Of Fire and Stars

Of Fire and Stars


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An atmospheric and romantic debut fantasy perfect for fans of Ash and The Winner’s Curse.

Betrothed since childhood to the prince of Mynaria, Princess Dennaleia has always known what her future holds. Her marriage will seal the alliance between Mynaria and her homeland, protecting her people from other hostile kingdoms.

But Denna has a secret. She possesses an Affinity for fire—a dangerous gift for the future queen of a land where magic is forbidden.

Now Denna has to learn the ways of her new kingdom while trying to hide her growing magic. To make matters worse, she must learn to ride Mynaria’s formidable warhorses before her coronation—and her teacher is the person who intimidates her most, the prickly and unconventional Princess Amaranthine, sister of her betrothed.

When a shocking assassination leaves the kingdom reeling, Mare and Denna reluctantly join forces to search for the culprit. As the two work together, they discover there is more to one another than they thought—and soon their friendship is threatening to blossom into something more.

But with dangerous conflict brewing that makes the alliance more important than ever, acting on their feelings could be deadly. Forced to choose between their duty and their hearts, Mare and Denna must find a way to save their kingdoms—and each other.

Plus don't miss the sequel: Of Ice and Shadows!

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062433268
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 02/06/2018
Series: Of Fire and Stars , #1
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 416
Sales rank: 44,502
Product dimensions: 5.20(w) x 7.90(h) x 1.20(d)
Age Range: 13 - 17 Years

About the Author

Audrey Coulthurst writes YA books that tend to involve magic, horses, and kissing the wrong people. When she’s not dreaming up new stories, she can usually be found painting, singing, or on the back of a horse. Audrey has a master’s degree in writing from Portland State University. She lives in Santa Monica, California. She is the author of Inkmistress and Of Fire and Stars, which was named a Publishers Weekly Flying Start. Visit her online at www.audreycoulthurst.com.

