Friday, October 31, 2008

Seize the Fire: Review

Book: Seize the Fire
Author: Laura Kinsale
Series: None
Category: Historical Romance
Sensuality: Hot

Olympia of Oriens is a princess. Exiled to England, she longs to return to her battle torn country and bring justice to her people. But she will be going up against her uncle who is, in her opinion, pure evil. She seeks out a recently retired, highly decorated Naval Captain, Sheridan Drake for help with her cause. Olympia has great expectations of Sheridan, his many accomplishments give him great acclaim and she is sure that he is just the hero to help her.

Captain Sheridan Drake is not the hero every one thinks him to be. In fact, he knows he is not a hero at all, more like a lying scoundrel. Returning home to his deceased father's house of pranks and nothing more, Sheridan finds himself down and out. Then the adorably plump Olympia St. Leger shows up at his door, pleading for his help. Sheridan hears out Olympia's plan. He is amused by the fierce passion Olympia has for her country, and knows she doesn't have the first clue about how to run it, much less take it over. But he is desperate and in need of money, and the beautiful, unassuming Princess is a jackpot in Sheridan's eyes. He takes Olympia up on her offer and they set out on the adventure of their lives.

I've always found Ms. Kinsale's writing to be emotionally draining, and Seize the Fire is no exception. Olympia and Sheridan were great characters. Olympia is a little reserved, but she has big dreams and even bigger notions about what she thinks the world should be like. This character trait was both a good and bad thing for her character because while it made her innocently endearing, it also put her and Sheridan in a lot of unneeded trouble on multiple occasions. Sheridan is mostly disenchanted with life and people in general. He is tortured to the nth degree, hates Olympia's hero worship of him, and as soon as the opportunity arrives to prove to her he is anything but, he takes it.

Per usual, while reading Laura Kinsale, there were times when I became exasperated with the amount of angst and the heaviness of the characters internal demons. But I knew there had to be a light at the end of the tunnel, and there was. Though it was not exactly how I expected it to be (the ending is just as torturous as most of the book is) it worked for the people that Sheridan and Olympia had become. Exasperation and all, I can not get over Ms. Kinsale's way with words, she can weave a story and leave me hanging on her every word.

At 583 pages, Seize the Fire is epic in scale. Sheridan and Olympia are taken to lands far away, deserted islands, tropical paradises, multiple ships and more. They deal with intense hardships on their journey, fall in love, get it torn away, they are nearly killed a few times and whatever else could happen, happens to them. Watching the characters finding themselves through loving each other was wonderful yet bittersweet. Sigh. Seize the Fire was a great, heart-wrenching romantic adventure to read. What else is left to say other than I loved it, misplaced hymen and all. Grade A-.


  1. I think I haven't read this one yet! (Strange ... I thought I'd read all of hers.) You're such a patient reader, persevering right to the end. I'd probably have tossed the book at the first sign of "emotionally draining". LOL

  2. Nice review. Sheridan really sounds like an interesting character! I love those jaded characters. Hymen-play notwithstanding.

  3. Love the review, Brie.

    Misplaced hymen. I swear, that's gonna have me cracking up for a while.

    Good to know the book has some redeeming qualities. :D

  4. Very nice review :) I have yet to pick up a book from this author and read it and I blame the length of the book LOL and the way it's written.

    LOL, misplace hymen ^_^;

  5. I read this one years ago but I don't remember that much about it. Seems to me after reading your review that it needs a reread. I hope I still have it after all these years!

  6. I know, Katie! It cracks me up.

    Jace, I had my moments when I wanted to toss it, but it was too good for me to give up on it.

    CJ- Sheridan is one of the most tortured hero's I've ever read. He beats Dain from Lord of Scoundrels in that department. But he's also a lot of fun.

    Lots of redeeming qualities, Ann. :)

    I hope so too, Kristie. It's the kind of book I would dust off every couple of years for a reread.

  7. I have this one but have not read it yet. I was a little daunted by the length. I will have to look at it again. Great review :)

  8. Hi Kris, it is a hunker of a book. I do hope you give it a, chance though.