Author: by Laini Taylor
Illustrator: Jim Di Bartolo
Genre: YA fantasy.
Setting: Modern-day America, colonial India, and a strange kingdom.
Reason for Reading: I saw this on several "best books of 2009" lists.
Pages: 265 and some notes.
Copyright Date: 2009
Cover: A lovely illustration of a woman's face above flames. Her hair is dark gray, her eyes are blue and her lips are red. Flames underlie the title.
First image: Each story is preceded by a series of beautiful illustrations in reds and sepias. The first illustration shows two girls peering out from behind a bush.
First line: "There is a certain kind of girl the goblins crave."
Best part: I loved the unusual sources the author drew from.
Worst part: I'm not convinced it's got one. The stories are fantastic, the prose is delicious, the illustrations are lovely. I do wonder a bit if the author has some family issues, as her characters all do.
Imaginary Theme Song: "Cantara" by Dead Can Dance.
Recommended for: All YA fans should read this one.
Related Reads: Tagging the Moon: Fairy Tales from LA. Green Man: Tales from the Mythic Forest edited by Datlow and Windling, and their other YA anthologies (The Faery Reel and Coyote Road).
Taylor writes three pieces about first kisses. One is based on Christina Rosetti's poem "Goblin Market," one on Indian folklore, and one on Zoroastrian mythology. Though a few themes repeat, the pieces are quite different. Di Bartolo's illustrations are magnificent. This is one to look for.