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Sunday, May 3, 2015

Through Fire & Sea (Otherselves #1) by Nicole Luiken ARC Review

2.5/5 Stars
Details of the Book:
eARC, 354 pages
Published by Entangled: Teen
Publication Date: May 5, 2015

Synopsis: Mirror mirror, hear my call…

In the Fire world, seventeen-year-old Leah is the illegitimate daughter of one of the realm's most powerful lords. She's hot-blooded—able to communicate with the tempestuous volcano gods that either bless a civilization or destroy it. But then Leah discovers she's a Caller, gifted with the unique—and dangerous—ability to “call” her Otherselves in mirror worlds. And her father will do anything to use her powers for his own purposes.

In the Water world, Holly nearly drowns when she sees—and interacts with—Leah, a mirror image of herself. She’s rescued by Ryan, a boy from school with a secret he’d die to protect. Little do they know, his Otherself is the son of a powerful volcano god at war in the Fire world…and he’s about to fall.

As Leah and Holly's lives intersect, the Fire and Water worlds descend into darkness. The only way to protect the mirror worlds is to break every rule they've ever known. If they don’t, the evil seeping through the mirrors will destroy everything—and everyone—they love…

I wanted to love this book so much. It had such a unique plot. It was intense, complicated, extremely interesting, and fast-paced. Unfortunately, it failed in its execution. There were so many fantastical details that I was in awe of as I was reading but the writing didn't evoke the right emotions out of me to be hooked. The book is so fast-paced that it seems like the authors uses this as her reason as to why the relationships and characters are under-developed but it didn't work. The one thing that will always knock a book down a couple stars for me is instalove, and unfortunately, this book has a lot of it. I definitely didn't hate it and the ending piqued my interest about the sequel. I guess we'll see what the future holds.


1) I've read a few parallel universe YA novels and I have been impressed by most of them. I was definitely impressed how Luiken wove this concept into her plot. She clearly spent a lot of time figuring out all of the details.

2) If you're a fan of fantasy this book is for you. There are dragons, mermaids, and so much more. I especially loved that Volcano and Oceans were given personalities and were the fathers of the fantastic creatures of these books.


1) I am such a romantic sap. I can't even begin to describe to all of you how much I love reading about love. It's what makes me so picky when reading about romantic relationships. I have to be able to watch it unfold and feel like I'm in the character's relationship. Although I believed the couples in this book loved each other, I have absolutely no idea why they do. In both cases, the couple meets for a second and that's it. BOOM, they're in love. The term "soul mates" was used to explain the instant connection but it came off pretty cliché and I didn't buy into it.

2) Luiken's plot happens so fast that instead of developing the characters and the reader able to learn about them, she tells the reader all about them. All of the characters are all tell and no show.

3) Randomly in the book, it would change POVs between our two main characters Leah and Holly. At times it was a bit disorientating and I had to reread several sections to figure out who exactly was speaking.

4)  I would have preferred if this book was solely set in the Fire World and focused more on Leah and Gideon's story. Then the sequel could combine Leah and Holly's worlds together. This would enable the plot to slow down a tad and allow for more development.

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