Friday, June 13, 2014

Fire & Flood - Victoria Scott

Summary:  Time is slipping away....

Tella Holloway is losing it. Her brother is sick, and when a dozen doctors can't determine what's wrong, her parents decide to move to Montana for the fresh air. She's lost her friends, her parents are driving her crazy, her brother is dying—and she's helpless to change anything.

Until she receives mysterious instructions on how to become a Contender in the Brimstone Bleed. It's an epic race across jungle, desert, ocean, and mountain that could win her the prize she desperately desires: the Cure for her brother's illness. But all the Contenders are after the Cure for people they love, and there's no guarantee that Tella (or any of them) will survive the race.

The jungle is terrifying, the clock is ticking, and Tella knows she can't trust the allies she makes. And one big question emerges: Why have so many fallen sick in the first place? (from

My Review: Okay. We need to get this straight right now. This book is a complete rip-off of The Hunger Games.  A group of unsuspecting "contenders" selected for a race to save the life of a loved one.  Animals that have been created and mutated for this specific race.  An unsuspecting heroine. A dashing male counterpart.  Innocents dying.  Betrayal. Factions. An evil creator of the game with mal intentions in mind. It was, without a doubt, written as a piggyback to get some of that fame and capture the readers that were mourning the end of the Suzanne Collins series.


That doesn't mean I don't think it was a decent read. Sure, there's a "been there done that" kind of feel coupled with that impossible-not-to-compare-it attitude, but I still liked it. The narrator is grittier, a little more sarcastic, and I liked that about her. I think she has a fun sense of irony and humor, and although sometimes I did get bogged down with the woe-is-me and the annoying martyrdom that she pulls, I think that teenage girls are sometimes that way and so I let it slide. There is, as with all books of this genre, a love story that is a little over the top, but again, I think that that's probably realistic with the age group. (And it disturbs me that I just said "with that age group," fully meaning I'm old and out of touch and so I'm willing to let the teens get away with silly romantic notions. See?  I'm old.)

I read this book really quickly. Once it gets going, it's exciting—there's a lot going on, there's a lot at stake, and despite the fact that I've read the Hunger Games and watched the movies, this book still had things to offer in the excitement-in-a-death-race-genre. If nothing else, it was one of those books that you just get into and read really quickly and are disappointed when it's over, especially because there is a great cliffhanger. I am looking forward to the next one for sure.

And in the end, I think it's worth the read.  Because I admit it. I'm missing The Hunger Games.

My Rating: 3 Stars

For the sensitive reader: This book is comparable to others in the genre in that it has language, violence, and romance scenes that are written for the YA audience.


MindySue said...

Really great review, Ashley! Refreshing honesty. I'm glad you're on board.

Ashleey Rayback said...

Thanks. :)


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