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Before She Ignites
Cover of Before She Ignites
Before She Ignites
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"A fully realized fantasy world complete with dragons, treachery, and flawed characters discovering their courage. I couldn't put it down!" C. J. Redwine, New York Times bestselling author of The Shadow Queen

From the New York Times bestselling author of My Lady Jane comes a smoldering new fantasy trilogy perfect for fans of Victoria Aveyard and Kristin Cashore about a girl condemned for defending dragons and the inner fire that may be her only chance of escape.

Mira has always been a symbol of hope for the Fallen Isles, perfect and beautiful—or at least that's how she's forced to appear. But when she uncovers a dangerous secret, Mira is betrayed by those closest to her and sentenced to the deadliest prison in the Fallen Isles.

Except Mira is over being a pawn. As she fights to survive and guards the secret she'd die to protect, Mira must find her inner fire, sparks of romance, and the scorching truth about her own endangered magic—before her very world collapses.
And that's all before she ignites.

"A fully realized fantasy world complete with dragons, treachery, and flawed characters discovering their courage. I couldn't put it down!" C. J. Redwine, New York Times bestselling author of The Shadow Queen

From the New York Times bestselling author of My Lady Jane comes a smoldering new fantasy trilogy perfect for fans of Victoria Aveyard and Kristin Cashore about a girl condemned for defending dragons and the inner fire that may be her only chance of escape.

Mira has always been a symbol of hope for the Fallen Isles, perfect and beautiful—or at least that's how she's forced to appear. But when she uncovers a dangerous secret, Mira is betrayed by those closest to her and sentenced to the deadliest prison in the Fallen Isles.

Except Mira is over being a pawn. As she fights to survive and guards the secret she'd die to protect, Mira must find her inner fire, sparks of romance, and the scorching truth about her own endangered magic—before her very world collapses.
And that's all before she ignites.

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About the Author-
  • Jodi Meadows wants to be a ferret when she grows up and she has no self-control when it comes to yarn, ink, or outer space. Still, she manages to write books. She is the author of the Incarnate trilogy, the Orphan Queen duology, and the Fallen Isles trilogy and coauthor of the New York Times bestseller My Lady Jane. Visit her at www.jodimeadows.com.

Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    July 3, 2017
    In this first book in the Fallen Isles trilogy, a young woman who is looked upon as the heart of her seven-island nation must stand up for what she believes after being bitterly betrayed. When 17-year-old Mira Minkoba discovers governmental treachery, she speaks out and is sent to the Pit, the most notorious prison in the Fallen Isles. At the mercy of Altan, a vicious guard with an agenda, Mira works to survive in order to save the dragons she loves and trains, see her family and friends again, and protect new allies she makes in prison. The narrative shifts between Mira’s harrowing time in the Pit and her pampered former life; Meadows (the Orphan Queen series) doesn’t instantly transform her into a ready-to-fight warrior, and she portrays acutely Mira’s insecurities about not living up to the demands of her station or to her mother’s expectations. Meadows leaves room to flesh out Mira’s island world in future books while exploring issues of inclusivity and discrimination. Fans of Naomi Novik’s Temeraire series or Julie Kagawa’s Talon books will be delighted. Ages 13–up. Agent: Lauren Macleod, Strothman Agency.

  • Kirkus

    July 15, 2017
    In this series debut, a young girl uncovers information that threatens to shake the foundation of her world.Mira Minkoba is known as the Hope-bearer. On the day she was born, a treaty uniting the six island-nations of the Fallen Isles was named after her. As the face and voice of the Luminary Council, her island's governing body, Mira lives life in a gilded cage. The only time she feels free is when she's with the dragons in the sanctuary. When Mira and her friends uncover a sinister plot involving the dragons, Mira takes it to the Luminary Council, but instead of addressing it, they banish her to the Pit, a tightly guarded underground prison. Faced with crippling anxiety, strange cellmates, and a cruel guard who will stop at nothing to uncover her secrets, Mira must keep her wits about her to survive, especially as it becomes clear that the dragon plot goes deeper than she ever imagined. In this first of the Fallen Isles Trilogy, Meadows sows the seeds for an exciting follow-up and creates a rich, vivid world with characters who blossom on the page. All of the novel's characters are brown, but so far this detail--punctuated with numerous mentions of hair and braids--feels surface deep; however, there is variance in culture from island to island, and as the novel progresses, discrimination becomes a topic of concern in the Fallen Isles. Meadows also hints at other clans and kingdoms beyond the six island nations. A page-turner that promises future intrigue, special powers, and dragon adventures. (Fantasy. 12-16)

    COPYRIGHT(2017) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • School Library Journal

