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Breathless

Breathless

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Breathless

ratings:
4/5 (100 ratings)
Length:
108 pages
1 hour
Publisher:
Released:
Dec 4, 2012
ISBN:
9780062254290
Format:
Book

Description

Sophie Jordan's breathtaking digital original novella set in the world of Firelight.

For Az, it's supposed to be a fun summer vacation with her family. Nothing complicated. Just a quick trip to test the waters as she prepares for a year on her own. That all changes when she rescues a drowning girl and meets Tate—the most gorgeous human boy she's ever seen. Tate throws her heart, her plans, and her life into upheaval, but the closer she gets to him, the harder it is to hide the secret of what she is. With no hope for a future together, the last thing that can ever happen . . . is love.

This stand-alone digital original is perfect for those new to the Firelight series as well as veteran fans.

Epic Reads Impulse is a digital imprint with new releases each month.

Publisher:
Released:
Dec 4, 2012
ISBN:
9780062254290
Format:
Book

About the author

Sophie Jordan grew up in the Texas hill country where she wove fantasies of dragons, warriors, and princesses. A former high school English teacher, she’s a New York Times, USA Today, and international best-selling author of over thirty novels, including The Me I Meant to Be and Kissing Lessons. She now lives in Houston with her family. When she’s not writing, she spends her time overloading on caffeine (lattes preferred), talking plotlines with anyone who will listen (including her kids), and cramming her DVR with true-crime and reality TV shows. sophiejordan.net Twitter: @SoVerySophie Instagram: @sosophiejordan

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Book Preview

Breathless - Sophie Jordan

Publisher

1

I wake slowly, sliding out of a dream where I’m flying one moment and diving into cerulean blue waters the next. I frown, my fingers swiping the tangle of hair back off my face. With a grunt, I lift my head off the pillow and open my eyes, blinking against the pervading wash of gray slipping through the curtains.

Just like that, I remember where I am.

Sighing, I shake off my favorite dream.

I stare at the ceiling, studying the slow churning blades of the fan as reality descends and washes over me. I’m so far from that dream, from being any place that I can fly or swim freely. I could weep from the longing. And that decides it for me. I know what I have to do.

I toss back the covers and slip from bed hurriedly, hoping to be out of the house before Mom is up and moving around. I wince as I glance at the digital clock. It’s already almost too late for that.

But then she won’t exactly stop me from going out. She might want to, but she won’t. That’s what this little vacation is for anyway. Me getting away from the pride and into the outside world so that I will know how to interact among humans. A necessary skill for every draki. We’re here to prepare me.

Still. Mom will bombard me with the usual questions. And warnings. So many warnings.

I change quickly. Stopping in front of the mirror, I swipe a brush through my dark, blue-streaked hair in three hard strokes. Grabbing a band, I gather it into a ponytail.

Rushing from the room, I dash down the stairs, wincing when I hit a creaky step.

Az?

I freeze and squeeze my eyes in a long, slow blink, hoping maybe she’ll just dismiss the sound after a stretch of silence.

No such luck.

Az? Is that you?

Releasing a breath, I turn in the direction of the kitchen. Mom’s at the stove, stirring an assortment of vegetables in a skillet. An egg mixture sits waiting in a nearby bowl.

Omelet? she offers. She surveys me with a sweep of her eyes. A brow arches at the strings of my swimsuit peeking out from the collar of my shirt. Her gaze drops to my feet. She does that thing where she cocks out her hip, and I know the barrage of questions is about to start.

Going somewhere?

Just for a swim.

Her gaze shoots to Dad sitting at the table. Clearly, she’s hoping he’ll chime in here. He doesn’t look up from his book. She blows out a heavy breath and I fight back a smile. Dad always has his nose in a book. He’s more comfortable with the ancient texts and treatises chronicling our kind than with what’s actually going on around him. Ironic considering he’s a teacher of draki history. You would think he might like to observe life as it’s happening around him.

With a disgusted snort, Mom levels her blue-eyed gaze on me, and I think her pupils narrow and shiver. Just my imagination, of course. Mom keeps herself tightly controlled, her draki always in check. Do you really think that’s the best idea?

Mom. Come on. You can’t expect me to stay in the house every day all day? A vacation is supposed to be fun, remember? That’s why people take a vacation.

"Right. People." Her emphasis on the word is deliberate. She holds my gaze until I look away.

I inhale deeply, flexing my hands at my sides. I know. I get it. I do. But I can’t just stay indoors and stare at these walls for an entire month. That defeats the point in coming here.

Mom looks to Dad again as if he might weigh in. He turns another page.

I press my advantage. Mom. I’m not going to do anything dumb.

She looks back to me. After a long moment, she jabs a finger in my direction. You can go out, but no swimming. I don’t trust you near water without either me or your father there to supervise.

Instead of arguing, I nod happily, feeling as though I’ve won this round. No swimming! I’ll just wade in. Get my feet wet. That’s all.

Rushing forward, I grab a banana off the table and press a kiss to her cheek, ignoring her sputters of protest.

She snorts with disbelief and calls after me, Like I believe that!

Grinning, I shout back, Shouldn’t have picked a place so close to a lake!

