Book Review: Firebug by Lish McBride

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Dear Lish McBride,

firebugThank you. Thank for hearing my repeated pleas for more magical mafia stories in YA literature.

Thank you for writing Ava, a strong female character who breaks the mold of what a “strong female character” has come to represent. For writing a character who has weaknesses as much as she has strength. Who possesses a power she’d rather not. Who loves deeply and truthfully, despite being scared and uncertain of her place in the world.

Thank you for writing Ava’s friends and loved ones, characters who I can rally behind as a reader. Who I can fall in love with. Who I wish I could hang out with.

Thank you for writing a wickedly delicious villain.

Thank you for writing the first book in a series that wraps up the main plot by the last page, while still leaving agonizing loose threads open for the next installation. (But seriously, can I have that next book now?????)

Thank you for weaving together a plot that is clever and twisty and engaging. Thank you for writing a smart, thoughtful storyline that never lags. Thank you for writing a book that I simply could not put down.

Thank you for writing a book that gave me a major book hangover, and made reading anything else after it incredibly difficult.

Thank you for Firebug. It’s amazing and is everything I ever look for in a YA novel.


Firebug is in stores September 23rd. Here is the official synopsis:

Ava can start fires with her mind . . . but is it a blessing or a curse?

Ava is a firebug—she can start fires with her mind. Which would all be well and good if she weren’t caught in a deadly contract with the Coterie, a magical mafia. She’s one of their main hit men . . . and she doesn’t like it one bit. Not least because her mother’s death was ordered by Venus—who is now her boss.

When Venus asks Ava to kill a family friend, Ava rebels. She knows very well that you can’t say no to the Coterie and expect to get away with it, though, so she and her friends hit the road, trying desperately to think of a way out of the mess they find themselves in. Preferably keeping the murder to a minimum.

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