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Trial by Fire (Worldwalker Trilogy) Hardcover – 2 Sep 2014

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Josephine Angelini was born and grew up in Massachusetts. A real-live farmer's daughter, she is the youngest of eight siblings. Josie graduated from New York University's Tisch School of the Arts in theatre, with a focus on the classics. She now lives in Los Angeles with her screenwriter husband . . . and she can still drive a tractor.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 69 reviews
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Witches like you have never seen them before! 8 Sep 2014
By Michelle@Book Briefs - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
Trial by Fire is a book filled with so many awesome elements. Not only are the characters fantastic, but the plot is original and the concept is thought provoking and utterly cool! It reminded me on an episode of the Big Bang theory where Sheldon is talking about an infinite number of universes and an Infinite number of different Sheldons. That is the world you get introduced to in Trial by Fire. Lily Proctor is in our world, and then she isn’t. She is taken to a different world where a bunch of people are familiar to her, but everything else is so very different. Magic exists and witches rule. But that is only the beginning. Josephine Angelini does an incredible job of blending science with magic. These are witches, or crucibles as they are called, like I have never seen them before. I love that their magic stems from converting elements and substances that they take in from their surroundings.

The book starts out in our world, but Lily quickly leaves and the rest of the novel takes place in Lillian’s world. Some of the characters up front confused me. I have no idea why Lily had a crush on her world’s Tristan. I know they were best friends, but I didn’t even get the vibe that he was a very good friend. He just seemed like a royal jerk. And the other character that confused me was Lillian. I know she is painted to be this power hungry killing machine, big bad villain. I do get why people would think that, she was hanging everyone in sight. But from her passages and her interactions with Lily, I just didn’t get a completely evil vibe from her. I know she is holding back a lot of information, and a small part of me wants it to be a great justification so I don’t have to dislike her. Because I don’t hate her yet. I can’t wait to find out more about her character in the next book. I just have a feeling it is going to be something good. But I will hate her in a second if she tries to encroach on Rowan! (just sayin’)

I got really into the story. All of it. I loved the willstones, and I was just as fascinated by the whole relationship between magic and science as she was. I liked Rowan so much, but I don’t blame Lily for being confused by him. He didn’t give her too much to go on. I wanted to get inside his head a little more. But really, the whole cast of characters was great. There is so much action and detail going on in this story that you will never be bored. Trial by Fire is one of those books, where you get mad at the world for sending real life interruptions to your reading. I didn’t want to put it down.

The cliffhanger at the end of this one left me cursing the fact that I have to wait so long for the next book. I am on the edge of my seat with this one. There are so many things that Josephine Angelini can do with the next book, and I can’t wait to see what direction she takes the story in. I have tons of questions that I can’t wait to delve into when the world walking really comes into play. This is a great one for fans of paranormal and witches. Trial by Fire is a riveting read that is delightfully original.

*Disclaimer- I got a copy of this book for free in exchange for my honest review. I was not compensated for my thoughts.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Breathtaking Read 19 Sep 2014
By Book Flame - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Oh gosh I loved Trial by Fire so much there was parallel universes, a mixture of medieval with modern times, magic and science and it seems like a lot and trust me it was a lot of information to take in but very thought provoking and not a dull moment once during the entire book.

Lily was a fantastic character. She was a very hard individual to sway she believed what she believed and stuck to it. Lily was strong and at times a little hasty with some of her decisions that put her in very dangerous situations but even then she fought hard and I loved her for it. I really enjoyed who she became once she left the world we live in where she was weak and fragile and went to the alternate version where magic is the key to everything not science, it was interesting how everything that made her weak in our world made her incredibly powerful in the other version.

Most of the story is told in Lily's point of view but every once in a while we get point of views from other key characters that help us learn more about the alternate world she is thrown into. I especially like the point of view from the other version of her (Lillian) which helped develop her character to where she wasn't just one dimensional.

Another character whom I loved so much was Rowan. Lily doesn't have a Rowan in her world but there is one in this one and he is just perfect. He has flaws and a very broken past and I don't know he is just one of those characters you have to meet to know why he is just so freaking perfect. We also meet the other version of Tristan who was very likable too bad Lily's Tristan was an ass which is why I am interested to see how thing play out with the Tristan in her world.I am really hoping there will be no love triangle I mean when you have Rowan why the heck would you even want Tristan who has already screwed up royally.

Overall this was an excellent read and with that cliffhanger I am going to be anxiously waiting for the next book.

Memorable Quotes:~"Because you can't run from yourself forever."

~"All I know is that you cut off all my hair and dyed it who-knows-what-color, and you used your pee to do it."

~"I don't think you could be considered ordinary in any world."
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Review for Trial by Fire by Josephine Angelini 2 Sep 2014
By Alyssa - Published on
Format: Hardcover
***Review posted on The Eater of Books! blog***

Trial by Fire by Josephine Angelini
Book One of The Worldwalker Trilogy
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Publication Date: September 2, 2014
Rating: 4 stars
Source: ARC sent by the publisher

Summary (from Goodreads):

Love burns. Worlds collide. Magic reigns.