Before she can respond, I’m jumping down the porch steps, letting my nose guide me to water.

I can feel it. Smell the wetness. Like smoking barbeque pits, I can always tell when water is near. Just before reaching the dock that stretches out onto the lake, I swerve right and cut through the woods.

Amid the foliage, I glimpse flashes of the lake’s deep, murky blue. Yesterday the water was greener, churned up by the weekend traffic of boats. But today only a few boats skip over the surface. Still, I would prefer a little more privacy.

I’ve seen humans before, of course. Talked to them. But it has never felt natural or comfortable. Honestly, I’ve always been a little skittish around them. Whenever I went into town with Jacinda or any other friends, I let them do the talking and interacting, preferring to hang back.

It’s funny how Mom thinks I might get in trouble. Does she think I would deliberately give myself away? That would require a certain boldness I lack when I’m around humans. I’m too afraid they can see right through me. To what lurks just beneath the surface.

I checked out the area yesterday when we arrived. The lake is fine, but I’d found someplace better. I weave through trees like a stream curving through a mountain pass. My bare feet pad silently over dried leaves and twigs. I follow my nose.

At last, I find it. Smiling, I step out onto the bank from the press of foliage. It’s perfect. Smaller, more secluded from the tourists. The inlet is little more than a big pond, a thin ribbon of water the only thing connecting it to the larger lake.

In the middle of the water, a wood dock floats, a beacon for swimmers. I can envision sun worshippers out there, bodies spread out on towels. For now, it’s empty.

Obviously, the place isn’t unknown, but an air of abandonment hangs over the dark waters.

Perfect.

With a glance over my shoulder to reassure myself I’m still alone, I pull my T-shirt over my head and then kick off my shorts. To be safe, I tuck the clothes out of sight in the trees. Just in case. I don’t want to leave my clothes out in the open and alert someone that I’m around. If someone comes along while I’m in the water it’s easy enough for me to do what I do and disappear.

I don’t know why Mom doesn’t realize that. I’m perfectly safe. Especially under cover of water. What could possibly happen to me? Water is my greatest protection. My shield.

I ease a few short steps into the water before diving in. The water isn’t as cold as I’m used to high in the Cascades, but it’s early enough in the day that the sudden plunge sends a rush of goose bumps over my flesh.

I swim out several yards, arms cutting smoothly through the glasslike surface, until I’m halfway between the shores, directly beside the floating dock.

I paddle in place for a few

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Reviews

What people think about Breathless

3.9
100 ratings / 92 Reviews
What did you think?
Rating: 0 out of 5 stars

Reader reviews

  • (4/5)
    I really enjoyed this book. I was so happy to see so many wonderful character from the first book in the series, Forbidden, featured in this book. I found this book to be a really easy read and liked the sweeter romance that it offered. The western setting was very well done and quite a lot of fun. The book focuses on Portia and Kent. Portia came to live with her Aunt Eddy and Uncle Rhine when she was 12 years old. They are forced to leave Virgina City shortly after the events of the first book. The family ends up in the Arizona Territory running a successful hotel. Portia has grown up to be an intelligent and very capable woman who handles most of the day to day operations of the hotel. She is very business minded and has no desire to marry.Kent's life has been rather adventurous since he fled Virginia City with Portia's family. He is now the rancher he always wanted to be and is hoping to settle down a bit. He signs on to work with Rhine and soon is put in charge of the adjoining ranch. He is a very hard worker and an all around good guy.I liked Portia and Kent together. This romance was really quite sweet. Portia is very innocent and the bulk of the book covers the couple getting to know each other. I liked how Kent handling all of the attention that Portia was getting from her long time suitors. He seemed to know just the right thing to say to handle a situation. It was nice watch this couple fall in love with each other.I would recommend this book to others. I didn't like it quite as much as I liked Eddy and Rhine's story but I thought it was a solid romance. Having Eddy, Rhine, and other characters from the previous book play an important roles in this book was a nice surprise. I can't wait to read the next book in this series!I received an advanced reader edition of this book from Avon Books via Edelweiss.
  • (3/5)
    Meh. I'm sick of books that end with a cliffhanger as a set-up to insure that readers will buy the next book in the series. A continuing series is fine by me, but a first book should really stand on its own. And this book really wasn't satisfying enough on its own.Still, it's better than a few others that I've read recently. It gets point for using dragons (or, "draki," as they are called here) instead of your usual vampire/werewolf/fairy lore. I liked the narrator, Jacinda, well enough. But she seemed to think she was strong, when I found herself pitiful and weak. The love story was flat, and I never felt that Jacinda and Will had a real connection - despite it being forced down my throat every other page. I also found Jacinda's short, sentence-fragment structure of thinking and speaking to get annoying pretty fast. I guess that's a stylistic thing, but I grew bored of really. Short Sentences. Page after Page. Okay. I'm dissing the book a little too much, and I don't really want to. I really did enjoy it, as it was a quick and entertaining read. I've read better YA fiction -- but I've also read far, far worse.
  • (5/5)
    Wow, this book was a great read. If you have some great stories like this one, you can publish it on Novel Star, just submit your story to hardy@novelstar.top or joye@novelstar.top
  • (3/5)
    super fun! love jenkins' writing a lot.

