Book Review: Ice Like Fire by Sara Raasch
Ice Like Fire
Snow Like Ashes #2
Publication Date: October 13, 2015
Genre: YA Fantasy
It’s been three months since the Winterians were freed and Spring’s king, Angra, disappeared—thanks largely to the help of Cordell.
Meira just wants her people to be safe. When Cordellan debt forces the Winterians to dig their mines for payment, they unearth something powerful and possibly dangerous: Primoria’s lost chasm of magic. Theron sees this find as an opportunity—with this much magic, the world can finally stand against threats like Angra. But Meira fears the danger the chasm poses—the last time the world had access to so much magic, it spawned the Decay. So when the king of Cordell orders the two on a mission across the kingdoms of Primoria to discover the chasm’s secrets, Meira plans to use the trip to garner support to keep the chasm shut and Winter safe—even if it means clashing with Theron. But can she do so without endangering the people she loves?
Mather just wants to be free. The horrors inflicted on the Winterians hang fresh and raw in Januari—leaving Winter vulnerable to Cordell’s growing oppression. When Meira leaves to search for allies, he decides to take Winter’s security into his own hands. Can he rebuild his broken kingdom and protect them from new threats?
As the web of power and deception weaves tighter, Theron fights for magic, Mather fights for freedom—and Meira starts to wonder if she should be fighting not just for Winter, but for the world.
Review copy provided thru Edelweiss
Well, I finished it. I forced myself to finish it. It's an unpleasant feeling, like the one I always got when I needed to read an assigned reading material at school. I didn't like it but I don't hate it either. I'm ambivalent about this book, much more than the first book. While the first book was okay, given that the tried-and-tested (and with this book, quite boring) She's really the true lost royal with awesome powers and the only one who could save the world plot, I'm actually surprised and quite confused with myself why I managed to finish this book.
What is this beginning?
I don't know what to make of the beginning. It was a slow start and contained hints of where the book was heading and it wasn't good. But I was characteristically optimistic at that time and prayed that it would get better later.
How utterly wrong I was.
Where are you heading?
As I said before, I don't know where you are heading... The book tells of the aftermath of the battle with Spring, Meira was crowned queen and now was dealing with her deal (no pun intended) with Cordell. But I did not have a problem with that; I was rather excited with the fallout and wondered what the actions of the characters will be with regards with their little problem. They let me down but I'll get to them later.
They found that magic chasm that was the reason why Angra invaded Winter in the first place. Quite anticlimactic including Meira losing her control over her powers because she foolishly went near it. Then, they couldn't get inside the cave unless they locate the three keys, located in different kingdoms, that could open the door. The journey was supposed to be the running narrative of the book but given how Meira easily (yes, I think it was easy!) obtained those then I don't know what the hell was that about.
What happened to Meira?
Yes, she was typical in the first book - Supposedly strong, heart of gold, with a higher destiny than she could possibly know, rebellious but could make good decisions if the situation called for it. Here? Not so much. I get the pressures of being queen, she didn't (and still doesn't) know how to be queen but heck! where did that girl in Snow Like Ashes go?
What did you do with Theron!?!
I had this dreadful feeling in the pit of my stomach when I noticed the direction the book was heading with its treatment of Theron. What the heck did you do to him!?! Did an alien swap occur when I wasn't looking? He was kind and thoughtful and good in Snow Like Ashes, that's why I loved his character in the first place and was rooting for him to be the one to be with Meira. I thought it was a done deal but nooooooo, of course not. Was this a ploy to add more drama to the mix? Sure, more drama but for a character to do a complete one-eighty? Was this a ploy to show that Mather was really the one for Meira? Love triangles. *disgusted noise* Fine. Mather, Meira is yours. I get to keep the book one version of Theron for myself.
What happened to the other characters? Like crap, their reasons.
The others, particularly the veterans, the older ones who remembered Winter's destruction, were being pains in the ass. Instead of moving forward and making their kingdom new and better version of the old one, they went and just wanted it to be how it used to be. I get it that they missed their old lives but they now lived in a time and place much, much different than their own. Didn't their experiences taught them that? And although they call Meira their queen, they're treated her like a child. They were her advisers. They advise not dictate with glares on how she should behave.
I can't believe I'm going to say this but I liked Mather here. He was the only consistent character, believed in going forward, was not complacent with how things turned out because he thought that there were things that were needed to be done. I still like Theron for Meira though.
Crammed with events but nothing really happened but triggers and sets up to a larger thing/third book.
That second book syndrome was at play here. So much potential to have in this book but it was squandered. *laments* I still liked the setting of the land of Primoria and the unique characteristics of its kingdoms but the storytelling left much to be desired.