Seeing as though my blog is titled Queen of Contemporary, it may not come as a surprise when I say that I’m not the biggest fan of fantasy. However, that’s not to say that I didn’t like Trial by Fire because, in fact, I loved it.
I’ve always had an affinity for fantasy novels that are set in medieval-type villages, towns or cities, and Trial by Fire mixes medieval with magic. It centres on the protagonist Lily who is very ill. After a humiliating event at a party, Lily then finds herself in an alternate Salem to the one she lives in, and magic rules. Lillian, the most powerful witch in The Citadel, rules this Salem and Lily’s alternate self. Lily is thrown into a world she doesn’t understand, where her weaknesses are what makes her powerful, and may also get her killed.
Often I read books that I forget about easily; I know that Trial by Fire will not be one of those books. Easily rivalling the likes of Throne of Glass, Trial by Fire will have you on the edge of your seat and invested from the start.
Lately I’ve kind of lost my ability to ship characters, which makes me an awful fangirl. I do think that Trial by Fire changed that though because I ship Lily and Rowan so hard. They absolutely must end up together!
The world building in Trial by Fire was spectacular and I think many authors could take a leaf out of Angelini’s book. I loved the idea of willstones. Carried around by each person, they give you the ability to perform certain magic. People who own the weaker willstones can only perform household tasks with theirs, whereas other willstones hold more power. They’re obtained in a way not unlike ‘the wand chooses the wizard.’
I felt very close to each character, learning the ins and outs of each one. The plot was fast-paced and spellbinding, hooking me until the very end, and now I cannot wait to read the sequel!
Trial by Fire now earns its place as one of my favourite fantasy novels of the year and I can’t wait until more people find out about this gem of a book.
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