Series: The Worldwalker Trilogy #2
Published by Macmillan Children's Books on August 27, 2015
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, Science Fiction
Amazon | Book Depository | Publisher | Angus & Robertson
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Lily Proctor has made it back to her own universe, and it's finally time for her and Rowan to be happy and relax. True, she almost died in the Pyre that fueled their escape, and they must hide her new magic for the safety of the world, but compared to fighting the monstrous Woven and leading armies in the alternate Salem, life is looking good.
'You think I'm a monster, but my choices, as ruthless as they seem, are justified.'
Unfortunately, Lillian, ruthless ruler of the 13 Cities, is not willing to let Lily go that easily. Lily is the closest version of herself she's ever seen in all her worldwalking, and Lillian's running out of time. If she can't persuade Lily and Rowan to return to her world, she'll have to find a way to make them come back.
Firewalker - the follow-up to Trial By Fire - is another sexy, fast-paced thrill ride from internationally bestselling author of the Starcrossed series, Josephine Angelini!
I love the blend of witches and alternate dimensions in this series, but Firewalker wasn’t as good as the first book. A few scenes had me suspending my disbelief and the whole book lacked emotional connection.
Connecting to the main character is a major part of enjoying a book, and even in the second book, I still couldn’t connect to Lily. She has Lillian, her evil alternate self inside her head, talking to her and showing her memories in an attempt to justify her evil decisions. Lillian is evil, she kills without a second thought, and wants to manipulate Lily in coming back to her world. But instead of confiding in the people who care about her, Lily keeps it a secret. And this leads to the drama in the book, especially when it comes to Rowan.
Love is being willing to become the villain so that the one you love can stay a hero.
Although Lily is a powerful witch, she still needs a knight in shining armour, whether that’s Rowan, her best friend Tristan, or her coven who can look out for her. That’s something I admired Lillian for, as evil as she was, at least she was strong, fearsome and could lead. Lily has a long way to go before she can be a worthwhile opponent, because of her extreme dependency on others. She’s still a rather passive character and her character growth is very slow.
The romance was a major part of the book, and many of the problems between Rowan and Lily could have been solved with open communication. For most of the book, they are really sappy, avoiding the problems that matter, but I just wanted them to be open with each other. Rowan came from an alternate world where he was in love with Lillian, until she turned evil and killed his father. So it’s kind of weird how he justifies his love for Lily, in that “maybe I always loved the Lily in Lillian”. Because although you’re the same person but in a different world, it’s the choices that really make you who you are. I also wasn’t a fan of Tristan’s intense jealousy over Lily and Rowan. D-r-a-m-a.
“While my life was perfect, every person who I owed that life to would be fighting and dying.”
Some of the scenes weren’t believable, particularly where Breakfast, Una, Tristan and Juliet easily accepted Lily and Rowan’s explanation. Imagine if someone walked up to you and said “I’m a powerful witch, and my friend here is from an alternate dimension. Want to join us?” My immediate reaction would be disbelief and I’d think it was a joke. But nope, these guys just went along with it, it felt way too easy, and the explanation here is purely because they “felt drawn to the willstones”.
Another scene is where one of Lily’s family members is killed, and there is absolutely NO emotional reaction whatsoever. Lily or her sister didn’t react. I felt nothing. She didn’t even check in with the rest of her family to make sure they were okay.
Despite all this, I enjoyed the world building with the alternate dimensions of different extremes based on ruling ideologies – one with an extreme dictatorship, one as a ruined wasteland. There was more development of the willstones, where they’re like an extension of one’s Will and entrusting a witch with it is like the ultimate trust. I also enjoyed contrasting ‘present’ world with the fantasy one, and bringing across the coven from one world to the next. The secondary characters were also enjoyable, although I didn’t get to connect to them very deeply.
The lack of emotional connection, scenes that made me suspend my disbelief, and the romantic drama in Firewalker affected my enjoyment of the book. This sequel wasn’t as good as the first, but I did like the unique premise and the deep world building. I’ll still continue with the series, but I’m definitely less excited about it than I was.
Rating: 3 out of 5
This is a weird cover, I mean why is the tagline so big and the title so small? Not a fan of the cover redesign!
Thanks to Pan Macmillan Australia for sending me this review copy.
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