Thursday, February 6, 2014

Blog Tour: Song Of The Fireflies by J.A. Redmerski

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Song Of The Fireflies
By:  J.A. Redmerski
Published:  Feb. 4, 2014
Publisher:  Forever Romance
Source:  Publisher
Mature Content:  18 & Up



Brayelle Bates has always been a force of nature. Even as a child, Bray's wild and carefree spirit intimidated everyone around her. The only person who's ever truly understood her is her best friend, Elias Kline. Though every fiber of her being wants to stay with Elias forever, Bray can't bear the thought of him discovering her agonizing history. She's done everything she can to keep him at arm's length, including moving away. But their undying bond was too strong a pull to deny, and Bray couldn't survive without him. Now she's back home with Elias, and things have never felt more right-until one night changes everything.  
Elias vowed never to be separated from Bray again. So when she decides to flee in a desperate attempt to escape her fate, Elias knows he must go with her. As the two try to make the most of their circumstance, taking up with a reckless group of new friends, Elias soon realizes there's a darkness driving Bray he can't ignore. Now in order to save her, he'll have to convince Bray to accept the consequences of their reality-even if it means losing her.

Lindy's Thoughts:

I am a huge fan of J.A. Redmerski's, The Edge of Never Series.  What I learned from reading that series was that Ms. Redmerski was a beautiful writer, who made me "feel" with her story telling ability.  She created very complex, and real characters with real issues.  She knew how to pull me completely in to the story, and hook me.  She made me smile, and she made me cry.  When I got the opportunity to review, The Song of the Fireflies, I was so excited!  I absolutely love the book cover, and think that it is beautiful.  Once I read the story, I found that the book cover matched perfectly.

Song of the Fireflies, by J.A. Redmerski, was a very intriguing story.  It was told from the dual perspectives of the main characters, Elias, and Brayelle (Bray). Elias and Bray meet as young children and become instant best friends.  Elias is more of a serious and introverted personality.  He comes from a stable family life, and has two very loving parents.  Bray on the other hand is a wild child. She is always taking huge risks, getting in to trouble, and dragging Elias along for the ride.  She pretty much does what she wants, when she wants it.  Her parents don't really pay much attention to her, and she is constantly being compared to her older, "perfect" sister, Rian.  

Elias and Bray had a very interesting friendship.  There was attraction, love, and they both understood one another on the deepest level possible.  They were each other's first kiss, and as they grew older, they did the whole "friends with benefits."  Elias always loved Bray and wanted a serious relationship with her, but she was scared that things wouldn't work out, and she'd lose him forever. Eventually, years later, Bray realizes that she needs Elias in her life, and she tells him she loves him.  He lets her know that he feels the same way, and they decide to try a relationship for the second time.  However, before they can give their relationship a try, a tragic accident occurs, and Bray's mind is set on leaving the state, and running away from her current problem.  Elias doesn't want to ever live without Bray again, and decides to run away with her.  While Elias and Bray are on the run, secrets will be revealed, danger will abound, new friendships will be formed, and their relationship will hit many high-highs, and low-lows.

Song of the Fireflies was an emotional story.  Bray was a difficult character to like, because she came off as very selfish, moody, and unstable.  However, we learn the reasons for her behavior, and realize that she is not completely in control of her actions and mental state.  It doesn't help that her parents were not nurturing, caring, and compassionate towards her.  Elias is very selfless.  He is completely loyal, devoted, protective, and in love with Bray.  He is the only person in her life that shows that he cares about her, and he would do anything for her.  I enjoyed the colorful cast of secondary characters that Bray and Elias met while on the run.  Tate, Jen, and Grace were my favorites, and I hope to get their stories in future installments.  I really got excited when Bray and Elias met and hit it off with Camryn and Andrew.  I recognized the scene, and it was such a treat getting the scene from Elias and Bray's perspectives.  I was really happy with the ending of the story.  It was full of hope, and happiness, and brought a huge smile to my face.
My Rating:

Song of the Fireflies was an interesting story.  It was filled with friendship, first love, excitement, danger, suspense, and was a realistic portrayal of mental illness.  It had elements of darkness, depression, destruction, desperation, and co-dependence.  At the same time, it showed us the healing properties of love, perseverance, and commitment to getting well.  I give Song of the Fireflies, by J.A. Redmerski, 4 Dark, Emotional, Gritty, and Unconditional Love Filled Stars!    

