Review: FIRE by Kristin Cashore

AUTHOR: Kristin Cashore
GENRE: Young Adult, Romance, Fantasy
PUBLISHED:  October 5, 2009 – Dial Books


(Courtesy of Goodreads-No Spoilers!)

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.


I’ve seriously fallen in love with fantasy fiction. FIRE is a "companion" book to GRACELING, and it is fantastic. When I cracked open this book, it brought me back to the seven kingdom world she created. It began with a Graceling but the main character was not a Graceling. But it didn’t disappoint. The story is weaved around a monster girl named Fire. Monsters were beautiful creatures in the shape of normal animals but they are gorgeously colored—fucia, turquoise, bronze, etc. Monsters have the ability to control human minds. It was a treat to read about Fire and envision what she looked like with the unnaturally fiery red, orange and pink hair. She captured everyone’s attention in good ways and bad. When a character is written that way you can’t help but be entranced by her too.

Fire is apparently a feminist (as well as Katsa, from GRACELING.) Fire is a believable character but when compared with the main character in the previous novel, it was at first hard to differentiate the two because they are both independent, feminists, push away the love interest and put themselves in unnecessary danger. But after finishing the entire book, I can gladly say they parted and when their separate ways. I just hope Cashore doesn’t use this same type of character for the MC of her third novel.

Fire is the last remaining human-monster in the Dells. A rocky mountainous land where a war is impending and there are plenty of storylines to keep an eager mind busy. Fire has an appreciation for right and wrong and there is plenty of mistrust from everyone because she is a monster. I loved this story.


Obviously I give it a 5. Excellent: Worth every minute, I’d probably read it again. The main story wasn’t as good as GRACELING but the ending of FIRE was better! I’m eagerly awaiting the next companion book. (BITTERBLUE by Kristin Cashore.)


I’d love for my pre-teens and teens to read these. Obviously, they have made my favorites list!

Graceling Realm Series:

Book 2: FIRE