ARC Review: Cast in Firelight by Dana Swift

Rating: 3 out of 5.

In some ways I really enjoyed this book, but in others I found it rather lacking. Part of this could be that I read an arc, but I feel like some of the ideas were sort of half-baked. First there would be talk of Jatin being ‘the’ Raja of Naupure, and then there would be talk of some other random raja or rani and then poof there’s only one again? The familial ties between the royal families were a bit confused as well. The magic system, while interesting, also seemed to suffer – the names of the Gods were just… their power spelled backwards? Ice magic is Dloc (cold), fire magic is Erif (fire), healing magic is Leah (heal)… There were also several places where I wished the writing were tighter or where I ended up confused.

But at the same time, I loved the enemies to lovers — and not just enemies to lovers, but betrothed enemies to mistaken identity lovers! — and Andraa and Jatin’s love for their people and wish to help them. The magic system (aside from the names) is cool and makes for very satisfying battles. And the chemistry between Andraa and Jatin is real, despite their false identities.

Going with three stars as I’m wavering between the good and bad points. I will be interested to see what happens in the sequel but I might not seek it out immediately.

*Thanks to NetGalley and Random House Children’s for providing an e-arc for review.

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