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Before She Ignites (Fallen Isles, #1)
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Before She Ignites (Fallen Isles #1)

3.67  ·  Rating details ·  3,291 Ratings  ·  736 Reviews

Mira Minkoba is the Hopebearer. Since the day she was born, she’s been told she’s special. Important. Perfect. She’s known across the Fallen Isles not just for her beauty, but for the Mira Treaty named after her, a peace agreement which united the seven islands against their enemies on the mainland.

But Mira has never felt as perfect as everyone says. She counts compu
Kindle Edition, 400 pages
Published September 12th 2017 by Katherine Tegen Books
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Sailor Many readers received ARCs (advanced reader copy) and were able to read and review the book before it comes out (:
Ruby She definitely suffers from anxiety, but I wouldn't say she has OCD. While she does count things compulsively in this case, I don't think that would…moreShe definitely suffers from anxiety, but I wouldn't say she has OCD. While she does count things compulsively in this case, I don't think that would be enough to diagnose OCD, as her counting functions more as a coping skill in that it helps to distract her from her anxiety (and thus, read to me as secondary to her anxiety.) While there are compulsions in OCD, and while they do help relieve anxiety, the key is that these compulsions are not realistically connected to the anxiety they're trying to prevent. Mira's compulsions are realistically related to her anxiety, because they serve as a distraction. Say if instead of compulsively counting to distract herself she did it because she believed that by counting compulsively, that would somehow prevent bad things from happening, then that would probably be OCD, because the compulsion isn't realistically related to the reduction in anxiety.

Not sure if that makes sense, or if you wanted that specific of an answer (probably not) but I'm a mental health nerd, so when I read this book and saw your question I had to get out my DSM (diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders) and flip though it because I was interested. (less)

Community Reviews

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Jodi Meadows
Jan 12, 2016 added it  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-i-wrote
Lots and lots of dragons. I'm not even kidding when I say I'm working on a dragon guide for other nerds who want to know all the things about the dragons in these books.


This is a book that I am writing.

It now has a title. But I'm not going to tell you what it is . . . yet. Soon, though. Soon!


9/28: I saw a piece of the cover -- an important piece -- and I can't express how beautiful the cover is going to be. I can't wait to see the whole thing!




10/3: And it
Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin

I'm not really sure how I feel about this book. I loved some parts and others I'm not too sure about so I'm going to go with 3 stars for now. I will do a re-read before the next book comes out and maybe that will be better =)

Mira is friends to dragons but the dragons are being hurt in this book. Mira also goes to prison because of reasons. She meets some cool peeps there.

Then she gets out for a bit and gets back to her best friends only to be sent back to prison with her friends. It's all craz
Cait • A Page with a View
May 11, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya-fantasy, 2017-arcs
This was a well-rounded story that delivered some great character growth & action while creating a strong plot for the sequels to build on! But it's definitely an intense read with a lot of trigger warnings for abuse, anxiety, and... it was just kind of stressful in general to read, ok. Most of the story takes place in a prison. But it still felt like a lot of familiar fantasy worlds where an almost-defeated main character has to battle through hell on her own, fight against a myriad of inte ...more
Oct 01, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars

“Thre is strength," he said slowly, "in knowing when to speak, and when to listen." His hands stayed on his chest, motionless. "And when to say nothing at all.”

Dragons in literature have always interested me in how they are presented. You got the massive ones that can literally set fire to an entire village and you got the small ones that can be on your shoulder.

Before She Ignites combines two of my favorite things: Fantasy and dragons. What more could you want from a book? I mean, DRAG
Sep 27, 2017 rated it did not like it
I want black teens to know exactly what you're getting into with Before She Ignites. I'm concerned that a black girl will see this gorgeous cover in a library or bookstore and pick it up thinking it will empower and entertain her. This is 300-something pages of a black girl being abused - physically and emotionally - by almost everyone in her life. Does that sound like a fun YA fantasy story to you? It's not to me.

