Thursday, July 7, 2016

ARC Review: Bright Smoke, Cold Fire by Rosamund Hodge

Title: Bright Smoke, Cold Fire
Author: Rosamund Hodge
Publication: September 27th 2016 by Balzer + Bray

Genre: Young Adult ~ Fantasy
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Google Play | Kobo
Rating: 3/5

Review copy received in exchange for an honest review.

When the mysterious fog of the Ruining crept over the world, the living died and the dead rose. Only the walled city of Viyara was left untouched.

The heirs of the city’s most powerful—and warring—families, Mahyanai Romeo and Juliet Catresou share a love deeper than duty, honor, even life itself. But the magic laid on Juliet at birth compels her to punish the enemies of her clan—and Romeo has just killed her cousin Tybalt. Which means he must die.

Paris Catresou has always wanted to serve his family by guarding Juliet. But when his ward tries to escape her fate, magic goes terribly wrong—killing her and leaving Paris bound to Romeo. If he wants to discover the truth of what happened, Paris must delve deep into the city, ally with his worst enemy . . . and perhaps turn against his own clan.

Mahyanai Runajo just wants to protect her city—but she’s the only one who believes it’s in peril. In her desperate hunt for information, she accidentally pulls Juliet from the mouth of death—and finds herself bound to the bitter, angry girl. Runajo quickly discovers Juliet might be the one person who can help her recover the secret to saving Viyara.

Both pairs will find friendship where they least expect it. Both will find that Viyara holds more secrets and dangers than anyone ever expected. And outside the walls, death is waiting. . . .

Inspired by Romeo and Juliet, Bright Smoke, Cold Fire is a darkly romantic and atmospheric fantasy from acclaimed author Rosamund Hodge. It will be released on September 27th, 2016.

Three stars might not seem like a very high rating for a Rosamund Hodge book from me considering I absolutely loved her previous books. I didn't hate Bright Smoke, Cold Fire but I can't help but feel slightly disappointed. It fell somewhere in the middle between good and bad for me.

Starting the book I was very confused because the world in it, though it was pretty brilliant, was quite a lot to take in. And it took me a while (at least 40-50% in the book) to really got what was going on. And I was also pretty disappinted with the writing. It just didn't feel as amazing as in the other books like Cruel Beauty.

The points of view were writting in Paris and Runajo's. I did like the friendship (not even sure I can call it that, maybe partnership?) that Paris formed with Romeo and Runajo with Juliet. I didn't care much for the chapters featuring Paris and Romeo. I just didn't like them as characters. I did, however, love Runajo and I eventually warmed up to Juliet also. Their connection and friendship (I'll just call it that) was pretty amazing as it grew.

I do want to give the author points for the complex and dark world she has created in this book. It was also a very original reimagining of Romeo and Juliet. And I do want to find out what happens next of course, even though it was not as great as I thought it would be. It's still a good enough YA fantasy, in my opinion.

       About the Author:

Rosamund Hodge grew up as a homeschooler in Los Angeles, where she spent her time reading everything she could lay hands on, but especially fantasy and mythology. She got a BA in English from the University of Dallas and an MSt in Medieval English from Oxford, and she now lives in Seattle with seven toy cats and a plush Cthulhu. Visit her on the web at


  1. Aah, I'm sad you didn't really like it. I was very excited about this one, because well.. ROSAMUND HODGE! Too bad. I will still read it, though. Her worlds are always worth visiting.

    1. I was really conflicted about this one. One the one hand it was not bad but on the other nowhere near as good as her previous books. But I hope you'll like it more!

  2. I didnt read her other books. So i have no idea how they are. Sad to hear you dont like this book as much as you would like

  3. I'm really curious about this one, but I'm hesitant because I DNF'ed Cruel Beauty so. :/


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