Ice Like Fire. Sara Raasch. Fantasy/Young adult. 2015. 479 pages. 2 stars. [Source: Bought as hardcover from Fullybooked]
“The Winter we know has always been one of our own creation, a kingdom built on dreams. So you’re right, Feige. We’re all Children of the Thaw. Our own hybrid of the past and the future.”
It’s been three months since the Winterians were freed and Spring’s king, Angra, disappeared—thanks largely to the help of Cordell.
Meira just wants her people to be safe. When Cordellan debt forces the Winterians to dig their mines for payment, they unearth something powerful and possibly dangerous: Primoria’s lost chasm of magic. Theron sees this find as an opportunity—with this much magic, the world can finally stand against threats like Angra. But Meira fears the danger the chasm poses—the last time the world had access to so much magic, it spawned the Decay. So when the king of Cordell orders the two on a mission across the kingdoms of Primoria to discover the chasm’s secrets, Meira plans to use the trip to garner support to keep the chasm shut and Winter safe—even if it means clashing with Theron. But can she do so without endangering the people she loves?
Mather just wants to be free. The horrors inflicted on the Winterians hang fresh and raw in Januari—leaving Winter vulnerable to Cordell’s growing oppression. When Meira leaves to search for allies, he decides to take Winter’s security into his own hands. Can he rebuild his broken kingdom and protect them from new threats?
As the web of power and deception weaves tighter, Theron fights for magic, Mather fights for freedom—and Meira starts to wonder if she should be fighting not just for Winter, but for the world.
With the first book being such a hit for me, this book was a miss in all the wrong places. While it was easy to read, it was dragging on and on and on and on. The first 100 pages are acceptable to be a bit boring IF it leads up to a juicy action packed story but no, this book is 479 pages long and I was wallowing in my own misery trying to read on just to see if the next page will be–finally–the point where things take off and get interesting. I knew that this book was getting low reviews for its never-ending plot that seemed to go nowhere but I didn’t know it was this bad. Finishing this book felt like a burden more than it did a pleasure, and that says a lot.
With the plot spiralling down, the characters seemed to go with them on this downhill slope of a series. Meira turns into a whiney, insecure, and annoying character that I hated being in her mind–and mind you, we read the book in her first-person point of view. You can only imagine my misery. Theron becomes this power hungry and inconsiderate love interest. Mather turns into a grumpy, self-pitying character that the entire story was just one disaster after another.
The book was mostly about the group traveling through the other kingdoms in hopes of finding what they need to open the magic chasm. While the idea is promising, it was written in a way that the group was going in circles since Meira was just losing her shit 80% of the time.
I kept reading this book only because I want to know the entire story for the 3rd book, not because I was interested in it whatsoever. From such a promising first book, this one was a disappointment I can’t put into words. If anyone ever asks me what second book syndrome is, I’ll just tell them to read the Snow Like Ashes series. I really hope that the third book redeems itself. I hope crawling through Ice Like Fire will be worth it.