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Air Awakens #2

Fire Falling

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Soldier… Sorcerer… Savior… Who is Vhalla Yarl?

Vhalla Yarl marches to war as property of the Solaris Empire. The Emperor counts on her to bring victory, the Senate counts on her death, and the only thing Vhalla can count on is the fight of her life.

As she grapples with the ghosts of her past, new challenges in the present threaten to shatter the remnants of her fragile sanity. Will she maintain her humanity? Or will she truly become the Empire’s monster?

Fire Falling is the second book in the Air Awakens Series.

378 pages, Paperback

First published November 19, 2015

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Elise Kova

44 books12.4k followers
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ELISE KOVA is a USA Today bestselling author. She enjoys telling stories of fantasy worlds filled with magic and deep emotions. She lives in Florida and, when not writing, can be found playing video games, drawing, chatting with readers on social media, or daydreaming about her next story.

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5 stars
13,416 (42%)
4 stars
12,029 (37%)
3 stars
4,986 (15%)
2 stars
1,091 (3%)
1 star
301 (<1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 2,680 reviews
Profile Image for Katerina.
422 reviews16.8k followers
January 27, 2016
I am strong I will not fall apart I am strong I will not fall apart I am strong I will not fall apart I am strong I will not fall apart I am strong I will not fall apart I am strong I will not fall apart I am strong I will not fall apart I am strong I will not fall apart
I am weak.I fell apart.I am trapped inside a bubble of denial,shock,sorrow and pain.And hope.Hope that Earth's End will glue the pieces of my shattered heart.

“Her eyes caught the mirror once more,and Vhalla spared another minute.She didn't recognize the woman who stared back at her.Hollow eyes and wild hair were framed by black armor.It was the visage of a warrior and a sorcerer.”

Vhalla is a soldier now,property of the Crown and a means to win the raging war against the North.Haunted by the blood on her hands and her guilt,she tries to put herself back together,to find her place in the world and to figure out the cost of loving the crown prince,the Fire Lord and future Emperor.To figure out how many times a heart can break.
“There was something severed and rough about her, something tainted and, yet, at the same time those jagged pieces were the makings of something fearsome. She'd wanted to become someone the Senate would fear, why not shatter the sky?”

Elise Kova's words hold raw power.The power to create a world so alive,so full of wonder and awe that you forget all attachments to your boring normal life and instead you travel,in jungles and forests and deserts,in battles and taverns,in tents and chambers while secrets are whispered and supressed feelings come to light.The power to sink magic in your pores and in your veins,to become unnaturally aware of the elements around you,to hear the humming of blood.The power to cause you emotional turmoil with the potential to tear you apart,to make you love and cry and sing and FEEL.

And the main source of them?
“Aldrik — the crown prince, the future Emperor, Fire Lord, ruler of the Black Legion, sorcerer — was only a man. And men could be broken.”

The dark,arrogant and cruel prince who at the same time is scarred,scared,insecure and alone,who unwillingly hurt Vhalla but loved her enough to go against his better judgement and defy everything he'd been told,is by far one of the best characters in history of books.Aldrik and Vhalla,they're broken and scared,strong and weak,they're each other's salvation and demise.And they're beautiful,together and as individuals.
“My Vhalla,my lady,my love.”

Yeap,my insides are turned into goo.I savored every moment they had together,I tucked these moments away in the corner of my mind so that I can replay them and relive a love so consuming that made all the hurt and the frustration worth it.
“Vhalla, I need her in so many ways, Mother help me.I need her as my redemption, I need her kindness, I need her forgiveness, I need her smiles, I need her humanity, I need her ignorance, I need her innocence, and, yes ... Mother Sun, yes, I need her as a man.”

If you don't like nasty cliffhangers,don't read this book.If you don't like epic romance and heroines strong in their weakness and war and characters with depth and poetic landscapes and wonderful friendships,do not read this book.But if you want one of the best YA fantasy books out there,Fire Falling is a reading experience you can't miss!
Profile Image for jessica.
2,535 reviews32.6k followers
June 7, 2021
omg. that cliffhanger! here i was thinking i would just continue the series whenever i had time, but now im desperate to pick up the next book.

i previously said that the first book reminded me a lot of ‘avatar.’ this sequel does maintain those similarities, but the majority of the story really builds upon the aspects that make this book its own. and the characters really shine in this. i got so attached to them this time around, especially aldrick.

the plot does kind of takes a back seat in this installment, but i appreciate that because the reader is able to learn more about the characters, as well as the magic system. and i finally got more information about the bond!! still not on the same level as feyre/rhys, but i still have my fingers crossed. lol.

i honestly have no idea whats going to happen next, especially after that ending, but i cant wait to find out.

4 stars
757 reviews2,346 followers
May 10, 2018

also wow i finished this literally two minutes ago and forgot what was that ending.

like, listen my guy, these books are fun and enjoyable, but they're nothing special, kind of annoying and forgetfull.

so like,,, obviously i'm continuing on with the series BECAUSE LOOK AT THOSE GORGEOUS COVERS, the fuck

3.5 stars

I forgot what happened in the first book and this is my second try. It's the pretty covers. AGH THEY DISCOVERED MY WEAKNESS AND HOW TO LURE ME INTO READING BOOKS.
Profile Image for High Lady of The Night Court.
135 reviews5,056 followers
April 10, 2019
This book was so different compared to the last one but in a good way. It ends with a cliffhanger that most definitely gave me a heart attack so if you can’t read the next book right after this one I would urge you to start it at a time you can, or suffer.

The book is more centered in the war and Vhalla’s role in it. She’s definitely grown to be a stronger person after the events of the last book and this one without giving up any part of herself. She goes through some painful events in this book that undoubtedly effect her greatly and I look forward to seeing how her personality changes and grows through the series.

There’s a great balance between moments of character growth and growth between characters, and moments which push the story the forward and moments simply stay in the present to emphasize a moment.

Relationships between the characters grow as they spend time together and more characters are introduced and new relationships are formed. Vhalla gets stronger with lots of training and support from those who mean well and uses her magic more often. The powers of a windwalker which were only shown briefly on the last book are highlighted more in this one.

I love watching the relationship between Vhalla and Prince Aldrik. Both of them complement each other very well and reveal parts of themselves that they themselves hadn’t previously found. Aldrik is truly an amazing person. He always gives Vhalla the choice of either staying by his side or leaving. He never presumes anything and always lets her make her own decisions. We see his strength and willingness to go to any lengths to protect those he deems under his care.

Vhalla’s intelligence shines through in this book. Her strategic side along with the knowledge she gained from reading throughout her life in the imperial library shine through this book. She finds herself having nightmares every night and is unable to deal with the horrors that have taken place but she pushes through it and come out of the ordeal stronger than she was before.

Vhalla struggles with the loss of her friends and is haunted by the night where she ripped those northerners apart to save Prince Aldrik and herself.
Now as the property to the throne she is thrown into the war and forced to fend for herself. The library apprentice with no skills in combat turns into a warrior hardened by the war and brutal training.

This book had elements that I was expecting and some that I was not but everything had a purpose and everything was extremely well done. The world is positively growing bigger in the eyes of the reader, we visit more places and learn more about the characters’ pasts.

I encourage everyone to go through with this series because it does not seem like it is going to disappoint in any way.
Profile Image for Daiane.
179 reviews202 followers
October 9, 2020
“For those of you who can meet our enemy with as much cruelty, as much cunning, and as much skill, maybe you’ll see the end of this war. So stand with me, stand with your brothers and sisters in black. We ride toward the horizon of victory, and whoever cannot see the path there should leave now.”

I must confess that while I was reading the first book I really desired to do one thing with the main characters:

For the first half of the second book, my desire just grew. I was tired of the come-and-go between the characters. I kinda got fed up with the Cinderella story and the "I-can-t-have-you" plot card.

She could never, she would never, should never, have this man.

