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Firebrand (Rebel Angel Series) Kindle Edition

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Length: 368 pages Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled Matchbook Price: $2.99 What's this?
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Editorial Reviews


"Once a year, a new novelist really blows me away. Last year it was Suzanne Collins with The Hunger Games…. This year it's Gillian Philip's Firebrand…. A fantastically violent, utterly thrilling tale.... Firebrand is one of the very best...Philip’s clear prose is as fiery as whiskey…. The best fantasy novel of 2010."
The Sunday Times

"Philip has created an utterly believable other world, where male and female are equals in arms. It is often stark and brutal but with moments of heartbreaking beauty."
The Guardian

About the Author

GILLIAN PHILIP was born in Glasgow, lived for twelve years in Barbados, and now lives in the north of Scotland with her husband, twin children, three dogs, two sociopathic cats, a slayer hamster, three chickens, and a lot of nervous fish.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1175 KB
  • Print Length: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Tor Books; Reissue edition (February 19, 2013)
  • Publication Date: February 19, 2013
  • Sold by: Macmillan
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00AEC9JI8
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #663,324 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Gillian Philip was born in 1964 in Glasgow, Scotland. She has worked as a music store assistant, wine sales rep, radio presenter, theatre usherette, barmaid, hotel wrangler, typesetter, and political assistant. She lived for twelve years in Barbados, where to avoid spending her entire life in a beach bar she took up writing seriously. In the evenings she worked as a singer in a band in an Irish bar, playing a combination of Celtic folk rock, reggae and calypso.

Her books include Crossing the Line, Bad Faith, The Opposite of Amber and the Rebel Angels series - Firebrand, Bloodstone, Wolfsbane and (coming in 2014) Icefall. She has written the Survivors series (as Erin Hunter), two Beast Quest instalments (as Adam Blade), and the Darke Academy series (as Gabriella Poole). She has toured widely in the United States as Erin Hunter, promoting the Survivors series for Harper Collins.

She has been nominated and shortlisted for awards including the Carnegie Medal, the Royal Mail Scottish Children's Book Award and the David Gemmell Legend Award.

She now lives in a beautiful valley near Dallas (the tiny one in Scotland), with husband Ian, twins Lucy and Jamie, and a fluctuating population of animals: currently Cluny the Labrador, Milo the Papillon, Otto the half-Papillon, psycho cats The Ghost and The Darkness, chickens Mapp, Lucia and Honey Boo Boo, and a lot of nervous fish.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Kevin L. Nenstiel TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on December 2, 2012
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Headstrong Seth MacGregor, bastard scion of a great Sithe captain, and his idolized brother Conal have come into inheritance of their father's fortress. But the Sithe queen, Kate NicNevin, has strange ambitions that extend beyond her domain. When the brothers MacGregor cross their queen, they find themselves exiled to a land more strange and savage than anything their undying eyes have ever seen: Scotland.

Gillian Philip's first novel, published in Britain in 2010 and now making its American debut, reverses the expectations of urban fantasy. Instead of the fantastic intruding on ordinary life, the banalities of human life intrude on the Sithe (pronounced "Shee"). By changing the direction of the portal, beloved of writers like CS Lewis and Madeline L'Engle, Philip creates a fantasy world not vast and prodigious, but cramped and limiting.

Because they are long-lived, Philip's Sithe rely on politics and trust in a way humans cannot. They have built a long-standing and elaborate system of mutual debts that keeps their people stable, if feudal. But it also keeps them completely unprepared for contact with humans, who think in what they consider short terms, and who die so easily and love so little. These Sithe are not the fae and sprites of myth, but very human, and shackled with human limits.

Philip's otherworldly domain is at once innately Scottish and historical, and modern and transnational. Because her setting is specific, and not some ill-defined fairyland where everything is vague and equal, her words convey more power, and her ideas resonate across cultures. Her use of specific terminology of the Scottish Reformation gives her setting a concrete structure that is truly universal.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By ashertopia TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 15, 2013
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Two worlds separated by a magical Veil collide in a dazzling mix of fantasy and dark ages, where demonic fairies impersonate priests who burn "witches" to sate their blood lust, where witch queens rule immortals through threat of death or banishment, and where a young boy filled with anger and hate wants only to be feared and respected.

Seth MacGregor is rejected by his mother, a powerful witch, and ignored by his father, a lord of a small village. His only friend, although not at first, is his half brother Conal. The same Conal in the opening pages of this book is about to be burned at the stake if Seth doesn't put him out of his misery first with a well placed crossbow shot.

Without giving anything away this is the story of Seth and Conal and their growth and impending conflict with the forces of darkness in the real world (16th Century Brittish Isles,) and in their land beyond the Veil. There is political manuevering, battles, magic, war, court intrigue, love - everything a good fantasy novel should have. And Gillian Philip does it well.

From start to finish I was hooked by this story and by this broken young boy who we all know is so much more than we find him. This is only the first book in the series and I'm in line to get the next two. It's been a long time since I've enjoyed a fantasy author's creation this much.

I highly recommend it.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Summer2015 TOP 1000 REVIEWER on February 2, 2013
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Sithe Queen Kate NicNiven thinks the Veil that separates the long-living Sithe's world from the full-mortals' world is failing, and wants to destroy the Veil now, while she thinks the balance of power is in her favor. Clann Chief Griogair MacGregor and his witch wife, Leonora, think the Veil can still be saved and should not be destroyed because it serves a purpose.

Seth MacGregor is Griogair's half-feral son by another woman named Lilith, who after becoming Kate's advisor, sends Seth back to Griogair, because she thinks of Seth as a growing embarrassment.

Ignored initially by almost everyone in Griogair's dun, including Griogair himself, Seth keeps to himself until Conal, his much older half-brother and Griogair's first-born by Leonora, arrives back at the dun after completing an assignment with another clann. Conal takes Seth under his wing, teaching Seth how to ride a horse, use a crossbow and a sword, control his anger, and hone his ability to read minds and block others from reading his.

Conal is soon called to Kate's service as one of her Captains. In Conal's absence, Griogair is ambushed and killed. Kate allows Conal to take his father's place as his clann's Chief with conditions, later claiming that Conal has displeased her and exiles him to the full-mortals' world as punishment, the first of many acts of cruelty that Kate will inflict upon Conal and Seth for no apparent reason other than she can. Near the novel's ending, Queen Kate's megalomania is on full display, and after enduring so many of Kate's acts of cruelty on them for the safety of their clann, Conal and Seth decide that enough is enough.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By BookMonster VINE VOICE on November 30, 2012
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
"A heart can only break so many times. I'm not saying it fails entirely; just that it mends the wrong way. It warps. It's stitched together loose and askew and it doesn't work as it should."

This book was amazing. The characters are well presented. They are almost artistically rendered. There is depth and so much hard hitting emotion. The relationship between Conal and Seth was so touching, so fun to read about. It really makes you think about your own family and relationships. It's beautiful. The focus was mostly on the brothers but the other characters did not suffer for it.

The narrative style was clean, simple, but eloquent. The quote above is from one of the first few chapters, simple but elegant. It really stuck with me.

The plot does not lack, it is interesting. I was hooked from the start and just could not put the book down until I'd finished it. Then I finished it and wished I had put it down. I was very sad that it ended. I so enjoyed the ride.

The author did not skimp on the detail. We learn a lot about the Sithe and their world, but the author is clever enough in her writing that the overall story is not bogged down with information and the action isn't interrupted by an info dump.

I can't wait to read more books from this author, this was an amazing piece of work.
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