Tuesday, January 19, 2016

#Tuesday Review - Burn by Elissa Sussman (Young Adult, Fantasy)

Series: Four Sisters # 2
Format: E-ARC, 272 pages
Release Date: January 19, 2016
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Source: Edelweiss/Publisher
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy

After helping to rescue Princess Aislynn, Elanor has finally rejoined the rebel camp she calls home. Stolen from her parents at a young age and forced into service by the Wicked Queen, Elanor now wants nothing more than to see the queen removed from power. But Elanor has secrets, mistakes she’s spent years trying to forget, and the closer the rebels get to the throne, the harder it is for Elanor to keep her past hidden away.

With fellow rebels on her side—including Princess Aislynn, Thackery, and the handsome and mysterious Matthias—it is time for Elanor to make a decision. Will she protect her secrets? Or risk everything to save the people she loves?

The thrilling companion to Elissa Sussman’s masterful and original fairy tale, Stray, that will appeal to readers of Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale and fans of Wicked, Into the Woods, and the Disney princess movies

Burn is the second installment in the Four Sisters series by author Elissa Sussman. Once upon a time there were FOUR SISTERS who were legendary warriors. After losing their lives in battle, the FOUR SISTERS agreed to become a fox, an owl, a wolf, and a swan. Orphans pray to the sisters and each takes one of them as their guide in life. While Stray, the first novel in the series, featured Princess Aislynn, Burn features one of her rescuers, Elanor. Elanor is a study in contrast from Aislynn.

Taken away from her parents at a young age, she was thrown into the Wicked Queen's service for the next 5 years as a taste tester. Later she escaped, and joined a group known as the Orphans, who are fighting to overthrow the Queen Josetta from their mountain home. Elanor is as cunning as the fox she prays to. She's also ruthless and has a fox named Dagger that has some pretty cool abilities. She is also good with almost every weapon, and what makes her even more of an asset to the Orphans, is that she can also create weapons from fire and steel. 

Elanor has a whole lot of depth along with a very dangerous secret that if exposed, could jeopardize her standing among the Orphans. She's back among those like her "brother" Ioan, adopted mother Tasmin, and Wren who she was prisoner with for 5 years. She's back teaching Aislynn and a new character "Matthias" how to fight and how to survive. Aislynn still carries a whole lot of weight from the first book including the fact that she has the ability to wield magic. In fact, she still holds an important magical mirror that is desperately wanted by other nefarious villains. 

I will say without hesitation, that you will do yourself a whole lot of good by reading Stray before jumping into this book. Even though this is a so called companion novel to Stray, there are more than a few characters who cross over into both stories. There is a bit of romance in this novel, but I shall deviate from other reviewers in speaking about it. It is what it is. It isn't necessarily a bad thing in my opinion, it's just not something that made my heart flip flop like a carp out of water.

There are more than a few areas that still haven't been resolved even with the events of this book. I have to believe that there will be at least one, maybe two more books in this series. I say this knowing that the series is called FOUR SISTERS. Who the next protagonist will be is anyone's guess, but I would be more than happy to pick up the next book and see Elanor back at the helm. I would even be OK with returning to Aislynn. 

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