“If you’re hearing this message, you are invited to be a Contender in the Brimstone Bleed. All Contenders must report within forty-eight hours to select their Pandora companions. If you do not appear within forty-eight hours, your invitation will be eliminated.
The Brimstone Bleed will last three months and will take place across four ecosystems: desert, sea, mountains, jungle. The winning prize will be the Cure—a remedy for any illness, for any single person.
There can only be one champion.”
Set up like popularized dystopian novels, Fire & Flood by Victoria Scott is an action packed mystery. Tella is living in the middle of nowhere USA, due to her brother’s severe sickness. The clean open air is supposed to help, but it seems like nothing can save her brother. That is until Tella receives a package, one with an earpiece that has a light persistently blinking with the prospect of a message. What Tella receives is an invitation to the Brimstone Bleed, this competition promises the ultimate prize for the champion, The Cure. This is exactly the miracle Tella and her family need, but why did her father seem so upset about the earpiece in Tella’s possession? Why did he try to destroy it? Why did her mother come into her room the night Tella was leaving, with a cryptic message about how their eyes are the same and then gave Tella a feather that belonged to her grandmother? Tella doesn’t know what to make of all of this; all she knows is that she cannot let her brother die and this is the best chance she has to save him.
What Tella doesn’t realize is that there is a much more dangerous plot ahead, one that is generations long, and if you’re on the wrong side things might never look up for you. This is a story of betrayal and revenge, which ravishes generations of those linked to the original betrayal. As Tella progresses in this competition, she enters allegiances and finds out that they are all just mice running in circle and manipulated to a higher master’s whims. But the problem is that everyone in this competition has someone back home that needs the cure, and only they can saved them.
This was an interesting concept. I did not wholeheartedly love this book, but I think that there is a great chance if the second book is done well that this will be one of my favorites. The Pandoras are awesome, the drama is high, and there are definitely some crazy competitors. Blood flows freely and romance can be quite difficult. Readers will be jumping at the bit to figure out if Tella will make it to the next round.
3.5 stars out of 5. Thanks NetGalley!