Misery's Fire by Kim Jewell

A teenager's account of his time in hell. When the demons couldn't torture him, they sent him to a place more gruesome - high school.

When I found myself in hell I learned several things. One, there really is a Devil and he does rule over hell.

Two, an eye for an eye does not extend to the lives of the gang members who did not personally kill your sister.

Three, when you splash gasoline all over a body shop you also splash gasoline on yourself.

The fourth and most important lesson I learned was before you light the match with the intentions of burning down the gas station and killing the man that murdered your sister, you would be wise to leave the building instead of waking him up so he could see you pass your judgment on his life.

In hell, everyone is assigned their own demon caseworker. His job is to make sure you're as unhappy as possible and hell lives up to its reputation. Much to my caseworker’s disappointment, after living through Misery's death, none of the hells they created for me had the desired effect. I told him after living through my years in high school, I thought I could endure all he had to offer. So he promptly beamed me back to the fiery pits of high school.

  • Classification: Moderate
  • Work is: Extract only on Authonomy
  • First submitted April 22, 2010
  • Last updated April 22, 2010
Misery's Fire
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  • Seringapatam's avatar
    Seringapatam wrote 2 years, 5 months ago
    Kim, I like the funny in your voice and thats why I could read this to the end. I love humour in books but its got to be right or it doesnt work. I would like to say that you have it right on the money spot on. Also when it is right it makes the flow of the book so easy to contend with and makes the reader want to read the book for ever more. I lived this ...
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  • Abby Vandiver's avatar
    Abby Vandiver wrote 2 years, 11 months ago

    I like the premise, the love Bones has for his sister and the idea behind it all. Very good concept. The writing was good as was the pace. I also found that it flowed nicely. I liked very much the opening scene where Grant wakes up dead and in hell. Not a lot of action or tension here, but a good story nonetheless.

    Good job.


  • Brian Bandell's avatar
    Brian Bandell wrote 3 years, 1 month ago

    Misery's Fire has been recognized as one of the favorite Authonomy books of Brian Bandell, author of science fiction thriller Mute from Silver Leaf Books.

    Here are my thoughts on Misery's Fire and the other elite level books by emerging authors.


    Brian Bandell

  • Tom Bye's avatar
    Tom Bye wrote 3 years, 10 months ago
    Hello Kim- book--Misery's fire-- What an amazing sense of imagination you have to write a story like this, so original, you have me believing in Hell again. This read so full of grimness, misery, and hopelessness as your narrator describes the scene surrounding him. Dialogue perfect for the characters, to express themselves; and what a weird lot you have created in ones mind here. after reading three chapters and scan read some more up to eight , i have to ...
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  • Retired user
    61BBboy wrote 3 years, 10 months ago

    Great imagination! Happy to put your work on my shelf. Hope you have a chance to take a look at Dark Side by CC Brown.

  • Nightdream's avatar
    Nightdream wrote 3 years, 11 months ago
    Wow! What an idea you got her. A Hell world. It’s been done many ways but not like this. Not so you can actually picture it as a real functioning world. Creating a world is hard. You have to think about it for a while before you get into it. You have to know how serious and real it’s going to be or is it going to be humorous or even both which I think you did. I found myself ...
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  • Retired user
    a.morrison712 [Retired] wrote 3 years, 11 months ago
    This is one of the most interesting books I've read on this site so far. I have nothing negative to say, you have a real talent, and I'm sure you will be published soon. This is a great idea for a story and I see it appealing to several different markets. You don't have Christian listed, but I think a certain section of that population would enjoy this. Keep it up! I'll be dusting off a spot on my shelf ...
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  • Retired user
    Jake Barton [Retired] wrote 3 years, 11 months ago
    I've read all your books and Misery's Fire certainly maintains the high standards you've set. It's more 'adult' in tone and vocabulary, yet still with strong appeal to the YA readership whose specific demands are so well catered for in your writing. The premise is certainly enticing and the sheer professionalism of your sharp editing and vibrant plot is an object lesson to writers of YA fiction. A couple of lines in Chapter five encapsulate the storyline, ‘I found myself ...
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  • Retired user
    1x80 [Retired] wrote 3 years, 12 months ago

    I'll be coming back for more of this! It's fantastic!

