Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Date: July 26, 2010
Format: Hardcover, 400 pages
Read the first chapter here!
First line: Ashline Wilde was a human mood ring.
1. The mythology/story. Forget about Greek gods---Polynesian volcano gods is about to be the new rage. After what Karsten Knight did with this story, people are definitely going to be interested. In fact, there are more than Polyensian gods in the story. There are many different types, each unique to a certain character, and each equipped with a backstory and lots of intrigue. The mythology throughout is really intriguing, and I can't wait for more in #2. The story really centers around this mystery (the mystery of these teens and the strange things happening in their lives) and what will happen to them now that they know just who and what they are. Ashline is the main character, so hers is the story we follow closest. Hers is also the one that keeps you on your toes.
2. The characters. Every person in this book is so well-rounded and filled with intrigue. They all have their own stories and their own history. Let's start with the MC.
- Ashline Wilde. Her name alone promises that she's going to be awesome. And she is. She's a fresh protagonist. She's angry and clever and as soon as the story starts, we're tossed into her world with no chance of escape. This never changes. She's always smart, always snarky and always trying to figure out something bigger--even when she doesn't know what it is.
- Eve Wilde. Eve is the wayward sister of Ash. She's completely off her rocker. All sorts of crazysauce. BUT, I liked her. Why did I like her? Am I a fan of loonies? Am I a fan of girls who do the things Eve did? Apparently. Because behind all her talk, all her bad-ness, all her trickery--I liked her. She's a girl who simply wants to know who she is and what she can be. No one can blame her for that. (Well, they can but everyone can relate.)
- Colt. Steamy, steamy boy. Girls will love him because--surprise!--Karsten Knight is pretty good at the kissy-kissy, heart-flutter romance scenes. For me, I liked him because he and Ash had this really awesome banter. I'm a big fan of banter. And he had to work for a date, like really work for it, which is quite refreshing. And did I mention the banter?
- There are MANY other great secondary characters in the story. Raja. Rolfe. Serena. Ade. Lily. Headmistress Riley. I loved them all for so many reasons. I won't tell you any of those reasons, though. You'll just have to read it. There are even characters in a bar, characters who don't really even matter much, but I think they really added to the story.
3. The writing. The book is full of funny dialogue, one-liners and lots of sarcasm. It's done so it's not an overtly "funny book" but the humor and sarcasm really add to it. I laughed quite a bit, which is refreshing. The writing is crisp and something I can't really explain to you. I knew from the first page that the style was like nothing I've ever read before and I liked that. There's even this really awesome part where the third person narrative turns into...well...something else. (I don't want to say and ruin the surprise!) but it's freaking flawless. That pretty much made the book for me.
4. The pacing. Wildefire is a long book. There are very long chapters. I feel like you should know that because so often we read books thinking we'll only read a chapter. This is a trap Knight catches you in every single time. I say this because when I look at a long book, I wonder how much of it I don't really need to know. This never happened in Wildefire. The pacing in this book is solid and it really keeps the suspense going throughout the book. You'll be reading and reading and wondering what's really going on. And Knight doesn't let you know until the very end. It's evil of him, but it's so fantastic. There isn't much foreshadowing (so you definitely can't predict the ending!) and he really uses the time to develop these character relationships. It's all so important. So important. And you don't know how or why until the end. That is hard to do.
5. The ending! Wow. WHAT AN ENDING. I obviously can't say anything about it. It's half the reason I didn't write a proper review, but if you read this book for none of these other reasons, read it for the ending.
Of course, then you'd be confused. So you should just read the whole thing and marvel at the ending.
AND HEY YOU PEOPLE WHO READ THE END FIRST....don't do it. Do not do it. It will ruin everything. I'm not judging you--I am someone who struggles to not read the end first--but I promise, it's worth the wait.
In summation: Wildefire is hot for many reasons. You should go order it!