Saturday, January 22, 2011

Review: White Heat - K. M. Grant

Synopsis: After escaping the pyre, Raimon has taken the Blue Flame with him into hiding deep within the mountains of the Occitan. Although he longs to follow Yolanda to Paris, where she has been sent to marry Sir Hugh, he must instead fulfill his duty of protecting the Blue Flame and save their beloved country from the advancing forces set on destroying it.

In Paris, Yolanda ignores Sir Hugh's attempts to win her heart, even though she believes Raimon is dead. But as his war train, backed by the French king, heads for the Occitan, she must find a new way to fight for both her country and her own future.

Review: Yes, I know - the cover is horrible, and those of you who know me are probably wondering why I read it. This is one of those cases where you cannot judge the book by its cover - it doesn't do the story justice at all. That said, let me move on to the book itself.

It has been a while since I have read the first book in the Perfect Fire Trilogy called Blue Flame, but even so the characters and events were all fresh enough in my mind to follow White Heat with ease. After all, Blue Flame had an ending that is bloody hard to forget. It took me a little while to get used to the idea once more that a country - the land Amouroix - is in fact the narrator of the story. I know how strange that must sound, but it isn't exactly a continuous narration. Every once in a while the Amorouoix pops smoothly in to reference itself in the first-person form, and then the rest feels like a third-person story. And yet somehow retains the feeling of a first-person narration. The style suits this trilogy perfectly.

It was easy to find characters to hate in Blue Flame. One of K. M. Grant's best writing talents - in my opinion - is being able to create characters that a Reader can so effectively hate. She did it with the De Granville Trilogy and How the Hangman Lost His Heart - if it can truly be said that there is an enemy in the latter. Never have I hated a character so much as the White Wolf - at least, it has been a long time since I have. And Sir Hugh I despised with almost equal violence. At least, in Blue Flame I did. But in White Heat, I couldn't help but feel a little sorry for Sir Hugh, and though I could certainly understand why Raimon hated him, I could also understand Yolanda's slight feeling of duty towards him. Normally I hate it when an Author takes an easy-to-hate character and transforms them into a pitiable, generally good-hearted person. Perhaps because it had been a while since I read Blue Flame that I found the transition so easy, or maybe even then I felt a little sorry for Sir Hugh. Either way, the transition worked.

White Heat's ending is not as climatic and breath-taking as Blue Flame's, but it is still very good, and I am glad that K. M. Grant did not attempt another ending like in the first installment. I look forward to reading Paradise Red. With former enemies now having to come together to protect the Flame and the Occitan, I believe that there will be some interesting occurrences.

Overall Rating: 

Others in the Perfect Fire Trilogy:
1)Blue Flame
2)White Heat
3)Paradise Red

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for visiting 667B Baker Street! Please feel free to leave a comment; I love hearing from my Readers and I always try to respond, especially if you have a question!