Review: ‘Firelight’ by Sophie Jordan #ATBF12

Rating: 3

The Low Down: Jacinda lives with her mother and her twin sister, Tamra, in the mountains in an area hidden from most people. They live in a community of draki, who are the descendants of dragons and they can take human form. Taking a huge risk, Jacinda and her best friend, Azura, take their dragon forms to fly during the day. They know of the hunters that stalk them for their skin and blood, but they seem so far away. Unfortunately for Jacinda and Azura, they are spotted by a huge convoy of hunters, and Jacinda is shot. Plunging into the water of a nearby lake, she attempts to conceal herself in a crevice in the cliffs surrounding the lake. She is not so lucky – a hunter finds her there. Then, in some incomprehensible twist, the hunter leaves and tells his partners that the draki is gone.

The pride finds out about the attack. Since Jacinda has put them all in danger with this encounter, the leaders decide to take harsh measures to keep this from happening again. They won’t expel Jacinda because she is the first draki in long, long time to manifest as a fire breather. The elders are obsessed with this power and plan to have Jacinda marry the prince of the pride. She feels like she is nothing but a commodity to them.

In the middle of the night, Jacinda’s mother packs up the family and they steal away. At first, Jacinda is furious. Without the pride, without her draki heritage, what is she? She does not want to give up the part of herself that she loves the most. Her mother has long ago let her draki die and thinks Jacinda ought to do the same. Tamra has never manifested and has always felt like an ignored outsider in her own community. She is thrilled to be leaving and to be given a chance at a “normal” life.

Their troubles aren’t far behind them, however. The hunter is Will, a handsome boy who attends school where Jacinda and Tamra end up. Then the prince, Cassian, finds them and tells Jacinda that she must return to the pride. It is no longer that simple, especially when she discovers Will’s secret and he, hers. Is it possible for hunter and prey to fall in love? What will happen if their secrets are revealed?

Best Thang ‘Bout It: The dragon theme is something that is completely unusual, so I give props to the author for coming up with it.

I’m Cranky Because: This book was on my list to read for the Austin Teen Book Festival. I actually started it twice before I finally read it the third time. I felt like the book was good, but it never reached the heights that I would have liked. For a book that needed to soar, it spent a lot of time plodding on the ground. Also, the double love triangle. Too much. It was enough that the two romantic characters were from horribly different worlds; did we need even a single love triangle on top of that?

Should You?: If you like books that combine fantasy, romance, danger and love triangles, then you will definitely like this one.

Firelight by Sophie Jordan was published on September 7, 2010 by HarperCollins.

Genre: Young Adult Fiction Fantasy Romance
Ages: 14 and up

Find this book at Amazon and Abe Books.

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