A Political Fantasy With Potential

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**3.5 Stars**

Fireborne was a slow, political fantasy centered around the effects of a revolution and the following regime. With dragons, dragonriders, and two categorically different main characters, Munda developed a richly dense and divided world for the two to find their paths in.

I loved having two characters from such painfully opposite backgrounds find heart and a home within one another; how their similarities were just enough to combat the rising stack of reasons why they should never be on the same side. Their subtle connection was what truly drove the story and made their respective paths—both driven by two stark kinds of anger—easier to fall into and get behind. They truly made the story what it was and were my main reason for enjoying it.

And while I liked the worldbuilding, dragons, and political intrigue, there was a pacing issue that dragged the plot to a snail’s pace. The focus on the mundane everyday things oftentimes made it feel like nothing happened for pages and pages, but because I was so riveted to these two character’s journeys, I spent much of the story waiting for more to be revealed—just to receive little bites here and there. That constant ebb and flow of plot progression made maintaining my attention a chore, sadly. Having a better balance between action and information would’ve made the story so much more inhalable.

Being the first book in a YA fantasy series by a debut author, my hope is that much of the building and info-dumping is finished and will leave more room for action and plot in the next book. There is such potential with this world, Munda’s storytelling, and Lee and Annie that I am holding out hope I will fall in love with what will happen in the second installment.