When the romance FINALLY developed, I was all like

“If you want me to remove myself from your life, all you have to do is say the word.”
“I think,” she started softly, “that I like playing with fire.”

But then it got too much. The plot got really dragged and it took a long time for something interesting/important to happen. While some small things got some attention, it was still really slow paced. However, I liked how some of those small things were part of the big plot and made the main character grow.

“I am the property of the crown. My chains are invisible, but just as heavy.”

Talking about the MC, the development she got was really satisfying. I loved how the library nerd was played here. Nobody thinks about the value of the mind when all you need is muscle, or in many books, just a damsel in distress. Vhalla is a wanna-be kickass with great powers being used by a great mind. She uses her knowledge on the field and plays mind games with everyone. Including the royal family.

Knowledge and power are a dangerous combination, and you appear to have both in quantity.”

Aside from the bitchy Emperor, we have the brother, Baldair.

“I’m the spare, Vhalla. No one cares what I do, they care what he does.”
“But they love you.” It was no secret who the common people’s favorite was.
“They love me because I never have to heap punishments upon them, or carry out executions, or levy taxes. I host parties and open casks of wine.” Baldair shook his head. “They don’t like him because Aldrik will be a fair ruler. He doesn’t care about being loved, he cares about doing what’s right.”

Do you know that feeling when you know someone is trouble but the attraction is so big that you can't resist? Baldair is that guy who is really nice outside but have to deal with his own daemons without anyone noticing. He is a whore and even if he is not really a good person, I still like him too mcuh for my own good.

I also can't leave the friendship out of this. All of the side characters are just really adorable.

“Daniel, huh?” Fritz gave an appraising hum.
“What?” Vhalla asked, defensive.
“Nothing, just a shame he doesn’t seem interested in boys. The march is long,” Fritz sniggered.

I can describe the girl power here in only one way

And I wanna some murder people and kick others.
Anyway, Although I liked the first book better, this one still got me hooked and not with the feeling that I want more, but with the feeling of FUCK IT! WHERE IS THE NEXT BOOK?

PS: About the ending, I have just one thought to leave here.... For those who know what I mean...

The Emperor wanted her to bring him victory. She would show him what it would cost.

Profile Image for Rachel E. Carter.
Author 9 books3,496 followers
January 2, 2018
"You're the first thing I've ever seen him want to take for himself... It also means that you are the first thing the world knows it can take from him."

The first book is my favorite by just an itsy bit more (I know, blasphemy!) because I loved all those declaring friendship/learning to trust each other moments between Aldric and Vhalla. This was a bit slower for me (though more action) but I am still 100% madly in love with Aldric. Every time I read his scenes I just can't let go. That poor tortured prince is seriously a medieval (professor) Snape for me, and one I will never stop rooting for!
Profile Image for Nina.
306 reviews407 followers
January 3, 2016
If it weren’t for that badass ending, this would’ve earned 2 sloppy stars.

Vhalla Yarl was unbelievably dense and whiny, except for the ending where she finally comes close to being the badass Windwalker she's supposed to be. However, I’m sorry to report that her brain was left on stand-by for a majority of the book. Aldrik trusts a soldier? Let’s trust them too, despite our suspicions, because surely a prince can never be proven wrong about someone. Aldrik seeks out Vhalla whenever he has the chance? No, it can’t possibly be because he’s in love with you, you daft woman! There was also an insufferable amount of phrases like “I am nothing”, “I’m useless” or “I’m just the property of the crown”. At some point, there’s a sandstorm threatening to kill the whole legion and it takes Vhalla two pages (!) to grasp that she can stop it with her powers, because she’s a fucking Windwalker and, you know, storms involve wiiiind.

I can’t even–

high six barney how i met your mother photo: himymbarneypunchwall.gif

Vhalla was surprised to find how
good it felt to use her mind again.

I know, honey, it’s been a long time.

Furthermore, this book was incredibly romance-soaked compared to the first installment. I hate it when romance takes the front seat. Hell, Vhalla and Aldrik are in warrior’s armour on the cover, SO BEHAVE LIKE GODDAMN WARRIORS AND SLAY SOME.

Of course, there were also positive aspects or this book wouldn’t have gotten 3 stars, like her continuously growing friendship with Larel, Fritz, and the Golden Guard. Or her growing powers. Or Vhalla’s first experiences with alcohol, which was pretty amusing. And no, I didn’t mind the romance overall, as I’ve been waiting for things to progress but I didn’t expect it to come with a shitload of whining, crying, yelling. And for it to make up 50% of the plot.

And this.
"I'd love to be someone you consider your friend."

jon stewart the daily show photo: RRRRJonStewart.gif

Good Lord, Vhalla Yarl, must I slap you?
Profile Image for Lucie V..
974 reviews1,797 followers
March 1, 2023
✅ Gorgeous cover
✅ Characters
✅ Magic
✅ World-building
✅ Plot and pace
✅ Action
❗️❗️ Cliffhanger

Vhalla is now a soldier, property of the crown and she is sent to the front to win the war with her Windwalker powers. This book is once again about Vhalla trying to figure out her place in the world and also her feeling towards Aldrik (and the price of those feelings).

Vhalla changes in this book, she gains confidence and her powers develop really fast (a little too fast maybe). There is however the logical explanation of her bond with Aldrik, so it's not just another case of a young girl without any training discovering that she has magic and somehow mastering it and becoming a badass fighter in a few weeks only.

Once again, this book had me hooked up in no time, even though it was mostly about the soldiers marching to the front. Somehow the author managed to integrate action, raw emotions, and political plotting into the travel. Vhalla and Aldrik have to deal with their sentiments and with the emperor who is watching them closely. It was more than just traveling, eating, and training, I went through the whole book in a day.

“You’re the first thing I’ve ever seen him want to take for himself.”
“What’s your point?” Vhalla knew already she wasn’t going to like it.
“That it also means that you are the first thing the world knows it can take from him.”

Then there is the end. Let me just say that an end like this should not be allowed. I ordered the third, fourth, and fifth book as soon as I finished Fire Falling but I just cannot wait for three days! The suspense is killing me, if you read Fire Falling, be sure to have the third book not too far away.

Air Awakens ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

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Profile Image for Nadia Awadi.
188 reviews246 followers
August 23, 2018
This is a perfect case of a guilty pleasure read and I would like to say: FUCK IT! I liked this book.

If anyone tries to convince me that they read this book for the goodness of their heart and the plot. I would call them on their Bullshit. Is there even plot in this second installment? Absolutely NOT. Characters are just walking to the north, south or west or whatever the hell they are going to start a war. Aside from the ending, nothing really happened. EXCEPT for one big thing: Vahalla is falling in luuurve with a dark prince called Aldrik.

If you read my review of the first book, you would know that it's heavy on Romance. Really. But since I'm a hopless romantic with cynical tendencies: I was drooling the whole time while reading this book.

Aldrick is ashfthijshbsh! this is the first time I ever use this expression. He is dark and dreamy. He gave me such Warner vibes. I just can't! Even when he's being an ass and I should know better. But I think my brain was eaten by a fungus. The Romance was so sappy and cheesy YET I liked it so much.

All in all, it was pretty good. If you love romance: this is your SHIT. If you're here for the action, magic and general badassery: you would be dissapointed.

Thank you for reading this semi-review and hope you have a wonderful life.
Profile Image for Ben Alderson.
Author 18 books13.3k followers
January 8, 2017
I finished this book in the coffee shop today, it was amazing! I cried twice!!!!

Elise you are really something special
Profile Image for Lexie.
222 reviews196 followers
February 7, 2016
I hate this rating. I do. I've been trying to avoid it from page 1. But from page 1, this book fell into a very specific category I dislike. (It dislikes me back. It's a mutual thing.)

This category comprises all filler books in fantasy series which are really just an excuse for romantic angst and lots of tears and purple prose. It's all topped with arguments which stem from misunderstandings that could have been solved in five sentences, had the characters been inclined to COMMUNICATE.

