Review: Sisters of Fire by Kim Wilkins
Series: Blood and Gold #2
Also by this author: Daughters of the Storm
Published by Del Rey on January 8, 2019
Also in this series: Daughters of the Storm
In the next chapter of a fantasy series featuring five unforgettable sisters—the warrior, the magician, the lover, the zealot, and the gossip—an insidious threat jeopardizes a fragile peace.
Four years have passed since the five royal sisters—daughters of the king—worked together to restore their father to health and to the throne while fracturing the bonds among themselves almost irreparably. Only Bluebell remains at home, dutifully serving as heir to her father’s kingdom. Rose has been cast aside by her former husband and hides in exile with her aunt, separated forever from her beloved daughter, Rowan. Ash wanders the distant wastes with her teacher, learning magic and hunting dragons, determined that the dread fate she has foreseen for herself and her loved ones never comes to pass. Ivy rules over a prosperous seaport, married to an aged husband she hates yet finding delight in her two young sons and a handsome captain of the guard. And as for Willow, she hides the most dangerous secret of all—one that could destroy all that the sisters once sought to save.
The saga begins in . . .DAUGHTERS OF THE STORM
Sisters of Fire picks up 4 years after Daughters of the Storm left off. It has a good amount of action, plotting, scheming, betrayal, etc. Each of the sisters are on their own path. Bluebell is working with her father, the King, and continues to have quite the fearsome reputation as a warrior. Rose has been cast aside and banished by her husband and is raising her younger child in a remote area. Her daughter Rowan is also featured with her caretaker who have been living in an isolated wood. I really enjoy that pair of characters and enjoyed seeing Rowan grow her independent and motivated personality. Ivy is Duchess and her older husband is quite frail. She continues to have questionable judgement and can be a bit selfish/vain. Ash is travelling with a mysterious companion that seems a bit scary at times, but have been hunting for a dragon across the lands, each for their own reasons. And then there is Willow. Willow seems to have gone a bit off the rails with her zealotry and has taken the villain route with her life and training (not that she sees it that way, but villains rarely do). It’s an interesting mix of personalities and story lines.
The first book in this series was addictive right from the start. It was one of those books that I just had a very hard time putting down and tore through in a very short period of time. While I still enjoyed this one, I had a different reading experience from the first.
I do want to lead with the fact that at the end of the book, I am quite happy with the story that this book tells. There is a serious amount of action and events that take place. That said, it did not have quite the same addictive quality for me, except maybe right towards the end. The end of this book is quite climatic, so many things come together it feels like everything that happens is pivotal at that point. It was an exciting ending, enough so that I was tempted to bump up my rating by half a star, but ultimately decided that my impression for the first 75% of the book should not be dismissed, if I bumped it up to 4 stars, it would have the same rating as the first book and my reading experiences with the two, while both enjoyable, were not really quite the same.
In terms of the story progression, this is definitely a book 2 were things do happen. Sometimes those middle books can feel less eventful in terms of overall story progression. Definitely not the case here. Each of the 5 sisters have their own stories and settings (as well as Skalimar/Snowy and Rowan), and honestly, I think this might be part of what slowed the book down for me. I really feel like there were some pacing issues that resulted from all the perspective changes. Yes, multiple perspectives are often key in telling an epic fantasy story because it is such a good way to view multiple sides to the story, add complexity and build the world, etc. However, the way these five were told, it just seemed to cause the story to lose momentum for me. I also found myself way more invested in certain ones, which can also slow down my overall reading.
Overall, this was a fun read that is setting up for what I expect will be a very exciting book 3.