  • Colin Price's avatar
    Colin Price wrote 4 years ago

    One of my favourites, I think this has wider appeal than young adults.

  • Retired user
    Linda Lou [Retired] wrote 4 years, 1 month ago
    hullo Kim. I have just finished all eight chapters of your book. your perspective concerning what and where hell is interesting. I like the pothole idea, always wondered just where they came from and why they always seem to come back, guess now I know. I am not sure is yours is intended to be a comedy but I thought a good part of it was funny. I just wonder about your story's transition from the dankness of hell to ...
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  • silvachilla's avatar
    silvachilla wrote 4 years, 2 months ago
    Kim I'm not even going to pretend to be able to do a similar in depth, line by line crit like you did for mine, I think you could tell my punctuation etc needed help. But boy, is this a great book! The idea of it is very original, Hell as a corporation. Your writing is extremely tight, and the dialogue spot on. I love Grant. He seems like a really nice guy, even if he has ended up in ...
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  • Amy Craig Beasley's avatar
    Amy Craig Beasley wrote 4 years, 3 months ago

    With so many talking about the end of the world, Kim Jewell's Misery's Fire may be the next hottest topic among teen readers today. If the topic is not enough, the langauge and the immediate referral to body oder of various degress will certainly get the YA crowd reading. Love the satirical edge and the details. The vegetables on the menu is funny - I liked that - Well written prose - nearly flawless -

  • sunrize604's avatar
    sunrize604 wrote 4 years, 3 months ago

    Misery's Fire


    Your book has some nice life lessons for your YA audience. I like how your MC is learning that giving, trusting and a positive outlook no matter your situation, is far superior than a more negative immediate gratification. Likable interesting characters and a relatable MC that gets the much sought after "do-over".

  • Gefordson's avatar
    Gefordson wrote 4 years, 4 months ago
    Kim, I read this a while ago but haven’t had time to comment. This is a great idea, well executed. You have real characters that come alive and compelling moments of drama to hold the reader’s attention. The book’s well paced and well plotted. My one comment is that on occasions you could do with tightening some of the dialogue – on rare occasions people are needlessly wordy. That aside this is a really strong piece of writing. Best of ...
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  • Retired user
    Jaen Glimmers [Retired] wrote 4 years, 4 months ago


    You have one of the most original books on Authonomy; the premise is fantastic. Your dialogue and MC’s musings are witty with dark comedic timing which keeps the reader engaged. Grant comes across as an endearing character to me (even if he is in hell) and apparently had a huge amount of empathy for his sister that rings loud and clear. I’m happy to display this on my shelf.

    Jaen Wirefly

  • Retired user
    Diane Lauritzen [Retired] wrote 4 years, 4 months ago

    I marvel at your imagination! If only I can get my students to open up their imaginations like this! ;] Backed!
    Di Lauritzen

  • Retired user
    Ivan1971 [Retired] wrote 4 years, 4 months ago

    Crisp, easy-reading. Very well-written narrative. It deserves to do well. Good stuff!

  • klouholmes's avatar
    klouholmes wrote 4 years, 5 months ago
    Hi Kim, You've done it again! Hell is so well-imagined that it's convincing and you wonder if anyone can find a way out. I really liked the construction, the alternating of those scenes with Grant's former life. There's such a relief in it and at the same time, they are involving, working through the past. Loved the therapist and the "work" they do. All well-described and tightly. It's gruesome but has the slow-going horror that makes it readable for anytime. ...
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  • Dwayne Kavanagh's avatar
    Dwayne Kavanagh wrote 4 years, 5 months ago
    Good concept. I like the style and voice of your writing. It reads like any of the books that I rip through! Kim, you do a great job buillding up your charcaters through dialogue (without describing them in narration, like most do) Your opening sentence made me pause for just a second...I would consider revising it. I get what you're trying to do, but the gravelly, bronx, sleepy head, etc seemed a bit cliche. Just my thought...don't hold it against ...
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