Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Trial By Fire by Josephine Angelini: Review

Trial by Fire (The Worldwalker Trilogy, #1)Title: Trial by Fire (The World Waker Trilogy #1)
Author: Josephine Angelini
Publisher: Macmillan Children's Books
Buy This Book: Amazon / Book Depository

Love burns. Worlds collide. Magic reigns.
This world is trying to kill Lily Proctor. Her life-threatening allergies keep her from enjoying many of the experiences that other teenagers take for granted...which is why she is determined to enjoy her first (and perhaps only) high-school party. But Lily's life never goes according to plan, and after a humiliating incident in front of half her graduating class Lily wishes she could just disappear.
Suddenly Lily is in a different Salem - one overrun with horrifying creatures and ruled by powerful women called Crucibles. Strongest and cruellest of all the Crucibles is Lillian . . . Lily's identical other self in this alternate universe. This new version of her world is terrifyingly sensual, and Lily is soon overwhelmed by new experiences.
Lily realizes that what makes her weak at home is exactly what makes her extraordinary in New Salem. It also puts her life in danger. Thrown into a world she doesn't understand, Lily is torn between responsibilities she can't hope to shoulder alone, and a love she never expected.
But how can Lily be the saviour of this world when she is literally her own worst enemy? (Goodreads sumary.)


Trial by Fire (The Worldwalker Trilogy, #1)
US cover
When I finally received my copy.
Trial by Fire first caught my eye when I saw the US cover, before I even realised who wrote it or had read the blurb. It's such an eye-catching design and it works well to show you what the story is about. I was intrigued already, and then I saw that it was the new book in a planned trilogy and it was written by Josephine Angelini. That was the moment that I knew that I just had to read it. Her Goddess series is really great and I find her books so easy to read. I no longer wanted to read this book, I needed to read this book. Thankfully Macmillan are amazing and were willing to let me review the book, and I can't even begin to thank them.

The story doesn't take too long to get into the action, in fact it feels like we get to it almost straight away. We get a little introduction to Lily Proctor and her life in Salem, she's struggling with allergies and she's fallen for her best friend Tristan. An embarrassing incident at a party leaves her wanting to disappear, but she never expects to suddenly appear in a different Salem to her own. A Salem that is ruled by powerful women called Crucibles, a Salem where giant monsters are a constant threat to it's people. This all happens very quickly, it's quite jarring but it works with the story. We spend enough time with Lily at the start to get to know her character a bit before jumping into the action, but it leaves you with a lot to discover.



The best kind!!!
Jumping right into the other Salem is a lot to get used to, you are left feeling a little lost. That's the whole point though, you feel just as lost and confused as Lily does. I felt like I was experiencing everything that she was, which made me connect to her a lot quicker. Lily is a character that surprised me, at first I was certain I wouldn't like her and then suddenly I just couldn't get enough of her. She starts out with a very high and mighty attitude, she's a vegan and even owns a shirt that says 'I'm vegan and yes, that does make me better than you' . From that moment on I was sure that Lily was going to be a character that got on my nerves and one I couldn't like at all. But there's so much to find out about Lily and the type of person she is and she completely redeems herself in my eyes. I loved how strong she was and how she dealt with situations that would have me running in the opposite direction. She's a very strong and determined person, she sticks up for what she believes in and I admired that about her.

Let's be honest, no YA series would be complete without a love interest and, frankly, I'd have been really disappointed if this book didn't have one. I'm quite the sucker for a romance. Rowan was a character that I liked instantly, even though he was ridiculously mean to Lily. I don't even know why I had this instant like for him, I just did. I think it's because I knew there was going to be a lot more to him, I was excited to get to know him and find out about his background.


What impressed me so much about this book is that it doesn't rely on the romance, or make it a big part of the story. It's actually barely a romance in this, it's more about the characters getting to know each other and just like each other in general. There's no insta-love and it sets up the idea of a romance in the next book, I feel that's when that will be given more time. I liked that romance didn't become a huge part of the story, it concentrated on the fantasy elements and I much preferred that. The way the relationship progresses so slowly in this, it reminded me so much of Aria and Perry in Under the Never Sky, which is one of my all time favourite romances in a YA series and one I think is done ridiculously well. I am beyond excited to see how this relationship evolves over the next two books, I feel a new ship being added to my armada.

I like to tell you about the things I liked about a book, as well as the things I didn't. I am so happy to say that Trial by Fire didn't give me too much to grumble about. Maybe I would have liked to learn more about the world, but I never felt like it was lacking in that department. It took me a little while to get into this, but then I just became completely addicted to the story and couldn't put the book down. It was moving at a fast pace, it was hard for me to put this book down because I needed to continue to see what was going to happen. My only true complaint would be the fact it has a cliffhanger ending that has me desperate to get my hands on book two. Seriously, someone invent a time machine so I can go forward in time and read it. Pwetty please?


