Fire Becomes Her | Rosiee Thor


Fire Becomes Her by Rosiee Thor

Coming February 01, 2022 from Scholastic Press; 368 pages

Content Warnings: Classism, manipulation, sexism, political and police corruption

About the Author: “Rosiee Thor began her career as a storyteller by demanding to tell her mother bedtime stories instead of the other way around. She spent her childhood reading by flashlight in the closet until she came out as queer. She lives in Oregon with a dog, two cats, and an abundance of plants. She is the author of Young Adult novels Tarnished Are The Stars and Fire Becomes Her and the picture book The Meaning of Pride.” (Bio taken from author’s website.)

Find Rosiee Thor on the following platforms:

“You think becoming one of them will make up for who you were born, but giving in to their impossible model of richness will just nail the lid on the rest of our coffins.”

The city of Candesce is built on the vast but finely guarded wellspring of magic, flare, which is used for everything from cosmetic tools to power sources. However, the ruthlessly structured social and economic classes leave all but a few citizens without enough access to the necessary magic to survive. Ingrid Ellis has spent her entire adolescence trying to overcome the legacy of her imprisoned father. She attends the prestigious Ainsley Academy and secretly dates Linden Holt, the son of the most politically powerful man, to ensure she never returns to the poverty and isolation she was orphaned into. With graduation looming — and the dawning realization that she will never have the same influence as her classmates despite her scholastic achievements — Ingrid agrees to infiltrate the political group rivaling Linden’s father’s presidential candidacy to earn a permanent spot within the magical elite of Candesce.

At its core, Fire Becomes Her is about a woman willing to turn herself inside out for a chance at a better life, all made possible by Ingrid’s manipulation of the people around her. This had me hooked from the moment she was willing to sabotage an entire political party to secure her own future. The commentary of this book is interestingly laced through with a unique magic system and a central queer, platonic relationship, all of which made Ingrid’s questioning of her desire for wealth and status more realistic. As a queer reader, I loved to see the bright spot of representation in Rosiee Thor’s book. However, it was the identity politics of a young woman forced to confront her own classist tendencies and need for academic and economic validation that I was more deeply connected with. I attended a rigorous high school that, similarly to Ingrid’s academy, routinely pushed students to the precipice of exhaustion via academic competition. When Ingrid joins the opposing political faction and is unexpectedly met with a true acceptance, she is forced to reevaluate her previously desperate grab for status in such a thorough way that I was brought right back to my past encounters with academic elitism. 

Fire Becomes Her releases on February 1, 2022.

(Pine Reads Review would like to thank Edelweiss+ and the publisher for sending us an ARC in exchange for an honest review. Any quotes are taken from an advanced copy and may be subject to change upon final publication.)

PRR Writer and Editor, Kayla Chandler