  • (3/5)
    3.3 stars

    The heat now glittering in his eyes touched her like a hand. “You are going to be in so much trouble, Miss Bookkeeper.”

    I was really enjoying this one, more so than the first one because I thought the hero and heroine had better back and forth (I still had moments where I thought the dialogue was a bit stop and go), but the last 40% or so was pretty full of dropped in and random threads.
    There was some awesome shout-outs to historical women figures and Jenkins does a great job of setting the scene, made you feel the West. There's not a lot of angst between our couple but I enjoyed their chemistry, not scorching but playful.
    I just don't understand how the last half ending wasn't cleaned up more, it left you feeling as if alternate endings were dropped in together and messily meshed together.
    Going to read the third because Regan was a character that grabbed my attention and Jenkins gives good historical feel and context (There's a tiny Geronimo and Lozen guest appearance here!).
  • (5/5)
    I loved this great little dragon shifter story and can't wait to read the next one in the series. I really enjoy that the author left off this story at a place where it doesn't feel like a giant cliffhanger, but definitely left me wanting to find out what happens next. I would highly recommend this story to the Young Adult and Dragon Shifter Lovers groups.
  • (2/5)
    This book started off strong and really drew me in at first. Unfortunately, it lost that momentum and floundered for a long while, then finally picked up at the end. Jacinda's absolute dependence on Will made me wince. He was the center of the universe and she existed only to be with him. I also grew weary of the constant use of sentence fragments. Like on every page. Completely overdone. Effect lost.

    I could be wrong, but it felt as though the story was being dragged out in order to make it into more than one book. Jacinda and Will kiss three or four times (I lost count) and each time, she pulls away because of the fire inside. That same effect could have been achieved with just one kiss and then we could have continued on with the story.

    I happen to prefer dialogue-heavy books, since they generally make the reading fly by. Firelight was extremely light on dialogue, relying mostly on introspection, angst, and gazing into one another's eyes.

    All that being said, I thought Jordan's word choices were vivid and painted Jacinda's internal landscape well. The story just didn't move fast enough to keep me wanting to find out what happens next.
  • (3/5)
    Meh - interesting premise but doesn't really flesh it out. Too much "Oooo he's so hot and he makes me burn" everytime they look/touch/kiss each other, too little world/dragon culture building. Little creeped out that she is constantly morphing into a dragon whenever she's turned on - what, suddenly he's making out with a reptile? Gross, can we say bestiality, anyone?
  • (5/5)
    This book made me so, so, so happy. Shiny and happy and young again. Reading about dragons and girls-that-are-dragons, and believable different world/life settings (of which there are three). I completely felt for the main character in her predicament, while understanding for my mother and sister.

    I loved how complicated the character standings were. I especially loved that even the person you're supposed to view as evil, the person the main charactere vies as evil, is never portrayed so as himself either. He's just another multi-faceted character trying to figure out everything going on around him, in the systems he's bound into.


    I definitely can not wait to read book two once it comes out.
  • (3/5)
    I liked this book well enough I bought it back in October and I got to page 267 and I really didn't want to know what happened next so I put my bookmark in and put it back On my bookshelf and so 5 months later my friend coaxes me into finishing it. I wasn't all too happy with the way it ended.
  • (4/5)
    I have wanted to read this for ages now, because I have watched the beautiful covers for years and wanted to read about the girl who shifted into a draki, a dragon. So, I finally found the ebook at my library and had a bit to read it, so jumped at the chance. I connected with Jacinda and liked being immersed into her world. She is energized by the mists and water from the earth, and she is a part of a tribe. But her mom doesn't shift anymore and her twin sister never transformed, so she feels like a bit of a loner even in her own family. She loves them a lot but their priorities and the way they perceive draki, the tribe, and their hidden existence has a huge gap. When Jacinda breaks a huge rule, her mom pulls them into the regular world and Tam, her sister couldn't be happier joining a new school and being away from the draki culture. But Jacinda hates the desert, it makes her uncomfortable, and hard to maintain her shifts there. But at school she meets the boy, the hunter that didn't kill her for some unexplicable reason and she feels amazing around him. She is trying to hide as a human in the regular world but her skin changes and she feels fire in her chest. The draki in this story all fall into different talents and she is the only fire breather, which made her special in her tribe, but also a commodity. I enjoyed the chemistry and the build up between Will and Jacinda. Its a case of forbidden love, because he is a hunter and she is the prey. But there is something different about Will. She learns things about him that shocks her and maybe makes sense with some of his differences from his family and the draw between Jacinda and him. So, Tamra and Jacinda's mom. In some aspects I enjoyed the family dynamics and that even though Jacinda didn't understand that her mom is acting in her best interest. No matter how painful or against it Jacinda is. There were also times that I didn't like Tamra much. She seemed so selfish at times and mean to Jacinda, with unrealistic expectations. But the story is also through Jacinda's eyes, so we're biased. But I can also take a step back and imagine how Tam would feel. For most of her life she has been the outsider, the one who didn't fit in because she didn't manifest, and had to watch Jacinda be fawned over and such a big deal while I am sure she felt like a failure. The twists towards the end as well as things revealed about the pride and their intentions were pretty shocking. I also couldn't quite figure out Cassian and whether he was truly a faker or if there was a bit more beneath the surface. I will be continuing with this series and can't wait to find out what is next with the draki, Jacinda and Will, and how they will make everything wrap up with an HEA.Bottom Line: Great premise, intense forbidden romance and great start to the series.
  • (4/5)
    This book is like a breathe of fresh air in the shape-changer type YA novel universe. I like the unique concept of people who can shift into dragons, or well dragons who can shift into humans. I also liked the decidedly sizzling scenes in this book, they were a lot steamier than most YA romance books I have read, yes, pun intended.

