We Hunt The Flame is a beautiful book filled with lush writing and a wonderful cast of characters. The beginning almost let the book down as we entered the world at such a slow pace it edged on boring. However, when the cast began to come together, and the plot unravelled We Hunt The Flame truly began to shine. Set in a fantasy world based on ancient Arabia, I’m excited to see what happens next.
People lived because she killed. People died because he lived.
Zafira is the Hunter. Forced to disguise herself as a man, she risks everything to provide for her people.
Nasir is the Prince of Death. A feared assassin who is forever bound to the command of his father, the sultan.
Both are legends in their kingdom – but neither wants to be. And when Zafira embarks on a dangerous quest to return magic to their suffering land, Nasir is sent on a similar mission. But as their journey unfolds, an ancient evil begins to stir . . .
Zafira is a hunter who disguises herself as a man to provide for her home in a land that prevents women from taking on these roles. The few people who know her true identity want her to stand up as a woman, to show them that women can do brilliant things. Zafira is the only one who can walk through the cursed forest of the Arz and return home safe. So when she’s called upon to complete a quest to bring magic back to the land, there’s no one else who can protect her people. Nasir is an assassin for his cruel father. His compassion is a weakness to be used against him, and he’ll never be free. When he’s sent to hunt the hunter, he travels on a journey he never expected.
The writing in this book was gorgeous. Although it could be said to slow the pacing, the way Faizal expertly crafted such a brilliant atmosphere and setting was delightful. Adventure books need to inspire awe in the places the characters travel through. I’m glad to say that We Hunt The Flame definitely delivered in this aspect.
I’m also a huge fan of the ragtag group of adventurers trope! When you combine clashing personalities, differing loyalties, and conflicting goals and force them into co-operating it’s always a lot of fun. Zafira, Nahir, and Altair stood out to me as characters, and I can’t wait to see how this trio develop in the next book. Faizal combines grumpy, serious characters with more light-hearted, humorous ones to keep the atmosphere balanced even in the face of danger.
The romance was also incredibly fun. Zafira and Nahir were attracted to each other early on, perhaps too quickly in some people’s opinion. What I liked was that despite their attraction the narrative kept placing blocks in their way. They weren’t able to explore their burgeoning feelings for the majority of the read. And yes, Zafira might think Nahir is a murderer, but he’s a hot murderer y’know. Who can blame her?
I have to admit, I did almost DNF this early on. I’m glad I didn’t in the end because I had a lot of fun with this read. The beginning was incredibly slow and lacked any compelling features. We Hunt The Flame is more of a character-focused book, but it truly shines when those characters come together. I also thought the pacing was a little off at times. The introduction of the Big Bad felt a little jarring and sudden. I’m hoping the second book will have solved these issues as this series has a lot of potential.
The ending was fantastic. The hint of mystery? The person it involves? Amazing. I can’t wait to see what happens next.
Overall, We Hunt The Flame was a beautiful adventure story with a wonderful cast of ragtag characters. I loved the group dynamic, and despite a slow start and some pacing issues, I had a lot of fun with this read.
CW: violence, death, torture, parental abuse
(Thanks to Netgalley and Macmillan Children’s Books for providing an advance readers copy in exchange for an honest review)
About The Author
Hafsah Faizal is the New York Times bestselling, award-winning author of WE HUNT THE FLAME, WE FREE THE STARS and A TEMPEST OF TEA, and the founder of IceyDesigns, where she creates websites for authors and beauteous goodies for everyone else. A Forbes 30 under 30 honoree, when she’s not writing, she can be found designing, deciding between Assassin’s Creed and Skyrim, or traversing the world. Born in Florida and raised in California, she now resides in Texas with a library of books waiting to be devoured.
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