Review: Rise of Fire by Sophie Jordan

Series: Reign of Shadows #2

rise-of-fire-sophie-jordanThe richly suspenseful sequel to Sophie Jordan’s romantic fantasy Reign of Shadows.

Luna and Fowler have escaped the kingdom of Relhok, but they haven’t escaped the darkness. When a battle against the dark dwellers mortally injures Fowler, Luna is faced with a choice: put their fate in the hands of mysterious strangers or risk losing Fowler forever.

Desperate to keep the one bright part of her life alive, Luna accepts the help of soldiers from a nearby kingdom. Lagonia’s castle offers reprieve from the dangerous outside world—until the king discovers both Fowler’s and Luna’s true ties to Relhok and their influence over the throne.

Now pawns in each kingdom’s political game, Luna and Fowler are more determined than ever to escape and build the life they’ve been dreaming of. But their own pasts have a tight hold on their hearts and their destinies. Luna must embrace the darkness and fire within her before she loses not only Fowler, but the power she was destined to inherit.

4 Drink Me Potions

Thank you Edelweiss and HarperCollins for this copy in exchange for an honest review

**Rise of Fire comes out February 7, 2017**

“Do you feel my gaze on you? Do you feel my heart, Luna? It’s yours. It belongs to you. You know me.”

Even after a year I still remember where we left off in Reign of Shadows with our dear princess watching her loved one sacrificing himself to the dark creatures known as dwellers in order to save her.

And this is exactly where this novel picks up from. At that horrid cliffhanger. At least I’ve finally got my hands on what happens next.

Rise of Fire is even more enjoyable than its predecessor. With more essential characters coming into the story (finally!) and more of Fowler’s past catching up to him that we only had glimpses of previously, this was mostly satisfactory.

Another kingdom has taken them in and now they’ve escaped one darkness only to hop into a different kind. Being pawns of yet another maniacal king (can there only be evil kings in fantasy stories that you just yearn to overthrow?), there is plenty for Luna to overcome to reach her happily-ever-after.

She’s still the brave and beautiful girl I remember. Her blindness both makes her unique and memorable. She uses it as an advantage that doesn’t slow her down in any way. Thrown into a completely different – and civil – environment among the nobles at court, you’d think she’d be like a fish out of water after all this time in the Outside where it’s an eat-or-be-eaten world. But she holds her own as she tries to care for Fowler, and her POV was always very enjoyable to read.

The bench was pulled out so quickly I nearly fell. I’d almost forgotten the existence of the king’s guards. Sadists. Apparently they were never far.

With plenty of swoony scenes for those of us rooting for more romance, this book gives enough to make you smile to yourself. Fowler is the guy you want for your princess. Add to that the suspense of escaping from the clutches of their manipulators, I couldn’t stop myself from flipping through these pages rapidly.

The only point that made this book less-than-perfect was that I could’ve used so much more to their story. Being a duology instead of a trilogy, it didn’t have the middle book syndrome, but I felt the action could’ve peaked a lot higher, especially nearer to the end. The whole ending felt a little anti-climatic to me. It was wrapped up too simply in my opinion. Maybe I just expected it to go out with a bang that was a little more nitty-gritty and complex. Don’t get me wrong, it still was a nice ending. Not all the loosest ends were tied up (I was glad for that because it would’ve just been TOO much of a happily-ever-after moment that’s only seen in traditional fairy tales), but it was a positive note overall. I’m happy with it, at the end of the day, and I hope you would be too.

Overall Recommendation:
Rise of Fire gives a smacking punch to the story that started off in Reign of Shadows. With amped up suspense and romantic scenes worth swooning a little over, Fowler and Luna’s adventures get a little crazier as they set off to stop a mad king. Wrapping up this duology, this sequel delivered in ways that were more than satisfactory, with most loose ends tied up in a nice bow. I recommend it to all you fantasy lovers that like equal parts romance and suspenseful plots.

Note: all quotes taken from this novel are subject to change

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