by Josephine Angelini
Published by Fiewel & Friends on September 2, 2014
Genres: Young Adult Fantasy
Buy on Amazon, Barnes & Noble
This world is trying to kill Lily Proctor. Her life-threatening allergies keep her from enjoying experiences that others in her hometown of Salem take for granted, which is why she is determined to enjoy her first high school party with her best friend and longtime crush, Tristan. But after a humiliating incident in front of half her graduating class, Lily wishes she could just disappear.
Suddenly, Lily is in a different Salem—one overrun with horrifying creatures and ruled by powerful women called Crucibles. Strongest and cruelest of them all is Lillian . . . Lily's other self in this alternate universe.
What makes Lily weak at home is what makes her extraordinary in New Salem. In this confusing world, Lily is torn between responsibilities she can't hope to shoulder alone and a love she never expected.
Trial by Fire caught my eye because of the book cover. My first impression was that this was going to be a book with a strong heroine and I am happy to say I was right. I was so surprised with this story that I couldn’t put it down.
Trial by Fire is about Lily Proctor, a teenager in Salem that is suffering from life-threatening allergies. But after an embarrassing and heartbreaking event with Tristan, her best friend and longtime crush, she wishes she could disappear. And her wish comes true by being transported to an alternate universe.
In this alternate universe Lily meets her doppelganger, Lillian, who is a cruel leader. She also meets doppelgangers of Juliet, her sister, and Tristan. Stories about alternate universes can be tricky and sometimes confusing. So in the beginning of Trial by Fire it was hard to keep the doppelgangers straight. But after reading more of the story I became comfortable with the different characters. I really liked the heroine Lily. Even though she was always sick in her universe she was determined to not have that stop her. She wanted to enjoy life while she can instead of getting pity from everyone. Once she enters the alternate universe she has less allergy reactions and becomes stronger. Lily’s main focus is on getting back home but when she meets Rowan Fall her plans change. Rowan Fall is a great character. He starts out as a mysterious and mean character. But as the story progresses we learn his backstory and get a better understanding of him. I really liked how the author developed this character and his relationship with Lily. It slowly built from dislike and mistrust to admiration and hopefully to something more.
This is my first time reading from author Josephine Angelini and I was really impressed with her creativity. I liked the worldbuilding in this book. Even though Lily jumps into a different universe it was nice to have there be similarities between the worlds. I think this was smart of the author so that readers wouldn’t be so confused. Since Lily is unfamiliar with her surroundings there was a lot of scientific facts in her conversations with other characters. This was interesting but I think some of it made the story drag in some parts. But overall I thought the pace of the story was good and that cliffhanger at the end was so surprising. I can’t wait to read the next book!!
Trial by Fire is an exciting adventure that I think all fantasy fans should read.