecy somehow tied to the small town of Cascade. The two of them must bond with the “mean girls” to overcome evil.

This book cleverly blends different genres of young adult fiction, including paranormal, fantasy, and mystery with a smidgen of world religion thrown in to spice things up.

The character of Laurel is quite enchanting with her very real insecurities, her “trailer trash” upbringing, her susceptibility to the spitefulness of local rich “mean girls” Mei and Peyton, her love for Ivy, and her dream of becoming a writer. There is just enough sexual attraction between Jasper and Laurel to make their romance believable.

Overall, a well-written book with believable personalities that pop off the page. From a slow build while introducing the various characters, Sparked quickly moves into innumerable plot twists and turns. While nicely wrapped up—no cliffhanger here—the ending left room for a sequel, one I’d love to read.

Author Helena Echlin

Authors Malena Watrous and Helena Echlin


Fifteen-year-old Laurel Goodwin wakes up to find her older sister Ivy missing from their Airstream trailer in the Oregon redwoods. A recurring nightmare convinces her that Ivy was abducted, but no one takes her dream seriously, including her mom. Laurel, a loner, has to learn to ask for help, and Jasper Blake, a mysterious new kid who shares her love of old books, quickly becomes her ally. Together they find their quiet town holds a deep secret and is the epicenter of a dark prophecy.

Laurel soon learns that her worst enemies, mean girls Peyton Andersen and Mei Rosen, are developing powers that she needs to find and save Ivy. With time running out, Laurel realizes that power doesn’t always take the form that you expect. And once she learns to look beyond her snap judgments, she develops an unexpected gift of her own.