This trilogy just got a whole heap hotter...
The world created in Cold Magic is split in two: the tangible and the spirit worlds. Cat can walk in both, and in Cold Fire we find out why.
Revelation after revelation peels back the false veneer of Cat and Bee’s gloriously naïve life in Adurnam; exposing a ruthless pit of political conniving and conspiracies that make the head spin. A fearsome General exiled on a remote island has escaped and the Mage Houses are both livid and terrified of an uprising. The populous are steeped pent-up frustration and anger, ready to boil over at the slightest provocation. The Trolls speak of “radicals”; a group of like-minded individuals seeking to galvanize a revolt against the old ways, overturn the Houses and initiate a more democratic society. Radicals infiltrate the Houses and the Houses infiltrate the radicals. But Cat discovers there is more at risk than the transient rise or fall of power – the terrible weight of “The Wild Hunt” and its need to feed on a powerful mortal on Hallows night is like a stone dragging her down. Bee is their perfect prey.
Cold Fire is the heart and soul of this trilogy. Cat truly discovers herself within the pages of this novel. Her impetuousness and outspoken tongue may make the journey of self-discovery more arduous than it need have been; but that’s part of her charm. Finally, there is a recognisable courtship between Andevai (or Vai) and Cat – it’s slow, ponderous steps at first full of alarm and hesitation, bloom into a resplendent display of wild abandonment; unfortunately, at the most inopportune moment. Bee’s true character continues to evade, but despite her “walking the dream of dragons” and being unspeakably beautiful; her part pales to insignificance.
With an alacrity previously lacking, Cold Fire blazes its way through its 500 or so pages, leaving a trail of unfinished chores, uneaten meals, grossly neglected husbands and bladders ready to burst, all borne out of a terrifying need to finish the book. Elliott evidently got into her stride with this one and it makes us like Cold Magic more. We have high hopes of a spectacular finale and wait with baited breath…
We interview C J Daugherty about Night School
- 10 January 2012