I'm iffy about this book. It's a prequel, set 30 years before Graceling takes place. It explains a lot about the above mentioned bad guy and how he came to be. I wasn't a big fan of Fire. She had her great moments, but for the most part I thought she was kind of whiny and dramatic. Those two qualities don't go hand in hand. But everything else I thought was well done, and I'm completely in love with Brigan, Fire's main squeeze.