    I like the development of the characters throughout the book but I believe that Jacinda, her mother, and her sister all need to figure something out, because all them are asking each other to give up something fundamental to their happiness in one situation or another. So somehow at least one of the family at one time will be depressed. So intro Will...he is doing something that he doesn't believe in for his father's happiness and I have NO CLUE how Jacinda can be with him after going to his house...no freaking way...but if he is the only connection keeping her afloat, well then there is another story all together. *sigh* this story is just so freaking jacked up and depressing all around, yet you CAN NOT stop reading, hence Romeo and Juliet.

    The writing throughout the story is very good; it keeps you focused on the story, unable to break away. The writing also has some poetic aspects here and there, which I love to find in a book. The plot is also very good, it has some wonderful surprises and keeps you interested until the very last page. That being said...this book is cliffhanger central, I HATE HATE HATE cliffhangers like this one, especially when we have to wait soooo long for the next installment. Even with the cliffhanger though, definitely worth the read.r
  • (3/5)
    The Draki species is original, an idea I truly loved. The first chapter of this book was a fantastic set up. The main character was a fantastic display of a strong, independent woman, her world breath taking, her people nothing short of extraordinary.

    It had me hooked right up until her trying to cover up some incriminating evidence against who she really was.

    Personally, I thought her relationship with Will was a little to back and forth for my tastes and I didn't care too much for the scene where she opens up completely about her people to him. If it were drawn out a little more, I'd be more accepting to it, but I don't think the scene did their relationship justice. That's most likely why it took me so long getting through this book, despite me listening to the audio book.

    I'm giving this book three stars because, much like Nightshade by Andrea Cremer, it was a good start with loads of potential and I'd like to see where Sophie can take her characters.
  • (3/5)
    Meh. I'm sick of books that end with a cliffhanger as a set-up to insure that readers will buy the next book in the series. A continuing series is fine by me, but a first book should really stand on its own. And this book really wasn't satisfying enough on its own.Still, it's better than a few others that I've read recently. It gets point for using dragons (or, "draki," as they are called here) instead of your usual vampire/werewolf/fairy lore. I liked the narrator, Jacinda, well enough. But she seemed to think she was strong, when I found herself pitiful and weak. The love story was flat, and I never felt that Jacinda and Will had a real connection - despite it being forced down my throat every other page. I also found Jacinda's short, sentence-fragment structure of thinking and speaking to get annoying pretty fast. I guess that's a stylistic thing, but I grew bored of really. Short Sentences. Page after Page. Okay. I'm dissing the book a little too much, and I don't really want to. I really did enjoy it, as it was a quick and entertaining read. I've read better YA fiction -- but I've also read far, far worse.
  • (5/5)
    It is typically hard for me to get into short stories because they’re, well, short. It’s hard to connect to the characters and get into the plot in only a few short pages. The exception is when I read a short story that takes place in a world I am already familiar with—which is why I loved “Breathless” so much—and I have to say, it was just a fabulous story.“Breathless” is told from the perspective of Az, one of the supporting characters in the Firelight trilogy. Since we didn’t know Az that well in Firelight, I wasn’t really sure what to expect from “Breathless.” Since Az was a great main character and a bit on the reckless side, we get an awesome story.Since Az is a draki, she isn’t supposed to interact with humans any more than necessary. However, she ends up meeting a boy named Tate, and lucky for us, she can’t seem to stay away from him. Az and Tate were unbelievably sweet together, and they truly made “Breathless” a joy to read.“Breathless” is an impeccable short story for those who have read the Firelight series and are already familiar with draki. Aside from momentarily getting to return to a world you love, you also get to learn more about Az and read about one hell of a romance. Hopefully, there will be a spin off series featuring Az because I think her story is going to be good to miss out on.
  • (2/5)
    Maybe 2.5 but not sure enough to give it 3.
    I just didn't care for the writing style. Felt very juvenile, more like 12 yrs old instead of 16.
    Didn't really care for the characters. They just didn't feel developed. WAY too much back & forth b/w want him, don't want him, want him... you get the idea.
    Not interested enough to read on. Love dragons though.
  • (2/5)
    Sophie Jordan wrote romance novels before foraying into teen paranormal romance for Firelight. There are some definite hints of this in the writing, not too overt and not worse than what happens in a lot of the teen books that are more about romance than anything else. It would not have bothered me at all, had I not had high hopes for the plot of this one. The premise is really great; how cool is the idea of people being able to turn into dragons!

