#BookReview Fire & Flood (Book One) by Victoria Scott #YA
My Rating: 5 out of 5
I discovered this book on a rainy afternoon as I browsed my local bookshop. The beautiful cover drew me in straight away, and the blurb intrigued me, offering a story about a mysterious competition through treacherous terrain to win a cure for any illness.
Tella is a sixteen-year-old girl who has been uprooted from her home and best friend and is now living in fear that her brother will die any day. He is sick, and getting worse by the minute. When an unusual device turns up in Tella’s bedroom explaining that she could ‘win’ a cure for her brother she does what any caring sister would do – she signs up for life-changing, dangerous, and potentially lethal quest.
At first, I couldn’t shake the impression of Hunger Games meets Pokemon, but it didn’t take long to get swept up in the story. Tella’s character is well crafted; she has a girly-girl vibe about her, but as the story unfolds, we see a much deeper character begin to emerge. She loves glitter and make-up, but she can also be a kick-ass competitor.
As Tella begins her journey in the Brimstone Bleed competition, she meets various contenders along the way. Guy Chambers is the hot guy that every YA book needs to add a little sparkle. Harper is the mean-but-loveable friend with her own story to tell. Characters come and go throughout the book, some you mourn and others you breathe a sigh of relief over their departure. Scott isn’t afraid to tug at the readers’ heartstrings!
To assist the contenders, each character has a Pandora, which is a manufactured animal with special talents, such as a lion who breathes fire. Tella is paired with a small black fox who becomes as much a main character as her owner. The bond between Tella and her fox is heart-warming and shows yet another side to our heroine. I loved the Pandora twist in this book, it’s unique, and makes a pleasant change from dragons or other supernatural elements.
Fire & Flood is set in treacherous jungle and scorching desert, but we are told at the beginning of the novel that there are four ecosystems that our characters must survive. Salt & Stone is book two and continues the Brimstone Bleed competition as the characters face the ocean and mountain terrain. I rushed out to buy book two before I finished Fire & Flood.
Blurb – Fire & Flood:
Tella’s brother has cancer, and she is helpless to save him. Or so she thought. When an invitation arrives for her to compete in the Brimstone Bleed, a deadly competition that will lead her through treacherous jungle and scorching desert, she doesn’t think twice. Because the prize is a cure. But Tella will be facing more than the elements …
#BookReview Salt & Stone (Book Two) by Victoria Scott #YA
My Rating: 5 out of 5
I made sure that I had purchased Salt & Stone before I even finished book one, Fire & Flood because I was so wrapped up in the storyline that I couldn’t face waiting to find out what happened.
Tella and Guy have survived the treacherous jungle and the scorching desert. They are just two contenders out of sixty-four that have made it this far. Not bad when you think that there were one hundred and twenty-two to begin with. Our heroine has evolved so much and can hold her own against the horrors of the Brimstone Bleed.
Scott’s beautifully crafted characters and captivating setting pull us along this chaotic quest at breakneck speed.
There is a back story that weaves through the novel and Scott expertly drops sufficient clues about the team who started the Brimstone Bleed, and what the contenders can do once they complete the race – if they survive! I had a fair few late nights as I got to the end of Salt & Stone, whispering ‘just one more chapter’ at midnight!
The ending is brilliant and keeps you guessing right up to the very last paragraph. I read on Victoria Scott’s Facebook page that her publisher hasn’t picked up a book three which is disappointing because I’m sure there would be a long line of fans eager to find out what happens next. I’m one of them!
Blurb – Salt & Stone:
With the help of her animal Pandora, Tella has survived the first two rounds of the Brimstone Bleed. But if she wants to win the Cure and save her brother’s life, she’ll have to make it across icy mountains and oceans – and beat her fellow contenders.
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