(re)Review: Torment by Lauren Kate

Torment by Lauren Kate

Release Date: September 28, 2010
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Series: Fallen, Book 2
Rated: YA 14+
Format: Hardcover
Source: Bought
Buy: AmazonThe Book Depository
Goodreads Website

Read my (re)review of Fallen HERE.

How many lives do you need to live before you find someone worth dying for?

In the aftermath of what happened at Sword & Cross, Luce has been hidden away by her cursed angelic boyfriend, Daniel, in a new school filled with Nephilim, the offspring of fallen angels and humans. Daniel promises she will be safe here, protected from those who would kill her. At the school Luce discovers what the Shadows that have followed her all her life mean – and how to manipulate them to see into her other lives. Yet the more Luce learns about herself, the more she realizes that the past is her only key to unlocking her future . . . and that Daniel hasn't told her everything. What if his version of the past isn't actually the way things happened . . . what if Luce was really meant to be with someone else?

I'm rereading the Fallen series because of a blog tour that I'm a part of coming up in November for the release of Unforgiven in paperback. I'm glad that I reread Torment, because I clearly didn't understand much of it reading the book the first time round. It might be me getting older and actually comprehending stuff, but yeah–I wasn't left perplexed by the end as I was four or five years ago. Also, that's also probably the reason why the third book Passion didn't make too much sense. Now I get to go into that with a clearer understanding!

Oh geez, Luce's character tormented (get it?!) me throughout this book. I wanted her to be a stronger heroine compared to the last book; a girl with a little more backbone. I got my wish (somewhat), but ugh, it seems like that confidence made her even MORE unlikeable. Why do you have to be so stupid? I mean it absolutely drives me nuts, the way this girl thinks: Daniel AND Cam told me not to leave campus for some reason, and they keep on talking about my "protection"...meh, imma roll out. What could possibly happen? I mean, the last time I left some chick tried to kill me, but that was just a coincidence, right? RIGHT? 

Oh god, the idiocy of this child.

Again, like the last book, the other characters were amazing compared to Luce. I loved Shelby–she was the quirky, outspoken one taking over Arriane's place...kind of–and Miles. I was reading my first review for Torment (only some slight cringes along the way...maybe I'd started to write better reviews? Who knows), and apparently I hated him. Well, damn, I'm doing a complete 180˚ because I LOVED him this time round. I don't know why, but I think the pretty sickening lovey-dovey way that Daniel gives up everything for Luce (ugh, somebody also needs a stronger backbone!) and his over-obsession with her–which is, okay, kinda understandable because of the whole in-love-with-her-for-several-centuries thing–slightly changed my view on him. For now I'm leaning more towards Team Miles, although I'm sure it'll never happen. Miles is sweet and I seriously don't know why I hated him so much to begin with–probably my obsession with Daniel–but, I'm hoping to read more about him in the coming books. I even liked Cam a lot more in this book! I love the truce that the angels and demons made, because I enjoy it when opposite teams join forces. I can't remember much of what happens in the next book, but I'm hoping this sort of collaboration continues. 

With the main character slightly more annoying than the first book, I would recommend Torment for the plot and other characters. I'm enjoying rereading the series so far, and this one–on top of having probably the most gorgeous cover–shows that the stakes are higher and nothing is as it seems. I'm looking forward to digging into Passion next, and then finally getting to Rapture to see how it all ends.

If you like this, try...

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The Memory Thief by Bryce Moore

The Memory Thief by Bryce Moore

Release Date: September 20, 2016
Publisher: Adaptive Books
Rated: MG 12+
Format: ARC
Source: Sunshine Sachs
Buy: B&N
Goodreads Website

After witnessing another one of their parents’ public fights, twin brother and sister Benji and Kelly wander off at the local county fair.  Benji runs into a group of bullies and escapes into a tent called The Memory Emporium, where he meets a strange old man inside named Louis.  The old man shows him a magically vivid memory of a fighter pilot, in the hopes of getting Benji to pay to see other memories Louis has collected from people over the years.

Benji quickly realizes the ability to take memories could help his parents stop fighting with each other, and he asks Louis to teach him how to become a Memory Thief.  But Louis isn’t the only person with the ability to show and manipulate memories.  There’s also the mysterious Genevieve, a Memory Thief with much more nefarious motives.

Benji learns how to manipulate memories himself, but having that power comes at a cost to his family, and possible to his own mind as well.  Genevieve’s powers get out of control as she steals more and more memories from people in town – including Benji’s sister, Kelly.  Benji must learn to use this newfound power, as he is the only one able to stop Genevieve.