My Favorite Quote:

"Everyone deserves someone who loves and cares for them enough to see them through life's obstacles."  (eARC, 4182)


Ro's Take on this Journey:

Song of the Fireflies, by  J.A. Redmerski, was just one more notch in the belt for one of my favorite writers.  Ms. Redmerski is not afraid to write about taboo subjects that others avoid at any cost.  The reader is transported on a journey that is in the perspective of both the main characters, Elias and Bray, from childhood to adult with water color descriptions.

Song of the Fireflies is a very complex story that deals with Elias, a child that comes from a broken, but loving home.  He has an overbearing mother, that works hard but spares no quarter.  He is loving, sweet, has a conscience, and is only bad when Bray leads him astray.   Bray comes from a dysfunctional family, with an older sister, Rian, that is the apple of her parents eyes, because she is typical.  Bray, on the other hand, has a disorder that she keeps secret from everyone, but is obvious, by her behavior.  She is the wild child that takes risks, does destructive things off the cuff, and doesn't worry about consequences.  She deprives herself of happiness, because she doesn't realize her worth.  Bray feels hopeless and like she is damaged goods.  She will do anything to preserve her relationship with her best friend since childhood; Elias, though she contradicts her own actions by her behavior.  She loves him dearly, but cannot take the chance of losing the only person in the world that has always accepted her unconditionally.

Ms. Redmerski, has written another dark, lonely, emotionally charged, work of art, that will pull you in and leave you on the edge of your seat.  Bray is constantly leaving when things get tough, and eventually, Elias has no option but to follow the only woman he has ever loved and will ever love to hell and back.  He is loyal to a fault, and a wonderful character.

The Song Of The Fireflies was phenomenal.  The cast of characters, primary and secondary are essential to the story, are well rounded, and have character growth.  The story is sad and so real, that the reader feels every emotion that the characters endure.  The cover drew me in, and the story touched my heart.  There was funny banter, brazenly blunt comments, emotionally charged scenes, and heartbreaking sadness. 

The Song of the Fireflies is a book worth investing your time reading, and a story you won't soon forget.  Ms. Redmerski is a wonderfully poetic writer with all the essential qualities to create touching, meaningful, heart wrenching novels, with a cause.  Have your hanky's ready for an intense, angst filled, off the cuff romance, filled with dark issues that are brought to the forefront. 

I give, Song of the Fireflies, by J.A. Redmerski, 4 Painfully Honest, Emotionally Charged, Second Chances at Love and Life Stars!!! 


Bray and I spent the whole night in the field chasing the fireflies and laying on the grass, staring up at the stars. She told me all about her sister, Rian, and how she was a snob and was always mean to Bray. I told her about my parents, because I didn’t have any brothers or sisters. She said I was lucky. We talked forever, it seemed. We may have been young, but we connected deeply on that night. I knew we would be great friends, even better friends than Mitchell and I had been, and I had known him since first grade, when he had tried to con me out of my peach cup at lunch.

And before the night was over, we made a pact with each other that would later prove to see us through some very troubled times.

“Promise we’ll always be best friends,” Bray said, lying next to me. “No matter what. Even if you grow up ugly and I grow up mean.”

I laughed. “You’re already mean!”

She elbowed me.

“And you’re already ugly,” she said with a blush in her cheeks.

I gave in, though really I needed no convincing. “OK, I promise.”
We gazed back up at the stars; her fingers were interlaced and her hands rested on her belly.

I had no idea what I was getting into with Brayelle Bates. I didn’t know about such things when I was nine. I didn’t know. But I would never regret a moment with her. Never.

Bray and I were found early the following morning, fast asleep in the grass. We were awoken by three cops; Mr. Parson, who owned the land; and my frantic mother, who thought I had been kidnapped from my room, stuffed in a suitcase, and thrown on the side of a highway somewhere.

“Elias! Oh dear God, I thought you were gone!” She scooped me into her arms and squeezed me so tight I thought my eyeballs were going to burst out of the sockets. She pulled away, kissed me on the forehead, embarrassing the crap out of me, and then squeezed me again.

Bray’s mom and dad were there, too.

“Have you been out here all night with him?” Bray’s dad asked with a sharp edge in his voice.

