Title: Fire & Flood by Victoria Scott
Release date: February 25th, 2014
Age group: Young adult
Grade rate: A
A modern day thrill ride, where a teen girl and her animal companion must participate in a breathtaking race to save her brother's life—and her own.
Tella Holloway is losing it. Her brother is sick, and when a dozen doctors can't determine what's wrong, her parents decide to move to Montana for the fresh air. She's lost her friends, her parents are driving her crazy, her brother is dying—and she's helpless to change anything.Until she receives mysterious instructions on how to become a Contender in the Brimstone Bleed. It's an epic race across jungle, desert, ocean, and mountain that could win her the prize she desperately desires: the Cure for her brother's illness. But all the Contenders are after the Cure for people they love, and there's no guarantee that Tella (or any of them) will survive the race.The jungle is terrifying, the clock is ticking, and Tella knows she can't trust the allies she makes. And one big question emerges: Why have so many fallen sick in the first place?
Wow, that was a wild ride! It is not secret that I love Scott’s Collector’s series (*waves at Dante*) and this new series is just as amazing, but in a very different way. I loved Fire & Flood!
Let me first start by telling you that this book can be best described as a mix between “The Hunger Games” (the ‘game’ part) and Pokemon. You’re probably shaking your head in confusion right about now, but have no fear, ‘cause I would never lead you astray. Let me explain a little bit more: There is a game being played with the ultimate prize, The Cure, and the Contenders can only be helped by their engineered animal companions. The plot, as you can see, it’s incredibly good. It is full of action, mystery, trilling adventure, and even romance. That’s why I couldn’t figure out what genre did it fall under (you might have noticed the question mark above.)
On to the characters. Tella is awesome! She’s completely ignorant (as most of the Contenders are) about what the heck is going on. Even though she is uncertain and afraid, she has compassion, loyalty, empathy and not only a desire to live, but to see his brother well. Her family tried to keep this from happening, but it seems there’s like a pact of silence going on. Being on Tella’s mind is a trip! She is snarky, cynical, and very girly; even if she can be that way during the Bleed.
Guy (appropriate name, right?), is good at survival and many other things, except talking that is. Gosh! It felt like talking to Guy was like talking to my oldest son, like forcing the words out with a spoon. BUT, when he does talk, you better listen. He became the default leader of an unlikely group of allies. Guy knows a lot more than anyone else, and thankfully he is sharing that knowledge with Tella. I can’t wait to see how Tella and Guy’s relationship develops next.
I won’t go over all the characters because it will take a while and you will know them soon enough, because I assume that this glorious recommendation will have you running to the store to buy the book. I will, however, tell you that there are a lot of them, good, and bad; crazy and sane; amazing and horrible. The bullies are atrocious, cruel and I’m sure we haven’t seen the last of them.
The animals (called Pandoras), are so different. They intend to protect, defend and help their Contenders. The trick is that the Contenders don’t know what they can do or what they are capable off. You would think that would be it more fun, but indeed, it’s quite frustrating. Madox, I’m a big fan of yours! We have quite a diversity of animals and things they can do. Scott has a BIG imagination.
The writing, like always is easy to read, intense, funny and snarky. In summary: Fire & Flood is a trilling book full of awesomeness. I cannot wait for the second book and conclusion to this duology!
Some quotes for you:
“I lean my head back and reinspect my reflection, try to see things in a new light. With curls trimmed close to my head and a roguish green-and-blue feather dangling over my right shoulder, I decide I just might seem like someone who would enter a daring race – and win.”
“…It gets cooler at night, and for some reason, my skin is doing something funky that worsens in the evening…It freaks me out to no end, but I can’t tell what the issue is. I think maybe I’m allergic to walking this much.”
“Okay, I’m going to ask it”, Ransom says. “How much friggin’ farther do you think base camp is from here?”
“Forever,” Levi answers, one hand on his ram’s curled horn. “It’s forever from here. That’s what it feels like anyway.”
About the cover: I guess the title, Fire & Flood, mean the first two environments (desert and rain forest) in the race. The feather might be the one Tella wears on her hair, but is not the right color. The cover though, does little for me.