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The Element of Fire

The Element of Fire  - Martha Wells I liked this tale. It is very fantasy, maybe a bit on the classic side but it holds up well, and I particularly appreciated the clear narrative approach, its refreshing straightforwardness –by no means to be confused with simplicity. There are interesting characters, action, politics, irony and mysteries. And the Fay!
3.5 stars rounded down because the romance is dropped like an afterthought and it fell flat, anyway considering this is a debut book I’m impressed; surely this won’t be my last Martha Wells’s story.

"Do you think you can control your desire for martyrdom and let me manage this?"

That’s what I wrote a couple of weeks ago when I jotted down my review. Actually, I’ve just finished [b:The Death of the Necromancer|321357|The Death of the Necromancer (Ile-Rien, #2)|Martha Wells|https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1287846738s/321357.jpg|2510225] and I’m in awe.
In this respect, though a very enjoyable book on its own which I would recommend for a pleasant fantasy read, the Element of Fire is kind of a dry run (pun intended, probably) compared to the second standalone of the Ile-Rien series. There all my minor gripes have been fully addressed: the characters are adult and well-rounded while the romance is just hinted at and it’s very, very clever.

Thomas had always known that if he had to die to please a royal ego, he wanted it to be as scandalous, messy, and politically inconvenient for as many persons as possible.