Title: From Brick & Darkness
Author: J. L. Sullivan
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary Fantasy
Bax always fantasized something remarkable would happen in his life. So when a decrepit man with glowing purple eyes offers him a ring intended for his estranged father, Bax accepts.
The ring speaks to Bax in a dream, tempting him with a vision of a powerful djinn. Desperate to make his fantasies a reality, Bax unleashes a creature called Ifrit, but soon learns this djinn isn't what the ring led him to believe. Feeding off the depths of his subconscious, the sinister demon fulfills what he thinks Bax wants by manipulating, threatening, and murdering. With everyone he loves in danger and a trail of crimes pointing back at him, Bax must scramble to solve the puzzle that will banish Ifrit forever.
A coming-of-age book takes a dark turn. Be careful what you wish for could be the main theme. Or is it be careful what you randomly dream? Bax is a boy who is missing his dad and struggles to fit in. Of course, his school is full of people who are the typical vicious and mean as often conveyed in young adult books.
Ifrit is probably my favorite character. There were a number of times in the book I felt his special kind of visit could have taught some a lesson. The grass is never greener on the other side is another book theme. Bax has to go through a world of experiences to realize what he has is alright.
A dark and sometimes twisted look at coming of age. It will appeal to those who enjoy the modern approach to YA as seen on streaming services. Those who appreciate dark magic will also enjoy this book.
My Rating: 5 stars
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J. L. Sullivan writes young adult stories inspired by gritty urban environments and the fantastical tales that percolate within abandoned buildings and desolate alleys.
In high school, he wrote for a local newspaper before venturing into creative writing in college. He currently lives in St. Louis with his wife, two daughters, and a dog named Princess Penelope Picklesworth.
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Reviewed by: Mr. N