    There was one issue I had with the whole turning into a dragon thing though. Jacinda likes Will (Mr. Studly) partially for his ability to awaken her draki. (spoiler of obvious bit of plot point coming) Once Will has found out what she is, she no longer worries about shifting partway while they are making out, even though her face changes when that happens. Umm, what? Besides, do dragons even have lips? Or hands? The hands thing made me wonder too. At the end of the book, she brushes Will's face with her hand while dragon-ed out. That just does not fit my understanding of what a dragon would look like.

    The relationship between Will and Jacinda is every bit the typical teen romance of melodrama-filled waffling between "I will love him forevers!" and "I can't be with him, because it's too dangerous!" Needless to say, that gets old, nor does it signal love to my brain. Unfortunately, the focus of the book (romance author) was on Will and Jacinda's relationship, not the cool fantasy story framing it. They make out a lot. And though her breasts don't heave, she does have intense physical reactions every time (dragon awakening).

    I give this a resounding meh! It could have been good without the cookie cutter characters and the CW style romance, but as it is it's barely merits attention. Nevertheless, Twilight fans will likely adore it and the inevitable sequels.
  • (3/5)
    Got an advanced readers copy of this, as at work I probably read the most teen fiction.

    It was very easy to read through and I actually found the mythology a lot more compelling than the book, characters or romance. In fact, the main character Jacinda is rather annoying at times and the way they frame her as important to the draki and a free spirit seems at odd with a lot of her actions. Still, it made me intrigued enough that I would probably read the next one and while fitting the very formulaic teen-supernatural-romance genre, I like that the shapeshifter character is a bit different from the usual ones you see. 2.75/5
  • (3/5)
    Pretty entertaining. I liked how Jordan created quite the dilemma for Jacinda - oftentimes in paranormal romances the "right choice" or thing to do is so obvious to the reader, but there are problems with every choice Jacinda can make here. The draki society is fascinating and I love all the different talents the draki can have and that they appear to be tied to the draki's coloring. I did feel like Jacinda waffled all over the place on her decisions which, while realistic, was a little tiresome and led to some parts feeling a little overlong. So the plotting could have been tighter, but my biggest problem was the complete lack of an ending. I enjoy series books because I tend to want to follow characters for longer than a single book allows, but I also want some sort of conclusion to things and this had none. It left me feeling that the really interesting things have yet to happen. I'll try the next one, but I'm gonna need some of the plot threads to come together better there.
  • (3/5)
    2.5 stars

    sixteen year old dragon shapeshifter jacinda spends this book between the proverbial rock & hard place: mom flees the homeland in the middle of the night with her twin daughters because the pride were so desperate to keep jacinda's special talents that they would have entrapped her physically and emotionally...but the place they hide out is, by necessity, brutally inhospitable to dragonkind. she can't go back, she can't stay, high school is a bitch, and her star-crossed hottie is the scion of a family of dragon hunters.

