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Saturday, August 17, 2013

The Flame in the Mist

by Kit Grindstaff
This book was published in April 2013

        I was looking for some magic and fantasy so I picked up The Flame in the Mist. The cover was well done and it seemed to reek of magic. So far so good. I launched into Jemma's world where she and her family live in a castle and rule over the land. They love to eat rotten food and spoiled milk, and every week make an offering to Mordrake and Mordrana, their family ancestors. Using magic they summon up evil things like bats, spiders, and monsters. However Jemma hates the weekly ceremonies and falters at doing anything evil. Obviously, she is different.

        I read one fourth of the book before I skipped to the last page, read the last paragraph, and declared the book finished.

        The plot moves a bit too quickly and awkwardly, using sleeping, escaping, and sneaking around heavily and repetitively in the plot. Too repetitively. In the first 24 hours of the book Jemma sleeps four times, sneaks around more than that, and attempts escape three times. This is essentially the first 100 pages of the book with 450 more pages to go. You might see now why I didn't finish it. Stephanie agrees with me although she was able to finish it.

       However, I think that this book has a place where it can find success. Middle schoolers and below will probably be more forgiving of the errors I find glaring and sympathize better with Jemma, who is 13. They won't find it immature and more they will be more likely to glaze over the oddly repetitive, shallow bits.

       Since I didn't enjoy this book I rate it a 2. I think a younger audience would give it a 3 or slightly higher. If this book were a food, it would be candy dots. Were they actually that good when I was young? I don't think so, but I also didn't care. Older teens and adults know to spend money on something else.


  1. I actually did finish the book, but your analysis is pretty accurate. The plot and the world were a bit oversimplified (four people don't rule a nation just by running around and taking pleasure in rotten things). This book is definitely targeted for younger kids looking for an introduction to fantasy.


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