Series: Snow Like Ashes #1
Published by Balzer & Bray on October 14th 2014
Genres: Fantasy & Magic
A heartbroken girl. A fierce warrior. A hero in the making.
Sixteen years ago the Kingdom of Winter was conquered and its citizens enslaved, leaving them without magic or a monarch. Now, the Winterians’ only hope for freedom is the eight survivors who managed to escape, and who have been waiting for the opportunity to steal back Winter’s magic and rebuild the kingdom ever since.
Orphaned as an infant during Winter’s defeat, Meira has lived her whole life as a refugee, raised by the Winterians’ general, Sir. Training to be a warrior—and desperately in love with her best friend, and future king, Mather — she would do anything to help her kingdom rise to power again.
So when scouts discover the location of the ancient locket that can restore Winter’s magic, Meira decides to go after it herself. Finally, she’s scaling towers, fighting enemy soldiers, and serving her kingdom just as she’s always dreamed she would. But the mission doesn’t go as planned, and Meira soon finds herself thrust into a world of evil magic and dangerous politics – and ultimately comes to realize that her destiny is not, never has been, her own.
❄Even blizzards start with a Snowflake❄
Snow Like Ashes was good. Actually, that’s a major understatement, it was more than good. I’ve been wanting to read this book since I first heard about it, which was a pretty damn long time ago. Then it was suddenly October and I was so busy that I didn’t have time to read it. So now, almost a month after release date, I finally get to write about this much anticipated read. This awesome book that turned out to be pretty much everything I wanted it to be.
The world building was pretty damn epic. Sara Raasch created a world that is incredibly creative and original. The beginning of the book was a bit confusing. You get lots of information thrown at you all at once, there are EIGHT kingdoms to keep track of… Which means politics and alliances and everything else that comes with wartime. There were some Whoah, Lets’s rewind moments for me. Once I got past that, there was nothing in the way of falling in love with the the story.
Another thing I loved: the magical aspect. The ‘magic’ starts making appearances about halfway into the book and I really hope there’ll be more about the history of magic in the following books. It was original, kinda unique, and pretty damn cool! I loved what I learned about it in the first book, and it was hinted that there was quite some history behind it, which I can’t wait to learn more about.
Meira was a great main character. She was rebellious and fierce (don’t we all love a little rebellion), and she developed a lot over the course of the story. She felt real and her actions and decisions felt real, which made it easy to relate to her. I was rooting for her throughout the entire story (read: yelling for her to kick-ass). She was pretty damn awesome.
There was a love-triangle. Surprise: I didn’t mind it at all. Both guys were likable, and Meira’s confusion about her feelings was understandable. It wasn’t just another overdose of teenage hormones: both guys have depth and the attraction didn’t feel forced. What I am trying to say is: it felt genuine. Which probably is the reason that I had zero problem with it. What I liked even more was that it fell away pretty fast (and what we’re left with is great!). I definitely have my favourite though: sweet, awesome, adorable Theron View Spoiler » and lucky for me, things seemed to be going in favour for him (plus, I think Meira and Mather kinda grew apart) « Hide Spoiler.
The only thing that was a bit disappointing (and keeps me from giving Snow Like Ashes the full 5 star rating) is the predictability of the story. I figured out the ‘big plot reveal’ pretty early on. Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. I did love the ending, everything came together perfectly, but I just wasn’t surprised by the final plot twist.