It's been a while since I've dived into a middle-grade book with fantasy elements, but wow, this one was fantastic! I had a ton of fun reading The Memory Thief. Not only did it remind me of my middle school reading days, but it also was so captivating that I read it in one or two sittings. I'm so glad I got the chance to read and review this one, and I'm hoping there's going to be more.

Benji was such a great character, and I loved how with taking memories from other people, his personality changed as well. The writing seamlessly adapted his character to fit the situation, and it felt like a natural progression. Kelly was a fantastic character as well–I really enjoyed the sibling (or rather twin) connection Benji and Kelly had with one another. Louis was just this eccentric old man who I couldn't help but enjoy, and Genevieve was this intriguing antagonist, who I will admit, while evil, sounded awesome as a baddie. The only thing is that I wish we had learned more about Genevieve. This book was kind of short, and I wish we'd explored more into her motives as a "villain" in this story. I mean, you do get some sort of explanation and exploration of her life at the end, but I felt like that could have been examined more. 

I enjoyed the novel's concept. The idea of memories and being able to see other people's memories and taking them, borrowing them, etc., is something I actually haven't come across in middle grade or young adult literary fiction until now. The closest, I think, would actually be Roald Dahl's The BFG, where dreams do play a large role...but they aren't the focus of the story. Anyway, obviously memories play a large role in this story and 

A fun adventure that readers of all ages will enjoy, The Memory Thief was an action-packed story about a boy trying to save his family and the rest of his town, whilst trying to adjust to his newfound skills in memory navigating. While this worked well as a standalone I'm secretly (well, not so secretly now!) hoping that there will be a sequel, or even a series. Don't miss out on this one!

▪ ▪ ▪ Thank you so much to Hayley at Sunshine Sachs for sending me a copy for review! ▪ ▪ 

If you like this, try...

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(re)Review: Fallen by Lauren Kate

Fallen by Lauren Kate

Release Date: December 8, 2009
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Series: Fallen, Book 1
Rated: YA 14+
Format: Paperback
Source: Bought
Buy: AmazonThe Book Depository
Goodreads Website

There's something achingly familiar about Daniel Grigori.

Mysterious and aloof, he captures Luce Price's attention from the moment she sees him on her first day at the Sword & Cross boarding school in Savannah. He's the one bright spot in a place where cell phones are forbidden, the other students are all screw-ups, and security cameras watch every move.

Even though Daniel wants nothing to do with Luce–he goes out of his way to make that very clear. But she can't let it go. Drawn to him like a moth to a flame, she has to find out what Daniel is so desperate to keep secret . . . even if it kills her.

I'm rereading this series because I'm going to part of the upcoming blog tour for the release of the paperback of the fifth book in the series, Unforgiven. It's been such a long time since I've read these books! I didn't even actually finish the series–I have yet to read the fourth book, so this reread will give me the chance to do so. I was a little afraid of going into this one, because while I did absolutely love this book when I first went into it way back in 2010 (and wrote a review that I couldn't finish reading because I was too busy cringing), my attitude towards books in general has changed, and I felt like I would be annoyed at parts of it. I'm glad that I still liked this book for the most part, even if I found parts that I didn't, and I'm excited to be rereading and continuing on with this series.

I can't remember how I felt about Luce the first time round, but ugh–I didn't like her! She's the only problem I had with the book. Seriously wayyyy too obsessive over Daniel. He flips her off, she wants him more. She's told to stay away from him, she just CAN'T. She stalks him, tries to find out more about him... it was just way too much. I mean, sure around the time this book was published, a lot of the young adult paranormal or supernatural novel's heroines were like this. Drawn to the mysterious boy, wondering why he's so different, basically trying to grasp onto any connection they have. 2010 me definitely would have appreciated it, but I just about tolerated it. I mean, there was a character–who shall remain nameless to avoid spoilers–who said it best:

You're the human equivalent of a migraine.
–p. 415, paperback

The other characters though? Loved them. Well, maybe with the slight exception of Penn. That chick was wayyy too clingy. Maybe that's why she and Luce are friends? Makes sense anyway. But yeah, Arriane was a total badass, and I liked that she was quirky and different. I even loved Gabbe, because she's got that sweet, protective vibe to her. Cam was super interesting, because he's the typical bad boy, and definitely has some swoon to him. Daniel–oh, Daniel–was one of my first book crushes, and yup, distance (and a whole load of time) DOES make the heart grow fonder.

