15 Dec 2019

Review: Dreams of Fire

★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆

From Goodreads:
Meet Kara Hartman, a young painter living and working in D.C. She would love to let you believe she is just an ordinary young woman with a dream of sharing her art with the world. But she is hiding an astonishing secret: Kara can wield magic, the most powerful force in the universe. Traumatized by the loss of her brother, she wants nothing more to do with magic. But when an old foe resurfaces, hellbent on destroying all that she loves, Kara has no choice but to embrace the only power that can stop her.

The beginning holds promise but ends up flat in the end.

The story is set mostly in DC and Canada where the world is quite like the one we live in right now. There's a little twist though, mystical creatures are roaming the land and some people possess powers like magic. The protagonist Kara Hartman is one of those people capable of wielding the powers, but she has chosen not to use them publicly ever again. A tragedy from her past has sent her into a new life-path, one a bit different, which she had originally set on.

The story is told from multiple perspectives, both present and past. The reader follows the present-day Kara as she goes through her day to day business and the life of a mystic training camp/prison in the Canadian wilderness. Then there's the backstory of how Kara lost her brother, got betrayed and made her hide her powers voluntarily.

The buildup for the final battle took too long in my opinion and because of it lost its effect as the main event in the book. One of the things that lead to me feeling like this, was the appearance of an unbelievable villain. A villain should have a motive for acting the way they are, but it seemed that there wasn't one. Just 'wanting to rule the world' doesn't give enough credibility for the villain.

Personally, I like books with a good narrative that keeps me interested and included in the book. If the voice is too passive or it just tells me what happens instead of showing, I lose interest in the story very quickly. And unfortunately, that's what happened quite quickly with this book.

Dreams of Fire might be a really good book for some, but for me, it felt a flat story about a woman who really didn't want to be herself.

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