Frostblood follows the story of a young woman named Ruby, blessed with the power of flame. Unfortunately, she can’t control it very well.
Ruby lives a relatively simple life, alongside her mother, in her village… until someone turns her into the guard for being a Fireblood. She is then imprisoned, rescued, and decides to aid a revolution by eliminating the reigning king.
So I enjoyed Frostblood; I thought Ruby was an pretty multidimensional character. She goes through a lot of physical development after training hard and basically becoming a soldier of this revolution. She also goes through emotional and mental maturation, which is good since, you know, she’s planning to kill a king.
Arcus is her love interest and mentor, a sullen, solemn man who guards the revolution’s base with a sword, and his heart with a wall. What a cheesy sentence. I can’t believe I wrote that but I’m leaving it here bc it’s funny. Anyways, Arcus dislikes Ruby intensely in the beginning, and the feeling is very much reciprocated. He thinks she’s childish and weak, and in no shape or way ready to kill a king. And he’s right. Ruby’s still offended, though. We find out a lot more about him; his big twist isn’t all that big a twist. Once you start reading, you’ll know what I mean. But I thought his character was still compelling. And I did feel bad for him. You find out a lot more about Arcus that makes him more personable than I’m making him out to be, also.
I think that the one thing I resent is not learning more about the current king, Rasmus. He was the really interesting character in this book; also, I don’t remember her name, but there’s a woman in his court who basically acts as an ally to Ruby for her own ulterior motives. It turns out that she’s been in love with Rasmus since they were young, though he basically ignores her existence. She’s watched him morph from the boy she loved into a tyrant, but she believes that he can be redeemed. Their story would have been more interesting than that of Ruby and Arcus; I think so, anyways.
So all in all, Frostblood was a good book. I enjoyed the character arcs and the villain had an interesting origin story; the only downside is that it’s not really anything new for the high-fantasy YA genre. Girl finds out that she is special. Girl meets brooding boyfriend-to-be. Girl hones her skills with the help of an old and powerful rando. Girl has weird chemistry with the antagonist. Girl topples dictatorial empire by herself. Sound like any book you’ve read?
I might keep going with this series but the next book touts a love triangle so… probably not. Still, if you enjoy elemental powers and rebel factions, crazy kings and a weird, shadowy entity that’s (who’s?) hellbent on taking over the world, give this book a go.
Minor update: I’m trying to make my tags more descriptive so that you can look through my books to see tropes you might enjoy. 🙂