Genre: Fiction, Fantasy, Young Adult
Edition: Hardcover; Library
Page Count: 461
Pub. Date: October 5, 2009
Series: Companion to Graceling
My Rating: 4.5 Stars (out of 5)
Amazon.com: 4.5 stars
Goodreads: 4.27 (Average)
Recommended For: Everyone, Fans of Fantasy, Readers who love a strong female protagonist.
(First Impression: Gorgeous cover. Definitely grabs your attention at first glance)
(Reaction after I finished: I don't remember. I might have flailed around a bit, it was just that good.)
Fire is a monster. Or rather half-human, half-monster. Her viciously bright hair and her flawless appearance make her an outcast in the world she lives in. But her beauty isn't the only thing that keeps her displaced from society. Fire has the ability to read and control people's minds. Unlike her father, she chooses not to inflict her ability on the weak minded. But she soon learns that there is more to her power than she could ever dream.
The story takes place in a mountainous and rough world. Separated by the impassible Western mountains and hidden away from the Seven Kingdoms, The Dells is a land filled with treachery, deceit, and a kingdom heading towards impending war. Among the cities of The Dells is King's City - home of the royal family who are plagued by a legacy of a king turned to madness. With the kingdom on a slow descent to ruin, King Nash must right his father's wrongs and prevent the land from falling into the plotting hands of two conniving lords. But the war isn't the only thing threatening to disturb the peace. A young boy with two different colored eyes has plans of his own.
A story wrought with tension, despair, hope, and love - it will keep you guessing and on the edge of your seat until you finish.
Taking place at least 30 years before its companion, Graceling, Kristin Cashore delivers such a rich and compelling tale that will hold you in rapture. It reveals a whole new world beyond the lands of the Seven Kingdoms, full of secrets, hidden agendas, and deadly creatures. It's dark, beautiful, and unfolds with a certain elegance that is borderline perfection. The pacing is one of the strong points of the novel and takes the reader completely through the journey and envelopes them in a mixture of emotions. Fire, herself, is a force to be reckoned with. She is such a strong female protagonist and provides so much intensity to the story while also giving the reader a sense of warmth and independence.
I loved how easily I got lost within the pages. So mixed with intrigue, love, complexity, morality, and more, that I never wanted it to end.
The only thing that is keeping Fire from a 5 star rating in my books, is the ending. I felt it was "okay" rather than spectacular but it did tie up the story nicely. Trust me when I say that it does not, in any way, take away from the quality of the book.
- * I admire Kristin Cashore's ability to give two distinct voices to two separate heroines in both Graceling and Fire. They are strong, original, and both unique in their own way.
- * The writing itself is just so eloquent and flowing with purpose. I can't recall a time when the novel lost pace or the writing became uninteresting. And the descriptions are so teeming with vivacity and life that it is easy to wrap yourself around the words.
- * Like Graceling, Fire has a strong plot of romance, but it doesn't overwhelm the feel of the book. It is wonderfully developed and gives to the overall story, rather than taking away from it.
- * A great secondary cast. Each has their own sense of individuality and contribute wonderfully to the developing story. They easily grow on you and you'll find yourself completely enveloped in their lives in just a short time.
For those of you who are wondering, you needn't have read Graceling before Fire in order to enjoy it. Come to think of it, Fire works just fine as a standalone novel. Although, I can pretty much guarantee once you finish it you'll be grabbing for Graceling with hasty hands. Whether you read it before the first, or read it alone, just make sure you READ it, period! A worthy and satisfying sequel (or rather prequel) to its companion, Graceling.