From New York Times bestselling author Keri Arthur comes a brand new series featuring heroine Emberly Pearson—a phoenix capable of taking on human form, and cursed with the ability to foresee death…
Emberly has spent a good number of her many lives trying to save humans. So when her prophetic dreams reveal the death of Sam, a man she once loved, she does everything in her power to prevent that from happening. But in saving his life, she gets more than she bargained for.
Sam is working undercover for the Paranormal Investigations Team, and those who are trying to murder him are actually humans infected by a plague-like virus, the Crimson Death—a by-product of a failed government experiment that attempted to identify the enzymes that make vampires immortal. Now, all those infected must be eliminated.
But when Emberly’s boss is murdered and his irreplaceable research stolen, she needs to find the guilty party before she goes down in flames…
*Blurb from Goodreads*
I’ve long been a big fan of Arthur, so when I saw she was writing a new UF series about a phoenix, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on a copy.
Emberly has lived many, MANY lives as a phoenix, and saving humans has always been a constant for her. Having a dream about the man she once loved being killed sends her out onto the streets to try and save him, and gets her wrapped up in a case that constantly puts her life in danger.
Between her phoenix soul mate, the ex-love of her life, and the sexy fae who pushes all her buttons, Emberly is lost trying to navigate what exactly is going on with the plague that is sweeping through, and her ties to everyone working the case. Add in her conflicting feelings with everyone involved, and Emberly finds herself way over her head.
One of the things that I love most about Arthur’s writing is that she doesn’t hold back the nitty-gritty when it comes to relationships. Like the Riley Jensen series, love and romance is hard for Emberly. There are so many different factors in her relationships that she struggles trying to keep it all straight. I love that the bond she has with her phoenix soul-mate is different than you would expect. They don’t love each other in the way a typical “mate” situation would imply, but instead require other people to satisfy their emotional needs, while needing the mate to keep them physically alive. It creates such a conflict for Emerly and Rory that I could read a whole book just about how their relationship has played out over their lifetimes. Such a wonderful source of conflict!
I really liked the aspect of the case with the virus. I’m really interested to see how it all plays out throughout the series, especially as it will most likely bring Sam, Emberly’s ex lover, into her life time and again. The angst between those two was so intense, especially as Emberly constantly found her life in danger (sometimes because of Sam’s direct actions). Arthur left a lot of really interesting threads in regards to the virus, and I’m super excited to see where it all leads and how it will play out in the series.
I thought Arthur’s use of a non-typical paranormal heroine was also a huge plus. I have to admit that I don’t really know anything about the mythology behind the phoenix, and yet I can only imagine that Arthur took something really basic and twisted and turned the concept around to create this incredible world. There were so many different little tidbits about the phoenix way of life that I was so engrossed in the book I couldn’t put it down. The worldbuilding is absolutely amazing, and I can’t wait to read more.
All in all, I thought Arthur’s first book in the new Souls of Fire series was amazing. I love the world building and character development. I love the internal and external conflict that has already been painted with this first book, and I am hooked on the overall story. I can’t wait to find out what comes next, with both the virus and Emberly’s personal life.
I give Fireborn an A-
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The folks at Penguin have offered one print copy as a giveaway. This is open for US addresses only, and ends July 22nd. Leave a comment or question to be entered!