Hello humans! If you haven’t come across Wicked Like a Wildfire yet then I urge you to go and read my review and then maybe buy a copy for yourself (or not, I’m not your mother). I read Wicked like a Wildfire last year and really enjoyed it, but it took me a while to get to reading the sequel. I purchased it during a blogger meet up in Birmingham but still, it took until my Ownvember project to really get to it! I’m delighted to share my thoughts with you all now.
n the bewitching conclusion to Lana Popovic’s sumptuous and romantic teen fantasy duology, Malina must use her gleam to rescue her twin sister from a magical power more dangerous than Death.
Twin sisters Iris and Malina thought they knew how to reverse the ancient curse that haunts their line, the spell that destines them to use their gleams—unique forms of beauty-manipulating magic—to entice and enchant none other than Death himself.
But both sisters thought wrong.
Instead of ending the wicked bargain with the power of her infinite bloom, Iris is taken to an exquisite, uncanny realm in between this world and the next—a world Death created for her alone. Only, unlike all of Death’s companions before, Iris’s body goes on the one-way journey along with her soul, arriving in a kingdom never meant to sustain a living girl.
Left behind with Niko, her girlfriend, and Luka, the boy her sister loves, Lina searches for a way to save Iris. But as Lina unearths the dark secrets that bind her family to parallel fates of loss and immortality and Iris tries to outwit Death on his own terrain, a power resurfaces that even Mara, the original witch mother, fears. Now both sisters must learn to fully embrace their gleams—or else they’ll truly lose each other forever.
Luscious and breathtaking, Fierce Like a Firestorm is the second book in Lana Popovic’s dazzling duology about freedom, beauty, sacrifice, and the infinite power of love.
I must say, I have a soft spot for any story where a girl ends up stuck in another realm with Death (or a similar entity, it remains one of my more favoured tropes. This book is no exception, my favourite parts of the story were those that took place in the realm between one world and the next. I thought that the otherworldly nature of that realm really lent itself to Popoviç’s writing style, which tends towards the more abstract side of things as is, so a realm where pretty much anything is possible definitely worked.
There is a bit of weirdness in there, tied up with romance and desire and magic. If you’re not comfortable mixing the idea of magic and consent then I wouldn’t say this is ideal – but it is addressed in the book and it certainly isn’t an extreme example of this idea, so I didn’t mind it too much.
I will confess that if you asked me to explain the ins and outs of the plot of this book I would certainly not be able to do so, it was a little too convoluted for me to follow everything and would probably benefit from multiple reads. What did stick with me were several moments, little bits of the story that I found particularly beautiful or evocative. I can’t explain them all because of potential spoilers but there is one lovely moment involving dance, and another that involves whale bones. What I’m trying to say is that I think I enjoyed this book not for the plot, but for the beauty of the writing.
This book does involve some really mature looks at relationships, which I don’t always expect from YA (or if I’m being honest, fiction in general). Again, I can’t go into too much detail without spoiling anything, but this book deals with two characters who had feelings for each other in book one being separated in the second book in a way that is different to how you might expect a YA title to handle this.
This book is gorgeous, I thoroughly enjoyed reading it. I think the plot is perhaps a little convoluted but it’s worth reading just for the prose. I would recommend it to people who love descriptive writing and like to take a bit of a unique view of the world.
My rating: 3/5 stars
I bought this book myself, all opinions are my own.
What say you? Is this on your TBR? Let me know what you think in the comments below!