Just to make you jealous, I finished Fire yesterday and now I will torture you by telling you that it is wonderful. How wonderful? Well, almost directly after finishing it, I found myself pondering how perfect the world would be if Kristin Cashore was able to write books fast enough for me to be always reading one of them. And when I say always, I actually mean always, as in all the time without any breaks. I would be satisfied, in fact, if she just kept on writing stories featuring the characters she has given readers in Graceling and Fire. That would be enough for me. Years upon years of Katsa and Po and Fire and Brigan. Keep it coming Kristin.
For Graceling fans, you might be a tad pouty-faced when you start reading Fire and discover that Katsa and Po are not in this one. That won’t last for long. Fire takes place about 30 years before the story in Graceling, in a kingdom called the Dells. The Dells are a pretty violent, war-torn place, and there are creatures, called Monsters, who inhabit the land, alongside ordinary human folk. Monsters look like many of the regular animals we know, except they have amazingly vibrant-coloured hair or scales or wings. Monsters are able to control humans’ minds, which means humans fear them. Fire, our heroine, is the only human-shaped monster left in the Dells. She is stunningly beautiful and like all Monsters, she has the power to control minds and most people hate her for it. A bit like Katsa, Fire is gutsy and burdened by her identity, and yes, there is another great love story in these pages. The only other plot piece I’ll mention is that there is one character from Graceling who plays a key role in this book. Remember super-freaky King Leck? Well… he’s back, as a boy, and he’s every bit as creepy in kid-version.
Cashore’s amazing strength is her characters. You care so much about them, and they are wonderfully complicated. It’s hard to imagine someone not being completely captivated by both of these books.
Fire is published by Dial Books, and will be released in September 2009.