This world is trying to kill Lily Proctor. Her life-threatening allergies keep her from enjoying many of the experiences that other teenagers take for granted...which is why she is determined to enjoy her first (and perhaps only) high-school party. But Lily's life never goes according to plan, and after a humiliating incident in front of half her graduating class Lily wishes she could just disappear.

Suddenly Lily is in a different Salem - one overrun with horrifying creatures and ruled by powerful women called Crucibles. Strongest and cruellest of all the Crucibles is Lillian . . . Lily's identical other self in this alternate universe. This new version of her world is terrifyingly sensual, and Lily is soon overwhelmed by new experiences.

Lily realizes that what makes her weak at home is exactly what makes her extraordinary in New Salem. It also puts her life in danger. Thrown into a world she doesn't understand, Lily is torn between responsibilities she can't hope to shoulder alone, and a love she never expected.

But how can Lily be the savior of this world when she is literally her own worst enemy?

What I Liked:

Holy smokes, I did not expect to like this book so much. I know that sounds bad, but I didn't *love* Angelini's debut series. I didn't hate it or anything, but it wasn't really a series I enjoyed. I did love the Greek mythology foundation though. Anyway, I really liked the sound of this book. Witches? I know, I usually don't like the sound of this book. But I don't mind being proven wrong, when it comes to books. And hey, this witch book turned out to be EPIC! And AWESOME!

Lily has a rough life - she's allergic to basically everything, which is a problem, because no one wants to hang out with the sick girl. I mean, dang, you can't even wear hairspray around her. Poor Lily! When her best friend and longtime crush, Tristan, finally wakes up and notices her, she can't not go to the party with him. But at the party, she is humiliated, and suddenly... she's not in her Salem anymore. She's pulled into an alternate Salem, in which she meets an exact copy of her. The thing is, Lillian is a powerful witch in this world, and she is evil. Everyone thinks Lily is Lillian, and wants to kill Lily. But Lily must trust Rowan, Lillian's ex-mechanic, and a few other mechanics, in order to survive, and defeat Lillian.

Okay, for some reason, I thought this book was completely historical fiction. Like, set in the time of the Salem Witch Trials, etc. That's not the case. This book starts out in the modern world, in which Lily is with her best friend/crush Tristan. But then Lily is transported to a world similar to that of what we readers know as the Salem witch trials. That world definitely has a historic feel to it, but everything is highly paranormal. Witches and crucibles are in abundance, as is magic.

I LOVE the worldbuilding in this book. Angelini does an amazing job of crafting the world of Salem (both of them), and developing the magic. The willstones is such a cool touch, and all of its properties and restrictions and powers. The witches of Angelini's Salem are different from your typical witch. These witches were crucibles once (not as powerful). They can control mechanics and people with willstones, if the person willingly lets the witch tough the person's willstone. But if you touch a person's willstone without their explicit permission, that's some serious pain coming your way. I LOVE how Angelini takes the time and effort and page space to detail little things, like the Woven or the willstones or the mindspeaking. Of course, all of these things are really big things, but at the foundation level, Angelini does a beautiful job of creating the magic and world from the ground up.

I really liked Lily. She's sooo stubborn, but also very kind and compassionate. It's so obvious that she's not Lillian. Lily is very forthcoming with her expressions, emotions, and thoughts. She doesn't want to deceive or lie, and she's also pretty selfless. It's hard not to like her. Everyone wants to use her or kill her, but she always seems to want to do what is best for everyone.

At first, it seems like Rowan totally hates her. And that makes sense, right? Because Rowan really does not like Lillian, that's for sure. Rowan is convinced that Lily is Lillian, just manipulating Rowan for her own causes. That's not true, and Tristan (THIS world's Tristan) sees this. Rowan is hard-headed and stubborn like Lily, but he acknowledges his mistakes.

I think I really, really like Rowan. He might actually be one of my favorite male protagonists of the year, so far. There is something noble and legitimately powerful about him. He's not necessarily a good guy - for a good portion of the book, he acts like he wants to kill Lily - but he's not a forced typical "bad boy". I really felt for him, as the book went on. It was painfully obvious to me that he loved Lillian, and fell in love with Lily, and he knew how much it would break him if Lily stepped on his heart like Lillian did.

So... that being said, I really liked Rowan. And Lily. And Rowan and Lily together. The romance is really, really breathtaking in this book. I absolutely loved reading the scenes between Rowan and Lily. If it was just the two of them, or them surrounded by others, or with Caleb and Tristan, it didn't matter. Every scene seemed to make my heart flutter a little, for Rowan and Lily. They're such a dynamic and passionate and beautiful couple. I could re-read this book just to read the scenes with them together, over and over. Even the ones when Rowan didn't believe Lily wasn't Lillian - even then, I felt the chemistry. Gahhh!

This book is written in third person. Now, I know that many people do not like third person narratives. I don't understand why not, because third person allows you to see things from an infinite amount of perspectives, if the author chose to do that. In this book, we get third-person perspectives from Lily, Juliet, and Gideon. I won't say who Gideon is, but Juliet is Lily/Lillian's sister. The book isn't necessarily divided between the three of them, but we see each of these three's perspective on things from time and again. This is good, because we get to see things from Lily, the female protagonist, from Juliet, a crucial supporting character, and from Gideon, a villain of a sort. We get to know inside the head of all three of these people, without each narrative being in the first person. I like this! And Angelini does an excellent job with the third-person narratives, in my opinion.