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Of Fire and Stars 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 14 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love the world and characters. I especially enjoyed the unexpected love interest. Instead of doing as she's told, she follows her heart.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Of Fire And Stars is a fantasy novel involving two princesses in love, magic, and horses. I loved this book a lot. The slow burn romance was fantastic and had me squealing and eager to read the next page. I loved Mare and Denna as characters and I was rooting for them to get what they wanted in the end. I loved the side characters and especially that Mare and Denna weren't the only gay characters. There were a couple others that set how this universe has no homophobia (which a really nice change of pace). It was interesting to read a fantasy novel with politics as one of the main focuses of the kingdom. However, the ending did feel a bit rushed (but it did manage to tie up most loose ends so I can't fault it for that) and getting into the politics was a bit challenging at first, but I managed it in the end. I still very much enjoyed reading the novel and would recommend it to anyone who wants a sweet f/f fantasy romance.
EllenRozek More than 1 year ago
A perfect blend of forbidden magic, political intrigue, and hidden romance, OF FIRE AND STARS is exactly what I was hoping it would be. LGBTQUIA fantasy fans are sure to love Denna and Mare, who fall for each other in spite of the fact that Denna is betrothed to Mare's brother. Although being gay is a fairly normalized thing in this world, duty and alliances still trump desire, which lends real politicized stakes to the novel without excluding or demonizing queerness or queer readers. Just brilliant.
JaneGinMA More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this book. The author does a good job of making it clear that lesbian or gay relationships are not considered unusual in the world in this book. It is refreshing to not have to have homophobia as a plot point. Other than that it was a typical fantasy-with-a-map-at-the-front type of book, with kingdom politics, sneaking out of castles, and trying to figure out how to work with magic. I'm dying for a sequel.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I found the story very enjoyable and I thought the progression of Denna and Mare's love was very natural and believable. While the ending felt finished and tied off, I hope there's a second book because it felt like there could be more as well.
Chancie More than 1 year ago
Unique story, but everything was very lacking and plain. Characters had maybe one or two traits, and they never grew or developed. There was very little world building, and I found myself a little lost with things that I felt I was supposed to know. The story was very slow moving and by the end, it didn't feel like much had even happened. I was excited for this, but it sadly let me down. Maybe her next book will grab me.
Sarah_UK1 More than 1 year ago
(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to HarperCollins and Edelweiss.) “But some things are stronger than years of lessons. The draw of fire. The longing for freedom. Or a girl on a red horse.” This was a YA fantasy story about a princess with a fire affinity, who fell in love with her fiancée’s sister. Dennaleia was a strong character and it was easy to see why she was so scared of the truth about her abilities getting out when everyone seemed to be on the hunt for magic users. Mare was also a strong character and she had real grit and determination to do what she felt was right. I did feel sorry for the Prince though, as he was really screwed over by Denna and Mare’s relationship. The storyline in this started with Denna going to Mynaria in preparation for her wedding to the Prince, and developing a friendship with the Princess (Mare) instead. We then got lots of horse riding, as well as trouble brewing in the form of magic, with blame being laid on a neighbouring kingdom, whilst Denna and Mare were convinced that they were being framed. We also got a GLBT romance between Denna and Mare, although it took a long time for me to really get invested in the relationship. The ending to this was pretty good, and I would definitely be interested in reading a sequel. 7 out of 10
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A cute and romantic friends-to-lovers story between two powerful women! Intrigue, magic, banter, steamy romance--everything I wanted and more!
KittyTheVicariousBookworm More than 1 year ago
First, let’s look at this cover. It’s gorgeous and I’m totally in love with the font! It’s what sucked me in and made me read the summary. “A princess with a forbidden magical gift is shipped off to a neighboring kingdom to marry a prince, but she has to choose between her duty and her heart when she falls in love with his roguish horse-training sister instead.” Obviously, after a summary like that I had to read this book. But you, my fellow bookworms, know how it is with the TBR piles and the such… so I never got around to it until the #DAReadAThon pushed me into reading it for the Stupefy prompt and the Beat the Backlist Challenge pushed me to kill off some of my ever-expanding TBR pile. I also recently joined the Diversely Booked Book Club, which happens to be reading Of Fire and Stars for January. Everyone I saw speaking about Of Fire and Stars on social media showered it with praises. Now, I feel like I should have read a few of the Goodreads reviews before selecting it because I’m pretty disappointed. The characters are very two-dimensional. There is minimal development even on the two point-of-view characters, Mare and Denna. For secondary characters, the development is literally non-existent. Everyone is either good or bad with no grey area or depth to be found anywhere. I was especially disappointed in the lack of depth of both Thandi and Alisendi because they had such important roles to the main story. I honestly couldn’t tell you anything about them aside from Thandi’s unwillingness to listen to reason and Alisendi’s hope that her sister will stuff herself into the role that has been forced upon her by her station. The world is much like the characters within it: falling sadly flat with little description of it aside from the separation or unity of Affinities and the Six Gods, who