An oddly specific category, I know. Sadly, I also know a lot of books which fit right in.

Not only does this book substitute fantasy and action for an angsty romance (+ incredibly slow pacing, + no plot to speak of, + no real villains), it's the most infuriating kind of romance - the incommunicado kind.

I really dislike this rating. But I also dislike that brand of angst. So I'm sorry. And I'm not.

On a positive note, I now understand how this thin plot will stretch to accommodate six books.

"Hi, I'm Filler Romantic Conflict, and boy, have I got an argument for you!"

(Proper review to come. Consider these early-morning phone thoughts. I blame all the rambling on the GR app. It made me.)
Profile Image for Pamela J. (Fantasy Book Nook) .
20 reviews23 followers
July 20, 2016
*Spoiler Free*
The second in the series, Fire Fallings leaves right where Air Awakens left off. In AA, Vhalla was a naïve library apprentice confronting a change in fate, identity, and falling in love. At the beginning of FF, we see a different Vhalla. The events towards the end of AA left Vhalla broken and conflicted, living with the consequences of a night of wind and fire and dealing with Sareem’s death. Despite the nightmares that plague her, she is given no time to rest or recover. She is now property of the empire- a mere tool to be used as Emperor Solaris wishes.

And his wish is for her to go north and win him victory. Coinciding with the physical journey north, is an emotional journey for Vhalla. New friendships and relationships are forged, along with new enemies. Two things stand out to me in this book: the relationship development and the writing.

The first, relationship development, we see played out in a variety of ways. Friendship is essential to FF, as it’s through these that Vhalla clings to in hopes of overcoming her precarious state of mind and the position she currently finds herself in. Yet, with those friendships comes uncertainty and a new kind of heartbreak. And with heartbreak, comes strength. Vhalla begins to transform in this book, hinting at her strength in fortitude to come in later books.

We also see an evolution in her relationship with Alrik. AA left us wanting, in the best way possible. The romance in this series is not rushed, rather it’s drawn out and fraught with tension, anxiety, and doubt. Their relationship continues to develop in this book, as they are faced with new trials that test and reveal their feelings towards each other.

It’s worth noting that the relationship development extends beyond the protagonist (Vhalla), to Aldrik and his brother Baldair. I was intrigued by their relationship- it’s strained despite the obvious love between the two and left me contemplating what caused their rift. I appreciated that such attention and depth was afforded to their relationship, and that Baldair, in his own right, was such a loveable character.

The other thing that strikes me about Elise’s books is the writing. I re-read certain passages multiple times because her writing is beautiful. This book in particular contains one of my favorite quotes, “Tears were going to fall at any moment, and if the two of them were going to break they may as well shatter.” It encapsulates a new, unsure, and poignant romance. It personally resonated with me as it embodies a mentality I possessed towards romance in my youth.

Overall, this book is an outstanding sequel and my favorite in the series thus far. However, be forewarned as the end of FF leaves off with a cliffhanger and you learn why the title Fire Falling is apt- in more ways than one. You’ll want to have book 3, Earth’s End, on hand.

See more of my reviews at: http://FantasyBookNook.com and like us at Facebook.com/TheFantasyBookNook
Profile Image for Brittney ~ Reverie and Ink.
259 reviews4,901 followers
June 5, 2017
4.5 stars... very well deserved.

This book was a conglomerate of frustration, agony, torture, and FEELS! Bahah... I know, I know. I'm a glutton for punishment... but I love these kinds of books.

BTW this was a buddy read with Emma - Thank you for being my emotional support because heaven knows I needed it!!! Check out Emma's amazing review!!

Though this story reminds me so much of other already existing book series, the characterization is vastly different. I keep expecting Vhalla to act like a typical struggling heroine, and jump to certain conclusions or react out of certain emotions- but she pleasantly surprises me every time. I find her quite unpredictable.. and I love that. She's becoming more and more badass. I feel for her so much!

Oh and Aldrik, lets not forget about you! What a tangled mess you are! I just finished the third book and I still barely have a grasp on you...

Then we have Daniel- oh Daniel. Please stay just as you are!! Don't change!! Vhalla needs you. She will always need you.

Overall, I'm loving this series - though I do have one complaint. I think I mentioned it before in the book #1 review. The writing style still confuses me some. It is limited third person- but the author keeps saying "the western man" or "the northern woman" and such when she's talking about main characters... and I have to sit there and think "ok.. who was eastern? who is she talking about?"

Overall, the story is rich and the characters are beautifully complex. Highly recommend!

My Blog ~ Instagram ~ Twitter ~ Etsy
Profile Image for jaymiej.
144 reviews
October 28, 2022
4.5/ 5⭐
.5/5 🌶️

"You're the first thing I've ever seen him want to take for himself... It also means that you are the first thing the world knows it can take from him."

This sums up the second book in the series! I loved all those declaring friendship/learning to trust each other moments between Aldric and Vhalla. That Cliffhanger!! My heart is in my throat, this author is genius!!!!


“Even something very small can cast a large shadow when it is close to the sun.”

“Aldrik — the crown prince, the future Emperor, Fire Lord, ruler of the Black Legion, sorcerer — was only a man. And men could be broken.”

“I love him, but I am only death. I am death to everyone I love. Someday I will be the death of him.”

“Unfortunately for them, one couldn’t break what was already broken.”

Profile Image for Kells Next Read .
528 reviews534 followers
November 20, 2015
"You're the first thing I've seen him want to take for himself"

Elise Kova second book had me:
 photo high five_zpsvbaqjgs7.gif

Guys I can't even begin to form into words the intense love that I have for Prince Aldrik. He has definitely move up to hold the prized place of my #1 fictional Crown prince that has me *swooning* with only the mention of his name. This book was good Great. I loved every character and particularly enjoy seeing the development of Vhalla and Aldrik's relationship.

This is a Read that you need to pick up..Like seriously...Go Do it Now.

Hey why are you still reading this Go...Dammit Go, Now. I dare you. You wouldn't be disappointed in the least

Lastly, I ask You this before you dive into this one, if
 photo you ready_zpsonqfvbfb.gif

Profile Image for Koistyfishy.
145 reviews171 followers
January 10, 2023
3.5 Gummy Throat Stars ⭐

This book is Popcorn. Very specific movie popcorn that induces that vague haze you are in when watching a movie. No matter what happens you just keep reading eating whilst escaping the boring mundane of life... In the end you are left slightly satisfied but still often hungry.

Please note this is Book 2 in a series that cannot be read as a standalone. As a result there might be spoilers for Book 1 - so if you do not want to see those, I might advise not reading the rest of the review - especially since a lot of my following comments will almost be a superimposed juxtaposition to highlight what was WRONG in the first book and how it was done RIGHT in this book. Book 1's Review can be found here

This book jumps right into the action where Air Awakens left off - Vhalla has been sentenced to a life of a soldier. She is thrust directly into a world of war as she has to come to terms with being the property of the crown, her complicated feelings over a broody "always angry" crown prince, and her extreme self-worth issues. That's it! That's the whole book! The book is a journey narrative story, so if you don't like those you will not like this. There is also very little plot. It does add a few things into the mix and you are given a few action scenes but nothing plot-wise to write home about...That is the first main difference between Air Awakens and Fire Falling. Book 1 was very "jump-plot" focused which wasn't always clear to understand and quite frankly was confusing at times. This one doesn't have much plot, so whilst it might seem that "lacking" plot is a bad thing, it allowed the story to move in an easy-to-understand progression...

The second main difference is we don't learn too much about who our characters are in Air Awakens - there is some character development but not much. I now believe Air Awakens is mostly setting the stage for this and future books because of what ABSOLUTELY WONDERFUL CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT we get in Fire Falling. I have realised a book can completely forgo a plot if there is good character development and OH MY GOSH does this book deliver on this! It's also not just Vhalla who we see grow, but we see more into her friends, as well as gain insight into what makes Aldrik the way he is, and are shown his personal backstory.