While my hatred for Luce tarnished my reading experience this time round, I'm excited to be diving back into this world. It's been a while since I've read a good ol' supernatural book with the classic tropes that made the young adult market boom. Dark and compelling, with a delicious gothic touch, Fallen reminded me of my love for (not only Daniel Grigori, but also) eternal love stories and paranormal fiction.

If you like this, try...

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Waiting on Wednesday – Week 181

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine. It's to spotlight upcoming releases that I'm DYING to get my hands on!

This week's WoW is:
Kiss Cam by Kiara London

Juniper, Jasper, and Lenny have been friends forever and co-own a vlog channel called WereVloggingHere. Their fans are huge "shippers" who believe that Juniper and Jasper are perfect for each other, and, despite warnings from friends and family, a simple Truth-or-Dare inspired kiss soon spirals out of control into a whole new world of making out and surprise kisses.

Juniper and Jasper's relationship begins to shift. But as fan requests for different "Kiss Cam" segments keep pouring in, Juniper puts her worries aside and convinces herself that it doesn't mean anything. After all, it's just kissing… right?

October 18, 2016 ● Goodreads

I only heard about this one recently, and that cover just GRABBED my attention. Not to mention the title too! It sounds really unique and relevant to today's internet culture, and vlogging and trends sound right up my alley. Can't wait for this one!

What are you waiting on?

Ripple by Heather Smith Meloche

Ripple by Heather Smith Meloche

Release Date: September 20, 2016
Publisher: G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers
Rated: YA 14+
Format: eGalley
Source: First to Read
Buy: AmazonThe Book Depository
Goodreads Website

With her impossible-to-please grandmother on her back about college and her disapproving step-dad watching her every move, Tessa would do anything to escape the pressure-cooker she calls home. So she finds a shot of much-needed power and confidence by hooking up with boys, even though it means cheating on her boyfriend. But when she's finally caught red-handed, she’ll do anything she can to cover up what she's done.

Jack is a prankster who bucks the system every chance he gets—each transgression getting riskier and riskier. He loves the thrill, and each adventure allows a little release because his smug smile and suave demeanor in the face of authority doesn’t make life at home with his mom any less tough. He tries to take care of her, but the truth is he's powerless in the face of her fragile mental health. So he copes in his own way, by defacing public property and pulling elaborate pranks, though he knows in the end this’ll only screw up his life even more.

As they both try not to let their self-destructive patterns get the best of them, Tessa and Jack gravitate toward one another, discovering the best parts of themselves in the process. An honest portrayal of the urges that drive us and finding the strength to overcome them, Ripple is a stunning debut from a powerful new voice.

Ripple is the first book I got to read from Penguin's First to Read program, and since I'd seen it around the book blogosphere, I decided to give it a try. It took me a while to get into–granted, it was probably because I was heading back to university and things got pretty busy–but after a while, I actually really started to enjoy it. Sure, there were things that I felt could have been slightly better, and the story was kind of slow in general, but all in all I liked this one.

I feel like the characters were really strong in this one. While I didn't agree with everything Tessa and Jack did, I could see why they did it. Except–the whole pranking thing. I mean, it's not been too long since high school, but are boys really that immature? I would honestly think that the pranks that Jack and his friends pull off fit more with middle schoolers or freshmen, but not seniors! Maybe it's just the high school I went to...anyway. I liked the motivations behind their characters. It felt really relatable, even though I have little to no experience with the things they deal with.

I just wish the pacing was a bit better. It felt like the book dragged a little bit at the start, and throughout the book there was this slow pace that held back the story. I mean, yes, there were absolutely fantastic plot elements in this book, but the rhythm threw me off a little. Regardless, I still think that Ripple was worth the read. Raw and real, Heather Smith Meloche's debut is a pretty powerful look at discovering yourself amongst mental illness, and sexual freedom and relationships.

If you like this, try...

Book Trailer Reveal: Lies I Live By by Lauren Sabel

Hey guys! I'm super excited (and sorry for posting this a teeny bit late) to be sharing the book trailer for Lauren Sabel's Lies I Live By. Before I share the trailer with you all, here's a bit about the book:

Lies I Live By by Lauren Sabel

Release Date: May 31, 2016
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books

Callie Sinclair is literally out of her mind; as the government’s youngest psychic spy, she finds valuable information for top-secret missions. Her work keeps her headaches at bay, but it means she must lie to everyone she loves, including her longtime boyfriend, Charlie.

