Wildefire by: Karsten Knight
Release Date: July 26, 2011
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
The Story: Every flame begins with a spark.
Ashline Wilde is having a rough sophomore year. She’s struggling to find her place as the only Polynesian girl in school, her boyfriend just cheated on her, and now her runaway sister, Eve, has decided to barge back into her life. When Eve’s violent behavior escalates and she does the unthinkable, Ash transfers to a remote private school nestled in California’s redwoods, hoping to put the tragedy behind her. But her fresh start at Blackwood Academy doesn’t go as planned. Just as Ash is beginning to enjoy the perks of her new school—being captain of the tennis team, a steamy romance with a hot, local park ranger—Ash discovers that a group of gods and goddesses have mysteriously enrolled at Blackwood…and she’s one of them. To make matters worse, Eve has resurfaced to haunt Ash, and she’s got some strange abilities of her own. With a war between the gods looming over campus, Ash must master the new fire smoldering within before she clashes with her sister one more time… And when warm and cold fronts collide, there’s guaranteed to be a storm.
My Review: Yes, I fully realize that my dear cousin, Cindy, has reviewed this book already. But that is ok. Sometimes a "second opinion" is what the doctor orders, and this is certainly the case with Wildefire by Karsten Knight. You see, Cindy and I often differ a great deal in our likes when it comes to books. We have had some serious debates on the "merits" and/or "faults" of books, and often end up agreeing to disagree.
So, let's discuss Wildefire. I think it is best if I do this in a pro/con format. Let's start with the pros:
1. Karsten Knight is a literary genius- every sentence is wonderfully crafted. I was impressed by the way the story flowed (even the interludes). Knight's writing is well formatted, descriptive, and action-packed. Very nearly flawless.
2. The characters are well developed- each and every character seems so real. It is amazing. I became very interested in what would happen to these characters.
3. The plot is phenomenal- action, action, and more action. But in between there's love interest, teen angst, and some interesting twists and turns.
4. Wildefire includes fascinating mythologies- yes, mythologies, plural, as in, more than one. (As the resident mythology lover at BCM, is it really a surprise that this would be a big plus for me?) I'm not talking just classical Greek here, Knight incorporates Norse, Polynesian, Hopi, and several others. But before your eyes glass over at the thoughts of complex mythology in a YA novel- its actually very skillfully done. Not boring at all. Knight gives the information you need to know, when you need to know it, and without a ton of needless detail. Interesting without being a mythology lesson.
5. I read this book in a matter of hours. It is 393 pages of pure enjoyment. I could not stop reading once I started. Which is a good sign (more and more these days, if I stop reading, I don't pick it back up, I simply do not have the time... or the patience).
Now, believe it or not, there are some cons.
1. The book ended. I admit it: I was royally ticked off when I reached the end of this book. Oh, the ending is fabulous, but when I reached the last page, it dawned on me that I will have to wait who knows how long for Knight to get his
@%$*...er, stuff together and give us another book. Like I said, I'm not a patient person. Get a move on, Karsten!
5. Yea, that's all I've got for the cons.
So, now for my rating. Occasionally, doctors (and reviewers) agree with each other. In rare times, when the planets are aligned just right, my cousin and I agree that a book is really great. This is one of those rare moments when I concur with Cindy's assessment. You WANT to READ THIS BOOK!!!