Aug 25, 2014

ARC Review--Trial by Fire by Josephine Angelini

Love burns. Worlds collide. Magic reigns.

This world is trying to kill Lily Proctor. Her life-threatening allergies keep her from enjoying many of the experiences that other teenagers take for granted...which is why she is determined to enjoy her first (and perhaps only) high-school party. But Lily's life never goes according to plan, and after a humiliating incident in front of half her graduating class Lily wishes she could just disappear.

Suddenly Lily is in a different Salem - one overrun with horrifying creatures and ruled by powerful women called Crucibles. Strongest and cruellest of all the Crucibles is Lillian . . . Lily's identical other self in this alternate universe. This new version of her world is terrifyingly sensual, and Lily is soon overwhelmed by new experiences.

Lily realizes that what makes her weak at home is exactly what makes her extraordinary in New Salem. It also puts her life in danger. Thrown into a world she doesn't understand, Lily is torn between responsibilities she can't hope to shoulder alone, and a love she never expected.

But how can Lily be the saviour of this world when she is literally her own worst enemy?

I received this ARC from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review, I was in no way compensated for this review.

Trial by Fire is Josephine Angelini's newest release in the new The Worldwalker Trilogy! And it was an unbelievably fascinating kind of read!

Trial by Fire starts off as a sort of ordinary read with a character who's a bit average, but she has a lot of health issues. Lily tends to get sick a lot, lots of things make her sick, but she doesn't let it get her down. She just recently started a romantic relationship with her best friend, Tristan, after crushing on him for years. Her mother is mentally unbalanced, and she has to take care of her a lot. Her older sister helps too when she can, but she's at college and works. Her father, while still married to her mother, is not really in the picture. Needless to say, a bit of boyfriend normalcy is needed. But then suddenly everything comes crashing down.

Lily is mortified when Tristan completely breaks her heart and when she hears a voice offering her respite from the pain, she accepts and wakes to find herself in a completely different place...a different world even! Yes, Josephine takes on alternate worlds with Trial by Fire! Lily finds herself in a completely different Salem.

It's hard to say what kind of time period they are in. It seems like it would be in the past what with the castles and all, but some events that have occurred in Lily's history, seem to have happened here too! And while this can be befuddling, not knowing what time or year we're in, it doesn't detract from the awesomeness of the story! Here there be witches and a kind of magic! It's truly remarkable the amount of world-building that Josie did here. There was some science thrown into the mix and as you might all know, that was my worst subject in school! So some of those moments went totally over my head when it started talking about physics and whatnot! Totally not my thing at all!

In this new Salem, Lily finds that she has a doppelganger, that nearly everyone she knew from her world is here in a sense. Her sister Juliet, her ex, Tristan, but then there are new people as well, such as Rowan. Lily is beyond confused with her new surroundings and doesn't understand why Lillian brought her there and really, it doesn't seem to get answered just yet. There's a lot of power plays going around this world and it's hard to know who to trust.

Rowan mistakes Lily for Lillian, as many will continue to do for awhile. You can definitely sense tension between Lily and Rowan and in part, it's due to his seeing Lillian in her. As time moves on however, we see a different side to Rowan. And shockingly, we also see that the Tristan in this world, is nothing like the Tristan in her world.

The pacing to this one was good. It moves a little slow in the sense that we don't understand why Lily is there. What's the point? And since she leaves Lillian so quickly, we don't get the answers we want. Plus, all the people here seem to have their own agenda and want to use Lily for their own purposes. So it's very hard in deciding who the bad guys are and who the good guys are. This leaves a lot of room for character development though and that kind of pushes the story forward in a different sense. We get to see Lily grow from being the timid, sick girl to someone who's stronger. Rowan who starts off a bit of an ass, grows on you and we learn why he is the way he is and even learn who he really is beneath the facade he shows the world.

There was a bit of romantic development going on as well, and thankfully it wasn't insta-love! It was definitely one that took a lot of growth and development too! And we don't full realize what it is just yet, another plus!

The ending...oh, Josie, how could you do that?! Yes, the ending is a bit of an evil little cliffhanger! I swear I think authors get a joy out of tormenting us readers! But all in good fun! The ending definitely leaves you wondering what is next for Lily and her friends. It's one that kind of in the thick of things and you're quite literally (but not exactly) hanging off a cliff wandering if you will fall or climb back up...or you know Superman comes flying by to save the day! It's totally up in the air! And ugh, the wait until next year for the next book will be killer!

Trial by Fire was a mindblowingly, awesome read and the characters were just fantastic! I am definitely eager for more!

Overall Rating 4.5/5 stars

Trial by Fire releases September 2, 2014


  1. I'm a bit of a sucker for alternate worlds!

  2. Yay alternate worlds but cliffhanger ending :(

  3. So glad you liked this one! I'm usually a fan of "world within a world" fantasies but I don't usually like alternate histories multiple timeline kind of stories. This one had me curious. Thanks for the review, considering putting it on my list now. Great review.
    Cassi @ My Thoughts Literally

  4. This book exploded in my Goodreads feed this week. Haha. Like many were reading it and a lot had it added to the TBR so I’m very intrigued and those who have read it all 5 stars. So I’ll definitely be checking it out b/c I’m curious. =)))

  5. I am such a fan of Josephine's. Her Star crossed series is FANTASTIC and one of my all time favorite series. I am fixing to reread them just to get me excited about this book coming out. I love her writing and attention to detail. I am so pumped for this book! Great review =)

  6. Yey, I really enjoyed this one too :D I kind of liked that the setting didn't match up with any particular time period since it made an interesting statement about how magic changed the pressure of technology ya know? Gah, I need book two!!

  7. I am starting this one today, I really liked her Starcrossed series so I am looking forward to starting this one!

    Kristin @ Young Adult Book Haven

  8. well crap evil cliffhangers are my arch nemesis. So note to self. Read this right before the second book comes out. I have to say I didn't add this to my TBR at first because I didn't like the cover much. I know bad reason right. The more I look at it the more it grows on me but something is still off. It almost looks too much like drawn art and made me think younger read. But I am going to give it a try because the more I hear about it the more awesome it sounds. great review.

  9. Read this one as well and had so many of the same thoughts! I like your point about the pacing. It was pretty slow due to our not figuring specifics out until late in the book. Totally agree about the ending. Talk about a crazy cliffhanger! Great way to get people to pick up the second book. :)


Comments are an award all on their own! So my blog is an award free one! Thanks for any consideration though!