You know those books that you love to read, because no matter how many times you read them, you still love them just as much? Fire by Kristin Cashore is one of those books for me. This book came out in January of 2011 (eek- 5 years ago!). My personal copy is dog-eared, torn up and probably has a bit of water damage (from being hauled to the beach, or cottage, or camping, more than once). I’ve loved this book since the first time I’ve read it, and while its companion novels, Graceling and Bitterblue, are certainly wonderful, only Fire holds a special spot in my heart.
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. Monsters, terribly beautiful creatures with the power to control the thoughts of man and beast alike, plague the land. Fire is the last remaining human monster. With a wild, irresistible appearance and hair the color of flame, she is equally hated and adored. She also has the unique ability to control minds, but she guards her power, unwilling to steal the secrets or thoughts of innocent people. Fire enjoys her quiet, routine life in the mountain range in the north of the Dells, until Prince Brigan comes to bring her to King City. The royal family needs her help to uncover the plot against the king – a plot far more complex than she, or the Royal Family themselves, could have ever imagined. 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.