Thursday, August 19, 2010

Of All the Twilight-y Books In All the World, I Had to Pick the Twilightiest ... And Love It! (With a Giveaway)

(Image from Barnes & Noble)

All 16-year-old Jacinda Jones wants to do is fly. Not squabble with her sister. Not mate with a prince. Not have her every move scrutinized by her pride. Just fly. Soar above the clouds and forget all the complications that exist on the ground. Her body's made for flight, longs for it, thrives on it. Like her dragon ancestors, Jacinda is meant to be in the sky. She's Draki, through and through, and a fire-breather, no less. One of a kind. Special, even in a community of unique creatures. She never wanted the spotlight beaming down on her. All she's ever wished for is the freedom to glide through the clouds, letting her wings carry her above all the cares of the ordinary world.
Nothing is ever that simple, of course. As the only living fire-breather, Jacinda is responsible for saving her dying breed. By mixing her genes with those of royalty, she could give birth to a new, stronger generation of draki. And the sooner the better, at least according to the calculating king. Jacinda's not thrilled with her future as a broodmare, but she's willing to do anything to help her people. Just not yet. Right now, she's more interested in feeling the sun on her scales. It's forbidden, of course, to let humans see her in draki form, which means she's only allowed to fly at night. Her rebellious streak has already gotten her into trouble, but she can't fight the urge to soar into the rising sun. It's a risk she has to take, one that ends with her running through the forest, desperately trying to shake the draki hunters that are right on her tail. The ordeal brings her face-to-face with Will Rutledge, a handsome tracker who's not like his murderous cohorts.
Jacinda's little stunt endangers not only herself but her whole community. Terrified of the repercussions, she and her family flee their home in Oregon, heading for the arid Nevada desert. Leaving the draki life behind is agonizing for Jacinda. No matter how hard she tries, she can't seem to assimilate. Especially when she runs into a familiar face - Will's never seen her in human form, but he's still inexplicably drawn to her. Jacinda can feel him with every fiber of her being. Pushing herself away from him is impossible, but letting him in could mean death to herself and everyone she loves. If Will ever found out what Jacinda really is, he'd skin her alive and sell her parts to the highest bidder. Preservation of her kind means staying far, far away from Will Rutledge. If only she could ...
Of all the Twilight-y books out there, Firelight by Sophie Jordan might just be the Twilight-iest. Not because of vampires or werewolves, but because of the impossible, consuming romance between the main characters. I'm no Edward/Bella hater - I just like me some originality. And yet, I burned through this book so fast, I swear I saw smoke pluming from its pages. It's the kind of story that keeps you glued to your chair even though you've got a thousand other things you really should be doing. Firelight starts out with an intriguing spark and ends with a raging inferno. It doesn't even come out until September 7 and I'm already dying for the next installment. Love it, love it, love it.
That being said, it's not a perfect book. Most of the characters need a good fluffing out, including the already appealing Will. The romance between Jacinda and Will seemed to develop awfully fast. It also got a little melodramatic at times. My biggest pet peeve, however, is this: Jordan never explains how Jacinda ends up in the exact town Will lives in. A coincidence like that is too big to leave unexplored. The fact that Jordan never addresses it bugged me throughout the whole book. I assume it will be justified in one of the sequels - Jordan's too careful a writer to let something like that slip - but I wanted it dealt with in Firelight.
Despite that big annoyance, Firelight kept me totally enthralled. I didn't want to put it down ... so, I didn't.
(Readaikes: reminded me a lot of Twilight, the Need books by Carrie Jones, Forgive My Fins by Tera Lynn Childs, and others)
Grade: B+
If this were a movie, it would be rated: PG-13 for language (no F-bombs), underrage drinking, and fantasy violence
To the FTC, with love: I received an ARC of Firelight from the generous folks at HarperTeen. Thank you!
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Thanks to the incredibly generous people at HarperTeen, I have an extra ARC of Firelight. If you're interested in winning it, comment on this post, answering this question: An incredible crop of Fall books are coming out this year - which titles are you dying to get your hands on? Please also leave your contact information. If you don't have a public blog that you check often, I'm going to need an e-mail address. The contest is international and runs until August 30. Good luck!

27 comments:

  1. My list of books I'm looking forward to is super long, but the ones I want to read the most are:

    Fallout by Ellen Hopkins
    Zombies and Unicorns (anthology)
    Firelight (of course)
    Ascendent by Diana Peterfreund
    Beautiful Darkness
    Matched
    The Last Sacrifice

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  2. Great review! I loved Firelight, but I do agree with you one some of your points, especially Jacinda living in Will's town. I'm not entering the giveaway, but good luck everyone!

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  3. Zombies and Unicorns, Beautiful Darkness, Halo, Blameless... so many more :)

    rexreadingrobot at gmail dot com

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  4. This one sounds interesting too.

    Excited, like everyone else, for Mockingjay. Also just heard about a new Tana French (came out in July). If you haven't read her's, you should get them. There are 2 before this one & they were awesome psychological thrillers.

