* I received an ARC at BookExpo 2018, all quotes included here may not reflect the finished edition *
Overall: 4.5/5 Stars
Plot and Themes: 4/5
Awesomeness Factor: 4.5/5
Review In A Nutshell: Seafire is a thrilling, epic adventure with badass female pirates set on revenge.
“Take your ship, take your crew, and prove to that man that he has not quelled all of us. Prove that there is a fire on these seas that he cannot contain.”
//Content warning: violence, death, drug addiction//
– Premise –
Seafire follows Caledonia Styx, the captain of Mors Navis. After making a mistake that led to the deaths of her family at the hands of the ruthless warlord Aric Athair and his army of Bullets, she is set on getting her revenge. When a Bullet saves her best friends life and offers them information that can give Cala the edge she needs, she must decide if she can trust him.
“Never underestimate the girls of this world.”
– Setting –
The setting of Seafire is really interesting, yet very vague. Set in a dystopian world where a warlord rules the seas and drugs children so they can serve his army, this book has a lot of compelling factors. While not entirely a fantasy setting, this book does have the fantasy/pirate feel despite the scifi-esque technology sometimes used. My only complaint is how little we’re told about the world. There are plenty of new words used in this book that are never really explained well enough, and despite inferring the meaning, several of them still aren’t clear.
“’I am not made for just surviving.’
‘What are you made for then?’
– Writing –
The writing style is amazing. Natalie C. Parker’s prose perfectly fits this genre-bending novel with great descriptions and intriguing internal dialogue. Plus some great banter too (Oran and Redtooth bring me so much joy, you have no idea).
“Just because there are bad things behind someone doesn’t mean they only have bad things inside them.”
The beginning of the book can feel a little slow because, despite the many action scenes, the world can be a little hard to jump into. While the exposition is balanced well, what hasn’t been explained in exposition slows down the plot. Not to mention, a large part of the first half of the book focuses more on the characters than the overall arc of the plot. However, by the 50% mark, the book really does pick up and is almost impossible to put down!
“Caledonia Styx, I suspect your regrets are few and legendary.”
– Characters –
The crew of the Mors Navis is one of my absolute favorite parts of the book. A fierce, all-female group of over fifty pirates hell-bent on getting revenge? It’s awesome. I will say, this book is definitely not as gay as it sounds (there is a side romance between some crew members, but it isn’t really explicitly stated in this book, but hopefully the next book will be gayer!). The main romance isn’t gay, and honestly isn’t at all a focus of this book (it is very much a slow-burn). The main character, Caledonia, is such a complex and fascinating protagonist. I absolutely loved her journey throughout this book. The Bullet (Oran) doesn’t really get to shine until the last quarter of the novel, but he absolutely stole every scene for me. I can’t wait to learn more about him in the sequel! The majority of the crew doesn’t get much focus, with the exception of Pisces, Lace, Lovely Hime, Amina, Tin, and Redtooth. They each have very distinct personalities and really do stand out in this book.
“There’s a storm on our tail, ladies. Not a small one. But we’re fire on water.”
– Conclusion –
Pros– Great writing, fascinating characters
Cons– A little slow at the start, the setting can be too vague at times
Overall– 4.5/5 stars.
Seafire is an epic adventurous novel that will blow you out of the water.