I generally don’t read many fantasy novels. It’s not that I don’t like a good fantasy story, but many books tend to have a few elements that I just can’t stand. For instance, many fantasy stories have names for characters and places that are thirty letters long, twenty-nine of which are consonants with a vowel thrown in just for fun. The words are totally unpronounceable and very easy to forget or mix up. I generally never make it past the second page of novels like this before I’ve tossed it aside and moved on. I hesitated to choose Daughter of Fire: Conspiracy of the Dark (Destiny of the Dark #1) by Karen Frost even though the introductory blurb sounded really good. My partner, who loves Science Fiction and fantasy genres, convinced me to read it, and I am so glad she did. Thank you, Honey!
This is the story of Aeryn, a young girl who lives in the remote northern village of Thamir, on the northern edge of the kingdom of Ilirya. Thamir and the other small villages along the northern border are known collectively as the Ice Crown, and the people are Ice Crowners. Because of the remoteness of the area, Aeryn only knows about the rest of the kingdom through stories that sound like myths to her. Her fifteenth birthday changes her life when she suddenly begins to create and manipulate fire. This is powerful magic that soon draws attention to her, and she is kidnapped and taken to the King’s City where she will be trained as a war mage in Windhall University. This is a totally foreign place to Aeryn, though she does make a few friends including Lyse, a young woman Aeryn is attracted to. There is a dark power creeping into the kingdom, though, and this spells danger for everyone.
I was drawn into this story on the very first page. Thanks to the writing skills of Ms. Frost, I not only read the tale, I lived it with the characters. Her skill at world building is exceptional, which is a must for a great fantasy story. Her settings are vibrant and real. The characters are easy to connect with. The storyline is compelling. And best of all, no twenty-nine consonants plus one vowel words.
By now, I’m sure that most of you know this book ends on a cliffhanger with the rest of the tale coming out in a little over a month from now. At least it isn’t like our favorite tv shows that end the season with the lead actor standing in the doorway asking his girlfriend to marry him with the credits rolling right after we see her shocked face (The Big Bang Theory). Even worse, spending a whole summer wondering, “Who shot J.R.?” Yes, I know I dated myself with that one. (For you young’uns, that’s from the seventies/eighties show Dallas)
I know it can be difficult to wait when a story is this good, but I believe it’ll be worth it. I know I’m glad I read this book, and I will be getting the next book as soon as I can.
I received an ARC from Ylva Publishing for an honest review.