When a new psychic arrives at the office, Callie can’t help but flirt; Jasper already knows her in a way Charlie never will.

But as her love life gets more complicated, so do her visions. People halfway around the world seem to be in danger...and people in her own backyard, too. If Callie can’t find a way to alter future events, she could lose the people she loves—and her mind. Literally.

This one sounds super intriguing! I'll need to get my hands on a copy... anyway, finally–here's the book trailer!

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Thank you so much to Giselle at Xpresso Book Tours!

Waiting on Wednesday – Week 180

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine. It's to spotlight upcoming reads that I'm DYING to get my hands on!

This week's WoW is:
The Weight of Zero by Karen Fortunati

Seventeen-year-old Catherine Pulaski knows Zero is coming for her. Zero, the devastating depression born of Catherine’s bipolar disorder, almost triumphed once; that was her first suicide attempt. 

Being bipolar is forever. It never goes away. The med du jour might work right now, but Zero will be back for her. It’s only a matter of time.

And so, in an old ballet-shoe box, Catherine stockpiles medications, preparing to take her own life before Zero can inflict its living death on her again. Before she goes, though, she starts a short bucket list. 

The bucket list, the support of her family, new friends, and a new course of treatment all begin to lessen Catherine’s sense of isolation. The problem is, her plan is already in place, and has been for so long that she might not be able to see a future beyond it. 

This is a story of loss and grief and hope, and how some of the many shapes of love—maternal, romantic, and platonic—affect a young woman’s struggle with mental illness and the stigma of treatment.

October 11, 2016 ● Goodreads

This one sounds like it's gonna be a powerful read. Mental illness is something that's popped up time and again in YA, and, most of the time, the books have left me close to tears. I'm desperate to get my hands on a copy of The Weight of Zero...hopefully I do soon. Can't wait!

What are you waiting on?

Waiting on Wednesday – Week 179

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine. It's to spotlight upcoming releases that I'm DYING to get my hands on!

This week's WoW is:
Spare and Found Parts by Sarah Maria Griffin

Nell Crane has always been an outsider. In a city devastated by an epidemic, where survivors are all missing parts—an arm, a leg, an eye—her father is the famed scientist who created the biomechanical limbs everyone now uses. But Nell is the only one whose mechanical piece is on the inside: her heart. Since the childhood operation, she has ticked. Like a clock, like a bomb. As her community rebuilds, everyone is expected to contribute to the society’s good . . . but how can Nell live up to her father’s revolutionary idea when she has none of her own?

Then she finds a mannequin hand while salvaging on the beach—the first boy’s hand she’s ever held—and inspiration strikes. Can Nell build her own companion in a world that fears advanced technology? The deeper she sinks into this plan, the more she learns about her city—and her father, who is hiding secret experiments of his own.

October 4, 2016 ● Goodreads

This one sounds a lot like Pure meets This Monstrous Thing, with a touch of The Madman's Daughter! I can't wait to read Spare and Found Parts–besides the gorgeous cover, the dystopian feel of the novel gives off a unique vibe, and I'm excited to see what's in store!

What are you waiting on?

A Torch Against the Night Blog Tour: Review

A Torch Against the Night by Sabaa Tahir

Release Date: August 30, 2016
Publisher: Razorbill
Series: An Ember in the Ashes, Book 2
Rated: YA 14+
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher

Read my review of An Ember in the Ashes HERE.

Elias and Laia are running for their lives.

After the events of the Fourth Trial, Martial soldiers hunt the two fugitives as they flee the city of Serra and undertake a perilous journey through the heart of the Empire.

Laia is determined to break into Kauf–the Empire's most secure and dangerous prison–to save her brother, who is the key to the Scholars' survival. And Elias is determined to help Laia succeed, even if it means giving up his last chance at freedom.

But dark forces, human and otherworldly, work against Laia and Elias. The pair must fight every step of the way to outsmart their enemies: the bloodthirsty Emperor Marcus, the merciless Commandant, the sadistic Warden of Kauf, and, most heartbreaking of all, Helene–Elias's former friend and the Empire's newest Blood Shrike.

Bound to Marcus's will, Helene faces a torturous mission of her own–one that might destroy her: find the traitor Elias Veturius and the Scholar slave who helped him escape... and kill them both.

