Title: Trial by Fire (The Worldwalker Trilogy #1)
Author: Josephine Angelini
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Release Date: September 2, 2014
Source: ARC from Publisher
This world is trying to kill Lily Proctor. Her life-threatening allergies keep her from enjoying experiences that others in her hometown of Salem take for granted, which is why she is determined to enjoy her first high school party with her best friend and longtime crush, Tristan. But after a humiliating incident in front of half her graduating class, Lily wishes she could just disappear.Suddenly, Lily is in a different Salem—one overrun with horrifying creatures and rules by powerful women called Crucibles. Strongest and cruelest of them all is Lillian…Lily’s other self in this alternate universe.What makes Lily weak at home is what makes her extraordinary in New Salem. In this confusing world, Lily is torn between responsibilities she can’t hope to shoulder alone and a love she never expected.
It’s no secret that I absolutely ADORE Josephine Angelini and her books. When I heard she had a new series coming out, I couldn’t help but be excited. But at the same time I was afraid that it wouldn’t live up to all of my expectations. Trial By Fire completely surpassed all my expectations and I loved every page of it.
For as long as she could remember, Lily Proctor has barely been able to leave her house without suffering from severe allergic reactions to the world around her. Her whole life, this has kept her from being able to experience the things normal high school girls would get to experience: things like going to parties, going out on dates. But she may finally be able to cross one off her list when her best friend and longtime crush, Tristan, agrees to take her to a party. Except the party turns into a big humiliating event for Lily and she wishes she could be anywhere but there. Without realizing it, Lily’s wish becomes a reality when she is transported to a different Salem, one where everything that once made her weak now make her incredibly powerful. With that power, Lily has to go up against the most powerful of all the Crucibles in this alternate Salem, Lillian, her other self. Will Lily be strong enough to do what it takes to protect a city she can barely recognize and find her way home?
So here’s the thing. When I first heard about Josephine Angelini’s Trial By Fire I was under the impression that it was about witches, and that the main character got transported back in time and met her past self. I was right about one of those things, sort of right about another, and wrong about the last. Trial By Fire is totally about witches, or Crucibles in this case. The main character, Lily, doesn’t get transported back in time, she gets transported to an alternate universe. And it’s her alternate self she meets, not her past self. That meant that when I first started reading, this made it so I was a little confused, but once I worked it all out for myself, I more than enjoyed this story. I was already a huge fan of Josephine Angelini’s before reading Trial By Fire, but this book made me love her even more. This story was captivating, and layered—every time I thought I had something figured out, something new was thrown in and I was trying to figure it out all over again. And I of course have to talk about the romance in this story. Having read (and being a huge fan of) Josephine Angelini’s Starcrossed trilogy, I was definitely looking forward to whatever romance was going to be in Trial By Fire. I’ll be honest and say that the romance here felt a lot more understated. I expected it to be more in my face, but in the end I really liked the way it played out. It fit in perfectly with the story, and it made me like those characters that much more. But obviously there were also some very sensual moments. One in particular involved paint and well, that’s all I’m going to say about that.
I really liked reading about Lily. I liked that once she was thrown in this world where magic was a thing she didn’t just take it in stride. Much like she never let her health issues stop her from doing what she wanted in her world, she fights back against what people are telling her in this new world. And that’s what I loved most about Lily’s character, she didn’t let anything get her down, and considering everything she was going through, that was a great attitude to have. It was also interesting to see the differences between Lily and Lillian, her alternate self. The two may have played the same role in their respective worlds, but they couldn’t have been more different. Or at least that’s how it seemed while I was reading Trial By Fire. Knowing what I know about Josephine Angelini and her books though, I might be thinking differently by the end of the next book. The same can be said about the differences between the two Tristans I met, granted I only saw one of them for a very brief period of time. The one character I only met one of was Rowan, and one was more than enough. I don’t even know where to start with Rowan. At first, I wasn’t sure how to feel about him. I honestly thought he might turn out to be one of the bad guys. But I was clearly wrong because by the end of the book I was ALL ABOUT ROWAN. I definitely want more Rowan in future books and I can’t wait to have more Rowan in future books.
In case you hadn’t figured it out by now, I absolutely loved Josephine Angelini’s Trial By Fire. It completely lived up to all my expectations, and it brought a fresh and new perspective to a subject that has been dealt with previously. I absolutely cannot wait to find out what happens next.