Author: Rosamund Hodge
Published by: Balzer + Bray
Publication Date: September 27, 2016
When the mysterious fog of the Ruining crept over the world, the living died and the dead rose. Only the walled city of Viyara was left untouched.
The heirs of the city’s most powerful—and warring—families, Mahyanai Romeo and Juliet Catresou share a love deeper than duty, honor, even life itself. But the magic laid on Juliet at birth compels her to punish the enemies of her clan—and Romeo has just killed her cousin Tybalt. Which means he must die.
Paris Catresou has always wanted to serve his family by guarding Juliet. But when his ward tries to escape her fate, magic goes terribly wrong—killing her and leaving Paris bound to Romeo. If he wants to discover the truth of what happened, Paris must delve deep into the city, ally with his worst enemy . . . and perhaps turn against his own clan.
Mahyanai Runajo just wants to protect her city—but she’s the only one who believes it’s in peril. In her desperate hunt for information, she accidentally pulls Juliet from the mouth of death—and finds herself bound to the bitter, angry girl. Runajo quickly discovers Juliet might be the one person who can help her recover the secret to saving Viyara.
Both pairs will find friendship where they least expect it. Both will find that Viyara holds more secrets and dangers than anyone ever expected. And outside the walls, death is waiting. . . .
What a crazy unique book! Rosamund Hodge is a must-read author for me. She always writes twisted and imaginative stories! Bright Smoke, Cold Fire is inspired by Romeo and Juliet, but it is definitely its own thing.
I would say this is Hodge’s darkest book yet, and I’m totally okay with that. In fact, that’s something I love about it. I mean, c’mon, there’s necromancers, magic, human sacrifices, and vengeance! Swoon.
Seriously, though, it can be pretty brutal in this world. I found the whole mythology dealing with Death and the dead really interesting. I love how it’s told mostly from Paris and Runajo’s perspective, leaving Romeo and Juliet as vital secondary characters. The twists on these characters is really creative. This is one Juliet not to be trifled with.
There were some parts that felt a little slow, but the action, suspense, and dash of humor totally made up for it. I have to say, I wasn’t expecting the cliffhanger, though. I assumed it would be a standalone like the rest of her books, but it seems it will be a duology. Wha-wha.
Overall, I enjoyed this twisted dark tale, and look forward to what’s coming next.