Vhalla is a complicated character who spends most of this book suffering from PTSD and depression. She has just killed people for the first time in her life, has been tortured and sent to war (and possibly her death sentence), and is plagued by horrid nightmares and night terrors. Her suffering and emotional journey of how she comes to terms with the events of the first book and evolves completely overshadows the aspects that annoyed me in the book. The more and more I think about it, the more this journey is ALL I can think about. It's just stuck with me and rooted in place...

The book is still a Romance Fantasy, so it still has a major focus on the Romance part of the plot and less on the Fantasy - there is more angst, longing, and glances when they think the other is not watching, so VERY TYPICAL slow burn; but the pace of the build-up to payoff was worth it! I think it was done really well. I was still annoyed at aspects of the Romance that Vhalla for the longest time couldn't see the Prince has feelings for her and the slight miscommunication on who Elecia is, but overall the Romance was enjoyable.

I am not sure what it was with the writing, or if Elise Kova fired her previous editor and a new one cleaned up this...because Book 1 feels like juvenile fan fiction written by a 12-year-old, vs this one; where the prose flows almost beautifully and comfortably across the page. The stop-start of sentences in book 1 DROVE ME MAD but now it seems almost completely eradicated. Overall this book feels highly more mature (whilst still being a "Young Adult"). It might have been due to the topics and emotional journey that this is more real and raw but I still cannot comprehend how Book 1's style compared to this feels like two separate authors wrote it!

Quite frankly I really enjoyed this and I can't get it out of my head.
I do recommend if you dropped the series due to Air Awakens being awful perhaps at least try this book and see if Fire Falling is better for you as it's basically COMPLETELY DIFFERENT - the same characters just happen to appear. I am a sucker for not being able to DNF a book or series and I am glad I did not stop after book 1, because if this is the true reflection of Elise Kova's writing then she got me hooked! Let's just hope the rest of the books don't cause me to break the line.


Ok, I’m a need sometime to process that ending?
WTF! You don’t just end a book like that…. The are cliffhangers but that was a fucking CLIFF-FALLING!!!!!!

This was entertaining, I’ll give it that… Still had some issues but I did enjoy the experience I went on for this book, honestly felt like Elise Kova was abducted by aliens this book felt so different to book 1….

Proper succinct review to come… ♥️
Profile Image for Leila.
415 reviews67 followers
November 15, 2015

Holy mother Sun! I'm starstruck. This is what I'd like to call a gorgeous sequel. Dare I say it, it might even top Air Awakes

This was an exceptional sequel. I loved it so much! I feel like the series has more of a direction, which is exciting. I'm still processing what happened in this book, because THINGS HAPPENS.


This book deserves More Than this insignificant five stars!! Omg what a roller coaster of emotions...

TO read more about my thaughts click [MEEEE]

upon opening the first page

Okay let's get ready, and start this beauty


Now let's begin: it started as expected, ummm hummm. Quite good actually, Hello Larel *waves!* by the way I love that girl if you ask ;)

*swoons* Aldrik eeek!

Okay now we move on...


Ooooh who's that?! I don't like that person near Aldrik
* dirty look *

The stranger has a name!!

and let me tell you... Elecia


Okay Vhalla get yourself together : she's like
description and I'm like description


Now is not the time to feel shy Vhalla!!

Vhalla your actions are totally irrationnal but if that what comes after them...Do as much as you want!
Plus That line

Straight to the gutter


Lady, Princess, QUEEEN , You killing me ALDRIcK!!

Oooookay When ALDRICK start to flirt I...


ELECIA I'll tell you something...
: description


When Baldair is actinng ...
And Then Vhalla ...
I'm first like
But then I was like "Haha Bravo!"

The danger is here!!! so Vhalla felt she was like
description BUT THEN
and poor me is ...

Ahhh I don't Like witchy stuff, & Vhalla where's your brains when needed.
you got yourself in another mess...

*broken mad voice* Aldrik...??!





OMG My heart is gonna brust from happiness!!

No no no no no pleaaase, NO!! NOT THAT PERSON *sobbing*


Just kill me already, this is getting way harder than I inticipated...




When Aldrick Goes like


I am like "Give me my glasses..."



That ending though

Note: Review will be posted over at my "what I call" a poor attempt at a blog ;) On the 14th of november http://missleila.booklikes.com/
Profile Image for Ann (annreads).
243 reviews314 followers
March 6, 2018
*Reread March 2018*

“You are a symbol, Vhalla. And, despite what some may have you believe, you have more control over what you symbolize than anyone else.”
“I am no one,” she muttered, hearing Aldrik mounting his War-strider.
“Even something very small can cast a large shadow when it is close to the sun.”

I literally know every single thing that happens in this book and somehow it still gets me EVERY DAMN TIME ??? *cries*


*Reread January 2017*

“The words were an arrow into the heart of the silence that had been flourishing between them. And words, like arrows, once let go, could not be taken back.”

Bloody hell, that ending gets me every DAMN time *SCREAMS*


*Reread June 2016*

“There was something severed and rough about her, something tainted and, yet, at the same time those jagged pieces were the makings of something fearsome. She'd wanted to become someone the Senate would fear, why not shatter the sky?”

Ahh this series man! I could literally read each book a thousand times and never get enough of this characters!❤️


*First read December 2015*

“You’re the first thing I’ve ever seen him want to take for himself.” “What’s your point?” Vhalla knew already she wasn’t going to like it. “That it also means that you are the first thing the world knows it can take from him.”


I can't with the feels right now but let me tell you one thing: Fire Falling was FREAKING fantastic, like omg I LOVED it so so much!!! Seriously, this books just keeps getting better and better!! Simply AMAZING!! Now I can't wait for Earth's End to come out, so excited!!
Ahhhh I think I found a new favorite series❤️❤️❤️

Profile Image for Nastassja.
423 reviews987 followers
March 3, 2021

What I love about the sequels is that you can abandon your usual pattern for reviews and go on babbling about your favorite characters and wow moments and angst moments and so on. And trust me, Fire falling has a lot of these.

First of all, let us summarize where we were left with our MCs in Air Awakens. Vhalla is a property of the Solaris Empire now and she is forced to join the war against north. Some people want her dead on the butterflied, some want her to win the war and bring new power - the power only Windwalkers can achieve.

The girl who had come to the palace at eleven and lived her life in the library was dead; she’d been killed by the Senators whom she’d always been taught were sworn to protect her. The woman sitting in the saddle now had to find a heart crafted of black steel. She had to survive if for no other reason than to spite the world.

Anyway, Vhalla is in the center of events and her forbidden relationship with Crown prince Aldrik is more risky and dangerous than ever.
“I realized something this morning, these past days,” Aldrik murmured. “I am a spoiled prince. No matter how unfair it may be, I do not do well being denied something I want, even if it’s self-inflicted. I have hurt you, I have put you in harm’s way, and I will continue to ask this and more of you the longer you stay near me. Yet knowing this, I seem to want you closer even when sense tells me the opposite.”

Friendship, love, danger, royalty, jealousy - everything is at stake and not all is as it seems. I want to underline that in this book the duty and desire is a stumbling stone.
“Vhalla, I need her in so many ways, Mother help me,” Aldrik groaned. “I need her as my redemption, I need her kindness, I need her forgiveness, I need her smiles, I need her humanity, I need her ignorance, I need her her innocence, and, yes ... Mother Sun, yes, I need her as a man.”

“You know your place in life, your duty to your people.” Vhalla didn’t like where Lord Ophain was headed with his logic. “Someday you will be Emperor and no one will be able to question your decisions. No one will question them if they feel that your law comes from a place of honor, sensibility, and compassion. The crown is a heavy burden and you will have to make choices between your wants and your Empire.”

