Hearts of Fire by Kira Brady
Series: Deadglass #0.5
Source: Review copy from publisher
In the prequel to a stunning new paranormal series, one woman’s desire for a forbidden man will spark a centuries-long supernatural conflict–and a love nothing can destroy.
She’s the heiress to Seattle’s most powerful shifter clan. Her destiny is as controlled and certain as moonrise. However, from the moment Alice Corbette encounters the man known as Brand, she will defy all constraint and break every rule to make this dragon-shifter hers. Brand is determined to repay the clan leader he owes his life to. But one taste of Alice’s exquisite spirit will make him question his loyalty–and plunge them both into the middle of a ruthless power play. Their only chance at freedom is a gamble that could risk the future of humans and shifters alike. . .
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While I quite enjoyed HEARTS OF DARKNESS, the first novel in Kira Brady’s Deadglass trilogy, I was underwhelmed by HEARTS OF FIRE, the e-prequel that was released last month. Set in the late 1800s at a pivotal point in Seattle’s history, HEARTS OF FIRE documents the building of the city, a forbidden love, and the beginning of the outright hostilities between the Kivati and the Drekar, two shapechanging clans. The Kivati transform into all sorts of creatures, including those of legend like Thunderbirds, while the Drekar are dragons who have no souls and seek to consume human ones.
The main focus of this 20,000 word novella is the blooming relationship between Alice, the daughter of the Kivati leader, and Brand, a Drekar glass artist who has just come to Seattle at the behest of Norgard, the main villain from HEARTS OF DARKNESS. Some of the events that occur in this novella are referenced in HEARTS OF DARKNESS; now we get to see how they happened. Although this was something I was interested in, there was a bit too much going on in HEARTS OF FIRE and it felt overly full. Generally, I enjoy it when an author has multiple threads but I felt like HEARTS OF FIRE had too much action and not enough development. That being said, there were some great moments. For example, I loved Alice and Brand’s first meeting. It was classic but a lot of fun. There was some serious smoulder between the two characters throughout the novella, which I really liked. You could feel their passion for each other. The building conflict between the Kivati and the Drekar adds a nice flavour but I felt like this part of the story got the short end of the proverbial stick because a lot of it happened off the page. From a writing mechanics perspective, it made sense since the story was being told from Brand and Alice’s points of view but it gave the conflict and resulting tragedy less gravitas.
I may also be a bit biased because there’s so much wonderful world and character development in HEARTS OF DARKNESS. I shouldn’t expect it because the novel is probably 4 or 5 times longer than HEARTS OF FIRE but I was so enamored of the world that I guess I was wishing for too much. In any case, I do hope you’ll check out HEARTS OF DARKNESS and see what a modern alternate Seattle looks like because it’s an original and creative setting for a lovely paranormal romance. You can click on the cover below to read my thoughts on HEARTS OF DARKNESS on Tynga’s Reviews:
This book was one of the many titles on my NetGalley Knockout list!
Thanks, as always, to Christen of Goldilox and the Three Weres for putting this together.