Four girls with the power to control the elements and save the world from a terrible evil must come together in the first epic novel in a brand-new series.
When Phantoms—massive beasts made from nightmares and darkness—suddenly appeared and began terrorizing the world, four girls, the Effigies, each gained a unique power to control one of the classical elements: earth, air, fire, and water. Since then, four girls across the world have continually fought against the Phantoms, fulfilling their cosmic duty. And when one Effigy dies, another girl gains her power as a replacement.
But now, with technologies in place to protect the world’s major cities from Phantom attacks, the Effigies have stopped defending humanity and, instead, have become international celebrities, with their heroic feats ranked, televised, and talked about in online fandoms.
Until the day that New York City’s protection against the Phantoms fails, a man seems to be able to control them by sheer force of will, and Maia, a high school student, unexpectedly becomes the Fire Effigy.
Now Maia has been thrown into battle with three girls who want nothing to do with one another. But with the first human villain that the girls have ever faced, and an army of Phantoms preparing for attack, there isn’t much time for the Effigies to learn how to work together.
Can the girls take control of their destinies before the world is destroyed forever?
Sarah Raughley grew up in Southern Ontario writing stories about freakish little girls with powers because she secretly wanted to be one. She is a huge fangirl of anything from manga to scifi/fantasy TV to Japanese role-playing games, but she will swear up and down at book signings that she was inspired by Jane Austen. On top of being a YA writer, Sarah has a PhD in English, which makes her doctor, so it turns out she didn’t have to go to medical school after all.
Girl power reigns in this debut fantasy series. Sixteen-year-old Maia believes in heroes and has always idolized the Effigies. No one is more surprised than she is when Natalya, the fire Effigy, dies and Maia is chosen to take her place. Known for their superhuman strength and the ability to control an element, the four, female Effigies are destined to fight phantoms, dark creatures that plague the world. When New York falls prey to a series of phantom attacks orchestrated by a man who can somehow control them, Maia finds herself in the middle of the action. Afraid and untrained, she must learn to work with the other Effigies—timid Lake, angry Chae Rin, and cold, powerful Belle—to save the world. What Maia lacks in skill, she makes up in spunk; however, she spends too long bumbling around, wondering what's going on—but that's intentional. In a world where Effigies are not just heroes, but also celebrities, the novel places an emphasis on humanizing the girls. As she gets to know her sisters-in-battle, it's not long before Maia realizes that Effigies are only human. The characters' races are somewhat ambiguous: Buffalo-born Maia's mother is from Jamaica, British Lake is brown-skinned, French Belle is blonde and white, and Chae Rin is a Canadian originally from South Korea. This series opener has it all: strong females, intrigue, a dash of romance, monsters, and a sequel in the wings. (Fantasy. 14 & up)
A 16-year-old becomes the latest in a long line of young women imbued with elemental powers and charged to defend the world from invading monsters. Maia Finley, who has long idolized the so-called Effigies, unexpectedly becomes the new Fire Effigy when the previous one dies. She is taken in by an organization known as the Sect for training, but all plans are disrupted by the emergence of Saul, an enigmatic man with the unprecedented ability to control the phantoms that have terrorized humanity for more than a century. To defeat Saul, Maia must reunite the Effigies, no easy task. In a thrilling adventure with echoes of Pacific Rim, Avatar: The Last Airbender, and Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Raughley (Feather Bound) depicts the cost of power, the lure of fame, and the trauma of overwhelming stress in a compelling story with memorably flawed heroines. References to our world (Star Trek, Popsicles) in an alternate Earth that has seen monumental change (like the destruction of Seattle in the 1960s) are slightly jarring, but it’s a minor quibble in an engrossing kickoff to the Effigies series. Ages 14–up.
"With its cast of diverse, well-drawn heroines, colourful world building, and action-packed storyline, FATE OF FLAMES is an immersive and monstrously fun read."