Holy crap on a stick I couldn’t put this book down. I am a commuter reader and my two hours a day on trains are made so much more enjoyably by the books I read. This book made me miss my stop. This book made me read when I was at home, and I haven’t read while not on a train in ages. Gillian Anderson and Jeff Rovin’s Vision of Fire was amazing. I loved it.
Renowned child psychologist Caitlin O’Hara is a single mum trying to juggle her job, her son, and a lacklustre love life. Her world is suddenly upturned when Maanik, the daughter of India’s ambassador to the United Nations, starts having violent visions. Maanik’s parents are sure that her fits have something to do with the recent assassination attempt on her father – a shooting that has escalated nuclear tensions between India and Pakistan to dangerous levels – but when children start having similar outbursts around the world, Caitlin begins to think that there’s a stranger force at work. With Asia on the cusp of nuclear war, Caitlin must race across the globe and uncover the supernatural links between these seemingly unrelated cases in order to save her patient – and perhaps the world.
I loved just how much this book covered and books like this make it obvious that there needs to be a better way to differentiate books than classifying them by genre. I have no idea what this could be but a book like this would definitely benefit from it. It’s a cultural, historical, metaphysical, medical, mystery science fiction novel. And I bet have forgotten something. Ah yes, romance. Both Anderson and Rovin cover all of these without compromising on anything. It spans all of this and the result is something extraordinary.
In this world the tensions between India and Pakistan are reaching (nuclear) breaking point. They are at loggerheads over Kashmir and just having this as the spine of the whole novel grounds it into reality, giving it far more gravitas than if it had been set in a galaxy far, far away. We soon learn of other children, all unconnected to Maanik suffering from the same thing that she is and the story takes a truly global scope.
While the plot in this story was truly absorbing, I love the characters. Caitlin and her son were very likeable. I understood Caitlin’s drive to understand this, and she carried the story. The supporting characters including, Maanik, Ben (Caitlin’s best friend), and Maanik’s parents, were incredibly well written. I liked how they interacted with Caitlin and how they were so very relevant to the plot.
My only criticism with this book is that it was too short. I wanted more. I wanted it to be longer. I didn’t want it to finish. And even though it is a self-contained story with an actual ending there are enough questions remaining to warrant a lot more books in this series. I can only imagine where they will take it and how it will develop.
If you haven’t already then I urge you to read it. If you have read it, what do you think? Do you agree?