Friday, March 22, 2013

Review: Fire (Audiobook)

Fire by Kirsten Cashore
Series: Graceling Realm #2
Genre:Young Adult, Fantasy
Length: 12 hours and 40 minutes
Narrator: Xanthe Elbrick
Source: eLibrary
Author's Website | Blog | Twitter | Facebook
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It is not a peaceful time in the Dells. The young King Nash clings to his throne while rebel lords in the north and south build armies to unseat him. The mountains and forests are filled with spies and thieves and lawless men.

This is where Fire lives. With a wild, irresistible appearance and hair the color of flame, Fire is the last remaining human monster. Equally hated and adored, she had the unique ability to control minds, but she guards her power, unwilling to steal the secrets of innocent people. Especially when she has so many of her own.

Then Prince Brigan comes to bring her to King City, The royal family needs her help to uncover the plot against the king. Far away from home, Fire begins to realize there's more to her power than she ever dreamed. Her power could save the kingdom.

If only she weren't afraid of becoming the monster her father was.
My Rating:

My Review:
An unknown crack in a mountain found in the seven kingdoms, drops the reader in The Dells many years before Katsa's story ( found in Graceling).  In this place there are lands in the brink of war.  Creatures big and small known as monsters also reside in this land.  Fire, a human monster, must continuously hide her true nature from other monsters.  While monsters want to eat her, humans fear her very special beauty and ability to control the minds of others.  When an archer with a strange mind enters her land, she ventures to see King Nash to see whether others can help her with her mystery.  Prince Brigan, thinking her to be like her father, doesn't trust her from the beginning.  But soon warring nations take precedence and Fire's abilities are needed to save the kingdom.

On the story...
Ahhh, I considered skipping Fire because of the reviews but I'm actually glad I didn't.   Readers seem to either love this book or hate it and I can see why in both instances.  Fire introduces us to another heroine with major abilities far above the men.  Unfortunately, Lady Katsa (from Graceling) is so kick*ss that Fire just falls flat in comparison.  She's a bit whiny.  And for all her amazing power, the sky was the limit, but it wasn't used in a particularly awesome way.  Also all the annoying things in Graceling are present in Fire but the second time around it is quite a bit more annoying.  For example, the women seem to defy every stereotype while the men seem to embody EVERY stereotype.  Then there is the whole monster thing.  I don't think the creatures were adequately explained.  There was much talk of them and the danger but I wasn't able to adequately wrap my head around the concept.  This might have also contributed to my dissatisfaction with Fire's abilities. BUT.  There was Prince Brigan who I absolutely adored.  For some reason I love the men in this series much more than the women.  I loved that he was so smart and commanded his army so completely.  He was fair but realistic.  Every thing that came out of his mouth I loved.  I also loved that he wasn't the king.  AND he had the most adorable daughter in the world.  It seems like I love the most insignificant things but really his character came together perfectly and simply.

On the audio...
I thought the narration was done well though it didn't stand out that much.  I still liked it better than the full cast audio of Graceling.

Overall... It's a must read because it is book two in the series.  It's not as bad and I expected based on the reviews and it would seem a lot better if Graceling wasn't so awesome.

P.S.  This book satisfies my 2013 Sequel Challenge.

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  1. I hate when the second book in a series doesn't live up to Book #1. It's like they "got you". You were hooked from Book #1 and you naturally needed the second book.

  2. I liked this more than Graceling but I agree about meh. Nothing special about these.

  3. Huh. I haven't ready Graceling yet, but it sounds good. Maybe this series is just suffering from second book syndrome? I'm sorry that Fire fell flat for you. :( Fab review, girly! P.s., your blog is too cute! :D

    Megan@The Book Babe


  4. So they changed for full cast in the second?
    Whoa. That would bug me.
    I don't like narrator changes. I'm weird like that.
    Great review!

    1. Yes they changed it. Though I didn't love the full cast audio, it was still a weird transition.

  5. I still really liked Fire, although for different reasons than Graceling. But you're right, Fire herself is a bit whiny. The whole time I want to shake her and just make her embrace being an awesome monster, you know?

    Bitterblue was really good too - although again, a lot different than Graceling. But Katsa and Fire both make an appearance, which is exciting :)

    1. I started this series because I thought I had Bitterblue but now I can't find it. I have high expectations for it.

  6. I preferred Graceling over Fire which I preferred over Bitterblue-for me, the books got progressively less good but I hope Bitterblue is a fantastic experience for you (and that you can find it ;)

  7. I feel like most people prefer Fire over Graceling (that's what I felt years ago, anyway, after reading reviews), but I was one who liked Graceling better. I just re-read my review and I guess I gave Fire 4-stars even though my whole mini-review is kind of bitching about the parts I didn't enjoy, haha. Graceling is my fave of the trilogy, yet I would still read whatever the author comes up with next.


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