Playing with Fire (Tales of an Extraordinary Girl, Book 1)

Playing with Fire  - Gena Showalter "Playing with Fire" was at least an interesting read for this line of books, but I have to say that I wasn't necessarily taken by it because I expected more on the supernatural side, and less on the sensual (at least in fair consideration with the development). The story certainly had potential in spurts, but there were times when I felt it dropped the ball.The premise intrigued me with the tale of a struggling, flighty 20-something woman named Belle who unknowingly drinks a formula that gives her supernatural powers. Those supernatural powers involve wielding the four elements (fire, water/ice, wind, and thunder). Since the story is written in first person, the story tells of Belle as she first comes to terms with her powers, as well as comes to know the man whom she can't tell whether he likes her or simply wants to use her for his own advances. There were times where I had to suspend disbelief at how Belle readily accepts Rome, but he turns out to be an interesting character in spurts. I just wish that both of them had a little more flesh than simply baring it as many times as they do. *sighs*One thing I really liked in this story - the secondary characters have a lot of potential and are interesting to watch. Tanner especially - I found him to be a cool kid in the group. Showalter knows her characters and she does develop their voices quite readily, but I think certain elements of "Playing with Fire" could've been expanded upon to make it have more substance in both plot and character expansion. The first part of the book was great, the final part of the book was interesting - the middle was a mine field, some with hits and misses that I had to struggle to push myself through.I don't entirely regret reading it, however. It was a quick book to get through (read it in less than 24 hours), and Showalter's prose is easy to follow and digest, but I wish that it amounted to more than what it did. I'm willing to see what else she offers on the table for her works from here, despite my qualms with "Playing with Fire".Overall score: 2/5