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  5. The book I am most looking forward to this fall is Fallout by Ellen Hopkins and of course I can't wait to find out which books will be the new Printz winners of 2010.

    yo teach 24 at comcast dot net

    http://www.booksnob-booksnob.blogspot.com

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  6. Ooohh! That has been on my list for sometime now too! :)
    Beautiful Darkness
    Matched by Ally Condie
    Pegasus by Robin Mckinley
    Mockingjay of course!
    There are so many more I can't name them all! :)

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  7. I'm so excited for Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins!

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  8. I'm waiting for Mockingjay with bated breath!

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  9. There are quite a few but some of them are:

    Clockwork Angel
    Mockingjay
    Firelight
    The Replacement
    Halo
    Last Sacrifice
    Paranormalcy

    bacchus76 at myself dot com

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  10. This book sounds great!
    A few that I'm looking forward to:
    Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins (of course!)
    StarCrossed by Elizabeth Bunce
    Spy Glass by Maria V. Snyder
    The Exiled Queen by Cinda Chima

    bgh at byu dot net

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  11. I am counting down to 'mockingjay' (currently 3 more days) , 'matched' by Allie Condie, 'Firelight' by Sophie Jordan, 'Paranormalcy' by Kiersten White, and finally 'Torment' by Kate Lauren. Regards:
    maidenhealer@hotmail.com

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  12. Some of the books I would love to get my hands on...

    Fallout
    Firelight (unless I win it here!)
    Mockingjay (only because I had a hard time with the first one and refused to read the second til this one came out...)

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  13. I'm so glad you liked this one! I've been wanting it for a while, mostly because of the cover. You need a good Twilight-y book now and again, I think.

    I think the two I'm most excited about are Mockingjay (yeah! a few more days!) and Matched by Ally Condie. Thanks!

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  14. Wow Firelight sounds enthralling (as long as the writing is better than Stephanie Meyer's I'll be happy). I am super excited for Mockingjay but really who isn't? But I can't wait to get my hands on the Scorch Trials by James Dashner and sequel to the Maze Runner. Also Creschendo by Becca Fitzpatrick the sequel to Hush Hush. Even thought it's not a fall book I can't wait to see the sequel to I am Number Four by Pittacus Lore, the Power of Six will be amazing.
    sabrinabertsch'at'hotmail'dot'com

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  15. Too many so I'll just list a few

    Matched
    Firelight
    Mockingjay
    The Replacement
    Halo
    Paranormalcy
    (\___/)
    (='.'=)
    (")_(")
    alterlisa AT yahoo DOT com
    http://lisaslovesbooksofcourse.blogspot.com/

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  16. I'm *dying* for so many books!

    Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
    Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare
    Paranormalcy by Kiersten White
    Firelight by Sophie Jordan
    Nightshade by Andrea Cremer
    Matched by Ally Condie
    Pegasus by Robin McKinley
    Beautiful Darkness by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl
    Sapphique by Catherine Fisher

    I could go on and on and on...

    Thanks for the awesome giveaway!

    Arena aka The Nerd's Wife

    thenerdswife(at)gmail(dot)com

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  17. I am looking forward to so many books, but here are a few:

    Behemoth
    Beautiful Darkness
    Jane

    throuthehaze at gmail dot com

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  18. I loved your review and can't wait to read this! Other can't waits are;
    Mockingjay
    Clockwork Angel
    Matched
    Paranormalcy

    I can't wait for My Unfair Godmother, but that will be in 2011 :) Thanks for the giveaway!

    bchild5@aol.com

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  19. Fun review! I'm so looking forward to Beautiful Darkness, Mockingjay and Matched.

    msdarcy22@aol.com

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  20. I, too, am waiting for my copy of Mockingjay to arrive. I haven't looked a lot into what other books are coming out, but I'm coming back to add the titles listed in the comments to my to-read list!

    latermom{at}gmail{dot}com

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  21. I'm especially anxious about Mockingjay and Matched. Love getting notes about other new ones to try!

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  22. Their are so many great books coming out some of my farorites are!
    Matched
    The Last Sacrifice
    Halo
    Firelight
    torment
    crescendo
    tishajean@charter.net

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  23. Matched
    Crescendo
    and even though Mockingjay came out I haven't got a copy yet.
    Firelight sounds really good. I'd love to win a copy!
    bkhabel AT gmail DOT com

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  24. My wait-list, so to speak, is
    -Towers of Midnight by Robert J and Brandon Sanderson
    -I shall wear midnight by Terry Pratchett
    -The wise man's fear by Patrick Rothfuss (this one most of all!!)

    My gmail id is deepalipratap@gmail.com

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  25. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  26. It's fall and time to sit by my fire and read!!!

    Clockwork Angel
    Mockingjay
    Sabotaged
    Paranormalcy
    It's Not Summer Without You
    Hothouse
    the list goes on and on!!!

    lalibrarybug@yahoo.com

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  27. This sounds great and I really liked the Twilight books so it could be a good match! Thanks for the heads up!

    AubrieAnne @ http://whosyoureditor.blogspot.com/

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