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Fire and Thorns (Fire & Thorns Trilogy 1) Paperback – 29 Sep 2011

4.4 out of 5 stars 26 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Gollancz (29 Sept. 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0575099143
  • ISBN-13: 978-0575099142
  • Product Dimensions: 15.3 x 3.2 x 23.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,071,901 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

Pure entertainment from cover to cover (SFX Sandy Auden)

It's the pampered princess who gives this story its sheer sense of life and vivacity . . . ample humour and heart-warming emotions (SFX)

There is a lot more of Elisa's story to be told. I can't wait! (Dear Author)

Book Description

A fat princess, a country at war, and a mission from God...

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
[...]
Caroline for [...]

This gorgeous coming of age tale transports you completely to a world of sumptuous palaces, humid jungles, lush oases and stunning, yet unforgiving, deserts. A land of beauty and of danger, this superb world building is not at the expense of the story's pacing. There is never a dull moment and like our protagonist Elisa; we are thrown from one experience to another. However the action never feels forced or gratuitous as each experience moves the story forward and informs Elisa's character development. The main problem you have as a reader is deciding where to leave your book mark as you reluctantly turn in for the night!

Although this is an action filled fantasy adventure with a few crush worth males thrown in for good measure, this is very much a character driven story and it is the character arc which I LOVE most about this book. We watch a girl with cripplingly low self esteem blossom in to a determined, capable and confident young woman.

Elisa's voice is intelligent and brutally honest, to the point of causing the reader discomfort. When we first meet her Elisa is, in her own opinion, a lazy underachiever who is so fat that she is unable to walk for more than a few minutes before tiring and becoming physically uncomfortable.
Taking the childhood teasing of her glamorous, capable older sister to heart Elisa has spent years believing that the disappointment of her birth caused her mother's death. These feeling of worthlessness have prevailed despite the honour of being the bearer of the Godstone and destined to do great things in the service of her god.

Filled with conflicting emotions and confusing self beliefs, on the one hand Elisa feels suffocated by the expectation of predetermined greatness.
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Format: Paperback
One person every century is chosen by God to do a great task and this person is Princess Elisa. On her 16th birthday she is married to a neighbour King but he is not the only one who seeks her. Some wants to kill her and some who thinks she is their saviour. Elisa is a marvellous character who changes and grows so much in this book. The story is full of so many twists and turns and a brilliantly written fantasy for very one no matter what age.
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Format: Hardcover
The Girl of Fire and Thorns surely hits all the marks on the checklist of "YA high fantasy novels"; however, something about it just lacked that spark that would make this a truly memorable novel that has me coming back for more. It never really wow-ed me, which, I guess, I really expected to happen. (Maybe it is once again due to the many people who swore I'd absolutely love this novel.) So my opinion is overall rather mixed.

The plot of the novel is the gem that gets a bit overshadowed by the smaller, more annoying bits. But we'll get to that. So Elisa is first forced into a marriage with King Alejandro and experiences court life, trying to figure out which role she is best suited to play. Then, she is kidnapped as one of many parties decides they need to use her, being God's chosen, to save their people. There is a great deal of mystery concerning what her task is, as God's chosen, and she has a fair bit of struggle with that. The pacing is perfect, and at no point does the novel become boring. There is no info-dumping and no long descriptive passages of traveling as one might expect of a high fantasy. Perhaps the best part of Rae Carson's storytelling ability is her decision to take risks. Characters die in this book. Characters you grow close to. That really keeps you on your toes and makes the story much more exciting.

The characterizations left me wishing for more. Though Elisa was an intriguing main character - a somewhat spoiled princess harshly confronted with reality - I found it difficult to sympathize with her for some reason (maybe because she was too quick to go back to some of her princess-y ways after escaping the desert, and I hoped she'd be more strong and independent based on her experiences).
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
An interesting fantasy, for both YA and adults alike. On Princess Elisa's naming day when she was a baby, she was gifted by god with his God Stone which was embedded in her navel. Once every hundred years someone is gifted with a God Stone, which means that they are chosen for great things. Flash forward to Elisa's sixteenth birthday. Elisa has low self esteem and is overshadowed by her eldest sister who is the heir to her father's throne. Elisa, although very well educated and a scholar, feels useless in comparison to her sister and comfort eats to compensate, consequently she is very overweight which adds to her low self esteem. Her father, in an attempt to protect her, marries her off to a neighbouring king. In actual fact in so doing he is thrusting her into danger as the kingdom he's marrying her into is under threat from an invading army. An army who has animages who use blood sorcery to help conquer other countries. They want a living God Stone, which means danger for Elisa. This first book follows the personal journey of Elisa, as a uncertain girl who considers herself worthless, to a more confident seventeen year old. The book is full of action and adventure, as we follow Elisa's initial progress.
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