The world of power is turning to ice… and when its keeper, the great Amadis Yeda disappears, armies of magic begin to war, creatures of darkness come into the light, gods walk among men, nations plunge into chaos, and the lives of four friends are changed forever.
From one half of the team that brought you Cult Fiction, comes a fantasy-based saga from James Dwyer. An action-packed character-driven fantasy epic that rivals the best of them, this story has it all.
You can expect Game of Thrones meets The Copper Promise with a bit of Trudi Canavan thrown in for good measure. Fireborn delves into a world full of war, gods, love and debauchery, where we are introduced to four key characters and what drives them as they struggle with the collective burdens that have befallen Powerborn and Fleshborn alike.
Just as Cult Fiction did before it, Fireborn throws you head-first into a deeply intricate story arc that centres around childhood friends and their journeys which I very quickly became completely invested in.
Kris is a warrior who struggles with his inner demons and closes himself off from all emotion so as not to risk going back to his dark past. This is a character I really wanted to understand and get a bit more information on. I think there could have been a more realistic conclusion to his story, particularly in respect to the relationship with his travel companions on his mission to stop the tyrant Aerath from turning the world to ice.
Thisian is a man who loves himself, women and gold – in that order! The least likeable of the troupe, Thisian has one thing on his mind and holds a very high opinion of himself. The inclusion of Thisian serves as a reminder that there’s always one!
Phira is the only female of the group and acts as the strong female character that seems to be par for the course with Dwyer’s story development, but you’ll find no complaints here. I found her character to be extremely complex and not just your stereotypical female character who lies between either too effeminate or aggressor. Her relationship with Dallid, my personal favourite character was one I genuinely rooted for and you could truly sense their connection and their will to live for each other.
Dallid’s motivation to move forward for his wife and to make her proud brought about an interesting dynamic between the two as the stereotypical war hero was not the male protagonist and it’s Dallid that has something to prove. The relationship between Phira and Dallid was a strong part of what kept me tied to this story.
I would have preferred a bit more development in some of the ‘extras’, possibly to take the place of some of the descriptions. Saying that, however, this story has qualities that rival The Copper Promise by Jen Williams with character development that really demonstrates the love Dwyer has for each, as well as intricate, well thought out and painstaking detail in the stories.
Each scene is played out with such meticulous detail that the reader is practically transported into a world that is created from the blood, sweat, tears and love of Dwyer.
It could be said that the devil is in the detail with this saga and, while it’s easy to get sucked into the narrative, I think this might still have been the case with a little less detail, as the arc of the story tends to get a little lost and you lose the collective aim of the story.
I’m not going to hold this against the book, though, as I still thoroughly enjoyed it and I’ll admit that it took me an age to read because I was so invested in the characters I didn’t want to finish their stories too quickly.
I’m really looking forward to seeing what else James Dwyer has up his sleeve, as he is a talented guy that has proven he can tackle both fantasy and science fiction in equal measure.
Have you read this book? What did you think? Let us know in the comments!