Author: Kristin Cashore
Publisher: Dial Books (Penguin)
Length: 461 pages
Fire is the last human monster in the Dells, a land mired in a violence, largely caused by the destructive power of Fire’s father, another, more vicious, human monster. Thought hated, adored and hunted, Fire is recruited by King Nash to use her powers of mind control to help save the kingdom.
This companion to the wonderful Graceling was everything I had hoped for and more. I’ve definitely found a new favorite author in Kristin Cashore. I did not want to put this book down! It was quite refreshing to read a book that wasn’t a sequel, instead, this book only had one recurring character from Graceling, a boy who becomes twice the villain he is in Graceling. I’m not sure I’ve ever hated a villain this much (maybe Voldemort…). Even though the Dells are next door to the seven kingdoms, it was a whole new world and culture, and I loved it just as much. Definitely read this book after you read Graceling, it will mean so much more.
There were some similarities between the two books. What should a person do with their power and influence? What if that power comes from violating others by reading their thoughts? Both heroines must embrace their power, and in Fire’s case, her beauty. Fire must come to accept her power and her beauty, and embrace it if she is to save the kingdom.
There was a lot more war strategy in this book than its companion, which I sometimes found a little hard to wrap my head around, but all together this book was haunting, beautiful, and surprising. Go read it!