The plot: BSI is about Mira Minkoba, a political figurehead named after an influen
Val ⚓️ Shameless, Skanky, and B*tchy ⚓️ Steamy Reads
The came with my first ever OwlCrate box. Happy to have really liked the box and all its contents, plus, well...DRAGONS!!!

Francina Simone
Jun 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
There is a review on my channel where I discuss the book and the little bit of controversy around it:
Ben Alderson
Nov 30, 2017 rated it really liked it
Be prepared that this book has a slow start... it took till about half way through for me to work out what was going on...

I think this is a well thought out book. Loved the magic system, although i feel like it still needs explaining. But thats the point of the story I believe, I dont think we are supposed to understand it till the next book.

Looking forward to more Dragons I hope! AND LESS PRISIONS
Sep 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars
Alone. Abandoned. Apart from everyone I loved. All because of one act of trust. One truth. One horrible mistake.

I didn't know much about this one before picking the book up other than dragons. Let me repeat that: DRAGONS. And I am more than pleased with how it turned out. I didn't expect a story filled with politics and imprisonment stemming from a treaty made between islands the day Mira was born.
This moment. Right here. I had my two best friends and my two favorite dragons, and eve
Korrina  (OwlCrate)
Feb 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Love love love!
Nina (Every Word A Doorway)
My reactions to the premise:

Since the day she was born, she’s been told she’s special. Important. Perfect.

But Mira has never felt as perfect as everyone says. She counts compulsively. She struggles with crippling anxiety. And she’s far too interested in dragons for a girl of her station.

I'm sorry, did somebody print MENTAL HEALTH all over this fantasy novel? Also dragons, GIVE ME THE DRAGONS. And that's how you turn around a premise from mainstream garbage to something I actually take an int
 ⚔ Sh3lly - Cranky Crone of Rabid Hedgehogs and Fire Breathing Kittens ⚔
4.5 stars! Dragons!

This book impressed me. Let me first say that it isn't often you see a main character portrayed with crippling panic/anxiety disorder that manifests in OCD-like counting. As someone who suffers from anxiety, it was refreshing to read about a character who has it as well. Kudos to the author!

Mira is a girl who has been raised in privilege. She is a pretty face, not very smart, doesn't think much, is uncomplicated, does what she is told. She is "the face" behind the politics of
Brittney ~ Reverie and Ink
Wowza..this cover. Omgosh. And the summary? I'm SO ready for this..
Kimberly Kosydor
Sep 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book was everything I wanted, but even more so, it was what I needed. I loved this world and all the characters! And of course I loved the dragons! Now I will be impatiently waiting for the sequel!
Sep 28, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
WrensReads Review:

This book is about dragons and not going with the flow. So basically, this book is something I will be gushing over for a while.

Mira is basically the face of a treaty of peace between the isles. The treaty states that everyone is equal and no one can own a dragon and so on and so forth. But just like we have seen in our own world today, just because a piece of paper says everyone is equal, doesn’t mean that everyone sees everyone as equal. It actually gets pretty political whic
Minni Mouse
Mar 02, 2017 is currently reading it
Me: I've never once enjoyed a book about dragons.
Shortly after: Ooh, look! A book about dragons!
[adds to TBR shelf]
Beatrice (beatriceinbookland)
*I received an arc from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review*

DNF @ 40%

I'm giving it two stars just because the anxiety/ocd rep was good and the little dragon was so cute!

so let me introduce you to Mira, our female lead:
· she complains because the prison's water isn't sanitary
· she worries because she has ONE pimple on her chin ("Even the slightest pressure sent ripples of pain across my face." are you fucking serious???)
· she's sad because the other criminals don't like her
· she thinks abo
Sep 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
this book is awesome!!!
Aug 09, 2017 rated it liked it
I really enjoyed the bigger plot with the dragon trafficking, the corrupt government, gods and mythology, but when I first requested an ARC of this I was expecting something totally different. I wanted a kick butt female character going on adventure with some awesome dragons at her side, but after reading a few reviews saying the main character Mira spends most of her time in prison, I was a little wary. I tend to avoid novels that are primarly character driven because fast pace plots are what I ...more
May 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
All I really needed to know about BEFORE SHE IGNITES before I read it can be summed up in two statements:

1) It's by Jodi Meadows, who is an author I absolutely adore.
2) It has dragons in it.

