Genre: YA fantasy
Publication date: February 25th, 2014
Publisher: Scholastic Press
A modern day thrill ride, where a teen girl and her animal companion must participate in a breathtaking race to save her brother's life—and her own.
Tella Holloway is losing it. Her brother is sick, and when a dozen doctors can't determine what's wrong, her parents decide to move to Montana for the fresh air. She's lost her friends, her parents are driving her crazy, her brother is dying—and she's helpless to change anything.
Until she receives mysterious instructions on how to become a Contender in the Brimstone Bleed. It's an epic race across jungle, desert, ocean, and mountain that could win her the prize she desperately desires: the Cure for her brother's illness. But all the Contenders are after the Cure for people they love, and there's no guarantee that Tella (or any of them) will survive the race.
The jungle is terrifying, the clock is ticking, and Tella knows she can't trust the allies she makes. And one big question emerges: Why have so many fallen sick in the first place?
Victoria Scott has done it again! She has started another great series starter with really good ideas, characters, and themes.
What I love about Scott's work is that I can both have fun and find good themes/focuses as I'm reading. In The Collector, I saw a big focus on beauty that I really loved, but in Fire & Flood, I saw desperation. The book demonstrated how desperation can strip away sympathy and consideration for those around us—both human and animal. A lot of people were desperate to win the Brimstone Bleed, to come out first and win that cure, that they did things that they probably would never have considered in the past. Whenever I can pinpoint a theme or focus like this while I'm reading a book, I just enjoy it more.
TELLA & CO.
Tella was NORMAL. Completely and totally normal, which made the book all the more enjoyable. She wasn't extra special and she didn't have a "one of a kind" ability. She was portrayed to be more kind and sympathetic than others, but that still didn't make her seem abnormal (like a lot of heroines are).
As for the other characters, there were a variety of them. There were a lot of side characters, but they seemed easily distinguishable from one another. Also, quite a few of them surprised me—I didn't fully expect some of their actions.
Guy was mysterious. Very mysterious. I really, really liked him, and I'm definitely looking forward to more of him in the sequel.
Pandoras are awesome. That is all.
Actually, no. I do have a couple more things to add. I loved the Brimstone Bleed. It was something different. There was a good background to it—the author did a great job setting it up and giving it history as to why the race was being held. I loved the pieces that went with the race: the pandoras, the cure, the twists, the settings. I also loved the the events and surprises that occurred during the race.
One more thing: Max was awesomely adorable. You may want one of him after reading this book.
Great book. The author did a really good job with this one. It was an entertaining read with cool and interesting concepts and ideas, as well as great characters and super awesome pandoras. I definitely recommend picking this one up!
My question for you:
Do you like the idea of a normal, non-one-of-a-kind heroine?