Before She Ignites

Before She Ignites

A Fallen Isles Novel

Book - 2017
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Mira Minkoba is the Hopebearer. Since the day she was born, she's been told she's special. Important. Perfect. She's known across the Fallen Isles not just for her beauty, but for the Mira Treaty named after her, a peace agreement which united the seven islands against their enemies on the mainland. But Mira has never felt as perfect as everyone says. She counts compulsively. She struggles with crippling anxiety. And she's far too interested in dragons for a girl of her station. Then Mira discovers an explosive secret that challenges everything she and the Treaty stand for. Betrayed by the very people she spent her life serving, Mira is sentenced to the Pit–the deadliest prison in the Fallen Isles. There, a cruel guard would do anything to discover the secret she would die to protect. No longer beholden to those who betrayed her, Mira must learn to survive on her own and unearth the dark truths about the Fallen Isles–and herself–before her very world begins to collapse.
Publisher: New York : Katherine Tegen Books/HarperCollinsPublishers, 2017
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780062469403
Characteristics: 481 p. ; 22 cm

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forbesrachel Nov 13, 2017

Mira Minkoba knows something that she shouldn’t. It is something that threatens the peace treaty between the islands. The peace treaty which bears her name. For this reason, this young woman gets condemned to the Pit, the place where the worst offenders are sent, and it is there that her metal gets tested. The question of “what Mira knows” hooks us right from the start, and is wisely left unanswered until we get to know this individual. Mira is not a heroine in the traditional sense, but she is undoubtedly heroic, struggling to overcome her own fears, limitations, and oppressors as best she can. Her voice draws you in because of her endearing quirks, her realistic doubts, and the great strides she takes as she grows. For one, Mira starts off by constantly thinking about what others would say or do, it is only later that she is able to think about what she wants and needs to do. This transformation from seeing herself as worthless to seeing her value is slow, and not yet complete, but by the end of the book she is no longer the sheltered or restricted young lady that we first met. Meadows’ writing is superb, although it is too brisk at times. Mira slowly adds to our understanding of the world through her observations, and interactions with others. The mythos, politics, and peoples of the islands get fleshed out as the story progresses. Those she meets are fascinating characters in themselves, and their stories are only hinted at. A lot of backstory is given to us through regularly spaced flashbacks to events in Mira’s life. These are essential for defining her character, and the world outside, because for most of the “present” she is imprisoned in the Pit. A brilliant start, with a wonderfully defined world, and an engaging cast. More please!

MelifluousView Oct 03, 2017

Character growth is what I love in books, and this one has it in spades. Mira is pampered and spoiled but also used and belittled when she enters the Pit. Her self-discovery and survival in horrible circumstances bring out who she really is underneath it all. All of that built into an intriguing world dealing with prejudice and treachery made for a great read. Plus, there were dragons!

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