Year Published: 2015 - by St Martin's Griffin.
Genres: Fantasy / young adult / paranormal / romance
Source: Thank you to Pan Macmillan SA for sending me this book in exchange for an honest review!
Bryn Aven is an outcast among the Kanin, the most powerful of the troll tribes. Set apart by her heritage and her past, Bryn is a tracker who's determined to become a respected part of her world. She has just one goal: become a member of the elite King’s Guard to protect the royal family. She's not going to let anything stand in her way, not even a forbidden romance with her boss Ridley Dresden. But all her plans for the future are put on hold when Konstantin– a fallen hero she once loved – begins kidnapping changelings. Bryn is sent in to help stop him, but will she lose her heart in the process?
LET'S JUST TALK ABOUT THE COVER PLEASE. Isn't it just gorgeous?! Hocking always has the most amazing covers for her books, and I'm already half in love before I even start the book.
Seriously though. The covers are amazing. And thankfully I also rather liked the book, too...
The world-building was excellent. It's strong, realistic, and easy to fall in love with. And I just LOVE LOVE LOVE anything to do with ice and snow; it creates such a beautiful backdrop for fight scenes and kissing scenes and AHHH there's just so much potential with snow and ice. I loved the world.
The story/plot was strong and intricate, and although the book ended with a lot of unanswered questions, I'm sure they'll be resolved in the next book or the last one. The plot was clever, tight, kept me guessing, and was only slightly predictable. It also had a darker, more chilling undercurrent than the Trylle series, and I really liked that.
Unfortunately, the story also dragged - till about the last quarter of the book. It wasn't boring exactly, but not much happened. Considering that Bryn's a tracker (a bodyguard), I was expecting a lot more action and physical fights, but there was hardly any of that. The plot was clever and tight for the most part, but it needed a lot more action. That said, the scenes without Ridley and Bryn together and without some physical action suffered greatly.
With the exception of Bryn, Ridley, Ember and Tilda, the characters weren't brilliant at all. But Bryn was an awesome heroine - stubborn, flawed, realistic, brave, vulnerable, and capable. She was unique and strong, and I really felt for her. Her aim in life wasn't guys or love, but instead her job, and that's created gorgeous potential for the books to come. Ridley was also awesome: so swoony and so hot and so right for Bryn (and me, FYI).
The romance was AMAZING. Every scene between Bryn and Ridley was burning with sexual tension and chemistry, and I ship them so hard it hurts. They were equals, they were capable, they were brilliant characters on their own, but together they were magical. The scene where they first kiss was the most beautiful scene in the book and definitely the best written one. It was spellbinding, gorgeous, haunting, and overwhelming. I loved it.
There are hints of a love triangle to come, but I really hope that doesn't happen. I love Ridley and Bryn too much <3
Some other things I found disappointing:
While Frostfire was easy-to-read and enjoyable, Hocking's sentences were far too long and there was too much telling and not enough showing. The long sentences killed the drama, and Hocking's insistence to explain nearly everything after it happens got annoying and just plain unnecessary. A lot of drama was killed because of that, and it was infuriating.
The prologue was also a very bad start to the book, and the cliffhanger at the end of the book was frustrating.
Frostfire was entertaining and addictive reading, and its beautiful romance and strong lead characters made up for the the dragging plot and infrequent action. It wasn't amazing, but it was a wonderful escape into a mysterious world.
It also improves upon the Trylle series (which I didn't like at all) and I highly recommend this book over Switched.