Friday 21 July 2023

Chaos & Flame (Chaos and Flame Book 1) - Tessa Gratton and Justina Ireland

An assassin, a soldier, a prince . . . and a deadly game of power, where no one knows the rules. Prepare to enter the world of Chaos and Flame - perfect for fans of Iron Widow and Legendborn.

When Darling Seabreak's family were murdered by the ruthless House Dragon, she swore she'd get revenge. And as a deadly assassin, there's no one she'd rather take out than their bloodthirsty war general, Talon Goldhoard.

Talon Goldhoard has no problem defending his lands from threats - even ones he hates, like the whispers of madness that surround his brother, the High Prince. So when he battles a ferocious girl who looks exactly like the one Caspian has painted obsessively, repeatedly, for years, Talon knows he must capture her alive - and find out exactly what kind of a threat she really is.

What Talon is unprepared for is the thrilling chaos that Darling will bring into his life. With the world they both know appearing to catch fire all around them, these unlikely allies must navigate a game of power, betrayal, destiny - and love - that neither of them could ever have expected.

What did I think?

Chaos & Flame is a great start to a new YA fantasy series and I really enjoyed it.

The book is a collaboration between fantasy author Tessa Gratton and author of graphic novels Justina Ireland.  It’s beautifully written and there’s no noticeable change of writing style at any point to make it obvious that there was more than one author.

With houses at war, it’s very reminiscent of Game of Thrones but with added magic in the form of gifts that are particular to each person, ranging from prophecy to invisibility.  Caspian, the Prince Regent of House Dragon, has been compelled to paint images of an eyeless girl since he was a young boy.  Now Caspian is about to meet Darling in real life, as she has been captured by his brother Talon, but Darling is on a mission to destroy House Dragon.

With chapters written from the point of view of the three main characters, Chaos & Flame is absolutely riveting and completely unpredictable; I couldn’t tear my eyes away from the page.  The story ends quite neatly and satisfyingly whilst at the same time leading nicely on to book two, which I am most eager to read.

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