My mom immediately went into defensive mode. She stood up the rest of the way with me and wrapped one arm around the front of me, pressing my head against her stomach.

“That daughter of yours,” my mom said, and already I was flinching before she finished, “she has a mouth on her. My son would never have snuck out unless he was influenced.”

Oh geez…

I sighed and threw my head back against her.

“Mom, I—”

“Are you blaming this on my daughter?” Bray’s mother said, stepping up front and center.

“As a matter of fact, I am,” my mom said boldly.

Bray started to shrink behind her dad and every second that passed I felt even worse about her being blamed.

Before this got too out of hand, I broke away from my mom’s arms. “Dammit, Mom—!” Her eyes grew wide and fierce, and I stopped mid sentence.

“Watch your mouth, Elias!” Then she looked at Bray’s mom again and added, “See, Elias never uses language like that.”

“Stop it! Please! I snuck out on my own, so leave Bray out of it!”

I hated shouting. I hated that I had to put my mom in her place like that, but I spoke what I felt in my heart, and that was something my mom always taught me to do. Take up for the bullied, Elias. Never stand back and watch someone take advantage of someone else, Elias. Always do and say what you know in your heart to be right, no matter what, Elias.

I hoped she would remember those things when we were back at home.

My mom sighed deeply and I watched the anger deflate with her breath. “I apologize,” she said to Bray’s parents. “Really, I am sorry. I was just so scared something had happened to him.”

Bray’s mom nodded, accepting my mom’s apology with sincerity. “I understand. I’m sorry, too. I’m just glad they’re safe.”

Bray’s dad said nothing. I got the feeling he wasn’t as forgiving as her mom had been.

I was grounded for the rest of the summer for that stunt I pulled. And yes, I met the fly swatter that day, after which I vowed never to sneak out of the house again. But whenever it came to Bray, from that time up until we graduated high school, I did sneak out. A lot. But I never got caught again after that first time.

I know you must be wondering why after so many years of being best friends, attending the same school, working together at the local Dairy Queen, even often sharing a bed, why we never became something more to each other.

Well, the truth is that we did.

Guest Post:

What do you like to do in your free time?

I love the outdoors. Camping, hiking, bike riding, star gazing. And I also love to watch my favorite TV shows over and over again. The Walking Dead, Supernatural, Dexter, etc. 

Purchase At:

Amazon | B&N iTunes | Kobo

About J.A. Redmerski:

J.A. Redmerski, New York TimesUSA Today and Wall Street Journal bestselling author lives in North Little Rock, Arkansas with her three children, two cats and a Maltese. She is a lover of television and books that push boundaries and is a huge fan of AMC's The Walking Dead.



  1. Lovely reviews, Lindy and Ro! I loved The Edge of Never, too, and I already have The Edge of Always on my kindle waiting patiently for me to find the time to read it. I agree that Ms. Redmerski has a beautiful writing, and I can't wait to read Song of Fireflies myself.

    I hope you're having a terrific Thursday!

    Lexxie @ (un)Conventional Bookviews

    1. Lexxie,
      Don't wait too long to read The Edge of Always, it is fantastic. Thank You for commenting on our reviews. This was an emotionally charged book that is worth reading!


  2. Thank you both for the great reviews! And for participating in my tour. :-)

    1. You're Very Welcome :) We LOVE your books!!!

    2. Ms. Redmerski,
      You are a phenomenal writer and we were honored to be a part of your tour. We look forward to your next journey, that I'm sure will leave us breathless.


  3. This sounds like an intensely emotional story. I like the sound of Elias' character, I always love a selfless and caring hero that truly cares for the heroine. I haven't read anything by this author before, it sounds like she has a beautifully emotional writing style.

    1. She does! I hope you get to read one of her books soon! Thanks for stopping by Amy :)

    2. Hi Amy,
      You have got to catch up on reading Ms. Redmerski's books. She is a truly gifted writer and every book is an "Edge of your Seat" journey into the fascinating lives of unbelievable characters. Don't miss out! Thank You so much for stopping by to comment.


  4. Lovely reviews!

    I have only read the first book in the series, but, oh, I enjoyed it soo much! I really need to get back into it!

    1. Thanks Magen! I can't wait to see what you think!

    2. Definitely Megan!!!
      Let me know what you think! I wouldn't steer you wrong.
      Thanks for commenting.


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