are not elaborated upon beyond the affinities they represent. Hints are given as to the existence of a specific “order” in which the Gods should be displayed based on religious sect, but the actual order and representative colors are never given. Almost no elaboration is given to regional cultures, languages, or daily life. Vague hints are given to climate differences of different regions as well as regional preferences for a single specified god of the six available for three of the regions discussed. The thing that bothered me the most is the plethora of questions that stuck with me at the end of the story, especially since it didn’t seem like the author was really trying for a cliff-hanger. How did the information get out of the castle and into the two rivaling factions ears with such speed and accuracy? How was the Directorate able to capture so many of the Recusants when they couldn’t even figure out where their new meeting location was? I also have a question as to why the author picked who she did as the villain, but to ask openly would spoil the entire book and I try so very hard not to post spoilers in my reviews. Needless to say the end, like much of the rest of the book, left me frustrated. The only thing I really enjoyed about Of Fire and Stars was the romance between Mare and Denna, but even that left something to be desired. I will admit I spent most of the book anticipating the romance between the two of them, which carried me through much of the story by itself. Said anticipation (and my curiosity of where the story would take the two of them) allowed me to read the book in only a day.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Oh, my heart! This book! My heart! I love this book so much. It's intriguing fantasy with magic and politics and ponies, all wrapped around a ridiculously satisfying slow-burn romance between two fantastic characters. The world feels realistic and lived-in, with just the right amount of world-building detail to make it easy to follow all the political strains and alliances and dangers. I especially love the magic--it feels small and subtle at first, a little thing that hardly seems worth all the fuss various political/religious groups are making over it, but then... it isn't so small and subtle anymore, for reasons which I shall not divulge because SPOILERS, and then all at once this world's magic is terrifying. AND I LOVE IT. But most of all what I adore about this book are the main characters, Denna and Mare, and their relationship. It's such a delight to watch these two young women who are very different people from very different lines, with very different sets of expectations and burdens on them, slowly come to like and appreciate each other, to see each other's strengths and flaws clearly, and to work together when all kinds of forces are trying to push them apart--and, of course, to fall in love, which happens so naturally and so perfectly I barely even noticed when I shifted from "aw you'll like each other eventually" to shouting JUST KISS ALREADY at the book every three pages. And sometimes I would mix it up and shout NO REALLY YOU LIVE IN A VERY DANGEROUS WORLD JUST KISS ALREADY. So, yes, it's the kind of book that had more shouting a lot because I was REALLY VERY CONCERNED for these characters and their dangerous, magical world, right up until the end when I wasn't shouting anymore but sighing a deep sigh of happy satisfaction, because literally every single thing about this book is fantastic. Including the horses. I love it.
hwheaties More than 1 year ago
It's not often that I read a book that's able to surprise me—in a good way—and this book did it. The characters are richly drawn and real and true, but true in a way that most books don't offer, which is true to their hearts. Dennaleia and Mare come together as Denna is supposed to marry Mare's brother, but they end up becoming friends, and then falling for each other. This is the way, usually, that those things happen, but they way they're never described in literature, usually, because people are afraid to be honest about the way those things happen. Told in a dual point-of-view style, this story of friends who become lovers covers a country and includes a bit of magic, which of course is always fun, except in this case, magic is not looked on as good. Throughout the book, Coulthurst develops tension not only through Dennaleia's discovery of her secret magical abilities, alongside the burgeoning tensions between Mynaria and other less friendly kingdoms, but also the developing relationship between Mare and Denna. The best part of the book is, the people around them find absolutely nothing wrong with Denna and Mare's relationship—other than, of course, the fact that Denna was supposed to marry Mare's brother. Relationships between men and men, women and women, are just as common as relationships between men and women. In this time when we are now so worried about the normalization of the hateful behaviors so present in the news, it would be so nice to see more novels and stories like this, in which love in all forms is normalized, so that people would not be afraid to share their love to the world. After all, we could use a bit more love to go around all the time—especially now. Coulthurst wrote a beautiful story about magic and love, which are truly the things that keep the world going round.
KathyMacMillan More than 1 year ago
What can I say about this book? It broke my heart, then put it back together, then broke it again. Denna and Mare are two strong, smart young woman, on different tracks in life but equally determined to do right by the people they care about. Denna has trained all her life to be a queen, and is determined to be a good one, but is frustrated when no one in the Mynarian court appreciates her politically astute intelligence – no one, that is, except her fiance’s sister and Denna’s riding instructor, Mare. Headstrong, independent Mare struggles to find her place – and she is more surprised than anyone to find that where she truly belongs is at Denna’s side. When these two princesses fall in love, it’s fire and stars and romance and political turmoil, all wrapped up in the dangers of Denna’s hidden magical gifts spiraling out of her control. I loved this story, and I can’t wait to read Coulthurst’s next book – I might even have forgiven her for the heartbreaking death of one of my favorite characters by the time it comes out.