Monday, July 14, 2014

Review: Fireborn (Souls of Fire, #1)

Fireborn (Souls of Fire, #1)Author: Keri Arthur
Series: Souls of Fire, #1
Published: July 1st 2014
Publisher: Piatkus
Format: Paperback, 400 pgs
Source: Publisher for review
Buy: The Book Depository

From New York Times bestselling author Keri Arthur comes a brand-new series featuring heroine Emberly Pearson—a phoenix capable of taking on human form and cursed with the ability to foresee death....
Emberly has spent a good number of her many lives trying to save humans. So when her prophetic dreams reveal the death of Sam, a man she once loved, she does everything in her power to prevent it from happening. But in saving his life, she gets more than she bargained for.
Sam is working undercover for the Paranormal Investigations Team, and those who are trying to murder him are actually humans infected by a plaguelike virus, the Crimson Death—a by-product of a failed government experiment intended to identify the enzymes that make vampires immortal. Now all those infected must be eliminated.
But when Emberly’s boss is murdered and his irreplaceable research stolen, she needs to find the guilty party before she goes down in flames....
Fireborn is not my first book by Keri Arthur, but it’s the first one I truly liked. It’s neither paranormal romance nor urban fantasy in their purest form, but a successful blend of the two, with strong UF elements and plenty of romantic interests.

Emberly Pearson, our heroine, is a phoenix, which is certainly new and interesting in both these genres. She is basically immortal. She burns once every century and is reborn from the ashes, free to continue her existence any way she pleases. With each new rebirth she is destined to fall in love just once, but never with Rory, another phoenix and her counterpart, who keeps her grounded and alive.

The thing with me, however, is that I’m a one-man-one-woman kinda gal. I don’t do love triangles, squares or any other shapes or forms, I don’t do multiple love interests and I most definitely don’t deal well with jealousy. It is, therefore, too bad that I constantly get jealous on behalf of my characters. So when my heroine has one counterpart she doesn’t love romantically but has to have sex with in order to survive, one lost-but-never-forgotten love who abandoned her because of said counterpart and one hot, practically irresistible silver-tongued fae vying for her attention, I’m bound to get more than a little uncomfortable. But that’s just me.

The urban fantasy elements however, are very well done, and the plot is extremely tight. Keri Arthur is a seasoned author, and her vast experience shines from every page. She never once loses control of her many characters or her plot and she knows exactly how to steer the reader through her rich and complicated world.

And let me tell you, with vampires and werewolves out in the open and plenty other creatures still hidden from the world, Arthur had a lot to keep track of and it’s very fortunate that she was up to the task. I loved seeing this dark side of Melbourne and I’ll enjoy going back to it every single time. I just hope the romance will be more focused in future installments.

A copy of this book was kindly provided by the publisher for review purposes. No considerations, monetary or otherwise, have influenced the opinions expressed in this review.


  1. Everything sounds fantastic and right up my alley except for the romance... I still think I'll probably give this one a try cause phoenixes? Really that's super unique! But more than one love interest... not in the right emotional place for that, and since I don't usually like it, now even less! I'll add it to the TBR for future reading!
    Great review, Maja!

  2. I'm not for love triangles either, Maja, so I doubt I'd be comfortable with the romance elements in this one. While I love the concept of a phoenix heroine and the blend of PNR and UF is one I enjoy, I'm going to have to push this to the back burner unless I receive confirmation it isn't a love triangle, square, or shape of any sort. Lovely review, dear, and thanks for introducing this one to my radar!

  3. Maja, it's so good to see a review from you after such a long time. :) I hope you're doing well. I know you mentioned not being too well a couple of months ago.

    Anyways, I like the idea that she's a phoenix. It's definitely something new in the genre. I do think I wouldn't appreciate the romance one bit. I'm just like you when it comes to these kinds of thing. Your description of it left me feeling very confused and I'm typically not a fan of those kinds of romances. I do love the sound of the world building. I'm glad you could find a book by the author you enjoyed, Maja.
    Lovely review!

  4. I've read a couple Arthurs' and liked but not loved them (writing was good but I wasn't invested in the stories) -- I actually passed on this one because I wasn't the biggest fan but it's good to hear that the story shines in this one!

  5. Not another love triangle! Either way though, I am really interested in this book. I have seen some pretty good reviews on it including yours. It sounds unique and like the series has potential.

    It is so nice to see you Maja, I have missed you!!

  6. Hm... I have a love/hate relationship with her books. There are parts to her books I really enjoy and those that either just don't seem to fit or are forced into the storyline. The "must have sex or die" issue sounds like a forced part. Still, glad you enjoyed this one. I will probably read it because it seems you have the same issues as I do with her work and still enjoyed this one.

  7. It does sound good. I tried something by her and was not a fan. But second chances are always nice

  8. A phoenix?! Well, that's something I don't read everyday. I don't do love triangles as well except for a few exceptional books and it's disappointing that this book has this. However, I am glad that the book shines and is stronger in other aspects. Lovely review, Maja! :)

  9. I confess that I'm quite curious about this one. I love Keri Arthur and I want to try this new book, I heard great things about it.

  10. Who doesn't like a love triangle :P all though this more of a lust/need/love triangle ... gets tricky! Check out my blog and like my facebook page :D

  11. Yeah I'm not so sure about the romance. I have read some of her other books and liked them fairly well but didn't LOVE them. I think I'll skip this for now but I'm glad you enjoyed it pretty well.

  12. Ok, first. That woman on the cover, at a quick glace reminds me of Jean Grey from the X-men movies. Famke Janssen. Thanks for sharing.

  13. I really enjoyed Fireborn. I couldn't resist picking this up since it's a brand new series to check out. Normally, I like my couples, well ... couples. LOL. But, I think this works (not necessary needed though) due to the very nature of Emberly being a Phoenix. I agree that the urban fantasy elements well done. I'm excited to see where this series goes and what's up with Sam and the Red Cloaks?! Wonderful review, Maja.

  14. very nice


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