4.5/5 Butterflies

This one jumped right into the action, which made it a little hard for me to get into. But once I was, I could not get enough of this book and the story. I was so happy to find another fantasy YA that's got me hooked and is making me so eager for the next book. I was impressed by the fact a romance doesn't suddenly become the main storyline, it's always in the background and mostly just the characters getting to know one another. I want to know more about the world, more about the characters and I can't wait to see the romance evolve over the next two books. This feels like a series that is just going to get better, and I am already dying to read book two. I highly recommend to all, but definitely to those looking for a new fantasy series to get into. 



As I now have a finished copy of the book, I am doing a giveaway for my ARC copy. Because of the cost of shipping it, the giveaway is UK only.





*I received a copy of this novel from Macmillan Children's Books in exchange for a free and honest review and received no monetary compensation for this review.


43 comments:

  1. Wow I'm interested already! The plot sounds super cool and the "slowly progressed" romance is the best. I'm so happy there is no insta-love. Great Review :)

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    1. In all honesty, if you actually think about the amount of time they spend together then it probably could be considered insta-love. They might even tell each other they love each other at one point, but you get to know them so much that it feels like it's taking place over a much longer period. I enjoyed it, I thought it worked really well.

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  2. Noooooooooooooooooooooo.. I NEED THIS BOOK NOW! Gods of books, you high and mighty fellows, please give me a copy of this book like, now? This was an amazing review and I am officially jealous, why you be bezzies with MacMillan and get one? NO FAIR. Anyhow, this was fantastic, it sounds fantastic, your fangirl is fantastic, your comparison to Perry and Aria is fantastic, man, this book will be fantastic, you just cemented my love for a book I haven't read, thank you! :D And great review!

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    1. I know, you're the perfect person for my spare copy to go too. I need some cash so I can send it to you!!!! :) I think you will end up really liking it. I know, I pretty much fangirled in this. At first I felt like I wasn't going to enjoy the book and I would have to send a really bad 3 star review to them. So happy it picked up and I became absolutely obsessed, I loved it.

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  3. I am super excited for this book, more so after reading your review. It will be my first read by Ms. Angelini, somehow I never got around to reading her other series. A big plus for me is no insta-love and a strong main characters. It seems that I will really enjoy this book. Great review!

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    1. I have to admit that maybe they are technically an insta-love couple, if you actually look at the amount of time they no each other for. But I think it's the fact that it never feels like it, it feels like they get to know each other and fall for each other over time. I had a lot of fun with it, I'm very excited for book 2.

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  4. Great review :) I wasn't such a fan of Starcrossed, but maybe I'll give this a go.

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    1. This was a lot of fun, I really enjoyed it.

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  5. Yes! I loved this and that is saying something because normally I have such a hard time with this genre but this was so much fun!

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    1. It really was, I was so surprised by it and now I am a little depressed that I can't immediately go and read book 2!

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  6. This book does sound incredibly unique. I also like to hear that there isn't any insta-love. I may have to look more into this one. Great review!

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    1. I feel like maybe it would be classed as insta-love, when you consider how long they actually know each other. But it feels a lot longer and you actually feel like they get to know one another and make a connection. I really enjoyed it, I highly recommend it.

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  7. Super-duper excited for this book. Great review.

    Aparajita @Le' Grande Codex

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  8. You know, I still haven't finished her Goddess series. I read the first book when it first came out. Pre-ordered the next two and yup, it's still sitting there. Unfinished. *sigh*
    Anyhow, Trial by Fire sounds much more interesting than her Goddess series was for me. I love me some witches! I assume it's about witches, lol. Your review is great! It really got me excited to check this out. Because honestly even with all the early high praise, I haven't really cared. But you definitely made it sound like something I'll thoroughly enjoy. So thanks! :D
    Happy reading!
    Brittany @ This is the Story of My(Reading) Life

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    1. To be completely honest... neither have I. I own all 3 but have only read 1 and 2. The wait between 2 and 3 means that I forgot a lot and required a whole reread, just haven't found the time yet.

      I really did end up enjoying it, I struggled at the very beginning and then suddenly found myself hooked and I couldn't get enough. The relationship between the main girl and guy suddenly clicked for me as well, which helps. I thoroughly enjoyed this one, definitely recommend it.

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  9. I'm glad you enjoyed this :) I still need to read my ARC... Ooh your review got me so excited! I'm glad that the romance isn't the focal point of the story an starts slowly and builds like Aria & Perry. The Salem/alternate universe sounds cool :)

    Lovely review!

    Rachel @ A Perfection Called Books

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    1. It was a lot of fun, it took a while to get into but once I did... I WAS HOOKED! I hope you enjoy it when you finally find the time to get to it :)

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  10. Wow, this is definitely going on my TBR now! It sounds so good. And I'm insanely glad that there's no instalove. When you brought up Under the Never Sky, I was reminded that I needed to read that, which will happen soon since I've heard so many great things about Aria and Perry's relationship.

