Book Review: Ignite the Sun

Title: Ignite the Sun
Author: Hanna C Howard
Date Published: August 18, 2020
Rating: 2.5/5 stars
Date read: April 12, 2020

Ignite the Sun takes place in a world covered in darkness, where the sun is a myth. This world has mages, nymphs, and fae type creatures. We follow Siria, who is just turning sixteen and is trying to gain the favour of the queen. When she becomes an honoured guest at the Choosing Ball, she discovers not everything is as it seems, and she may be the key to bringing the sun back to the kingdom. 

I’ve been dreading writing this review because I don’t have too many positive things to say. Let’s start with characters, Siria is your typical chosen one. She doesn’t particularly stand out, and she very much does not want to be the chosen one and doesn’t believe she’s capable enough and is a brat about it. The side characters are pretty lacklustre as well and I wish they had been more fleshed out. At times it felt like some characters were introduced solely for the sake of having more characters in the story. The villain of Ignite the Sun really doesn’t have too large a roll and could have benefitted from more page time because she seems like more of a way to drive the story forward than like an actual character.

The dialogue also leaves much to be desired. Siria’s interactions with the other characters come across as forced and the banter between her and her love interest, Linden, is lacking in the charms required for me to root for them together. When we meet the two we already know they have crushes on each other and are the best of friends, but I find none of this believable through their interactions. Siria’s also a bit too focused on Linden’s looks maybe because of his lack of personality and that’s something I never enjoy in regards to romance. 

My biggest gripe with this novel is that I thought the writing was lazy. The main character conveniently keeps blacking out during the height of tension, the plot is predictable, there were many info dumpy moments, especially in regards to the backstory of characters, and there are some very convenient magical elements thrown into the story, some in regards to those backstories, that do not make for an engaging narrative. I think Howard has potential as a writer, her style is easy to digest and the story concept is great, but her potential wasn’t fully reached with this debut.

Something else that does not sit quite right with me is that the “chosen-ones” of the story are all red-haired or blond while, and correct me if I’m wrong, the other characters are dark haired. I understand what the author is trying to do here, and that the hair is meant to represent the sun, but the execution could have been better. 

Have you read Ignite the Sun? If not, do you plan to? I’d love to hear your thoughts! Happy reading! 💗