To have what your heart desires is literally can kill you and to follow your duty can also kill you, only from the inside. The emotional torture our characters endure through out the book will not leave anyone unmoved, and if you thought the first book was emotional, then you are for a heart-wrenching ride in this one. There are going to be a lot of surprises and not every one of them is pleasant. I lost count how many times my heart was broken during this book and how many times I mended it, only to break it in the end again.

In the previous book I missed some world-building and wanted to know and see more of the history we are witnessing. Fire walking did not disappoint me, and we have now a full-time fantasy with an amazing world-building and much more action than in the previous book. And a map, finally we can see on paper how this world looks.

Vhalla was a shy uncertain girl in Air awakens. Here she is finally becoming a woman and a ruthless one. More darkness is settling in her and she is coming into her powers. I admired Vhalla in this book and was proud of her like a mother hen, worrying about her child she saw growing in front of her eyes. These books are from Vhallas POV and it was impossible to stay away from her experiences and emotions.

“She was kind, shy, and sweet the first time I met her. Less than a year with you and look at what you’ve done to her Aldrik.

But you know what? I want more POVs in the next books. I want to be inside of Baldair's (his POV I need desperately) and Aldrik's heads. Please, Elise, give us insight into our princes!

Ok, now about things that weren't very nice for me. For starters, the foreplay between Aldrik and Vhalla is too stretched. I want more action under the sheets. They are star-crossed lovers, they can't be together but when they find these rare stolen moments to be together, why are they wasting them on sleeping together without really sleeping together? Do you get my point here? It's frustrating like hell! Furthermore, the romance is one of the leading parts of this series and the author so sensually and beautifully crafted the desire and tension between Vhalla and Aldrik, that it's impossible not to want more of them together in a more intimate way.

“I love him.” Vhalla shook again, the words bringing a fresh batch of tears to her eyes. “I love him, but I am only death. I am death to everyone I love. Someday I will be the death of him.”

“If you want me to remove myself from your life, all you have to do is say the word.” There was no levity to his declaration.
Vhalla quickly looked askance, saving them from impropriety and hiding the blush that had found its way to her cheeks at his apparent attentions.
“I think,” she started softly, “that I like playing with fire.”

There was one inhale, one exhale, one heartbeat between them.
She melted into the strange warmth of the communal existence, relinquishing the last of her physical senses. It was unlike anything she had ever felt. Like life and death all bundled neatly into one moment of beauty. She tried to find where her own self ended, to find where he began, but there were no ends or beginnings anywhere. They were infinite.
She felt as he felt, and he thought as she thought.

“Oh? Tell me what will you do to me?” She did her best to imitate one of his trademark smirks, and she was rewarded by the spark turning to a fire in his eyes.
“I could think of quite a few things to do to you.” His voice was gravely and deep, and Vhalla felt a flush rise to her cheeks.

“If you want to make the widely accepted appropriate decision, then leave now, have mercy and end this before you entice me further. Because I promise, this will never be easy—for either of us—and I refuse to love you halfway.”

MORE, Elise, please!

Then there's Baldair, who is like a lost puppy. What role does he suppose to play in this series? Because I have no idea.

She found his presence uncomfortable. First he’d been nothing more to her than the Heartbreaker Prince, a man straight from the lore of servants. A man she’d only briefly met in the library by chance. Then, he’d been Aldrik’s brother, and her conspirator in sneaking her into the gala at the end of the last Festival of the Sun. That had also been the Night of Fire and Wind. The last time she’d seen Prince Baldair he’d been tending to her wounds at Aldrik’s command. What did he think of her now?

I want him in action and I want more of him. We need either (I can't believe I am saying this) to create a love triangle between him, Vhalla and Aldrik or find him a nice lady so we can swoon over them together. But I am not ok with his role in the books today! And I want more of this brotherly relationship between Baldair and Aldrik. I mean, there's obviously something off with them.
“Tread carefully, Vhalla,” Prince Baldair cautioned. “I know a lot more about my brother than you. I may seem like an ass.”
She raised her eyebrows.
“I am an ass at times,” he corrected with a chuckle. “But I am exactly what you see. He’s not. There are things about him you still don’t know.”

“They love me because I never have to heap punishments upon them, or carry out executions, or levy taxes. I host parties and open casks of wine.” Baldair shook his head. “They don’t like him because Aldrik will be a fair ruler. He doesn’t care about being loved, he cares about doing what’s right.”

I have an elder brother and I know how hard things can be between siblings, that's why I am curious as how things between Aldrik and Baldair will progress.
“Our relationship works when we need it to, how we need it to. We normally have an understanding.”

And my final complain. It's more like an observation than complain. The books have a certain pattern and the first 50% are usually very slow-paced (sometimes frustratingly so) and I have a feeling that five books are too much for this series. A trilogy would be nice, because some scenes are too stretched and feel unnecessary (though I am not complaining, because at least we don't have to wait a whole year to read the next books)

Finally, I can't be silent about some tragic events of this book.

Fire falling ended in a huge cliffhanger and with more questions than we had before. Now to wait till February will be a trial for me. Seriously, people, I am strongly recommend to wait for the next book before reading the whole series, but then again, the next book can also end with a cliffhanger (and probably will). At least I have a moral support in my dear friend Katerina with whom I buddy read this book and shared my crazy range of emotions. So seriously, find other people and read this series together.

Bottom line: Highly recommended fantasy series. If you haven't read it yet, what are you waiting for?

Profile Image for Bibi.
1,282 reviews3,263 followers
June 18, 2020
Apparently, no character is safe. I can't even right now.
Profile Image for Khadidja .
563 reviews397 followers
October 17, 2018

That's it. That's the review.

Profile Image for Ashley.
370 reviews113 followers
February 5, 2017
"This was the Fire Lord...He was like poetry through fire."

Question: If you could have one fictional man, which would you choose?

A: The mysterious, bad-intentioned Darkling who you share an unexplainable bond with?
B: Rowan Whitethorn, a badass warrior who you are also bonded to, and wants to ultimately protect you?
C: Nikolai Lantsov, a prince whose snarky as hell?
D: Rhysand, a suave and tad cocky overall badass?
E: Prince Aldrik aka all of the above?

Oh wow. I loved this book. I never thought I'd see the day where I grew to love a fictional guy more than the Darkling. Like I'm still trying to process this. We've been mentally married for almost three years now...I just can't let Darkling go...maybe Aldrik, Darkling, and I will just enter into some mental polyandry relationship. Haha, a girl can dream I guess. Honestly, I was slowly devouring this, and I had so much time to read this in one sitting, but I didn't want to let these characters, the burning romance, or the story go too quickly. This is one of those books where you want to take a piece of it, and absorb every tiny detail. This books has absolutely everything I could ever want in a book, and I'm so glad many more people have picked up this wonderful series.

There are so many quotes I could share with you that i absolutely love, but like I say with all other books special to my heart, I think you need to fully embrace this book and go into it without other people spoiling you.

Can we just talk about the romance though?


Absolutely wow.

Can someone come help me pick my heart off the floor because I think it just bursted with feelings.

So yeah, there was a lot of this:

Which then had me doing a lot of this:

But, the one thing that frustrated me with this book was Baldair.

I don't get it. I really enjoyed him in book one, I couldn't wait to see more of him in book two. But gosh, I did not like him at all in this book which makes me so sad. The way he treated Vhalla and Aldrik really frustrated the hell out of me, and then in the end in that one dream Vhalla has of the some past events in book one where we see Baldair's true colors just made me all the more frustrated with him. Oh, and I don't know if I like Daniel. He's slightly interfering with my ship and I don't like that because I want my ship to sail.



Elise must have been sitting there as she wrote that just laughing at the evil things it was going to do to her readers.

That cliffhanger was definitely not welcomed.

