Hello and welcome to my stop for “Bound by firelight” by Dana Swift book tour! A huge thank you to Tbr and beyond tours for this opportunity!
Thank you so much, NetGalley, Random House Children’s and Delacorte Press, for the chance to read and review this book in exchange of an honest review.
After the devastating magical eruption that devasted the kingdom of Belwar, royal heir Adraa is falsely accused and arrested. Sent to the Dome, the impenetrable fortress filled with criminal herself put there, Adraa will have to fight to prove her innocence and save her own life. On the other side, Jatin, the royal heir of Naupure and Adraa’s betrothed is willing to do anything to save Adraa, helped by friends and unexpected allies. But when Jatin and Adraa discover there’s a plan to destroy their kingdom, they will have to be ready for anything.
Bound by firelight starts right after the thrilling ending of Cast in firelight, in a Belwar where people are seeing Adraa as a monster, rioting and rallying against the royal family and where Vencrin and Bloodlurst are still major problems. The author expands the universe with the Dome’s introduction, a prison where the divide and power imbalances are strongly present and where Adraa finds herself in a complicated situation. Alone and without allies, or so she thought, Adraa is forced to do anything in her power to adapt to this new situation, trying to understand what happened at her trial and what is happening in this facility, between lies and manipulations, fights and tortures, deaths and unexpected allies.
Jatin finds himself without his partner and helped by Prisha, Riya, Hiren and Kalyan and by an ex classmate they start to concoct a plan to help Adraa escape from the prison, but nothing is what it seems and there’s more to the eye. The story is told by two POVs, Adraa’s and Jatin’s and I loved reading this book, because the author talked about brilliantly, about self-doubts, traumas, guilt, fears and what it means to have a voice, or not have one, to fight back, to be oneself and face the world, but also the importance of having a partner, to let others in and trusting them.
One of the most intense and lovely relationshis in this book is the one between Adraa and Jatin, who came a long way since the first book. Rivals, betrothed, allies, partners, I love their chemistry and how much they trust, help and support one other. Their relationship shines even more in this sequel, because, even among self-doubts about ruling countries and self-worths, they know they love each other and that their love is strong and it can face everything and that’s truly beautiful. Like in the first book, the author talks about addiction, torture and Bloodlurst, power imbalances and unfairness, mainly in the Dome as setting, a new and scary universe where the hierarchy is strong and built on violence and intimidation and where Adraa has to move and fight back.
I loved reading about the interactions between characters, new and old ones, in a romantical way or in parents/children or siblings one and I was really happy to see how the author addressed jealousy, love, family problems and doubts in this book. The characters’ growth is parallel to their fights against usurpers, violence, lies and manipulations and I really admire both Adraa and Jatin as characters. I was really happy to be able to read this book and I think it’s a brilliant sequel and a wonderful way to end this duology.
Between war, lies, violence, magic and self affirmation, this book is absolutely amazing. I loved the banter and the sweet moments, the intense and wild ride, the action and fights and I was so in love with everything. The ending is an open and hopeful one and I truly appreciated it, because it shows how much Adraa and Jatin have done and are still doing for their kingdoms, themself and each other, confident and powerful. I totally recommend it.
“Jatin will do anything for the people he loves. And he loves me.”
“No one can save me but myself.”
“In this world, I don’t need to throw myself away or hide behind a mask.”
“I like you well enough. Always. Thank you for liking all part of me.” Every part. Every version. Every facet of myself that got me here, that he helped shape. “I love you.”
And here you can find the tour schedule!