Sunday, April 20, 2014

Review: The Burning Sky

17332556Title: The Burning Sky
Author: Sherry Thomas
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:

It all began with a ruined elixir and an accidental bolt of lightning…
Iolanthe Seabourne is the greatest elemental mage of her generation—or so she's being told. The one prophesied for years to be the savior of The Realm. It is her duty and destiny to face and defeat the Bane, the greatest mage tyrant the world has ever known. A suicide task for anyone let alone a sixteen-year-old girl with no training, facing a prophecy that foretells a fiery clash to the death.
Prince Titus of Elberon has sworn to protect Iolanthe at all costs but he's also a powerful mage committed to obliterating the Bane to avenge the death of his family—even if he must sacrifice both Iolanthe and himself to achieve his goal.
But Titus makes the terrifying mistake of falling in love with the girl who should have been only a means to an end. Now, with the servants of the Bane closing in, he must choose between his mission and her life.

Interesting twist on the usual girl-at-boys-boarding-school story! I'll admit that the only reason I started reading this was because the title started with B and I needed it for an A-Z challenge. This book was a lot funnier than I was expecting it to be, which was a definite plus.

When I was about 9 or 10, my mom bought me the boxed set of Enid Blyton's St. Clare's and Mallory Towers books. Looking back, most of the stories were really similar to one another and pretty cliche, but I loved reading about going to boarding school and making friends (and "enemies"). The Burning Sky brought back all those memories of wanting to go to boarding school, but with a lot more fun. Not only is the main character at a boarding school, she is trying to pass off as a guy in an all-boys school. She is also one of only a few students who come from a secret realm with magic, and she may or may not be the greatest elemental mage of her time.

Iolanthe was an excellent character. Not only was she quick-witted and sharp-tongued, she was always level-headed. Sure, she had her doubts about her own abilities and what she was destined to do, but she always delivered when she was in a tight spot (be it learning the rules of cricket on the fly or avoiding detection by magical chariots). There was a line somewhere in this book that went something like "A messy business, rescuing princes." I loved the reversal of the usual damsel-in-distress stereotype, and I really liked that Titus didn't resent having to be rescued (...by a girl). In fact, I don't think that issue came up even once in this book. Titus himself was a great character too, although he was rather manipulative at first. He always did what he needed to do in order to protect his people, and it was so painful to see how much he gave up to do it. He not only respected Iolanthe, he admired her. Thank you, Sherry Thomas!

Magic. Boarding schools. Witty banter. If that isn't enough to convince you to read it, I don't know what is!

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3 comments:

  1. Magic and boarding schools, sounds like my type of book. Nice review! (and Iolanthe is a cool name. I like)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks! Yeah, Iolanthe is a very cool name, and a very cool character too :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Michelle {Book Hangovers}April 22, 2014 at 12:27 PM

    YAY! I'm so glad that you enjoyed this book! I love it and can not wait for The Perilous Sea 's release! WOOO HOOOO xoxo

    Michelle @ Book Hangovers Blabs Books

    ReplyDelete

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