I have so many feelings (good and bad) towards book three. I'm hoping Vhaldrik is still afloat (you know with that evil cliffhanger and all), and there will be no love triangles in the future. Please, no. And Baldair needs to get his act together. And I wish a certain character would come back to life. Pretty please? Okay, no. My dreams are crushed.
Profile Image for Shauni .
289 reviews236 followers
August 17, 2021
Excuse me as I scrape my heart off the floor. That ending was brutal! 😭

I'm so glad this series is complete and I can start the next book right away. I thought about taking a little break before continuing on. But nope, I've been sucked in. I'm invested now and can't leave it like this. Vhalla and Aldrik have slowly grown on me. And Daniel, I love that guy. Even Baldair has weaseled his way into my heart.

I actually didn't care very much about the war and politics. I felt this book focused a lot more on the inner turmoil of the characters. It was much heavier and slower paced than the first book and the characters became much more relatable. They all need to find a little happiness. I'm looking forward to continuing the series.
Profile Image for Shannon (It Starts At Midnight).
1,145 reviews1,010 followers
November 2, 2015
This review was originally posted on It Starts at Midnight
You know when you're reading a book, and suddenly you look down to see that you're making actual puddles of tears on your own lap? Yeah, that is a thing, and it was the product of this book. This is one of those reviews that is extra hard to write because you just want to flail and throw the book at people. Yep, it was that good. I haven't read a book that had me this entranced in a long while.enthralled-ScottPilgrim-Knives-amazing

You probably want to know what was so epic, no? Great, because I shall tell you these things!

That tiny, pesky worldbuilding issue I had in the first book? Gone, fixed, I am now informed and in the loop and have a map for reference. This is perfect. We also start to find out the stakes, both for Vhalla and the rest of the empire.
Vhalla still amazes me at every turn. She's still coming to terms with her situation, which means that sometimes she is bitter and angry and scared and miserable. And other times, she realizes that she needs to step it up and basically kicks ass. But she still needs a hug when it's over. This is what makes Vhalla so real- yes, she can handle herself better now, she understands more of what is at stake in her world. But she is still just a young woman with feelings and emotions like everyone else, who is looking for friendship and acceptance and love. She knows you can be both tough and retain your humanity. She can love as fiercely as she fights; she can conquer enemies and nurture friendships. I love her now more than ever.
There was a perfect balance between action and character development. There was a lot of action as Vhalla and the gang march to a war, of course. But there was plenty of restful periods where we got to know all of the side characters quite well. Since there's only a finite number of people traveling, we get to really learn a lot about those involved with Vhalla. But the action scenes are full of tension, yet move at a pace where I never once felt lost. Best of all, the events really had quite a cumulative effect- the ramifications and fallout always had an impact on other scenes.
The romance is so swoon-worthy I can hardly contain myself. I haven't shipped a couple this hard in a long time. Even though there are so many reasons that they should be apart, their chemistry and affection is undeniable.

Bottom Line: While I loved Air Awakens, Fire Falling did the rare and fabulous job of outshining its predecessor. I basically don't know what to do with myself until Earth's End. Things definitely ended on a "need next book now" level, and I do. I absolutely do. Fire Falling made me swoon, laugh, cry (fine, sob), and I definitely count it among my favorite books. Next, please!!
Profile Image for nicklein.
401 reviews77 followers
October 7, 2016
I'm so busy I barely even have time to take a peek here, let alone read. Ugh. Two more weeks, just two more weeks and I'M FREE!

Mini review to come soon.
Profile Image for Kristalia .
383 reviews612 followers
February 18, 2016
Final rating: 4.5/5 stars

“I see you taking steps down this path, and I don’t want you be lost to that darkness.” He laughed and bore the most unfiltered sorrow she had ever seen from him. “What is worse is, thanks to the extraordinary wisdom of the people’s Senate, I cannot protect you from that.”
“So, what do I do?” Vhalla finally sought guidance for her guilt.
“Never forget who you are, and do not let the dead define you.”

This book made up for everything I minded in the first one. It was great. I enjoyed it, it had a perfect amount of angst (yes, if you have followed my reviews for a while, you would notice I love angsty things to read) and it was quite emotional with a killer ending. And, the best of all, there were so many parts that made me smile, despite the sorrowful time our main characters are forced in. If you plan to read this series, spare yourself torture of waiting and read after the next one is out. With the luck we have, third might end with an ever worse cliffhanger.

But I am glad to know that author plans to publish the next book very soon! Which is fantastic because I need the next one like I need air.

Loved the plot twists though, and when I was certain I had figured something out, I didn't even think about the other options and I even felt betrayed at one point until the next plot twist kicked in. Well done!

Once again, the writing was so damn beautiful and lovely, and there were many quotes I had to highlight and put in my review but I will put some of them under spoiler for reasons.

The emotional struggles the characters face in this book is great, and I also loved the focus on side characters - especially Larel and Daniel and the others, and I loved that we found more about certain relationships and we also have new characters, maybe even key players introduced.

Thankfully, we also have a map of the world now, so it's much easier to figure out what is where.

This one has also much more action than Air Awakens and it was great to see that, and there was also more information on Bonds, Joining, magic in general.

What i loved in these books is that women going to war here - being sorcerers or not - is quite normal. So, we get to read about kickass women.

I'm still shocked over that cliffhanger though...


In short: After the Senate and Emperor made their decision that will most likely kill Vhalla earlier than she thought, she is sent to the front as soon as the verdict was passed. Having no time to adjust herself for the inevitable, she is at least relieved to see her friends Fritz and Larel as the new recruits in the army of sorcerers. In the end, she must learn how to fight and how to stay alive, how to deal with Prince Aldrik, Emperor and Baldair, and how to accept what she had become and what her choices are.

{More will be written in the character section}.


Vhalla Yarl is not at her best - she only just found the Empire is sending her to war to die. Being the last Windwalker in the world, she is still not accustomed to her own magic and she is in the state of panic - how will she survive this?
“Vhalla Yarl, blessed bird of the East. The one who can soar without wings. The first chick to fly the cage. The first to return to our land.”

She is plagued by nightmares, she sees her friend dying over and over again and can be easily triggered. Vhalla is now seen by royalty, or actually Senate and Emperor as their property and the only way she can get her freedom back is if she brings them victory.

“You’re not someone to live in darkness or sorrow.” Larel reclined on the bed, inviting Vhalla to do the same. “You’re a light that can shine brighter than even the sun.”
“That sounds treasonous,” Vhalla teased.
“I mean it all the same.” Larel leaned forward and pressed her forehead against Vhalla’s a brief moment. “You have something in you, Vhalla, something most never have or lose quickly. I cannot wait to see when you realize it yourself.”

{Vhalla goes through a lot in this book - she is scared, she panics, she is terrified of dying this way. She is happy that she can still rely on her friends Larel and Fritz, and she is happy when she sees Daniel and Craig with her as well. What she needs is reassurance she will go through this alive and hope. And then there is also Aldrik - she finds herself more and more entranced by him, but she tries to figure out if Aldrik feels the same.}

“I think,” she started softly, “that I like playing with fire.”

Prince Aldrik's character was established at the end of the last book. Aldrik's only fault is his fear of trusting in the people and being honest to them. And sometimes, that can lead to lot of misunderstandings. He tries his best to help Vhalla by helping her train using her magic, and explaining how their bond works and how magic can save her life.

“I just need to really understand what it’s like to have someone whom-whom I trust.” Aldrik avoided her gaze, scowling at himself. “Someone who knows my dark truths and who isn’t seeking something from me or is trying to use something against me.”

{In the first book it was hard to see his true character. But in this one, we see him open up more than ever, see his though and even know more about his past and what made him this way. He easily became one of my favorite characters but I have to admit he had me scared there, and even disappointed one time, but when it was all cleared up I was able to breathe again. You know the term Problematic Fave? You are looking at one of it's definitions. }

“You know your place in life, your duty to your people.” Vhalla didn’t like where Lord Ophain was headed with his logic. “Someday you will be Emperor and no one will be able to question your decisions. No one will question them if they feel that your law comes from a place of honor, sensibility, and compassion. The crown is a heavy burden and you will have to make choices between your wants and your Empire.”

