“It's been a long time since I've read a paranormal book. In fact, I'm pretty sure this is the first one I've finished this year. I got tired of the genre late last year, and this year just didn't have the desire to read it, or couldn't get into it when I tried. Luckily, when I picked up Firespell, I had a hard time putting it down. It was a really enjoyable read!
It started off a little slow, but I don't remember being bored, just not super interested in the beginning. I can't remember exactly when it picked up, but considering it's a pretty short book and too much of nothing-really-happening would have made me put it down, it must have picked up pretty close to the beginning.
One of the things I think made me really like this book, is that it's just a quick, fun read. To me, it played out a bit like one of the role plays I used to do on Shelfari (one of the good ones, mind you), only it centered around one character discovering a world of magic, instead of six or so characters doing the same thing (conveniently at the same time). The story got going fairly quickly, and kept going at a steady pace from there, always keeping me interested. It had some light, amusing moments, some action, and a bit of mystery (kind of predictable, but that didn't make me like it any less).
I even kind of liked the characters, which is really rare for me. They aren't some of my favorite characters in the literary world, and I didn't love any of them, but I did enjoy reading about them. They were likable and amusing, and I look forward to meeting them again in the sequel.
As much as I liked this book, I did have a few problems with it. Mainly, frequently recurring themes. Neill seemed a bit hung up on the word 'notwithstanding'. I can't count the number of times it was used throughout the book. Some other themes are head bobbing (as in 'I bobbed my head at her' not lazy head-banging) and addressing people by their last names. I found these to be a bit strange, particularly the name thing. Some of the slang they used seemed a bit off, too. But there was nothing big enough to ruin the book in the slightest.
The second thing that bothered me is a bit of a spoiler, but you kind of know it's coming, so at the same time it's not. Anyway, *SPOILER WARNING* I didn't really like the way Lily discovered her powers. The way she got them was fine, I guess. A little weird, but also somewhat interesting. But the way she discovered them was just... poorly written. I hate to sound harsh, but those are my thoughts. But then, discovery-of-powers is rarely done well, so you can't really fault someone when it's less than spectacular. *SPOILERS OVER*
Overall, I liked it. It was quick, interesting, and highly enjoyable. I now wish I hadn't put off reading it for so long; it must have sat on my shelf for about a year. It's kind of changed my opinion on paranormal books, which I'd all but given up on, now I'm willing to give the genre another chance. The ending wasn't exactly a cliffhanger, but it might as well have been. It certainly had the effect of a cliffhanger, leaving me desperate to get the sequel.”
Ren wrote this review Friday, September 16, 2011.