Book Review: Fire Touched by Patricia Briggs

By Douglas Soule on April 25, 2016 from Book Review via Connect-Bridgeport.com

Werewolves, vampires, trolls, and a conscious walking stick- What more could one want from an urban fantasy novel?
 
Fire Touched by Patricia Briggs is the ninth book in the Mercy Thompson series. While- if this is your first time reading the series- there may be initial confusion about past character and plot developments, this does not impede upon the overall enjoyment of the book. The characters are hot, the action is hot, and the antagonists are hot-tempered- if the figurative temperature rises any further, I’ll have to take a dip in a pool.
 
This book began calmly enough. Mercy Thompson is dealing with a particularly persistent door-to-door salesman. Ten pages later, a troll is destroying a bridge, tossing cars around and creating much car-nage. Of course, as normally happens in these situations, a pack of werewolves and a lava monster were sent to save the day- the situation was both hairy and heated.
 
A character is introduced during this conflict, one which motivates the plot-to-come. He is Aiden, a boy with magical fire abilities- or at least, someone who appears to be a boy. He- kind of like me- is older than his appearance makes him seem. This creates a complex situation where none of the other characters know how to interact with Aiden, and while he is given aid from Mercy and the others, he is also socially excluded from the group. Remind you of high school?
 
Another magical species in this book are the Fae. They have a somewhat confusing mix of abilities. Some can turn into an angry hive of hornets. Others can control metal elements. Some are friendly good guys that are addicted to video games; others are bent upon evil, with the power to destroy cities.
 
The Fae are the opposing force in Fire Touched. Stuffed into reservations to avoid the humans that manifest the land, they've grown irritated of their station and willing to do anything to get out- like sending trolls to troll the city-goers on a bridge. They are forced to attack the humans or face extinction.
 
This book is not entirely devoid of flaws. Despite being a short and sweet read, it lacks depth. In fact, certain parts are shallower than a kiddy pool. Some plot elements are not well explained and reading through it is like trying to understand the inkblot pictures of a Rorschach test.
 
I didn’t get the sense that the world is actually real. The civilian reactions to the monster attacks seem as fake as a politician’s smile. Today, if a public figure says a mean word there are country-wide riots, with millions of dollars in property damage. In this story, when a non-human species killed innocents, everyone seems to take it in stride. No presidential addresses, no threats of military intervention, and not even so much as a protest.
 
Fire Touchedwill not one day be considered a “classic.” Yet, it is a magical read, showing a society similar to our own- only with wizardry peppered in to spice things up. Don’t worry; this book will conjure your attention!



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