Kristin Cashore's Fire is a prequel (or perhaps more accurately a companion novel set 30 years earlier) to last year's Graceling. Graceling was one of my favorite titles of 2008. When I say that Fire more than lives up to the bar set by Graceling, well, that should tell you that Fire is something special.
All I can say is, don't miss your chance to read Fire. Fans of Graceling will not be disappointed. If you haven't read Graceling, I do recommend (as does the author) that you read Graceling first. Even though Fire is a prequel, it contains a fairly significant spoiler for Graceling. Read more about Kristin Cashore's thoughts on launch day here.