At first, Lily is being dragged around by Rowan and company (Tristan and Caleb), as a prisoner. But then it becomes obvious that Lily must be introduced to magic, and trained. Soon, Lily has willstones of her own, and she claims some people. Lily uses her power to help others, like cleansing water or burning out fevers. But then she must use it against Lillian. A lot of this book was spent with Lily developing her magical abilities. The climax isn't Lillian against Lily, but it's an intense climax. The ending is... well, a very Angelini ending, even for a first book in a new series. Basically, I need book two now!

What I Did Not Like:

Just two things bothered me slightly. For one, we never really got a good explanation about Lily's allergies. Why is she allergic to like, everything, in her world. She's still not exactly healthy in the other Salem. And how do Lily's allergies make her powerful, in the other Salem? I didn't really understand that as well. Maybe I missed something?

And I mentioned the climax - it wasn't a showdown, of Lillian versus Lily. Somehow, I kind of expected that it wouldn't be, but the book and characters keep building up this fight between Lily and Lillian. I expected Lily to at least confront Lillian directly in this book. I expected to know a little bit more about what Lillian is doing and why. This book is written in third person, so that was a possible thing to happen. Why not?!

Would I Recommend It:

I would definitely recommend this book, especially to paranormal readers. Witches aren't really my thing, but Angelini's take on witches is awesome! And if you like a really good romance, this book is for you! And if you like Angelini's books in general, then you won't be disappointed. Lots of good reasons to read this book! The pretty cover is my last good reason... but it's a good one! A fitting cover, it matches well with the story!


4 stars. I really, really enjoyed this book, which is awesome! I'm sooo excited to read the second book - where is it?! I need it!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
An exciting new series 3 Sep 2014
By Kathy @ My Nook, Books & More - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
**4.5 STARS**

Trial by Fire caught my eye because of the book cover. My first impression was that this was going to be a book with a strong heroine and I am happy to say I was right. I was so surprised with this story that I couldn’t put it down.

Trial by Fire is about Lily Proctor, a teenager in Salem that is suffering from life-threatening allergies. But after an embarrassing and heartbreaking event with Tristan, her best friend and longtime crush, she wishes she could disappear. And her wish comes true by being transported to an alternate universe.

In this alternate universe Lily meets her doppelganger, Lillian, who is a cruel leader. She also meets doppelgangers of Juliet, her sister, and Tristan. Stories about alternate universes can be tricky and sometimes confusing. So in the beginning of Trial by Fire it was hard to keep the doppelgangers straight. But after reading more of the story I became comfortable with the different characters. I really liked the heroine Lily. Even though she was always sick in her universe she was determined to not have that stop her. She wanted to enjoy life while she can instead of getting pity from everyone. Once she enters the alternate universe she has less allergy reactions and becomes stronger. Lily’s main focus is on getting back home but when she meets Rowan Fall her plans change. Rowan Fall is a great character. He starts out as a mysterious and mean character. But as the story progresses we learn his backstory and get a better understanding of him. I really liked how the author developed this character and his relationship with Lily. It slowly built from dislike and mistrust to admiration and hopefully to something more.

This is my first time reading from author Josephine Angelini and I was really impressed with her creativity. I liked the worldbuilding in this book. Even though Lily jumps into a different universe it was nice to have there be similarities between the worlds. I think this was smart of the author so that readers wouldn’t be so confused. Since Lily is unfamiliar with her surroundings there was a lot of scientific facts in her conversations with other characters. This was interesting but I think some of it made the story drag in some parts. But overall I thought the pace of the story was good and that cliffhanger at the end was so surprising. I can’t wait to read the next book!!

Trial by Fire is an exciting adventure that I think all fantasy fans should read.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Disappointing. 24 Sep 2014
By Ari - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
Terrible. Completely terrible for a number of reasons.

I actually really liked the Starcrossed series. I thought Helen and Lucas were engaging, and had good chemistry. Lily and Rowan- not so much. Lily was terrible, for starters. When I read the book, I kept wanting her to be a Kaitlyn Fairchild type character (old school L.J. Smith character from Dark Visions trilogy), but instead she was Meghan Chase from Iron fey. Whiny, annoying and missing the obvious everywhere she went. Rowan wasn't as bad, but that was only because he was bland. There wasn't really much to him. A major thing that bothered me was the interaction between them. They would be having a slight disagreeing (mostly because Lily was annoying and pretentious. The whole "I'm vegan and yes that means I'm better than you" was ridiculous) and suddenly, with very little escalation, one of them would suddenly start screaming at each other. Overreaction, maybe?

The plot was obvious. Halfway through I knew exactly how it was going to end. Surprise surprise, I was right.

Also- can we move away from the 'hot-guy best friend finally noticed me only for him to then be discovered in a compromising situation with heartless slut and leads me to make poor, life-altering decisions with disastrous consequences' plotline? It's a little played out.
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