Review: ‘Trial by Fire’ by Josephine Angelini

I received this book for free from NetGalley, requested from publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: ‘Trial by Fire’ by Josephine AngeliniTrial by Fire by Josephine Angelini
Series: The Worldwalker Trilogy #1
Published by Feiwel & Friends, Macmillan on September 2nd, 2014
Genres: Fantasy & Magic, Love & Romance, Young Adult
Pages: 374
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley, requested from publisher
This world is trying to kill Lily Proctor. Her life-threatening allergies keep her from enjoying experiences that others in her hometown of Salem take for granted, which is why she is determined to enjoy her first high school party with her best friend and longtime crush, Tristan. But after a humiliating incident in front of half her graduating class, Lily wishes she could just disappear.

Suddenly, Lily is in a different Salem—one overrun with horrifying creatures and ruled by powerful women called Crucibles. Strongest and cruelest of them all is Lillian . . . Lily's other self in this alternate universe.

What makes Lily weak at home is what makes her extraordinary in New Salem. In this confusing world, Lily is torn between responsibilities she can't hope to shoulder alone and a love she never expected.

The Book DepositoryChapters/IndigoGood Reads


Lily is allergic to a lot of things, weak and constantly sickened by her allergies, her bright spot in life is her best friend Tristan. Taking her to her first house party, he abandons her for some other girl and she ends up having a seizure from a drink filled with alcohol. As the alcohol threatens her weak body, she finds herself transported into another world. Except this world, there’s another Lily who is the most powerful witch in the universe. She finds herself allying with another version of Tristan and Rowan, to help them against the monsters that hunt their very land.

So there were a lot of bad bits about this book that I have to say. Racist remarks of Native American Indians deemed as “savages” made me feel uncomfortable. If Lily is such a good person, why didn’t she question this at all? Every time she transmutes energy into power for her claimed, she always wants to take them over. And it’s the same statement over and over again. Then they all turn into Supermen and start to pull apart limbs. I was kind of horrified about that. I found it vaguely interesting that there the ruling classes were divided between the poor and wealthy. And that the poor were people of colour or mixed races. What I also didn’t like was that it was one long info dumping session. It just kept going on and on and I was trying to remember everything, but there was a lot to go through.

There was a scene where they were teaching her to harness her power by painting runes on her naked body. And I couldn’t understand why it was part of her magic? I also can’t help but laugh every time she wanted to touch their willstone. Because to me, claiming sounds just like having one-night stands and all these witches were vying for poor Rowan’s attention. I couldn’t understand the romance at all. I rolled my eyes when there were always stuck together. One sentence described as his “skin whispering to her.” I could barely stomach it. And even though there is a slight love triangle, I still want to know about Rowan and the other universe.

The wonderful bits? Even though this world is different than ours, it still had its creative elements. My favourite is bio-luminescent trees that glow only at night. The parallel universe, how different their lives are, the magic and even the world that wasn’t quite like ours. There is also something about her writing that made me devour the book in two sittings.

Love triangle, parallel universes, automatic witchy powers and oh yes the world is going to end. Pick this one up for the lovely universe, but I do have to warn you there are a lot of cheesy romance bits that I couldn’t accept.

reading progress



She isn’t crazy if there are multiple versions of people and multiple worlds that only she knows about. (19)
I just want to go to one high school party before I’m stuck inside a plastic bubble for the rest of my life. (20)
As long as you don’t verbally promise anything to anyone, you can treat girls like dirt, and you aren’t technically doing anything wrong. (34)
Maybe being crazy didn’t feel crazy at all—it just felt like you were having a conversation with yourself. (36)
I’ve watched you long enough to know that the important things inside of us are exactly the same. (48)
I don’t think you could be considered ordinary in any world. (103)
I’m not trying to seduce you. Believe me. you’d know if I was. (136)
I’m not stubborn. I have conviction. And I’m not afraid to do something difficult in order to stay true to my beliefs. (144)
If there were an infinite number of universes, didn’t that mean that one of them had to be perfect? And if one them was a paradise, then did that mean that another one had to be hell? (146)
Like all scientists, you promise a cure but you deliver greater hazards and more death. (226)
Should the Outlanders do nothing just because they’re poor? (227)
You can’t own a person, no matter how close to him you feel. (254)
I can’t trust myself around you. (339)





  1. rohimba

    December 14, 2014 at 6:23 PM

    I would have given the book a go from the synopsis, but your review has been very eye-opening. And I never really understand it either when author’s create their characters to be such morally upright individuals but the character’s never take it upon themselves to tackle the injustice that they come across sometimes. I would actually prefer it if, rather than the character being ‘perfect’ to begin with, the author demonstrates how their character has morally ‘grown’ into being a better individual. That is all.

    Great review though.

  2. Jaime Lynn

    November 16, 2014 at 10:19 PM

    A lot of the time, I tend to not love the over-hyped books as much as I feel I should. But I really have to admit that I thoroughly enjoyed this one. I did not take it too seriously, I definitely rolled my eyes several times (rune painting session being one of them), and I got frustrated a few times with certain things. But overall, I really did like it. The one thing that I am left shaking my head at? I still am not quite sure why Lillian had to bring Lily over, and what her purpose is and how Rowan plays into it all…. Maybe I was almost asleep when I read those parts? I am sorry that you didn’t enjoy this one. THat is never a fun thing. I know!

  3. Cali W.

    November 11, 2014 at 4:54 PM

    Good review. I felt like the book was more about science, than witches.

  4. neednewspace

    November 11, 2014 at 10:48 AM

    Looks like another one that was hyped way too much! Bummer. Best them to stick with Mary E. Pearson’s Remnant Chronicles! Now Kiss of Deception was a GOOD book!

  5. Priscilla Tan

    November 10, 2014 at 2:48 AM

    Aww man. I can’t stand books with cheesy romance bits. Guess I should skip this.

    • giselle

      November 10, 2014 at 11:15 AM

      It was more than cheesy, it was a little ridiculous..I couldn’t stop laughing..

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