Author: Lish McBride
Series: Firebug #1
Genre: Young Adult, Romance, Fantasy, Humor, Horror
Release Date: September 23, 2014
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.
Ava is a firebug — she can start fires with her mind. Which would all be well and good if she weren’t caught in a deadly contract with the Coterie, a magical mafia. She’s one of their main hit men…and she doesn’t like it one bit. Not least because her mother’s death was ordered by Venus who is now Ava’s boss.
When Venus asks Ava to kill a family friend, Ava rebels. She knows very well that you can’t say no to the Coterie and expect to get away with it, though, so she and her friends hit the road, trying desperately to think of a way out of the mess they find themselves in. Preferably keeping the murder to a minimum.
First Sentence: Ryan slammed the book shut and tipped his head back, sprawling on the bench and claiming it as his own.
I received a copy of the book from the publisher in exchange for a honest review. All opinions are my own and I was not compensated for this review.
Doesn’t Firebug have the most awesome premise ever? A hitman (in this case, a hitwoman, but hitman sounds a lot better in my opinion – hitwoman just sounds really awkward) who can start fires with her mind, who is also on the run from a magical mafia. To make things even more intriguing, the magical mafia probably wants to kill her. Who would not love a book with that kind of premise? Answer: No one. However, despite Firebug‘s intriguing premise, I found myself really struggling to finish it due to multiple issues I had with the book, issues that definitely affected my enjoyment of the book.
If you want to be mad at me, fine. I probably earned it. When they go out of their way to sulk in your presence, however, then it’s more about hurting you than it is about their own hurt. (ARC 97)
Without doubt, the biggest problem I had with Firebug was all the info-dump in it. In fact, 60% of my notes on Firebug was me complaining about the info-dump and mentioning which parts have info-dump. Not only did Firebug have tons of info-dump at the beginning of the book, there were also tons of info-dump every few couple of pages. You want to know Ava’s history with a guy? No problem, some info-dump will help you out. You want to know about Ava’s past? No problem, some info-dump will be there to help you out. The info-dump was painful to read, especially since it occurred so often. To make things even worse, there was also some telling, not showing, added into the mist with all the info-dump. My eyes and brain just wanted to cry when I was reading all this.
My mom had taught me what it meant to love a firebug. Everything was fine as long as you kept it light. No delving into major relationships. Avoid all complications, especially the pitter-patter of little feet. (ARC 33)
Look at the summary of Firebug and note the part where Ava and her friends have to run away from the magical mafia. Doesn’t that sound exciting and just plain awesome? Well, I’m sorry to tell you this, but that doesn’t happen until around a little more than one-third into the book. The first one-third or so introduces you to Ava’s life, her background, her friends, and her boyfriend. There was barely any action in the first third of the book and it just bored me to death. Then the action parts happened and it picked up a little, but by then, it was already wayy too late.
Even though Firebug left off with a sort-of cliffhanger, I am pretty sure that I will definitely not be reading the sequel, if there is a sequel. Yes, I may want answers, but I don’t think I can get through any more info-dumping.
Overall, Firebug sadly failed to impress me at all. It’s such a disappointment to find a book with such a promising premise and to have it not live up to its premise.