    chock-a-block full of teen angst ("oh, I must swear him off forever!") and most romance novel tropes ("we can't possibly actually discuss this!"), but saved by the fun premise, it's worth checking out, but only for teen romance novel lovers with a tolerance for this type of foolishness.
  • (3/5)
    When Jacinda first meets Will he's literally hunting her. She's a Dragon who can shape-shift into human shape and he's part of a family who hunt her kind. However he saves her. However this has consequences and Jacinda and her twin Tamra have to run away with their mother. Tamra can't change to dragon-form but Jacinda is a fire-breathing dragon, rare in the community and wanted to breed.They move to a desert town, where it will be harder for Jacinda to change, where after a while she might lose the ability and where, coincidentally, the family of hunters lives.Full of teen angst and a lack of communication, shows potential but somehow it needed more.
  • (3/5)
    I kind of hate books that don't have any sort of ending at all, so that was the thing I liked the least about this. I thought the story was good and I liked the characters. It was just a little weird, though. The writing wasn't that great, and it amused me that it is only a 3.8 AR reading level. But I liked it enough to read the second one.
  • (5/5)
    Every once in awhile I read a YA paranormal novel that may follow the standard format but still stands out above the rest. This is the case with "Firelight" by Sophie Jordan.Our main character, Jacinda, is a draki, or a dragon type creature. She lives in a hidden pride with her mother and twin sister Tamara. Her mother hasn't shifted to her draki in a very long time and is now mostly human. Tamara has never manifested and is largely ignored and looked down upon by the pride. Jacinda is the prize of the pride because she has the rare (nearly extinct) talent of being a fire breather. But Jacinda breaks a rule and meets a human boy -a hunter- named Will. When her pride determines Jacinda must be severely punished, her mother leaves town with Jacinda and Tamara to begin a human life.There is a very real sense of danger and desperation throughout the book. It creates an urgency that kept me racing to the end of the book. I almost couldn't put it down. The pride, including the leader's son Cassian, is trying to find Jacinda. Jacinda runs into the human boy at her new school. His evil family are hunters. Will's cousins especially have it in for Jacinda immediately.The romance is one of my favorites. It's a tale of forbidden love between a hunter and his prey. Will has obvious distaste for what his family does. He is biding his time until he can get away from them. Jacinda and Will are drawn to each other in a very compelling way. I liked Will from the start. He is a good guy with a horrible family. He wants to keep Jacinda safe when his own family poses her the greatest danger. Unlike in many YA romances, I actually found the relationship between Will and Jacinda to be very believable.The other characters are equally fleshed out. Jacinda's mom wants to do what is best for them, but she resents being a draki and being stuck with the pride. She loves Jacinda but still wants Jacinda to `kill off' her draki. To Jacinda's way of thinking she might as well kill herself as kill the draki part of her. Tamara thrives in their new human life. After always being ignored by the pride, she loves being able to hang around normal people who take a real interest in her. The relationship between sisters is very complex. They don't seem to like each other all that much, but still they are very connected.The book just brings together many common elements and ideas in a way that is bright, unique and fun. If you have missed out on reading "Firelight" and enjoy YA paranormal fiction, I encourage you to remedy that right away!
  • (5/5)
    I want to yell and cry! I can't believe the ending, even if it was good and had me on the edge of my seat, I still can't get over how it turned out.Am I disappointed? Not in the least, just surprised.Now I have to get a copy of the next book.... I have to know what happens next.... what do they do to Jacinda??? Oh, the burning questions in my mind....Yes, if you haven't read this book, get a copy. I mean, who isn't fascinated by dragons?! And this is like no other dragon story out there, it's waaaay cooler than that!I don't know which I liked better, the adventure/fantasy aspect or the romance. It was a great blend of both and very exciting!
  • (3/5)
    Jacinda Jones is a draki - a descendant of dragons - and is the only draki in her pride to have the ability to breathe fire. This makes her something of a "hot" commodity (pardon the pun), but when she breaks one of the pride's rules, her mother, twin sister, Tamra, and Jacinda flee the pride to avoid the consequences of her actions. While trying to adjust to a completely human existence, she meets Will, a smoldering boy at her school, who makes her want to manifest into draki form. There's only one problem: Will is a hunter, the draki's main predator. Jacinda knows she should stay away from him, but soon realizes that this is impossible, as Will is the only thing keeping her draki from withering away and dying.So, this book. I read the synopsis and my initial reaction was, "Yay, something new that isn't angels/vampires/werewolves!" And then I saw the mixed reviews and thought, "Hmm, maybe I'll be one of those who loves this!" Oh, silly self. While this book isn't terrible, it reminded me pretty significantly of "Twilight" and "Hush, Hush", which I've read more recently. And I don't say that as a compliment. Overall I found myself irritated with Jacinda, and only reading the latter half of this book just to finish it. Not what I wanted at all; to say this was a disappointment would succinctly sum up my thoughts.I'm not going to go on and on about what I didn't like, but here are a couple of brief summations: Jacinda was unbelievably indecisive. "I need to stay away from Will. I can keep my draki alive myself." Then on the next page, "I couldn't do this myself. I needed Will." Lather, rinse, repeat. Also, we have another case of insta-love, in that Will sees Jacinda in the hallway and is instantly interested. And Jacinda's been smitten with him since she first met him in her draki form. It was all a bit too much. Will is a bit of a stalker, too - he watches her from afar, visits her house late at night (and never mind that he convinced the school secretary to give him her address), picks her up unannounced for school one morning, etc. The one thing I will say about their relationship is that Sophie Jordan definitely knows how to write make-out scenes; Jacinda wasn't the only one bursting into flames at Will's touch. :-PThis entire book was one big, "I want to be with him but I CAAAAAAAAAAAN'T because we're ENEMIES, but I NEEEEEEEEED him and can't live withOUT him,"-fest and it got really irritating after a while. The only interesting bits were when when Cassian (who is the next alpha-in-line of the pride) showed up; he helped