This review is based on an advanced reader’s copy of the novel obtained through snail mail at the permission of Scholastic Press. This is in no way had an effect on the integrity of my review. Please note that published novel will differ from this ARC.
Young Adult, Dystopian/Science Fiction
Part of a Series?:
2nd Novel of the Fire and Flood Series
February 24th, 2015
You Can Find the Book At:
In Fire & Flood, Tella Holloway faced a dangerous trek through the jungle and across the desert, all to remain a Contender in the Brimstone Bleed for a chance at obtaining the Cure for her brother. She can’t quit–she has to win the race, save Cody, and then fight to make sure the race stops before it can claim any more lives. In the next legs of the race, across the ocean and over mountains, Tella will face frostbite, sharks, avalanche, and twisted new rules in the race.
But what if the danger is deeper than that? How do you know who to trust when everyone’s keeping secrets? What do you do when the person you’d relied on most suddenly isn’t there for support? How do you weigh one life against another?
The race is coming to an end, and Tella is running out of time, resources, and strength. At the start of the race there were one hundred twenty-two Contenders. As Tella and her remaining friends start the final part of the race, just forty-one are left–and only one can win.
Please be advised that while there will be no spoilers for Salt and Stone, there will be spoilers for Fire and Flood. You can read my review for that book here.
When I first read Fire and Flood, I was blown away by it. I had heard some comparisons to other books, in particular, The Hunger Games. And while I can see those comparisons, Victoria’s story and characters stand on their own and I became a staunch supporter of her right away. I’m proud to say I’m part of the V Mafia and I’m eagerly counting down the days (not many of them left) until this book releases and all of you can enjoy it. Fire and Flood was absolutely fantastic and I wasn’t quite sure where the rest of the story was going to take us so when I managed to get my hands on Salt and Stone, I was ready for an adventure of a novel and I was granted just exactly that.
What really gets me about this book, besides the fact that it COMPLETELY TORE OUT MY HEART AND MADE ME SOB INTO MY PILLOW (ahem, ahem), is that she’s not afraid to take it just one more step further, one more step further, one step further. Its incredible. The basis of this series is this: how far are you willing to go in order to save someone you love? How far are you willing to take it? Are you willing to kill? Are you willing to let others be killed? Are you willing to maybe die yourself? Its incredible. Every single person taking part in this…”game” of sorts has volunteered. They weren’t forced. Every action taken, its a choice they made, and its crazy. Some of those choices didn’t feel like choices because they want this cure and they want to win the game and they want all of that, and it feels like they have no choice, and this is getting a little tangent-y but it all boils down to…every single person in this game makes the choices they feel necessary to get them where they need to go.
Which is why this book is so good. Fire and Flood was brutal but when compared to this novel, its child’s play. Tella and the rest of her gang are faced with worse obstacles than they were before, including each other. They are pit against each other over and over again, struggling with the feelings that they have each other, whether its friendship or just plain straight out love, which is something that’s hard to feel when you’re all battling for the same thing, something that you can’t all win. But its also the struggle for Tella and Guy at the same time. Victoria creates such real characters and even when they’re in this completely incredible world…they still feel real to us. You don’t know if you would do any different if it was yours.
The best part of this book is the end. I can’t go into too much detail because spoilers and all that. But she pushes it to the limit at the end, that last sort of thing she makes the contestants go through just…oh my god, it kills me. It breaks my heart. I literally was clutching the pages, wanting to scream at her, how could you do this? It was really pushing the limits. She really takes it to the very tip…really, how much are you really willing to sacrifice in order to get what you want? Its incredible. And the ending just makes me want the next book. The book is brutal and harsh and incredible but I just love it. And I can’t wait for more.