Destiny’s Fire might just be the best debut of 2012 thus far. Trisha Wolfe has definitely crafted an amazing steampunk world filled with supernatural beings and events. I was enthralled with the story from page one, and it is brimming with action, romance, and mystery.
The world Wolfe creates is extensive and creative. The reader is immediately thrust into Dez’s world. There is no slow explanation of who is who and what is what. Instead, the reader has to piece it together bit by bit. I think this was a great move by Wolfe. Trying to explain the dynamics of politics, economy, and people would have made everything seem more complicated than it actually is and would have detracted from the story. The plot is rather simple to understand, and the plot twists had me enthralled, especially towards the end. There were times I was squirming in seat, eager to find out what happened next! And something I cannot mention or gush about enough is Wolfe’s writing. Her descriptions and details are exquisite, making the world she created really easy to visualize and get drawn into. She is able to convey the characters thoughts and feelings really well, making them very easy to relate to and understand.
Wolfe’s characters are all unique in their own way, and I liked all of them. Dez is a great female lead. She is strong, courageous, and hates being told what to do. She is also an excellent fighter, and she is not afraid to put a boy in his place. She holds a secret that makes her wanted by some and dead by others. I really liked how she was willing to always be in the action. She did not let people fight to protect her; she jumped into the fray herself. I really like female characters who standup for themselves and doesn’t let others fight their battles. Jace, coincidentally enough, is a lot like the Jace from The Mortal Instruments series
by Cassandra Clare
. They are both hotheaded and always gearing up for a fight (but Jace from TMI is way more egotistical). He is always there for Dez, and he will do anything to protect her and his brother and sister. Then there is the new guy, the ridiculously hot Reese. Excuse me for the swoon fest that is about to ensue. I have no idea what it is about Reese, but the minute he was introduced in the book, I was a lost cause. Like Jace, he is stubborn and willful, but there is something about his character that I found super intriguing. I seriously loved his character, and he is definitely on my list of favorites. Even the side characters, like Jace’s brother and sister, Nick and Lana, were great. Lana is quirky and fun, and I think she is a great friend for Dez. Nick is a lot like his brother, and he fights for what he believes in. The character dynamics were great, and I loved how they all meshed together, especially the main three.
This leads me to my next point. I know a bunch of other people mentioned a love triangle. In the beginning, there might have been a bit of one, yes. However, at the end of the book, the love triangle has all but disappeared. In fact, I really do not consider the relationship between Dez, Reese, and Jace to be a love triangle. Why? Dez cares for both of them, but there is only one she is interested in romantically. In my opinion, a love triangle is where the main character cannot choose between two people. She (or he) loves them both and is unable to decide who she/he wants to be with. According to Wikipedia, the keeper of All Knowledge, there are two types of love triangles: there is the rivalrous triangle, where the lover is competing with a rival for the love of the beloved, and the split-object triangle, where a lover has split their attention between two love objects. (Thank you, Wiki.) The relationship dynamics featured in Destiny’s Fire does not match either definition. There were one or two moments where Reese and Jace ‘competed,’ but most of this rivalry perpetuated from the deep running hatred between the Narcolyms and Shythe. (There was also this one part where Dez leads on one of the boys, which was a bad move on her part, but she did it to avoid hurting the guy’s feelings and also because she thought the other guy would never talk to her again. She did not do it because she was romantically interested in the guy.) Even when Dez is with one of the boys, who I will call Boy A, she is constantly thinking about Boy B. When she is with Boy A, she mentions how something is ‘missing,’ but when she is with Boy B, she feels like she is finally ‘home.’ In fact, she admits to never being able to be with another person besides Boy B, and she always wants them to be together forever. The only thing she is afraid of is hurting Boy A emotionally for being unable to reciprocate his feelings. (And at the end of the book, Boy A bows out and accepts the fact that he will never have Dez the way he wants.) Even though there was some relationship drama, I do not think that this constitutes a love triangle.
I am not sure if Wolfe intentionally tried to write a love triangle, but as I have already mentioned rather extensively, I personally do not think there was one (which is a good thing since I hate them!) If you like love triangles, this book might have enough drama to make you happy, but if you are like me and hate everything about them, then have no fear! There may be some moments when you get frustrated, but there is a very clearly defined romantic relationship between two of the characters, so you should have no worries.
Overall, Destiny’s Fire was an exceptional read, one everyone should check out. Wolfe is an amazing storyteller, and this book was an AWESOME debut. I cannot wait for more! There is no information about a sequel just yet, but I am sure there will be one, right, Ms. Wolfe?? (Please say yes!) Wolfe also has a novelette out, entitled Unveiled
, and I am eager to get my hands on it. The premise of the story sounds interesting, so be sure to check that out as well!