Review of ‘Out of the Flames’ by Stacy Lynn Miller
This was a very entertaining debut. I’m a big fan of reading and reviewing debut books. I love finding new authors to put on my must-read list. I’ve noticed over the years that there are some publishers that are very good at finding new talent and Bella is one of those. Just think in the last handful of years they have found (just to name a few) Tagan Shepard, Virginia Hale, Bette Hawkins, Carolyn Elizabeth, and the current queen of lesfic herself, EJ Noyes. That is some major talent and I’m hoping that they just found another author to join that list in Stacy Lynn Miller.
If you read my reviews you will know I have been whining a lot about not grabbing books that are angsty or drama-packed lately. Maybe it’s my personal life, maybe it’s Covid, I just know I’m craving books that will make me feel and get my emotions running, the more tissues the better. And for whatever dumb luck I have, I’ve instead been reading cute, fluffy, and feel-good. I’m on a streak of quality books so I can’t really complain, but FINALLY, this book brought on all the feels and made me grab for the tissues. Thank you, Stacy Lynn Miller, for giving me the emotional book I was looking for.
While this is an easy 4-star book, I do have to say that in normal debut fashion, that this is not perfect. In fact, I had some trouble at the beginning of this book. I’ve read some other reviews and this seems to be the common comment from most of us. The beginning is rocky. Miller designed a quick series of events so she can cover a timeline of what happened in years, but so it only takes her a few chapters to describe. But because of the constant quick skipping ahead, you don’t feel comfortable reading. It’s like you can’t really settle down into the story. Fear not. Once the skips ahead stop, and the story goes back to a normal pace, it’s a whole new book. The last two-thirds of this book is really good. It’s emotional, sweet, heartbreaking, and exciting all rolled into one. Miller just gets into this writing groove and the story is so much better for it. I think what it also is, is that you can feel her confidence growing as a writer. The fact she improves so much makes the book a lot of fun to read.
As a character-driven reader, I was impressed by the characters. It’s not just the mains but all the secondary characters too. There is a teenager that is like the perfect teenage character ever and some good police characters too. There are characters you will love, and characters you will love to hate. And the important thing is that Miller makes you care about them so yes you might need the tissues just like I did.
While this does NOT end on a cliffhanger, there are some loose ends left open. The nice thing about that is it means at least one more book for us, and maybe even more. Without spoiling anything, with the way the events play out in this book, you will absolutely want a book two. This story is too big to cover in one book and I’m glad that Miller didn’t try to edit things down to fit into just one.
If you are looking for a book that is emotional, exciting, hopeful, and entertaining, you came to the right place. After the bumpy beginning, this turns into a very good lesbian debut book. I see a lot of potential in Miller and I can’t wait to read book two.
A copy was given to me for an honest review.