move the "plot" along, at least. But overall I was left with the impression that this book was a bit too long and far too heavy on the "forbidden love" theme. I would have liked to see more about the drakis and their world, instead of being thrust into a high school setting where the new girl gets the hot (and previously uninterested-in-dating) guy. I wanted more struggle for Jacinda to hold on to her draki ancestry, not an easy and sudden fix once she starts spending time with Will. I don't know. This book just really didn't do it for me.Also, there were a few lines that made me think immediately of "Twilight", and I will share one of those: "He's an addictive drug to me that I can't quit." Hmm, sound familiar? As if we needed MORE to draw the comparisons between the stories.Anyway, to wrap this up, this wasn't a great book by any means. I found the main character irritating, the plot pretty formulaic and the surprises completely not. Portions of it were enjoyable, but the things I didn't like definitely outnumbered the things I did. Definitely not going to rush out to read the sequel.
  • (5/5)
    Sophie Jordan has done a very nice job in weaving a tale of a draki pride, as they are now called, in modern times. Descended from the dragons of old, draki have evolved into human form – humans who can manifest into dragons. There are different kinds such as “onyx” dragons – black, sleek and the most powerful of their kind. And then there are rare ones, like the heroine of this trilogy, Jacinda. She is a fire-breather. The draki thought fire-breathers had been bred out of existence until her talent became apparent once she manifested (they usually begin their first manifestations in their early teens – I’m sure the author intended the correlation between these fiction ones and real ones). But this sets her up for all sorts of problems. Now she is promised to Cassian, an onyx and the “prince” of the pride, in the hopes that more fire-breathers will be born. It just doesn’t set well with any female to be told, “you have to mate with so & so”. Nor does her Mom like it. So next thing you know, Mom whisks her and her sister, Tamra – who seems to be a defunct draki since she has never manifested -- far away from the pride. It is hoped that Jacinda’s fire-breathing tendencies will slowly die, as well as her ability to fly. Only Jacinda falls in love with a human, named Will. There is something that draws them together – something that will not be revealed until the end of Book One. Fast-paced, just the right amount of teen angst without being ‘over-the-top’ and a sweet, little romance in the midst of danger and adventure.
  • (2/5)
    Firelight was a book I was excited to read because there are not many books out there about dragons. I was more than a little disappointed with how it turned out. I wanted to read about drakis and hunters, not a teenage love story. Firelight would have been almost the same if you took out the paranormal element in it.*********spoilers**********What I liked about Firelight:-the mythology of the draki, but most of the book is focused on Will and Jacinda’s relationship rather than the really interesting history of drakis, why were less and less draki able to manifest?, why were they only descendants of dragons and not actual dragons?-the different types of draki and their abilities-the hunters and the enkros, I wish there was more on the hunters and who the enkros areWhat I didn’t like about Firelight:-the instant love between Will and Jacinda-Jacinda’s indecisiveness, does she want to date Will or not?-the selfishness of many of the characters (Jacinda especially, Tamra sometimes, etc.)-Jacinda can only ever think about flying in the mountains or being with Will-how Jacinda became an outcast while her twin sister became popular-more of a high school love story than a YA book about draki and forbidden love-the blond bratty cheerleader and her followers that hate Jacinda, too cliched-Will is not a very memorably hero, dangerous, brooding, and super special because he is the best hunter in his family, hates everyone but the heroine can make his heart beat faster-how Will never goes out with anyone to keep them away from his family, but instantly falls in love with Jacinda and asks her out-Jacinda dating Will fully knowing he hunts her kind-Jacinda putting her family in danger by not telling them they live in a city with hunters and that three of them goes to school with her-Will stalking Jacinda and driving by her house in the middle of the night just to “check it out”-Jacinda doesn’t seem to be happy anywhere, not with her pride and not when she goes to live with humans-Jacinda wanted to look for a new pride which I looked forward to, but never actually tried-the love triangle between Will, Jacinda, and Cassian, seems clear that she will pick Will-Jacinda and Will made out too much, their love was unbelievable-the high school full of bullies and cliques was unrealistic to me because my high school is nothing like that, there are popular people and certain people that like to hang out together, but they don’t beat up one another-the really big coincidence of Will, whom Jacinda met in the Cascade Mountains, happens to attend the same school she now goes to-Jacinda loves Will way too much, she exposed the biggest secret of her kind to hunters to try to save him-the ending was a cliffhanger sort of and it makes me not want to read Vanish-many, many more things...As you can see, the list of what I didn’t like is much longer than what I did like about Firelight. I plan to read Vanish someday, but for now I’m going to take a break from this series. Hopefully Vanish will be better. I hope Tamra and Cassian will be featured more. I have a feeling they will end up together. Firelight just wasn’t for me. ⅖ stars.
  • (5/5)
    Jacinda is not just your average teenager. She holds a secret that under no circumstances can be known by anyone other than those in her Pride. She is a Draki and a rare one at that. Jacinda’s talent is that she can breathe fire which just happens to be a Draki attribute that was thought to have died out. Once it was clear that she could breathe fire, Jacinda was catapulted to the top of her pride and right into the eager clutches of the Pride Elders. With hopes of creating more fire breathers, they aim to bond Jacinda to the soon to be Alpha Cassian. Only Jacinda has no intentions of being with anyone without it being her choice.Fleeing the strict confines of the Pride, Jacinda and a friend sneak out to enjoy some flight time in the sun. Their joyous flight soon comes to a halt when they are spotted by humans. But these humans only have one thing on their minds – hunting dragons. To save her friend, Jacinda leads them away only to find herself in dragon form and looking into the eyes of Will.Will is a dragon hunter with his own secrets. He doesn’t enjoy the hunt as the rest of his family does and is just buying his time until he is able to escape. That all changes one day when Jacinda enrolls in his school after escaping from the Pride. Will finds himself drawn to Jacinda and wanting to save her but will he still feel the same once he discovers the truth about her identity?I have been eager to read Firelight by Sophie Jordan since I first saw the cover. It is so intriguing and beautiful! I find myself so pressed for time these days, that I decided to buy the audio book version of Firelight. Perhaps the element that I most connected with is Jacinda’s need to be where her Draki survives. She needs the fertile soil and damp mountain air to feed her spirit. When she escapes and moves to a desert, the change is almost unbearable. Feeling her inner Draki dying in the dry heat, Jacinda longs for home.However, I did find at times that I wanted to yell at Jacinda during some of her temper tantrums. She had a bad habit of making everything be about herself even though she claimed it was for others such as her twin sister whom never manifested. Overall, I enjoyed listening to Firelight and the narrator, Therese Plummer, did a wonderful job at making the emotions realistic.
