Monday, 28 June 2010
Firespell is the first book I have read by Chloe Neill and it's book one in the Dark Elite series. I’d been interested to read it for some time now but it’s been hiding in my ever growing TBR pile. The hardback version was released recently in the UK and as a huge fan of hardbacks; I got myself a copy and started reading. You’ll be pleased to know that I have since given the paperback to a good home!
I was drawn to the book by both the title Firespell (ooh that sounds interesting, what’s firespell?) and also the cover art which is dark and mysterious. The premise sounded interesting too although I was a little concerned as there are A LOT of YA books at present set inside a boarding school that the main protagonist has just been sent to. Thankfully, my concerns were pulverised as I read the story and decided that this book was different and when you read it, you’ll see why. I enjoyed every minute of reading it and was thoroughly entertained throughout.
Firespell is about Lily Parker, a teenage girl who is sent to St. Sophia’s, a boarding school in the heart of Chicago as her parents move away with work. There, Lily becomes firm friends with her roommate Scout who seemingly disappears late into the night and comes back exhausted and covered in mysterious bruises. Scout refuses to fess up the truth about what she’s up to and so Lily decides to take matters into her own hands and follows her. She finds out that Scout is part of an elite group of teens with magical powers who have formed an alliance to protect the citizens of Chicago from other magical beings who have been corrupted by their own power. Lily treads a dangerous path as she wants to help but has no magical powers of her own. When she meets a reaper who attacks her with firespell, Lily can no longer sit on the sidelines and becomes part of the dark elite but will the group accept her and more importantly how can she survive being part of the group without magical powers?
Scout was one of my favourite characters and I really enjoyed the dialogue between her and Lily as they had some hilarious conversations which include one of my favourite lines from the book (see above). You’ll have to read it to find out the context but it had me laughing out loud!
Lily is a great protagonist who is strong willed and strong minded. She isn’t afraid to fight for her principles and beliefs, to stick up for friends when they need help and she can give as good as she gets in the snarky stakes. I’m excited to see how her character develops through the Dark Elite series. There were hints at a love interest in the form of Jason but the relationship aspect was a subplot that only really got going towards the end of the book leaving lots of room for development in the next book. This is something that I’m especially excited about! Bring on the next book!
Firespell was released in January 2010. The next book in the Dark Elite series is entitled Hexbound and it too has a beautiful cover. This will be released in January 2011.
Chloe Neill is also the author of the Chicagoland Vampires series (Some Girls Bite, Friday Night Bites and Twice Bitten). You can find her website and blog here. She is also active on facebook and twitter.