    Great review! (:

    Tori @ Bookish Affairs

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    1. Yes. You not only should read Trial by Fire but you most definitely need to read the Under the Never Sky series, it's a brilliant series!!! :) :) :)

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  11. Ever since I saw this appear on NetGalley I've been coveting it! I love when fantasy series focus on witches and feel like it's a rather under-explored theme! I'm also interested to see how the historical Salem witch trials influenced this series. Great review!

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    1. Thank you! I hope you get to read it soon, and that you enjoy it as much as I did :)

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  12. Ooooh, FANTASTIC, fantastic post, Charnell! I'm so glad you enjoyed this and now I'm even more excited to read it! I haven't read the Starcrossed series yet, but I do own the first book, and look forward to reading it soon. The UK edition isn't actually that terrible, but I definitely prefer the US cover.

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    1. I can't even decide between them. I think the US one makes way more sense to the story. I would probably have bought that one if I was buying them, but I do prefer paperbacks so who knows! I hope you enjoy this one, if and when you get to read it! :)

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  13. THIS SOUNDS AWESOME. (Sorry. Do I always start my comments shrieking in all-caps? *le sigh* BUT STILL.) I don't even remember hearing about this, but a 4.5?? I think I need this book in my life. I particularly like it when books don't 1000% focus on the romance, but there's actually a plot as well. Don't get me wrong, I like romance, I just find it disconcerting when that's ALL that happens in the person's life. Boring. Magic though, magic is awesome. I love the US cover more I think. The UK one kind of makes me think it's a contemporary?? For some reason?? lol x)

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    1. I like to shriek in all caps a lot too. Mostly to emphasise my point. You know, like... YOU HAVE TO FINISH HARRY POTTER!!! (It works! Are you convinced yet?!? I bet your convinced!) I ended up LOVING it, despite the fact that I struggled at first and for sure thought it was going to be a 3/5 read. I just got sucked into the story and couldn't put it down.

      The romance. Maybe it is insta-love. They technically know each other for barely any time before that word is probably used. BUT it never feels like it. Like with Aria and Perry, you actually feel like you have watched two characters get to know one another and fall for one another.

      The UK one doesn't really tell you anything about the story. The US one is definitely better for that and I think I prefer it for that reason.

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  14. OOoo interesting. I don't remember ever seeing her books. The US cover definitely catches my attention. Glad it was so good! I'm with you on the romance. Such a sucker for it. I'm gonna check out her other series. Those covers are totally doing it for me too :D

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    1. I absolutely adored this book, it ended up really surprising me. I can't wait for the next book! :)

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  15. This sounds like a great book - and awesome review as well! I'm also a sucker for romance, haha, I feel like YA books somehow require it...

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    1. They definitely do, it would be weird to find one that didn't have one in it, haha! :)

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  16. This seems like a genuinely good book. The US cover does look really good xD I am not so sure about reading it myself, even though you did give it a good rating. It just doesn't seem like the book for me and the blurb left me a little bit too confused... hm, I will think about it.

    Everyone loves a little romance, me included :)

    Check out my review and giveaway: http://olivia-savannah.blogspot.nl/2014/08/legacy-glow-book-review-giveaway.html

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    1. It really was, definitely surprised me and I am so happy I requested it now. If the book doesn't seem like your kinda thing though then I understand why you would skip it.

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  17. I haven't read the review yet, as I don't like to read reviews of books I have read as to not get my hope's up. But I am super duper excited for this book and I know its naughty because I have an eARC, but I've still entered the giveaway haha

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    1. Haha! That's totally cool, if I thought you would have wanted the physical ARC then I could have just sent it straight to you. Amanda suggested doing a giveaway, seems like a great way to get rid of it, now I have a finished copy.

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    2. That's really lovely of you, but I wouldn't have taken it because like you said I have the eARC and this way it gives others the chance to win it. If I'm lucky enough than wicked, if not than I'll more than likely buy the physical copy before christmas or request it for Christmas haha (providing I fall madly in love with it like her other series that is haha). Thank you anyway :)

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    3. And at least if you buy a copy then it will have a really pretty cover. The ARC doesn't have a cover.

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    4. haha I know, it was more about just entering :)

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  18. So glad that you enjoyed this one! One of my favorite parts of this was the world building! I loved how Angelini described this new version of Salem to be both modern and medieval at the same time. So cool! Great review! :)

    -Em @ Books & Cleverness

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    1. Thank you! I really enjoyed the world building too, although I think it still left you with a lot to discover in the next two books, which I am so excited for.

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  19. I am so glad that you gave this a good rating! I have heard so many good things about it. Thanks for your review!

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    1. Thanks, it really was a great read and I can't wait for the next one.

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  20. So glad you liked this one so much, I'm really excited about it! The romance sounds great, I also loved Perry and Aria and the way their relationship progressed. But a cliffhanger ending…arghh! That's becoming my new pet peeve. ~Pam

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    1. I know, mine too! I can't deal with any more cliffhangers, they are just too much! I guess they need to keep you intrigued enough for the sequel, but not like this, haha.

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