    September 1, 2017

    Gr 9 Up-Mira Minkoba, nicknamed the Hope-Bearer, is seen as the living representation of the Mira Treaty. The treaty united and brought equality to the six island-nations of the Fallen Isles; each island (populated by people of color) is connected to a different god who bestows gifts to its people. Mira, used to being the mouthpiece of The Luminary Council, is thrown into prison, known as the Pit, when she discovers dragons have gone missing and makes the mistake of bringing it to the council's attention. Away from her best friends, wingsister Ilina and protector Hristo, who disregards his islands' peaceful ways, Mira must rely on herself for the first time. Living with anxiety, the protagonist has learned to cope with breathing exercises and panic pills. A secret obsession with counting everything turns shame to skill when learning to communicate with prison mate Aaru in code. Relying on her belief in the treaty, and the ways of her island gods Damyan and Darina, the lovers, Mira works to survive and make allies. Interspersed with flashback chapters, the novel is fairly fast-paced with surprising twists and turns. This richly written fantasy-the first in a trilogy-will keep readers asking whom to trust and wondering what's true. For fans of Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake, Long May She Reign by Rhiannon Thomas, and Graceling by Kristin Cashore. VERDICT A must-have for YA collections, especially where the author and fantasy is popular.-Rebecca Greer, Hillsborough County Public Library Cooperative, FL

    Copyright 2017 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • DOGO Books queen_luna - I have been looking for some fresh YA books to read and ended up finding this as a recommended book for people that read Mary Weber's Storm Siren. I loved Storm Siren so I was excited to try something that would be similar in theme but a unique book. First off, I am obsessed with the title. As soon as I saw it, it took my breath away. I'm not sure what it is about it, but it is probably one of the most captivating titles I have ever seen. What ends up happening when I see a book with a really good title or cover is that I then set my expectations very high. This lived up to all my expectations. It was exciting and emotional at the same time. I loved the main character. She was truly the perfect mix of goodness and imperfections. I loved the realness of her anxiety and all her struggles that she had to deal with. I loved her immediately. The whole idea of the gods and the isles was really intriguing to me also, and I loved how different and unique each island's culture was portrayed as being. I immediately liked Aaru! He is probably one of my favorite male characters of all time. And also....DRAGONS? Need I say more?
  • Booklist

    August 1, 2017
    Grades 9-12 Mira Minkoba is used to being seen and heard. Born the same day as the peace treaty that was named for her, Mira is the mouth of her government, helping to ease tensions between six island nations. Her beauty is cultivated, and her speeches written for her, but Mira's real love is her work with the dragons protected under the treaty. When Mira stumbles upon a dangerous secret about these dragons, she is sent immediately to the Pit, a huge, frightening prison. Mira's life has never been anything but soft, and her struggles with crippling anxiety threaten to overwhelm her as she faces life as a prisoner. But the dragons are still in danger, and Mira will have to summon inner strength she never knew she had if she's to be more than a mouthpiece. Pacing can be slow, as Mira is imprisoned for the bulk of the story, but the complex political system is compellingly built, and Mira's characterization is admirable. Hand to fans of rich world buildingand, of course, fans of dragons.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2017, American Library Association.)

  • Kirkus Reviews "In this first of the Fallen Isles Trilogy, Meadows sows the seeds for an exciting follow-up and creates a rich, vivid world with characters who blossom on the page.... A page-turner that promises future intrigue, special powers, and dragon adventures."
  • Publishers Weekly "Meadows portrays acutely Mira's insecurities about not living up to the demands of her station or to her mother's expectations...while exploring issues of inclusivity and discrimination. Fans of Naomi Novik's Temeraire series or Julie Kagawa's Talon books will be delighted."
  • ALA Booklist "The complex political system is compellingly built, and Mira's characterization is admirable. Hand to fans of rich world building—and, of course, fans of dragons."
  • School Library Journal "...fast-paced, with surprising twists and turns. This richly written fantasy—the first in a trilogy—will keep readers asking whom to trust and wondering what's true."
  • Geeks of Color "If you were looking for a new YA fantasy book to read with incredibly diverse characters, fantastical world-building, and a riveting plot, then Before She Ignites is the book for you. This book is what the future of the YA genre should be."
  • Mary Pearson, New York Times bestselling author of The Remnant Chronicles "Do not walk, run to get this book, so you can devour it like I did! Mira is a fascinating and flawed heroine who tilts the world on its side. I loved her and this fiercely imagined world. Jodi Meadows is a genius."
  • C .J. Redwine, New York Times bestselling author of The Shadow Queen "A fully realized fantasy world complete with dragons, treachery, and flawed characters discovering their courage. I couldn't put it down!"
  • Stacey Lee, award-winning author of Outrun the Moon "Complex world-building and luminous storytelling. Mira will sear a mark on your heart long after the final page is consumed."
  • Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books Meadows weaves a taut narrative of loss, betrayal, and friendship, building a politically and environmentally fascinating world that readers who are looking for fantasies that center on people of color will especially appreciate.
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