Fanning the Flames
(Going Down in Flames #4)
by Chris Cannon
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Publication Date: March 6, 2017
Genre: Fantasy Young Adult
Bryn McKenna has it all. Even though she’s a hybrid dragon, she’s finally fitting in the new shape-shifting dragon world that’s become her own. But her grandparent’s want to ruin everything by making Bryn’s nightmare of an arranged marriage to Jaxon Westgate a reality. It doesn’t help that Jaxon’s father is on a witch hunt for Rebel sympathizers and Bryn finds herself in his line of fire.
If she doesn’t say “I do,” she’ll lose everything. Good-bye flying. Good-bye best friends. Good-bye magic. But if she bends to her grandparents’ will and agrees to marry Jaxon she’ll lose the love of her life—her knight.
Fanning the Flames picks up right where Trial By Fire left off. It wasn’t until this book that I realized that we are on the fourth book of the series and a school year hasn’t even past yet. I don’t know why I didn’t realize that before but it seems like this series is going to span the first year of Bryn’s life as a dragon, and boy does a crazy first year she have. I mean, she’s been poisoned, attacked, kidnapped, betrothed, fallen in love, broken up, fallen in love again, only to have that become a rocky relationship. This poor girl has gone through so much in such a short span of time.
I had issues with the last book and that was mainly because the story seemed to consist of Bryn and Valmont (her knight and boyfriend) going back and forth on whether a relationship between them would work. I just didn’t feel like a lot was accomplished in it. So I was glad to see that we get some mystery and action back with this installment. You see, there are vaults/rooms under the library at school that only a certain colored dragon and their knight can open. No one knows what’s inside until they are opened. However, it seems that the rebels are after whatever are in those rooms. So, it’s kind of a race against the clock to try to get into the rooms to see what they can figure out and hopefully stop a war with the rebels from happening. Of course, because Bryn is the only dragon with a knight, she and Valmont sort of set the stage and help find other dragons who would be interested in taking on a knight to try to open up one of the rooms. The majority of the story line consists of the mystery behind the rooms and figuring out what it all means.
Now, I’m all for romance. I am a romance junkie. I love me some romance. However, this whole Bryn and Volmont thing is driving me up a wall. Very rarely to I wish for a unhappily-ever-after, it’s happened before but it is rare. So, the fact that I was just sitting there hoping they would go their separate ways was a bit shocking. Ever since the last book I sort of lost respect for Volmont and their relationship as a whole. It’s not that I want to see Bryn with Jaxon, I just couldn’t stand hers and Valmont’s relationship angst. So, this entire book I was just biding my time hoping they would call it quits and I’d be done with it all. Which is shocking because I love romance!
…Just not theirs.
Like I said before, the majority of the book is just a lot of mystery and room hunting. Not a whole heck of a lot of action. However, the book does finally pick up steam about three quarters of the way through. I had a moment where I got teary-eyed (which really shocked me given what I was crying over), there were some gnarly fight scenes with limbs and wings flying, there was some big secrets revealed, and the story takes a turn into uncharted territory. I will admit that the author was starting to lose me there for a moment because I wanted excitement and dragony scenes, not so much teenage angst, but she was able to reel me back in with the last quarter of the book. It’s not that the story was bad, I just wasn’t in the mood for a slow-building read. I wanted action-packed dragon awesomeness. So when the pacing took on a much slower pace than I was expecting I found myself getting a little bored. However, I’m kind of in it to win it at this point. With everything that happened in the last quarter of the book, I need to know how it all goes down for Bryn.
“As a general rule, books don’t sparkle at me.”