Prince Baldair is back in all his glory... and his warnings. He doesn't really trust Aldrik, and like everyone else, he is too quick to judge him - without even trying to understand him. But he cares of other people. He cares about his own guard, he cares about his people, he cares about Vhalla.

{While he might have some feelings for Vhalla, he doesn't show it much. But he is willing to help and he wants to keep her safe and sound no matter what. His relationship with Aldrik is very complicated and I hope to see more of it later on. There is one thing people without siblings don't understand. Life is different when you have one, or two, or more. You have the person that is closest to you and if your relationship is right, you have the most amazing ally in the world. Your sibling is your anchor, your casket of secrets, your treasure. But the bond between Aldrik and Baldair is not easily mended. While Aldrik was shunned from the world, Baldair is welcomed by it and is loved by people.}

“They love me because I never have to heap punishments upon them, or carry out executions, or levy taxes. I host parties and open casks of wine.” Baldair shook his head. “They don’t like him because Aldrik will be a fair ruler. He doesn’t care about being loved, he cares about doing what’s right.”
“And what’s wrong with—”

Larel and Fritz decided to go with Vhalla to the war, so they wouldn't leave her alone - they know that the only person she can rely on is Prince Aldrik, but he is not the one who can stay with her all the time, only the two of them. So, deciding that is for the best, they venture forth as new recruits in the army in order to make her stay sane and safe.

{I was surprised to see Larel talking about her life - I have not expected it but it was surprising... and painful. And in this book we have a clear view on Aldrik's and Larel's relationship and it was nice to know and read about. Larel is one of my favorites, she is kind, thoughtful and wonderful person who cares about the others.

“There are many kinds of love,” Larel said.
“Are there?”
“Do you love Aldrik as you love your father?” A grin was in Larel’s voice.
“Family is different!” Vhalla pushed the other woman’s shoulder.
“I love you,” Larel said softly, stilling Vhalla. The Western woman leaned close, placing a gentle kiss on Vhalla’s forehead. “I don’t love you as a lover. But I love you wholly and completely nonetheless.” Vhalla suddenly felt like crying.

As for Fritz: he was wonderful as well. Careful, lovely, funny, amazing. Wonderful. I really, really want more scenes with him. His enthusiasm and cheerfulness make me smile and he is just too adorable.

Fritz squeaked. He seemed to vibrate with excitement. “Tell—us—everything.” He punctuated his words, making each a demand.
“She doesn’t have to tell us anything,” Larel scolded. He whimpered at the other woman.

He cares about Vhalla and he is there to support her and stay with her.

“So then, if you didn’t share his bed ... what did you do?” Fritz seemed genuinely confused.
“He worked, some magic,” Vhalla outlined vaguely.
“You’re adorable,” Larel said knowingly, earning a look from her and Fritz.

Way too adorkable.}

Daniel and Craig , the guards that guarded her cell in the first book, are in the army as well. But not as ordinary soldiers, but as members of the Golden Guard, the personal guard of Prince Baldair. And they are happy as well as sad to see Vhalla near them.

{Daniel's character is more explored than Craig's - meaning that he appeared more than the other. Daniel is interesting and nice guy who wants to help and teach and be there when he is needed and the two of them started caring about Vhalla ever since they saw her broken and now want nothing more than help her with dealing with this.}

Elecia is a mysterious woman and Groundbreaker who is somewhat close to Aldrik - they know each other, but Vhalla is confused of their relationship. And she knows some things about Vhalla as well. I'll leave her mystery to the future readers.

I really enjoyed reading about Vhalla and Aldrik, most of the time, their interactions made me smile. I have so many quotes that I have highlighted only for the sake of it. Some of my favorite quotes: [be warned, some of them contain spoilers].

I also loved the other relationships and friendships and how it was done, and I wish there was more interaction between Larel and Fritz, because the two of them are too adorable together:
Larel’s fist smashed through Fritz’s face, and his body dissolved in a puff of smoke. The Western woman turned with a groan. Vhalla caught a shift in the light behind her. There was a flash of ice and Fritz faded back to sight, holding an ice dagger at Larel’s throat.
“Every time!” Larel threw up her hands, and Fritz backed away with a grin, tossing the wickedly sharp icicle aside. “Every time!” she said again, kicking the ground in frustration.

I also wish there were more interactions between Larel and Aldrik - them being friends is only mentioned and they don't really interact. We find out their relationship through stories and flashbacks but I needed more.

I was also surprised to find out about the ages of the characters. I was not sure before, but now i think I am not wrong about Aldrik being 24, Vhalla 18, Baldair 21, and Larel 23? I always love to find out about the ages of the characters, it makes it always so interesting for me.


Well done and strong sequel, even though there is not much happening in the book in the beginning, but it was worth reading and I felt many things. What I love here the most is not the story, nor the worldbuilding, but the amazing characters and their struggles. I need Aldrik like I need Air, hahahahah....

And that cover... that beautiful cover... I am in love... Wonderful, just wonderful and majestic. (Just look at Aldrik, his fabulous hair and armor!)

☑ Characters and relationships.
☑ Last 40% of the book.

☒ Nothing.

Standalone: No. Series of 5 books.
Point of View: First POV, 1 character.
Cliffhanger: OH HELL YES.
Triggers: i'm sorry i forgot, i dont think there was anything serious.
Love triangle: NO. THANK GOD.
Angst: Of course.
Supernatural: Elemental magicians.
Explicit content: No.
Ending type:


Air Awakens (Air Awakens, #1)
Fire Falling (Air Awakens, #2)
Profile Image for Katerina  Kondrenko.
498 reviews828 followers
January 1, 2021
9 out of 10

Ревью в моем блоге/This review on my blog
Living A Thousand Lives
(please use Chrome/Yandex browser or Android/IOS to see the page; otherwise, spoiler-tags I use to make my post compact may not work)

Phantogram – Fall In Love
Imagine Dragons – A monsters
Chroma Music – Playing With Fire (Feat. Casey Hensley)

Genre: high-fantasy, YA+ (upper-YA)
Stuff: sorcerers, girl gets stronger, war, magic
Setting: road to the North
Fail: a bit slow beginning though it's ok
WOW: romance, last 20%
POV: 3rd-person, female
Love-Geometry: zero or seeming

“Even something very small can cast a large shadow when it is close to the sun.”

Wanna thank my dear friend Nastassja. This journey is so much better with you by my side!

If you would like to know whether this book was better than Air Awakens, I'll say indeed. And you know how I loved AA! Can't imagine how I would feel when I lay my hands on Earth's End. BTW, have you noticed how Elise chooses her titles? AA, FF, EE. So we can wait for WW already. And one of these W will be 'water'. I like this pattern!)

Okay, let's be back to Fire Falling. The First 20% of the book are the setting, preparations, and stuff. Yes, the start would be a bit slow, but this is how Elise develops her story: step by step, then the wild ride goes. You have time to prepare yourself for big booms.

Vhalla is going to leave her home for war.
“Home. This magnificent palace had been her home since she was eleven. She’d come to it as a farmer’s daughter, and now she’d leave it as a soldier.”

All fine and dandy, but she can't fight, she never did it, and why would she. So Vhalla attends combat-classes and tries to learn something from one of the most experienced war-generals in Black Legion. One-eyed, badass woman. Larel continues to support her protégé, Fritz — to entertain her. While Vhalla, in her turn, is torturing herself, feeling guilty for Sareem's death. A week or so passes fast and here we go, marching to the North. Our girl, despite her situation, is determined to show them all and get back alive.
“There was something severed and rough about her, something tainted and, yet, at the same time those jagged pieces were the makings of something fearsome.”

This book will be dedicated to the march; we would cross half of the continent and have a glimpse of the series's world. But it’s not the most important thing. Romance is.

