Fire by Kristin Cashore

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Fire by Kristin Cashore

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Category: Fantasy
Rating: 5/5
Reviewer: Loralei Haylock
Reviewed by Loralei Haylock
Summary: Cashore has created a world it's a real joy to exist in, populated with characters it's a pleasure to be among. An incredibly enjoyable book.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 352 Date: October 2009
Publisher: Gollancz
ISBN: 978-0575085121

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Possessed of great beauty, the kind that drives men mad, Fire is used to people trying to kill her. She isn't used to them doing it by accident. When a poacher in the woods outside her home accidentally shoots her, Fire is hard pressed to keep the temperamental Lord Archer from killing him. But as sure as Fire is the man did not mean to cause her harm, she is made unsure by the strange fog that exists in the man's mind.

But fears that she is not the only person in the Dells able to influence thoughts and read minds are soon pushed to the back of Fire's mind. Trouble is stirring in the Dells. The path of destruction the old King, and Cansrel, Fire's father, walked together has left the kingdom in ruins, held together barely by young King Nash and his brother Prince Brigan. Discontented Lords, with eyes on the throne, once a nuisance are thought to have banded together. Their combined might could be more than a match for the King's Army.

Fire, with her ability to beguile and entice the truth from people, is sought by the King and his spies. Loath to leave her childhood home and friend, Fire agrees only on the condition she is not forced to extract information not given to her freely. Under the protection of Prince Brigan and his army, she makes the dangerous journey to the King's City, where she must play her part to unravel the political intrigue or risk the homeland she holds dear being destroyed completely.

But while the threat of war grows, Fire never quite shakes the fear of the empty headed poacher and the mystery person, or creature, who bent him to its will. When more foggy minded people turn up in King's City, Fire begins to think that rebellious Lords aren't the only things she should be afraid of.

This is where I lose my supposedly mature, University educated head and revert back to thirteen-year-old, incoherent fan-girl. This book was AMAZING. See, capital letters and everything.

What Cashore has achieved with Fire is writing the book absolutely, completely perfect for me. Epic fantasy, romance, strong female lead, superpowers – it's like she had a checklist of everything I enjoy and wrote a book from it. While we like to think we are all individuals, the truth is, we're not. I'm sure there are thousands of people out there with a literary checklist identical to mine. I thoroughly recommend they invest in Fire.

The setting is rich and beautifully explored and described, the characters all multidimensional, interesting and believable, and the romance is exquisitely drawn out and developed. Cashore has created a world it's a real joy to exist in, populated with characters it's a pleasure to be among. The book is a lengthy 334 pages, big pages too, but when it ends you'll wish it went on just a little bit longer.

My only slight nitpick was the character Leck, whose side story seemed a little unnecessary, given the scope of the main plot. I presumed his character would feature in another book, as this is the second Cashore has written set in this world, with a third currently underway. Because I am a dedicated reviewer (not an insatiable fan-girl, honest) I ordered the first book, Graceling, from Amazon and after an evening spent curled up in bed reading (I had to read the whole thing, of course, just to be thorough) I found my suspicion proved correct. So the only slight inconsistency is actually a nod to the first book, and temptation to go out and buy it. You should. It's AMAZING too.

My thanks to the publishers for sending a copy.

Entirely unrelated to almost all the things Fire is, but the last fantasy book to capture my attention so completely was A Madness of Angels by Kate Griffin. Also check out Bookbag's Fantasy Picks for a list of some of the best we've had the pleasure of reading.

Buy Fire by Kristin Cashore at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Fire by Kristin Cashore at

Buy Fire by Kristin Cashore at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Fire by Kristin Cashore at


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