The Burning Sky (The Elemental Trilogy #1) by Sherry Thomas | Review

The Burning Sky (The Elemental Trilogy #1) by Sherry Thomas | ReviewThe Burning Sky by Sherry Thomas
Series: The Elemental Trilogy #1
Published by Harper Teen on September 17, 2013
Genres: Fantasy
Pages: 464
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher
Buy on Amazon

It all began with a ruined elixir and an accidental bolt of lightning…

Iolanthe Seabourne is the greatest elemental mage of her generation—or so she's being told. The one prophesied for years to be the savior of The Realm. It is her duty and destiny to face and defeat the Bane, the greatest mage tyrant the world has ever known. A suicide task for anyone let alone a sixteen-year-old girl with no training, facing a prophecy that foretells a fiery clash to the death.

Prince Titus of Elberon has sworn to protect Iolanthe at all costs but he's also a powerful mage committed to obliterating the Bane to avenge the death of his family—even if he must sacrifice both Iolanthe and himself to achieve his goal.

But Titus makes the terrifying mistake of falling in love with the girl who should have been only a means to an end. Now, with the servants of the Bane closing in, he must choose between his mission and her life.

picadillyblueThe Burning Sky, Sherry Thomas’ YA debut, is a magic-filled fantasy novel that will greatly appeal to a wide range of readers.  Fans of the Harry Potter series will especially enjoy this one.

The Burning Sky surprised me at first.  It’s set in the 1880s and takes place between two worlds, Britain (the real world) and a magical world.  It’s a blend of historical fiction and fantasy which is something I’ve very rarely read.  It’s a combination I greatly enjoyed.  The fictional magical world was fabulous even though I would have liked a bit more worldbuilding.   The regular world, set in Britain, more specifically, Eton, was the best though.  Sherry Thomas really captured life at an all boys school in the 1880s.  It was fascinating.

Titus and Iolanthe (or Archer Fairfax) are wonderful characters who are marvelously well developed.  Titus is a very complex young man who has too much responsibility for any one person.  His destiny was told to him at a young age and it’s shaped his whole life.  Knowing he will die young, he doesn’t waste time with friends or love.  His life was lonely and Titus was very closed off.  I still managed to really connect with him though.  There was a lot more to him than meets the eye.  It was the same with Iolanthe.  She and Titus had a lot in common.  They were both forced to grow up at a young age and it’s made them wise beyond their years.  They fit together well because of this.  The secondary characters were surprisingly well-developed as well but lacking much backstory.  Hopefully that will be expanded on in the next book.

The story is fast-paced and fun.  It’s full of mystery and twists.  I was fully drawn in from the beginning and hooked until the very end.  It’s a fresh story that readers will want to keep reading.

Overall, The Burning Sky is a fabulous fantasy novel that I definitely recommend.  Check it out!

What others are saying about The Burning Sky:

Bookworm Dreams’ review:It feels like Sherry Thomas took a list of my favorite elements in young adult fantasy novels and wrote The Burning Sky.”

Nerdophiles’ review: “The Burning Sky won me over pretty early on.”

There Were Books Involved’s review: “The best way I can describe this book is like… if you took Harry Potter, some YA epic fantasy, and some animated Disney movies like Mulan and Sleeping Beauty; then randomly pulled out sections (or scenes from the movies) of varying length, and shuffled them all together and covered the resulting pages in extremely sparkly glitter.”

Follow by Email
Visit Us

Leave a Reply


  1. Had no idea that it’s a multi-world kind of story!! This is so much fun, to have a real historical setting and a fantasy setting 🙂

    Love how each character has their own goals that conflict with the other characters’ goals but how the ties they forge make their actions a true dilemma, a choice they have to make between duty and what they want or the emotions they’ve got for others – both the prince and the main character seem to be in this position.

    Lovely review 🙂

  2. I bought this on my Kindle when it was $1.99, just haven’t started reading it yet. I think it will be a summer read for me right before book two comes out in August.

  3. I loved this book! I was so surprised. I’m still trying to get into fantasy books so they are generally hit or miss and I loathe romance novels generally. Sherry Thomas is just that good. I can’t wait for the next book.

  4. This sounds like a very interesting novel- especially since it takes place in 2 worlds, and most especially since one is magical. I haven’t read any books that are blends between historical fiction and fantasy. It sounds like it would be a super interesting way to write a book. Glad to hear that you enjoyed this book. I might have to give it a try when my TBR pile decreases a little.

  5. The Burning Sky was one of my favorite books in 2013, I’m glad to hear you enjoyed it too. Great review. And thanks for linking to mine. 🙂

  6. I’m a huge cover girl and this cover is AMAZING!!! This book has been on my TBR list for awhile now and ‘m o glad to see that you loved it. Good to see there’s excellent character development in this book.