I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.The Fire Sermon by Francesca Haig
Series: The Fire Sermon #1
Published by Gallery Books on March 10, 2015
Genres: Dystopian, Young Adult
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When Zach and I were born our parents must have counted and recounted: limbs, fingers, toes. We were perfect. They would have been disbelieving: nobody dodged the split between Alpha and Omega.\r\nNobody.\r\n\r\nThey were born together and they will die together.\r\n\r\nOne strong Alpha twin and one mutated Omega; the only thing they share is the moment of their death.\r\n\r\nThe Omegas live in segregation, cast out by their families as soon as their mutation becomes clear. Forced to live apart, they are ruthlessly oppressed by their Alpha counterparts.\r\n\r\nThe Alphas are the elite. Once their weaker twin has been cast aside, they're free to live in privilege and safety, their Omega twin far from their thoughts.\r\n\r\nCass and Zach are both perfect on the outside: no missing limbs, no visible Omega mutation. But Cass has a secret: one that Zach will stop at nothing to expose.\r\n\r\nThe potential to change the world lies in both their hands. One will have to defeat the other to see their vision of the future come to pass, but if they're not careful both will die in the struggle for power.
I wanted to like this book, I really did. But it just never really came together for me. I had a hard time getting into the story from the beginning. While I sympathized with Cass since she didn’t really fit in with either the Alphas or the Omegas, I never found her to be that likable. Her heart was in the right place, as she saw no difference in the two groups, but it bugged me that she never stood up to Zach. I also felt like she always let her power as a seer overwhelm her instead of trying to figure out how to become stronger, and she didn’t have a whole lot of growth throughout the story. I kept waiting for the moment when I would stand up and cheer for her, and it never came. I was also hoping for her to have more of a showdown with her nemesis, but instead, I found that scene to play out a little predictably. The other characters were okay, but none of them really stood out for me except for Piper and Zoe. Kip was okay, but I was never really smitten with him. I also felt like parts of the story moved very slowly. I’m usually a quick reader, but I felt like this one took me forever to wade through. There was a lot of traveling…and hiding…and then traveling some more. I did enjoy some of the scenes, though, and I thought she did a good job with the world-building. I thought that overall, the concept was interesting, especially that the twins always died at the same time, which really complicated things. The Fire Sermon by Francesca Haig is intended to be a trilogy, and apparently Dreamworks has already purchased the movie rights. I’m not sure where the second book will go, or if I will even read it. For a plot with a lot of potential, this one really fell flat for me.