The Fire Rose (Elemental Masters #1)
I had more respect for the heroine, Rosalind (Rose) Hawkins. But not much. Blame it on Lackey's introduction of this young bespectacled historian:
In the autumn of...more
However, I found this book rather a disappointment. Robin McKinley is 100 times more talented at the retelling, and honestly, I don't think Lackey put her best effort into this.
A decent read, but not really worth the effort.
I met Mercedes Lackey a couple of years ago at Ad Astra, and I began reading her work afterwards. While her Valdemar books are possibly the best known, I prefer her Elemental Masters and 500 Kingdoms series. Each Elemental Masters novel follows a young woman in the late nineteenth or early twentieth century as she discovers her own magical powers and uses them to change her life. The idea is that all magicians have an element that they are...more
Some of the writing isn't perfect; sometimes it's a hair dramatic. But on the whole, Lackey does a nice job here developing characters and conflict, and exploring the early 20th century world she sets them in. In fact, this book gives me a bit of hope...more
Rosalind Hawkins is a medieval scholar from a fine family in Chicago. Unfortunately, her professor father has speculated away the family money and died, leaving young Rosalind with no fortune and no future. Desolate with grief, forced to cut her education short, she agrees to go West to take a job as a governess to a wealthy man in San Francisco. A boom town in the 1850s, in 1905 San Francisco is the center of culture in the new West, and perhaps there she will rediscover a reason for living. B
First of all, I felt that the second half is far more rushed than the first. It took a long time to get to action at first: Lackey describes everything in vivid detail, and as this is h...more
Lackey is an master story teller, giving just enough rich descriptions to fill your mind with wonder and just enough of a glimpse into each character’s heart that you can almost tell what they are going to do – until t...more
I loved Mercedes Lackey in college but sometime in my 30s I became tired of her simplistic characters, and especially of the chip she has on her shoulder regarding organized religion. If I had to read one more time that non-orthodox...more
Do NOT judge this book by its cover!
"The Fire Rose" is a gem, a masterful retelling of the Beauty and the Beast story.
The Beauty is Rose Hawkins, a booksmart Chicago native working toward a doctorate at university. The Beast is Jason Cameron, a San Francisco rail baron, and a man trapped by hubris in the body of a wolf.
Left penniless when her father dies, Rose has few options for survival. She could work as a governess or a teacher, but pursuing her cherished d...more
Once there, she...more
I really enjoyed this book. It's the second Mecerdes Lackey book I've read, but she really shows off her skill here. Set in the turn of the 20th century San Francisco, her research into this historical period is flawless. The technology is right, the clothes are right, the attitudes feel right, the language is marvelous. Not only that, but Rose's characterization is believable and likable....more
Honestly this deserves far closer to a three. It suffers from every single one of the Mercedes Lackey pitfalls, including but not limited to:
- Sedate first act followed by compressed second act and a blitzed third act.
- Laughably and yet disturbingly evil villains (where do you come UP with this shit Misty?)
- Plot points appearing out of nowhere and then getting harped on forever like she suddenly realized what a great idea they were.
- About twice as many words that need to b...more
Though the story moved slowly, I kept reading it because I loved Rosal...more
Rose arrives to find that her employer, Jason Cameron, is extremely wealthy, as well as quite eccentric, and the posi...more
All of the series are loose retellings of traditional fairy tales, set in the turn-of-the-century "real world" but with the framework of elemental magic added in. The Fire Rose is a Beauty and the Beast story, and it's basically a romance - there's really not much plot to speak of beyond the will-they-or-won't-they. Th...more
employer has no children and only wants her to read to him through a speaking tube. What secrets is her employer hiding behind the tube? what magical abilities does he have?
this book took a while to get started. Once I settled myself down to read it, though, I really enjoyed it. I was kind of disappointed in the narration of this book. Kristin ali...more