Suffice to say that I have been extremely excited about this novel since it was first announced, and I have eagerly anticipated being able to read it as soon as possible. And now that I've read it, I can confidently tell you that it's another really great story from Jodi Meadows. The world was so interesting,
Jul 25, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: d-n-f, dnf-2017
DNF @ 41%

I received an eARC, this in no way impacts my opinion


I tried. I wanted to like this but I just can't. I'm getting so many Shatter Me vibes from this that it kind of hurts. I wanted heaps of dragons because I stared Game of Thrones and am currently obsessed with Khalessi (spelling is probably wrong).

There are other reasons I didn't enjoy this. In the first chapter we reference both Idris and Silent Brothers, like, hello Shadowhunters? I understand those words
Giselle (Book Nerd Canada)
A POC as the main character in a fantasy book with dragons? I NEED THIS!!!
Blog | Twitter | Tumblr | Instagram | Youtube | Twitch

Buddy read with Jules at JA Ironside! ❤

This was in the September 2017 OwlCrate box!
lmao i give up. it's so boring and i'm so tired of the before and after nonsense.
Martina Boone
Mar 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is an utterly dazzling and beautiful book with a richly imagines world, fresh wonderful characters, and a story that didn't let me go from the first page to the last. And can I just say that I desperately want a dragon? Remarkable!
It was exhilarating, really.
Being shred asunder.
Burning like a thousand galaxies.

I've been such a moody reader the last few months so it took me forever to finish this book, but I really enjoyed the story. The writing flows well and is incredibly engaging, the characters were all fantastic (including the bad ones), and the settings were described so well I could imagine myself there, even though this took place in an entirely different world than our own.
I loved Mira and reacted mor
Sarah K
Jun 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Do you want free bookish mail? Get your As She Ascends postcard right here:

4.5 Stars

All I knew going in was something about a prison and dragons but that sounded very exciting, PLUS when I first saw the cover I was blown away and so grateful to see a beautiful black woman on the cover of a fantasy book! As someone who has 3 black children and a black tween daughter who is obsessed with reading (and DRAGONS!!!), I was thrilled. I am always on the look out
alice (arctic books)
I don't know, I'm not feeling it. I'm at around 45% into the book, and nothing really has happened?? Mira has been interrogated about dragons, and she's been locked up in a cell and been extremely mistreated, and there's a lot of characters, and my expectations have dwindled massively. I might continue this later or end up calling a DNF. I'm very disappointed right now - I was hoping for a lot more action.
Danielle (Life of a Literary Nerd)
“I had knowledge. I had power. I had a voice.
And it was my duty to use them all.”

Dragons and mental health rep in a fantasy is the recipe for a good book. Mira Minkoba is told she’s special, so when she uncovers a dangerous secret that threatens the Treaty that keeps peace between the Fallen Isles, she thinks the council will listen. Betrayed and alone, Mira is imprisoned and must battle her own demons to discover the truths that will save her world.

Things I Liked
I love that we got to see
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I like books. Reading them, writing, and admiring them as my bookshelves begin to bow.


Yes, I will accept your friend request. I will probably not reply to private messages, though. If you want me to respond, please send an email. jodi.meadows at gmail dot com


Why are my ratings either five stars or none? I give five stars to books I'm enthusiastic about and think everyone should read. A lack o
More about Jodi Meadows

Other books in the series

Fallen Isles (3 books)
  • As She Ascends (Fallen Isles, #2)
  • Untitled (Fallen Isles, #3)
“I wanted freedom in the same way I wanted my next breath: an unspoken but constant desire.” 15 likes
“Thre is strength," he said slowly, "in knowing when to speak, and when to listen." His hands stayed on his chest, motionless. "And when to say nothing at all.” 10 likes
More quotes…