Hardcover: 464 pages
Publisher: Razorbill (April 28, 2015)
Rating: 5 stars
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.
BUY THE BOOK:
This cannot–I repeat cannot be a standalone book. It’s too damn good to be one book. I need more Laia and Elias asap. So to the bigwigs over at Penguin/Razorbill need to give Sabaa Tahir the green light to write the next installment because An Ember in the Ashes is freaking phenomenal. No lie it’s my top read so far in 2015. I’m so in love with this book and I’m sure you will be too.
Told from two points of view, author Sabaa Tahir weaves such an incredible story that is both brutal and beautiful at the same time. We have Laia, who is the lowest of the low and must become a slave to one of the most ruthless person known to man, in order to rescue her brother from being executed. Then we have Elias. A soldier with a conscience. While everyone around him doesn’t question orders and kill without mercy, Elias just wants to be free. Free to be the person he is meant to be.
In my opinion, Elias is the most developed and complex character that I have read in YA in a long time. I don’t know how Sabaa Tahir does it but you can feel the emotions and turmoil that plagues Elias every waking morning as he questions what is right and wrong. His loyalty to his friends and soldiers at arms. I truly enjoyed reading from his perspective more than Laia.
Although there wasn’t anything truly wrong with Laia story line I was just more invested in Elias and the choices he had to make. You just feel for him as you read his chapters. Plus, he kind of hot in that brooding sort of way.
Now before I end this review I just want to say that the use or threat of rape in An Ember in the Ashes was excessive for my taste. I wish it was toned down. Overall, I really enjoyed this fantastic read. All the hype that is surrounding this author and this book is well deserved.
So if you’re looking for top notch world-building, beautiful writing and a breathtaking read, An Ember in the Ashes is for you. I highly recommend this book. Go pre-order yours today. Or take your chance with my giveaway down below.
*I recieved an ARC copy of An Ember in the Ashes in exchange for a honest review. All opinions are my own and is not influenced by Penguin/Razorbill
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Sabaa Tahir grew up in California’s Mojave Desert at her family’s 18-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.
Okay I’m going to keep this giveaway simple. All you have to do is follow me on twitter @creatyvebooks and leave a comment down below repping where you’re from and why you wish to read An Ember in the Fire. It’s International and ends 5/1/2015. Just make sure BookDepository delivers to where every you live. Simple right? Good luck to all and thanks for reading. Oh there will be two winners. One US winner and one International winner. 🙂