  • (4/5)
    Where’s the next book?! The third isn’t coming out ‘til September?!?! AAACK!!This book is refreshingly fast. I have a “thing” for flying, for turning into a dragon and taking off in the air. It’s exhilarating!! Getting chased by hunters, makes my blood run fast.Right near the beginning, we get a taste of the best part of being a Draki… and the worst. The two extremes leap from the first 25 pages. And we’ve also encountered Will, and he has done something amazing, something completely un-hunter-ish, something confusing, fascinating, intriguing.Jacinda is a fun character. I love how she loves and honors her family and her clan even when she disagrees with them. It gives her more character to care especially when it’s physically painful to honor them… both. The romantic attraction is all Draki-blood hormones. (My terminology.) There is very little to base relationship on, although the overwhelming physical attraction brings characters close enough to interact and start building relationship. There is lots of kissing, frantic, heat-soaring, crazy-wild kissing. The Draki blood intensifies the experience for Jacinda, drawing out her inner Draki.Cassian is a great protagonist. He’s powerful, sexy, the up-n-coming leader of the draki clan and he has moments of kindheartedness. I never knew which part of him was real, the calculating leader or the kind man. I’m too suspicious of his motives to wait and see if he’s really kind. Run away!!!Will is a fun mystery, dark-but-not-really, brooding, unapproachable, tall and super-strong, intense… and somehow detects Jacinda before he sees her. *shiver* Because of their initial encounter, Jacinda is more inclined to trust his intentions than his description suggests she should. There’s always a tension between something mysterious and his strong attraction to Jacinda.I never know if the attraction is all based on that iridescent purple blood, though. In part, I feel very sorry for Jacinda because no matter how much she wants to make her own decisions, even those decisions are instinctual. Nothing about her is free from what she is, which makes her twin sister the wisest of everyone, since she sees this and still loves her sister while resenting all this wild instinct stuff. It’s ironic, actually, that Jacinda is trying so darn hard to create a bubble of free will about herself, while only pitting vying instincts against each other.That said… the kissing is very hot. The attraction is strong and dramatic. I love the action: the panic attacks, the fights. There’s an intense girl cat fight in the bathroom that’s just brutally fun – ouch!! Sophie Jordan writes adult romance novels, which I think is important to note. Her writing is skillful, if repetitive in a sprinkled through-out sort of way, and she handles the action really well, especially that kissing. I don’t really think two sophomores should be making out that intensely, in retrospect, but ages don’t seem important, for reasons eventually uncovered. It worked for me, even though I was blushing while reading. The best part, for me, was how fast of a read this book is. I set Firelight aside for some family time, but other than that, I finished it in one sitting. This was a much-appreciated boost to my current reading slump.Oh… one warning… there is one line that I wish didn’t exist in this book at all. It killed the storyline for me temporarily and wasn’t even necessary to the story: Catherine, new friend, says of Will, “He doesn’t date high school girls. He hardly talks to any of us.” All I could think was, “Edward”. Since the perspective changes so quickly and Will’s character and that of those around him explain him well, this entire conversation was pretty unnecessary. Will is more like Mr. Darcy, really, than Edward, if I was to compare: Reserved, mysterious, bad relatives, amazing in his own right. When you get to that scene, skim quickly to the other side!!!! (And resist the urge to chuck the book!! The comparison is gone as quickly as it comes up!) (You shouldn’t be throwing books, anyway. It’s not a good practice and definitely a horrible habit. Just say “no” to chucking.)
  • (4/5)
    How would you feel if you were forced to leave every part that made you yourself behind? From the beginning, Jacinda Jones knew her mother was doing the right thing by taking her and twin sister Tamra from their hidden world after an incident involving Jacinda’s foolishness and a handsome Draki hunter named Will letting her go, and moving them miles away to the town of Chaparral. But, that doesn’t mean Jacinda is okay with the move. It WAS her fault they had to flee, but how could she leave her people, the only ones like her, behind? The Draki, descendants of Dragons. She is the last of the fire-breathing Draki, who has been selected by the King himself to mate with gorgeous prince Cassian. Soon, when Will enters the picture again, Jacinda is faced with the toughest question of all. Should she choose dynasty and her own kind? Or should she choose the handsome boy who’s been trained all of his life to kill beings like her?Sophie Jordan does a wonderful job at showing the dryness and heat Jacinda feels in the city of Chaparral. That unquenchable thirst. I found myself having to have water at my side when reading. The thing that kept this book from scoring a perfect five from me was when Jacinda frequently teeter-totters on the edge of loving and hating Will. This did not fare well with me in Crescendo by Becca Fitzpatrick and it did not fare well here either. Once is perfectly understandable, twice is pushing it but still okay, more than that and it becomes a bit of a stretch. Nevertheless, I still enjoyed FIRELIGHT and look forward to reading VANISH soon.The world was inventive, the different types of Draki were interesting, and I look forward to reading more about them in the next book. As far as Team Will or Team Cassian, I have to admit that I am somewhere between both. Will is sweet and romantic, but Cassian is that dangerous sexy, that protective one, it’s kind of hard not to end up liking both. ;)