Blog Tour: A Review of Fire Lines by Cara Thurlbourn



When your blood line awakens, how do you choose between family and freedom?
Émi’s father used to weave beautiful tales of life beyond the wall, but she never
knew if they were true.

Now, her father is gone and Émi has been banished to the
Red Quarter, where she toils to support herself and her mother – obeying the
rules, hiding secrets and suffering the cruelties of the council’s ruthless Cadets.
But when Émi turns seventeen, sparks fly – literally.

Her blood line surges into life and she realises she has a talent for magick… a talent that could get her killed. Émi makes her escape, beyond the wall and away from everything she’s ever known. In a world of watchers, elephant riders and sorcery, she must discover the truth about who she really is. But can the new Émi live up to her destiny?


I’m participating in the blog tour for Fire Lines by Cara Thurlbourn, and the first thing I want to mention is how beautiful the cover is. Seriously, I applaud whoever designed it as it is so lovely, and definitely caught my eye!

I found the first half of the book really promising, and thought that the way that the author created the different societies was really interesting, although it wasn’t completely original, I did like her spin on it! The characters were also well-developed, and I really liked Emi. She was selfless and brave, two characteristics that I definitely like.

The second half, however, I didn’t like so much. I didn’t dislike it, but I feel I was expecting more from it. Some of the decisions that were made were not logical at all, and I thought to myself several times, “why the hell did you just do that?!”

There was something unexpected that happened (which I won’t say, because my reviews are spoiler-free!) that caught me off guard and definitely had me shocked, which then got piqued my interest once again, and left me excited to continue reading.

Overall, I give this book 3.5 stars. It was an enjoyable read that I would recommend to any YA Fantasy lover!





GoodReads Link

Amazon Link

Author Information


Cara Thurlbourn writes children’s and young adult fiction. Fire Lines is her first novel and it’s a story she’s been planning since she was fifteen years old. Cara has a degree in English from the University of Nottingham and an MA inPublishing from Oxford Brookes

She lives in a tiny village in Suffolk and has worked in academic and educational publishing for nearly ten years. Cara blogs about her author journey and in November 2016 she crowdfunded her first children’s book. 10% of its profits are donated to animal rehoming charities.

Cara plans to write at least two more books in the Fire Lines series, as well as a young adult mystery series, and has lots more children’s stories waiting in the wings.
You can sign up for Cara’s newsletter, for giveaways, updates and latest releases,
here: www.firelines.co.uk and follow her on Twitter here.

-Books&Belle xx


Down The TBR Hole #1: Conquer your TBR


I originally saw this post from Boston Book Reader, but it was created by Lost In A Story, and I loved the idea. My GoodReads TBR is constantly growing, so it’ll be nice to see it decrease for once!

THIS IS HOW IT WORKS: (straight from original post)

  • Go to your goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 if you’re feeling adventurous) books
  • Read the synopses of the books
  • Decide: keep it or should it go?

I’m going to choose 5 books a week, and decide if they stay on my TBR, or if they go. This will be posted every Tuesday until my TBR has gone down enough!

1. The Scarlet Letter


I’ve wanted to read this one for absolutely ages.


2. The Start Of Me and You


Not interested in reading this one anymore!


3. I Am Malala


Malala is someone who greatly inspires me, so I 100% want to read her book.


4. Moranifesto


I already have this book on my bookshelf, and I really enjoyed Caitlin Moran’s other book, so I probably will get around to reading it.


5. Lies I Told


This one doesn’t really interest me anymore.


So, I got rid of 2/5 books from my TBR this week. Although that’s not a lot, it is definitely progress for me.

Make sure you check out Boston Book Reader and Lost In A Story‘s posts, too!

-Books&Belle xx


To My Grandad

This post isn’t related to books, but instead to something much more personal to me.

On August 19th 2017, my Grandad sadly passed away after 14 months of suffering with heart disease. He was a fighter right until the end, shocking the doctors and nurses with how long he stayed with us, and considering they gave him until September 2016 and he went another 11 months, I have to agree with them.

Despite his serious illness, he still managed to keep a smile on his face and everyone around him laughing at his somewhat weird and wonderful sense of humour.

I will always keep in mind the advice he gave me shortly before he died… “whatever you want in life, you can achieve it with hard work. Go get it, Ginge.”

Today, we said goodbye to him one last time at his funeral, and I wanted to share with you all the poem that I read out.

He Is Gone by David Harkins

You can shed tears that he is gone.

Or you can smile because he lived.

You can close your eyes and pray that he will come back.

Or you can open your eyes and see all that he has left.

Your heart can be empty because you can’t see him.

Or you can be full of the love that you shared,

You can turn your back on tomorrow and live for yesterday,

Or you can be happy for tomorrow because of yesterday.

You can remember him and only that he is gone.

Or you can cherish his memory and let it live on,

You can cry, close your mind, be empty, and turn your back.

Or you can do what he would have wanted, smile, open your eyes, love and move on.

-Books&Belle xx