We know that Vhalla likes Aldrik and he has some feelings toward her. But we can’t be sure of anything, ‘cause our crown prince has a company upon this road in the person of a good-looking dark-skinned and sharp-tongued young woman. Though he can’t stand away from Vhalla too. He has to show her how to fight, mixing up combat skills and her power over the air. Or she won't survive in the North. In addition, he trains her Projection, thinking this ability would help somehow to take over the Empire's enemies. While doing this, they try Joining and this act makes their Bond even stronger. Now Vhalla really can fight. She has access to Aldrik’s knowledge and experience through their connection. As much as his memories, those are coming to her in the form of her dreams. The scene when Vhalla fights just how Aldrik is one of my favs. This execution-move is dangerous, scary and sexy. As to dreams... they open up some dark Aldrik's secrets, some painful moments, some intimate ones. And he doesn't like it at all (who would?!).
“Tell me, Vhalla, what’s it like to find out your prince is a coward? Is weak? Is scared? Is wicked? Is—” “Human,” she said firmly.”

To be honest, I liked Aldrik as a wicked prince. In this book he would be a king of drama, I still into him, but c'mon, prince, stop being this gentlemen-like and noble-ish much. Push someone from the roof again!

Anyway, the romance is very good. The slowest among slow-burning ones and so bitter-sweet. I felt every Vhalla's emotion. Aldrik was around and my breath was caught. One look at his eyes and I had to drink a glass of water. Those were Vhalla's feels, but I had mine as well (though toward another man, I'll tell you about him later).
“I am a spoiled prince. No matter how unfair it may be, I do not do well being denied something I want, even if it’s self-inflicted. I have hurt you, I have put you in harm’s way, and I will continue to ask this and more of you the longer you stay near me. Yet knowing this, I seem to want you closer even when sense tells me the opposite.”

Aldrik is hot-cold and cold-hot. Vhalla wants to be with him, but he’s a future Emperor and she is no one. He says it can be changed as soon as he’ll get the ultimate power but she has her doubts. Smart girl. Only love makes us stupid. And Vhalla knows that her feeling is love and no less. I won’t say to you after which moment she understood this fact, I just say that it was a heroic act. But her revelation doesn't matter, 'cause...
“She could never, she would never, should never, have this man.”

Right. But you can't command one's heart. And Aldrik doesn't help to end what they share.
“What is this woman to you?” “Vhalla, I need her in so many ways, Mother helps me,” Aldrik groaned. “I need her as my redemption, I need her kindness, I need her forgiveness, I need her smiles, I need her humanity, I need her ignorance, I need her innocence, and, yes ... Mother Sun, yes, I need her as a man.”

Cold shower! And a lot of ice, please.
“If you want to make the widely accepted appropriate decision, then leave now, have mercy and end this before you entice me further. Because I promise, this will never be easy—for either of us—and I refuse to love you halfway.”

Silver-tongued. Indeed.

And you see? This is love from both sides. I mean... what we would do with Baldair? I love this man! Maybe I do just because he hasn’t romantic moments with Vhalla while I’m eager for them? Or maybe I see through his reputation and mask? Aldrik is lonely and has a hard life (from the very first day of it, ‘cause his mother died back then), but Baldair is lonely too. He is a hostage of his image. People wait he would act as a womanizer and funny guy and he does. But does he want to be like that all the time? I’m not sure. I can't decide if I prefer him to Aldrik until I saw Baldair and Vhalla together. And I see how he is interested in Vhalla. Maybe it started as a mere curiosity, but it gets deeper and wider. I think he actually can fall in love with her. I WANT it. But I see no room for such a twist so far. Yes, dear friends, there’s no love-triangle. Unfair! So many unnecessary triangles are out there, and when I really need some kind of love-geometry in this particular series, I have none. *CRIES* In the first book a seeming love interest was Sareem, in this one it’s Daniel. I like the latter, but I love Baldair muuuch more. Just look at what he does:
“The prince closed the tent flap behind him and did a short circle around her, assessing Vhalla from head to toe. “Sit.” He motioned to a chair. “Or perhaps you’d rather I threw some pillows on the floor?”
Vhalla’s eyes widened, hearing the meaning between his words.
“You look uncomfortable.” The prince paused, his eyes reading hers. “I would think you’d be more at ease in a prince’s tent. Or is it just my brother’s?”
“What do you want?” she demanded.
“Today, I saw him in you.” Baldair squinted his eyes, as if he was trying to imagine Aldrik imposed atop her. “The way you moved, the way you were rushed by the fight. Tell me, is that the only way he’s been in you?”

This is a way to shatter Vhalla’s calm, but I sense jealousy here. I sense it! And you know, Baldair made a serious promise to Vhalla.
Either way, consider me your sword, Vhalla Yarl.”
“Then consider me your wind.”

Isn't that a start for, IDK, something? *le sigh*

Howbeit, Vhalla thinks about Aldrik only, she's mad about him and he's mad about her. But...
“You’re the first thing I’ve ever seen him want to take for himself.” “What’s your point?” Vhalla knew already she wasn’t going to like it. “That it also means that you are the first thing the world knows it can take from him.”

This is dangerous, and the consequences are on their way. You'll see them in the last 20% of the book. They are a bomb with deaths, twists, moves, and surprises. I cried I was scared, couldn't be still, couldn't lay down the book. And then I saw IT. The ending. This cliffhanger-ish ending. I have my theories about what would happen next, but Elise can be very unpredictable. She already did something I wasn't ready for and now I try to be open to everything.

Thank God, we'll get EE in a few months and not in a few years. But I still don't know how I would manage to wait!)

Elise, you took my heart with this story. Don't break it, please) XOXO

Air Awakens (Пробуждение воздуха):
Air Awakens (Пробуждение воздуха) #1/5
Fire Falling (Влечение огня) #2/5
Earth's End (Край земли) #3/5
Water's Wrath (Гнев воды) #4/5
— Crystal Crowned (Коронованная кристаллами) #5/5
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407 reviews204 followers
June 2, 2018
As Vhalla marches off to war she battles with her security of who she is while discovering more about her power and her place in the army.

The Story
Holy Crap. If you’re looking for a cliffhanger, read this book. I don’t know how I am going on without knowing what happens next. Okay, I do, it’s because I have so many other reads to keep going at the moment, but I seriously can’t wait till I continue. First of all, I love Elise Kova, and I am going to be auto-buying her books from now on. I already really liked her, but I just need them all now.

So this book picks up pretty much where we left off on the first book, Vhalla is sentenced off to be in the army as punishments for what she did. What I loved about this book was that it wasn’t like Vhalla suddenly has a grasp on what is happening to her. She is still stumbling with what she is, controlling her magic, and dealing with the tenuous relationship/friendship she has with the crown prince. So the book is sort of romance driven, sort of driven by her self discovery/learning, and by the increasing presence of a war she will encounter.

World Building
I think we got a decent idea of what the world was like in the first book. What this book introduced was a little more action with the magic. I loved how Kova describes the physical actions mixed in with the magical skills that each character wields. It created a diverse range of abilities as well as a creative way to differentiate them all. I especially loved Aldrik’s “killing move” so to speak that is exposed. I thought it incredibly clever to use a fire capability that way as opposed to just shooting fire balls in a PvP fighting game or something.

The Characters
Vhalla and Aldrik have this almost obsessive relationship. I understand the boundaries that they have, but seriously, Aldrik you’re torturing us, just communicate a little better why don’t you? For someone who’s life is directly linked to, you would think that he would express himself a little better? No not really, which, honestly, after what we see of his personality in the first book I am not exactly surprised. But there are times when I seriously feel bad for Vhalla, and just wish she would fall for someone else. Would a love triangle completely ruin this book? I’m sure Kova would be able to master that either way.

There are a lot of other great characters in this book, but I won’t really get into that because I would probably start spoiling because of what I like about them. I will say that Vhalla really is incredibly lucky throughout the book because of who she has supporting her. She may feel alone or isolated, but she really isn’t and her growth through her friendships is really beautiful.

The Soundtrack
Third Eye Blind – How’s it Going to Be

Buddy read with Ms. Patient Cassondra

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