After finishing An Ember in the Ashes, it was hard to keep away from A Torch Against the Night. I knew that I needed a little break in between books–no matter how much I absolutely ADORED the first one–so grudgingly I parted with the beautiful copy I received for review for a while. Once I'd finished the "halfway book," I pounced on this one and started it frantically. I was a little bit afraid that the sequel would fall under the second book syndrome, and would not live up to the hype and the brilliance of the first one, but I'm so glad that wasn't the case.

My wish was granted! Helene was such an interesting character in the first novel, and I was desperate to learn more about her, since at the end of An Ember in the Ashes it's clear that her position becomes more conflict-inducing, both for herself and those around her. I'm just super happy that along with Laia and Elias we get her point of view in the book.

Loyal to the end.
         The motto of Gens Aquilla, whispered into my ear by my father moments after I was born. I've spoken those words a thousand times. I've never questioned them. Never doubted.
         I think of those words now, as I sad between two legionnaires in the dungeons below Blackcliff. Loyal to the end.
         Loyal to whom? My family? The Empire? My own heart?
         Damn my heart to the hells. My heart is what landed me here in the first place.
–p. 30, ARC*
*text is subject to change in the final version

Laia and Elias weren't too different compared to the first book, which kind of makes sense, since we only got their perspectives the last time round, and we saw them grow then. In this book though, what I really enjoyed was the development in R-E-L-A-T-I-O-N-S-H-I-P-S. I mentioned that in the first book there was some love triangle-esque romance going on. That still continued on for a while in A Torch Against the Night...until there was this HUGE-ASS twist, and now things are shifting, so there's a different outcome. There's also what I'm hoping is another potential love interest for one of the characters, because this new addition to the book is super interesting and I'm basically just rooting for the two characters to get together. JUST FALL IN LOVE AND KISS DAMMIT.

The appearance of magic is a lot more prominent in this book, as there was just a touch of it in An Ember in the Ashes. I believe we've only seen the beginning of the mythology for this world, and I know that so much more is going to happen during the rest of the series. The stakes are also a lot higher in this one–there's a hidden plot, deathly experiences, capture and torture, escape plans, secrets, a tyrannical ruler who may be hiding something, a new character who is ALSO hiding something, and just a whole lot of pain. The first book broke my heart a few times with the deaths of so many wonderful secondary characters, and this one did too. Brace yourselves, because while this world is beautiful and absolutely captivating to read about, the tables have turned and things are getting deadly.

An exciting sequel that matches the phenomenal start to the series, A Torch Against the Night exceeded all my expectations, and, like An Ember in the Ashes, has left me breathless and thirsty for moreSabaa Tahir's latest novel is exhilarating from start to finish, and my only regret is that now I have to wait a really long time for books three and four. Seriously, if you haven't started this series yet, WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?!

If you like this, try...

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Sabaa Tahir is the New York Times bestselling author of the young adult fantasy An Ember in the Ashes, which has been published in thirty-four languages. Sabaa Tahir grew up in California’s Mojave Desert at her family’s eighteen-room motel. There, she spent her time devouring fantasy novels, raiding her brother’s comic book stash, and playing guitar badly. She began writing An Ember in the Ashes while working nights as a newspaper editor. She likes thunderous indie rock, garish socks, and all things nerd. Sabaa currently lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her family. 

For more information, please visit Sabaa at SabaaTahir.com or on Twitter @SabaaTahir.

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Check out the rest of the international blog tour!

The Nocturnal Library (Aug 30)
Books on Petrova Fire (Aug 31)
With Love for Books (Sept 1)
Book Review Temple (Sept 2)
Book Stop Corner (Sept 3)
Bookevin (Sept 4)
Confessions of a Readaholic (Sept 5)
Chasing Faerytales (Sept 6)
Bookwormaniac (Sept 7)
Jasmine Pearl Reads (Sept 8)
Book Freak Revelations (Sept 9)
Musings of the Book-a-holic Fairies, Inc. (Sept 10)
Blackplume (Sept 11)
When Books Defy Gravity (Sept 12)
Amidst the Pages (Sept 13)
The Bookaholic Blurbs (Sept 14)
Home of a Book Lover (Sept 15)
Amaterasu Reads (Sept 16)
Random Things in Action (Sept 17)
The Bibliophile Confessions (Sept 18)
The Royal Polar Bear Reads (Sept 19)
The Soul Sisters (Sept 20)
Defiantly Deviant (Sept 21)
Mr. Book Wonder (Sept 22)
Bibliophile Soprano (Sept 23)
Feed Your Head (Sept 24)

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Thank you so much to Ingrid at Penguin Random House for having me on the blog tour and for sending me a copy for review!

