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Published by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers on September 12th 2017
Genres: Action & Adventure, Fantasy, Young Adult Fiction
All hail the Fire Queen.
Against all odds, Ruby has defeated the villainous Frost King and melted his throne of ice. But the bloodthirsty Minax that was trapped inside is now haunting her kingdom and everyone she loves. The answers to its demise may lie to the south in Sudesia, the land of the Firebloods, and a country that holds the secrets to Ruby’s powers and past…
Despite warnings from her beloved Arcus, Ruby accompanies a roguish Fireblood named Kai to Sudesia, where she must master her control of fire in a series of trials to gain the trust of the suspicious Fire Queen. Only then can she hope to access the knowledge that could defeat the rampaging Minax—which grows closer every moment. But as sparks fly in her moments alone with Kai, Ruby no longer knows whom to trust. The fates of two kingdoms are now in her hands.
Fireblood is book two in the Frostblood series by Elly Blake and one of the series books I have been waiting a while to get my hands on. I admit it, when I read the summary on the back, I was very worried as it says something about sparks and someone who isn’t Arcus but despite that, I dove right in. If you haven’t yet read book one, be warned. I won’t spoil anything on this book but can’t promise anything for the first book.
If you recall the ending of book one, you know that Ruby has defeated the Frost King but the Minax, which was trapped in the throne, is now loose and terrorizing the kingdom. Now cursed with visions, Ruby is looking for answers and she realizes she most likely will not find them in the Frostblood court. Not only is she the only Fireblood there but she and Arcus are faced with those who oppose her presence every day and that eventually leads to Ruby making a decision that will pull these two characters into different directions.
Ruby grows up a lot in this book. I thought she developed well in book one but in this book she learns a lot more about who she is and what she can do. Having met another Fireblood named Kai, she decides the only way she is going to learn more about her abilities and protect Arcus from the division in his court because of her presence, is to take Kai up on his offer to take her with him to Sudesia. Ruby also has some ulterior motives. She needs to find a book for Brother Thistle and also see if there is any way to help mend the relationship between the two kingdoms.
Of course, you know I love the swoony bits and this book has plenty. Arcus clearly loves Ruby and is willing to do whatever he can to protect her. The problem he has is that very few people in his court support him having Ruby there. When Ruby breaks the news of her plans to go to Sudesia, he is hurt and angry and it is very obvious he is trying to protect himself however he can by withdrawing from her completely. Even though they part, Arcus is always there for her and will do what he can to protect her, no matter their distance.
There are some characters from book one in this book but we also get some new ones. Both Marella and Brother Thistle are back. We also have new ones like Kai, the Sudesian Queen, and Prince Eiko. Kai plays a critical role in getting Ruby to Sudesia but he also becomes linked to her. A deal is made to get Ruby trained to complete the trials to become a Fireblood master. It is up to Kai to train her and prepare Ruby for the trials and if she passes, he will get a second chance at becoming a Fireblood master as well.
Things aren’t easy in the Fireblood court. Not only is she facing the danger of the trials but she is also trying to change the Queen’s mind regarding her feelings about Arcus and the Frostbloods. She, as you can imagine, isn’t very successful and when something Ruby is unaware of brings Arcus to Sudesia, she knows she needs to find a way to save him from the fate the queen has in store for him.
As the story moves forward, we find out more about the Fireblood throne and also, what happens with the Frostblood Minax as well as the Fireblood Minax. You will notice I am being a bit vague about things and that is because I don’t want to ruin anything. I admit it – there is a twist I absolutely wasn’t expecting and I thought the ending was perfect for this book. Just trust me…if you like fantasy and really, a great story, you should read these.
Overall I really enjoyed this book and I continue to love this series. If you haven’t started this one yet, definitely consider this. There is magic, deception, and great characters in this series and I love the world that Blake has created as well as how she continues to develop these characters within it. I am excited to get my hands on the next book as I am very curious to see where Blake will take it next.
Thank you to the publisher for the review copy!