Title: An Ember in the Ashes
Genre: High-ish Fantasy YA-NA
Author: Sabaa Tahir
Publication: April 28th 2015
Cover Rating: 5/5
I don't even know where to start with this review. I picked An Ember in the Ashes up because the second book just came out and I was seriously wondering what all the hype was about. I have read plenty of books that sounded similar to the synopsis so I didn't really get my hopes up about anything. I don't know if it was my low expectations or maybe I just connected with this book more than others but I really loved it. There isn't much originality to it. Horrible world, evil to be conquered, girl/boy tries to save the world, romance ensues, the end. Pretty straight forward but I really enjoyed the story and the world.
Laia is your typical YA heroine. She is weak and afraid and because of that she loses the people she loves the most. I hate that this is has become the trope for these books. With that being said, I did like this book. I didn't really care for Laia too much for most of the book but towards the end I did start to understand her more. I am just glad she didn't let herself become one of those damsel in distress type of girls where the guy saves the girl in the end because the girl is obviously incapable of doing anything for herself.
Elias and his story were confusing to me. I understood what happened and how he ended up where he did but I just couldn't get over who his mother was. Who his blood was. I am hoping we find out who some of his other relatives might be in the coming books. Elias was put into a difficult situation and in the end it was only made harder because he had to choose life or death. His best friend or himself. This mysterious slave girl or his best friend. There was just a lot of stuff shoved in his face. I do wonder why he didn't try to get out sooner.
Then we have this group of resistance fighters who are trying to overthrow the government, which is also very cliche. Laia goes to these people because of her parents connection to them and they agreed to help her but it turns out not everything was the truth. Within these fighters, Laia finds solace in the most unlikely of places. I really want to know how that turns out with her feelings being all over the place.
In the end, all I can say is that I am very glad the second book is already out and in my possession. I feel sorry for those who read this book right when it came out and had to wait a year to continue the story. I am having an internal battle as to whether I should pick up the second book right away or if I should wait a little bit so there isn't a huge year long gap between the next book. Either way, it looks like a war is brewing so it should be getting better in the next book.
Overall, I gave the book 4.5/5 stars.
P.S... There are 4 books on Goodreads for this series and I have no idea how to feel about that. I love that it is continuing but I'm going to slowly die over the next 2 years waiting for each release. There have been very few series that I have actually read as they come out and it has been hell. SAVE ME!