Boy, oh boy, was this a treasure.
This review is going to be short and snappy—unlike this mega-book—because I'd love to gear up some 'best of 2023' posts soon!
Fourth Wing and Iron Flame by Rebecca Yarros are what I needed for my brain to really settle into holiday mode. I started it while camping and was even distracted from this beautiful view by the DRAMA of this story.
I went into the sequel expecting to be a little disappointed. I jumped on the bandwagon late (but enthusiastic), and was confident that nothing could measure up.
I was so wrong.
I reckon this one was better, in my humble opinion. The stakes were higher, the characters more believable, the friendships stronger, the action more exciting. The dragons, though, were just as cool.
This photo is of Iron Flame, held by Maddy, in front of a beautiful view of the ocean at Kilcunda, Australia. Image: Madeleine Corbel, 2023.
This is another series of books that convinced me that reading 'trashy' or 'mainstream' stories are always worth doing, if that's something you enjoy. We're surrounded by people and readers who tell us to nourish our brains with 'worthwhile' stories that reflect profound meaning—that if it doesn't hurt our heads to decode the sentence, it's not really 'reading'.
Though there is (of course!) value in those beautifully crafted books with perfect on-the-line execution and memorable themes, there is also value in the books that we whiz through. The pages burn hot as your eyes work twice as hard, and you almost rip the pages out as you go.
(Don't worry, that's complete exaggeration—no books were harmed in the making of this post.)
This series sparked my love of reading again, and set me up to have a wholly enjoyable break from literary stories. Though I love them, and there will always be a place for them in my heart, and I will go into 2024 excited to read some majorly brilliant new works of literary fiction and non-fiction, there's just nothing like being transported so completely by an action-packed fantasy.
Never let anyone dictate how you feel about your reading habits. If Iron Flame is the key to getting me reading for joy again, I won't complain!
As always, thanks a bunch for reading with me.