Samstag, 27. Juni 2015

Review: An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir

“Life is made of so many moments that mean nothing. Then one day, a single moment comes along to define every second that comes after. Such moments are tests of courage, of strength.”


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.


I have to be honest, I like the English cover, but the German cover is much more beautiful. (I will show you both here) on the German cover you can see Elias’s eyes and his mask, and it looks so great.

My opinion:

Okay guys, lean back, I’ve got a lot to say about this book.
Before I started this book, it already got a lot of hype on BookTube and on several Blogs and to be honest, I was a little intimidated by that. But this book deserves all the hype it gets! It was absolutely fantastic. It actually was meant to be a stand-alone, but after this open ending I am so happy that there is going to be a sequel. I can’t wait for it!

Sabaa Tahir’s writing was absolutely perfect. It just made me want to go on and on, and I almost never put the book down, because I enjoyed the writing-style so much. It was very fluent and easy to read, also despite the new words surrounding the world this book takes place in. I just really enjoyed her writing.

The world-building was, again, just fantastic. This world is based on ancient Rome, which is really cool. I love history, and thus I loved the setting in this book so much. I’m also a huge fan of books which include soldiers or warriors in any way, and this book is literally about that, which was amazing too.

The plot development was on point. It couldn’t have been any better. There was one plot-twist after another, and the action didn’t seem to stop, which was great. If you like action-packed and fast-paced books you will definitely LOVE this one! Without giving too much away, this book even made me cry a few times. It was just great, let me tell you.

So, the book follows two people, and thus it has two points of views. I really enjoyed both of these voices so much. Let’s start with Laia; to be honest, I am usually rather annoyed with the voices of female characters, just because they cry about every single little thing, but it didn’t seem to be that way with Laia. She was strong, clever, and determined to safe her brother, no matter at what cost. She put so many burdens onto her shoulders just to safe her friends and family, and this dedication was stunning. I really loved her. Moving on with Elias; his character was just so fascinating and amazing. All the people around him just seemed to accept and do everything they were told, but he was the only one who thought about it, the only one who questioned the actions of the “government”. He was brave, and he always tried to help everyone else. He was by far my favorite character in the book and I can’t wait to read more about him and Laia in the sequel. Also the other characters were great. Everyone just seemed so authentic and real. Honestly, I still didn’t fully return into reality after finishing this book.


An absolutely stunning start to a great fantasy-series. I would recommend this book to everyone. Tip: if you want the real arena feel, listen to Fall Out Boy’s “Centuries” during the fight scenes. I swear, this is EPIC.


10|5 stars

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