To start with my favourite part, I shall bestow you with details. The training not only allowed us to see Ruby's physical strength growing, but also her mental and emotional strength as well. She learned to focus, be one with the magic, and let go. For Ruby to actually embrace her emotions, if only partially, is a huge step for her. She may not be a Frostblood, but she definitely acts like she could be. Or at least she did in the first novel. I loved imagining the actions that had to go with her mental and physical struggles as she learned to hone her abilities. It gave me an insight into the characters that I otherwise wouldn't have had. Not to mention, Ruby and Kai bantered a lot which kept the tone light and amusing.
Which, unfortunately, brings me to this: love triangle. Ruby and Arcus were fairly instant, though they didn't act on it until quite a while after. They seemed to work in the first book. However, in Fireblood we get to see a new side of him, of them as a couple. Being the King of Frostbloods who hate Firebloods leaves little room for romance with the enemy. So no, Arcus does not man up and declare his undying love for Ruby, nor does she fight to be at his side and not merely a Lady of Court. They didn't fight for each other. And then someone else came into the picture. Someone who treated Ruby like an equal, who didn't care if others saw him touch her, laugh with her, smile at her. They taught each other a lot in their time together and allowed each other to grow. But Ruby just can't get Arcus out of her mind. It was frustrating. I actually wanted her to forget about him. I still do. So I actually really enjoyed the blooming romance in this book more than I did in Frostblood. It made me root for the characters.
As for characters. Arcus is now the King, struggling to attain and then to maintain control of the throne. Peace is within grasp but only after a lot of hard work, and after the horrible reign his brother just left, people are not so eager to help Arcus succeed in his endeavors. There was political intrigue mixed into every interaction between Arcus and Ruby until Ruby herself started getting sucked into it. People want to kill her so their King is no longer tainted. If she leaves Arcus will not have to fight for his throne so hard. And then when she leaves, even more politics follow her. Through her struggle to become a part of Court life, Arcus merely sees her as someone to call upon, someone who will be there. He doesn't seem to see her struggle to fit in, and he doesn't do much about it other than put her in positions she'd rather avoid. He seemed more careless in this installment.
Kai on the other hand used humor and wit to keep himself going, which provided readers with a lot of smile-inducing moments. He is honestly probably my favourite character. Full of sass, witty remarks, and a passion he won't deny, he made the pages breathe life. I hope the next book has more of him!
Overall, I enjoyed Fireblood and will be continuing this series!