Skip to main content

Fire by Kristin Cashore

Miss Shayne returns this week with the review for the second installment of the Graceling Realm series by Kristin Cashore.  Read on for her thoughts about Fire by Kristin Cashore!

As I mentioned in my blog post reviewing Graceling by Kristin Cashore, I wasn’t expecting another book in this series. However, this book is a partner to Graceling. It is set in an area adjacent to the realm where Graceling takes place. However, the areas (somehow) don’t know of one another and the superhuman phenomenon is different. In this land, instead of people being graced with abilities, there are monsters in the shape of animals and humans. For example, there are regular raptors and there are monster raptors that come in a variety of colors. These monsters are so enchanting; they can lure people to their deaths.

Fire (appropriately named because her hair is like fire) is the last of the human monsters. She is beautiful and has the ability to manipulate people’s thoughts. Her father was also a human monster, and he wasn’t the best influence on the king. It is his fault that the previous king became corrupt and eventually died. Fire learned from her father’s mistakes and understands that he was a horrible person, and this leads her to believe that because she is a monster, she is horrible as well. Because she is capable of manipulating other people’s thoughts, she believes that she is just like her father. She also believes that the human monsters should end with her.

But wait—that’s not all! In addition to Fire’s internal struggle, there’s a war brewing between the royal family and the powers of the North and the South. The North and South have teamed up in order to take the power from the royal family. Naturally, this is a problem, and the royal family is not going down without a fight. At the request of the royal family, Fire goes to the King’s city to use her ability to question possible enemies to try and learn of the enemies’ moves.

Though there were a few jaw- dropping moments, I found myself becoming less and less interested as this book progressed. The main conflict was kind of boring to me. Tensions are growing between the royal family and the Northern and Southern powers, and there is about to be a war for control. Even though this was the climax of the book, it was still made out to be less important than Fire’s problems with people finding her beautiful. We get it. Everyone wants Fire because she is so beautiful. I don’t know who’s sicker of this: her or me! To me, beauty isn’t an issue when the kingdom is on the line.
And why shouldn’t the royal family give up control? Besides looking scary, what reason are we given for the Northern and Southern powers to be an ill fit for ruling the land? Maybe they’d do it better. We aren’t given any reasons why they are corrupt. And they are justified in their desire to take over because the previous king was corrupt. Maybe they believe his son won’t be any different. Maybe I just didn’t understand this part of the book, or maybe it was poorly explained.

Spoiler Alert:

Another detail that kept me up at night is how did this land and the land from Graceling never discover each other? There is only a mountain range separating these two lands! The only person that is aware of both of these lands is a Graced boy who kidnaps Fire in this book, and later becomes a corrupt king in the first book. (Yes, the first book, because the second one goes back in time.) Anyway, these two lands are vastly different, but they’ve never met. Both lands need to round up some explorers for an expedition!

I really wanted to like this book; the reviews I read made it sound like the kind of book I would love, but I found myself skimming the boring parts, and there were a lot of them. Even though I’ll likely never read this book again, and I clearly had some issues with it, it still kept me occupied on the couch for hours at a time (at least in the beginning).  Interpret that how you will.

--Reviewed by Miss Shayne


Popular posts from this blog

Broken by Karin Slaughter

Before I begin the formal review there are a few things I need to get off my chest in the wake of finishing this book; I'll do so without giving away too many (or any) spoilers.
The OUTRAGE!: the identity of Detective Lena Adams' new beau; the low depths to which Grant County's interim chief has sunk and brought the police force down with him; agent Will Trent's wife, Angie's, sixth sense/nasty habit of reappearing in his life just when he's slipping away from her. Thank God for small miracles though because while Angie was certainly referred to during the book, the broad didn't make an appearance. One sign that I've become way too invested in these characters is that I'd like to employ John Connolly's odd pair of assassins, Louis and Angel, to contract out a hit on Angie; do you think Karin Slaughter and John Connolly could work out a special cross over?
Hallelujah: Dr. Sara Linton and agent Will Trent are both back. There is no hallelujah for…

Crow Lake by Mary Lawson

When the end came, it seemed to do so completely out of the blue, and it wasn't until long afterward that I was able to see that there was a chain of events leading up to it. Some of those events had nothing to do with us, the Morrisons, but were solely the concern of the Pyes, who lived on a farm about a mile away and were our nearest neighbors." from page seven
I must confess that it took me longer than it really needed to in order to finish the novel Crow Lake by Mary Lawson. The entire story is building up to the big catastrophe that forever destroys all the hopes and dreams the Morrison clan ever dared to hope and dream for its future. In the eyes of the narrator, it is even worse than the tragedy of the car crash that claimed both parents' lives one evening on the heels of some good news the family has received and celebrated. Now you can see why I dreaded getting to the end of a book that drips in foreboding like nobody's business. What can be a worse tra…

In The Woods by Tana French

"What I warn you to remember is that I am a detective. Our relationship with the truth is fundamental, but cracked, refracting confusingly like fragmented glass. It is the core of our careers, the endgame of every move we make, and we pursue it with strategies painstakingly constructed of lies ... and every variation on deception. The truth is the most desirable woman in the world and we are the most jealous lovers, reflexively denying anyone else the slightest glimpse of her. We betray her routinely ... This is my job ... What I am telling you, before you begin my story, is this--two things: I crave truth. And I lie." opening lines of In The Woods chapter 1, pages 3-4
In The Woods by Tana French, an Irish writer, is an extremely well-written and well-crafted mystery novel. The downside is that this is French's debut novel, and her website (located at does not offer any insi…