Review: Firelight

I received this book for free from ALA in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: FirelightFirelight by Sophie Jordan
Series: Firelight #1
Published by HarperTeen on September 7, 2010
Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance
Pages: 323
Format: ARC
Source: ALA
Goodreads
one-half-stars

A hidden truth.
Mortal enemies.
Doomed love.

Marked as special at an early age, Jacinda knows her every move is watched. But she longs for freedom to make her own choices. When she breaks the most sacred tenet among her kind, she nearly pays with her life. Until a beautiful stranger saves her. A stranger who was sent to hunt those like her. For Jacinda is a draki, a descendant of dragons whose greatest defense is her secret ability to shift into human form.

Forced to flee into the mortal world with her family, Jacinda struggles to adapt to her new surroundings. The only bright light is Will. Gorgeous, elusive Will who stirs her inner draki to life. Although she is irresistibly drawn to him, Jacinda knows Will's dark secret: He and his family are hunters. She should avoid him at all costs. But her inner draki is slowly slipping away;if it dies she will be left as a human forever. She'll do anything to prevent that. Even if it means getting closer to her most dangerous enemy.

Mythical powers and breathtaking romance ignite in this story of a girl who defies all expectations and whose love crosses an ancient divide.

Sophie Jordan wrote romance novels before foraying into teen paranormal romance for Firelight. There are some definite hints of this in the writing, not too overt and not worse than what happens in a lot of the teen books that are more about romance than anything else. It would not have bothered me at all, had I not had high hopes for the plot of this one. The premise is really great; how cool is the idea of people being able to turn into dragons!

There was one issue I had with the whole turning into a dragon thing though. Jacinda likes Will (Mr. Studly) partially for his ability to awaken her draki. (spoiler of obvious bit of plot point coming) Once Will has found out what she is, she no longer worries about shifting partway while they are making out, even though her face changes when that happens. Umm, what? Besides, do dragons even have lips? Or hands? The hands thing made me wonder too. At the end of the book, she brushes Will’s face with her hand while dragon-ed out. That just does not fit my understanding of what a dragon would look like.

The relationship between Will and Jacinda is every bit the typical teen romance of melodrama-filled waffling between “I will love him forevers!” and “I can’t be with him, because it’s too dangerous!” Needless to say, that gets old, nor does it signal love to my brain. Unfortunately, the focus of the book (romance author) was on Will and Jacinda’s relationship, not the cool fantasy story framing it. They make out a lot. And though her breasts don’t heave, she does have intense physical reactions every time (dragon awakening).

I give this a resounding meh! It could have been good without the cookie cutter characters and the CW style romance, but as it is it’s barely merits attention. Nevertheless, Twilight fans will likely adore it and the inevitable sequels.

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