For information on the book's conception, see the Shannon Hale wiki's article.
Enna's brother, Leifer, has found the secret to an extraordinary power- to make fire without a spark. It's an ability that could be used for good... if he can control it. But Enna can't decide if it's a power she wants to learn for herself, or one that should be extinguished forever. And when their home country Bayern goes to war against Tira, the choice becomes unbearable. Enna never imagined that the warm, life-giving energy of a fire could destroy everything she loves, but now she must try to save Bayern and herself before fire consumes her entirely.
Main Characters Edit
- Enna: A headstrong forest girl who learns the gift of fire-speaking and feels obligated to use it to fight for Bayern against the kingdom of Tira. She is best friends with Isi, Razo, and Finn.
- Isi: The Queen of Bayern who knows wind-speaking and animal-speaking. Although her skill with wind has grown, she can't seem to escape its unceasing voice. She is Geric's wife and is best friends with Enna, Razo, and Finn.
- Sileph: A Tiran captain of fifty gifted with people-speaking who captures Enna. He tries to brainwash her into loving him and using her fire talents to fight for Tira.
- Finn: A quiet, gentle Forest boy who loves Enna. Despite his gentle demeanor, he does not hesitate to join the war and, through his grim determination, become one of the best swordsmen in the army so he can fight to protect his friends and homeland.
- Geric: The warm-hearted King of Bayern and Isi's loving husband. Although reluctant to go to war, he is unwilling to forsake the Bayern towns that Tira has already captured. He is also worried about his wife, as she seems to slowly be going mad from the incessant voice of the wind.
- Razo: A short, funny Forest boy who is not a great fighter, but is very friendly and is a good scout. He is the only one Enna trusts enough to tell about her new-found fire skills.
- Leifer: Enna's older brother. He finds a vellum that teaches him the language of fire and he decides to put his new skills to use by fighting in one of the first battles against Tira.
Awards and Nominations Edit
- A New York Public Library Book for the Teen Age.
- An Amazon Editor's Pick for Best Middle Grade Book of the Year.
- An Association of Booksellers For Children "Best Book" in the science fiction & fantasy category.
- Ranked the best fantasy sequel by the News & Observer (Raleigh, North Carolina).
- AML 2004 Young Adult Fiction Award.
- A Sonderbooks Standout 2004.