An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir

An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir

Release Date: April 28, 2015 
(PB: February 9, 2016)
Publisher: Razorbill
Series: An Ember in the Ashes, Book 1
Rated: YA 14+
Format: Paperback
Source: Publisher
Buy: AmazonThe Book Depository
Goodreads Website (Book) Website (Author)

Laia is a slave. 
Elias is a soldier. 
Neither is free.

Under the Martial Empire, defiance is met with death. Those who do not vow their blood and bodies to the Emperor risk the execution of their loved ones and the destruction of all they hold dear.

It is in this brutal world, inspired by ancient Rome, that Laia lives with her grandparents and older brother. The family ekes out an existence in the Empire’s impoverished backstreets. They do not challenge the Empire. They’ve seen what happens to those who do.

But when Laia’s brother is arrested for treason, Laia is forced to make a decision. In exchange for help from rebels who promise to rescue her brother, she will risk her life to spy for them from within the Empire’s greatest military academy.

There, Laia meets Elias, the school’s finest soldier—and secretly, its most unwilling. Elias wants only to be free of the tyranny he’s being trained to enforce. He and Laia will soon realize that their destinies are intertwined—and that their choices will change the fate of the Empire itself.

Holy shizzlesticks. I'm literally grasping for words here, because how do you explain reading such an awesome book?!? An Ember in the Ashes BLEW. ME. AWAY. I loved it so much. It's been a while since I've read an epic fantasy of sorts, something like Shadow and Bone, whee the story just sucks you into this brilliantly constructed world and enthralling narrative. I inhaled this one. When I wasn't reading it, I dreamed of it. I can't believe it's taken me this long to get to such a wonderful book–I've got so many regrets for not getting my hands on a copy of this one sooner.

The story is told through the alternating perspectives of Laia and Elias. I loved both of these characters so much. Laia...damn, that girl is STRONG. I mean, if everyone I had was taken away and killed, I would be a shrivelling mess, unable to do anything. But nope, not her. I liked the conviction she possessed.

You won't stop until you do. I lift the gate and stare into the black hole below. I have to go down there. I have to find the Resistance. Because if I don't, my brother doesn't stand a chance. If I don't find the fighters and get them to help, I'll never see Darin again.
–p. 23, paperback

And she's not the only super strong female character. There's the badass Helene, who I so desperately want to learn more about, because boy–she's a complicated character. There's also Izzi and Sana, and I'm hoping that the both of them make more of an appearance in the sequel.

Elias–other than being particularly swoon-worthy–was also really interesting. Raised to be a Mask, a soldier for the Empire, he hates his life and wants to escape it. Difficult, considering his grandfather is an important figure and his mother is the Commandant (and absolutely terrifying). I loved seeing the inner conflict play out, especially as the story progresses on, and he finds himself part of a larger scheme: the Trials.

'This life is not always what we think it will be,' Cain says. 'You are an ember in the ashes, Elias Veturius. You will spark and burn, ravage and destroy. You cannot change it. You cannot stop it.'
–p. 65, paperback

There is a love triangle in this book (or rather two-ish). I normally don't mind love triangles, especially if they're done well, and this one was no exception. I love a complicated romance but once it gets stupid or weird then I'm out. But this one seem to work, and I'm excited to see how it goes. Obviously I have my choices down, buttttttt...things could definitely change. I have a fickle mind people, and I love the romance.

As I mentioned previously, the world-building is SPECTACULAR. I could actually imagine this Roman Empire-esque world, filled with magic and combat, scholars and militants. What I also liked, though, was that the characters were also clearly diverse. There's also some paranormal undertones, which I'm sure will be explained more in the second book. I'm so glad that the series has now been expanded to four books, because I desperately need MORE.

Absolutely breathtaking, An Ember in the Ashes is definitely one of my favourite reads this year. Heart-pounding, bewitching, and beyond magical, I couldn't turn the pages fast enough, and I now wish that I could read it all over again. Sabaa Tahir's debut is a powerful portrayal of the fight for freedom in a world of oppression and rigid command, and I seriously cannot recommend this one enough. A Torch Against the Night–I'm ready for you.

▪ ▪ ▪ Thank you so much to Ingrid at Penguin Random House for sending me a copy for review! ▪ ▪ 

If you like this, try...

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