Thursday, February 26, 2015

Snow Like Ashes

Author: Sara Raasch
Release Date:  October 14th, 2014
Publisher:  Balzar +Bray
Genre(s): YA Fantasy
Pages:  416
*Book one of a series*


Summary (Goodreads);
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

Snap, crackle, and pop- this is a GOOD book.  I mean, it has speedy pacing (which could be good and bad I guess?), (mostly) well written characters, and chemistry.  SWEET SNOW- the chemistry is strong with this one- until the ending that is.  But I'll get to that later.

The best thing about this book is its writing.  Smooth, beautiful, and powerful- this author knows how to write (granted, every author should, but...this thought would be best left unfinished for today ;) ). Every few pages I would get shivers and goosebumps- it was THAT good. I honestly can't get over how pretty the writing is.

Now, with Meira I'm conflicted.  On one hand, I love Meira.  Strong, complex character-wise, and trying to find her place in the world- I clicked with her instantly.   It's not so much her situation was anything similar to mine (I don't where I would start with the dissimilarities LOL), but it's just her feelings of wanting to feel like she has a place in this world, that she has a purpose in life, oddly resonates with me as I prepare for college and to go out into the "real" world.  It helps tremendously that this author's writing is SO powerful. On the other hand, I REALLY  hated the Chosen One complex in this book.    I totally knew she was the One.  I suspected it from the beginning, but I just didn't know how it was going to all work out (I kinda expected Mather and Meira to be related- which EW).   For once, I wanted a heroine who isn't the ONE (I mean the Chosen One trope does work sometimes, but other times....), but I guess if wishes were fishes, we'd all cast nets.  BUT UGGGGGGGGGH.  I totally called it.  And those flashbacks make it super obvious.  Also, by the end, I could feel the author losing her steam, and everything was a little rushed.   The plot, the character growth, everything- so it seemed like Meira had a bit of a (bad) personality shift at the end.

This love triangle. ASDDSFJLKDSF. *Excuse me, while I bang my head against this wall.* WHY BOOK!?!? WHY!?! YOU. DON'T. NEED.  ONE.  OMG . Way to ruin a perfectly good relationship- and it was nearly perfect.  The chemistry between Mather and Meira is SO GOOD. It's honestly one of the best written relationships I've come across in a looong time.  MY GOODNESS.  The attraction is undeniable, but their friendship is stronger,  and ARGH.  There's angst, but it's balanced out by the little moments. AND THEN THERON WALTZES IN (quite literally actually) AND RUINS IT.  He's not super underdeveloped as a character (sorta kinda), but he doesn't have the same chemistry with Meira as she did with Mather.  Their relationship is really rushed and totally un-needed.  UGH.  This was just bad. Bad. Bad. Bad.  UGH UGH UGH UGH

Finally, the plot.  It was a good plot- well, hmm, okay. I found myself totally immersed in it (the world-building JUST KILLED IT); however, at the same time, it was very... heavy? A LOT happens in this one book, and the pace moves at breath-taking speed.  I didn't think this was a bad thing until the end where everything was a bit rushed and lots of things were left unclear (for the purpose of the second book of course ;) ).

Overall, a nice story (excluding that love triangle and the Chosen One thingamajig), maybe a bit rushed at the end, but I would definitely recommend.  Ready for that second book yo. ;)

Thanks for reading! :)

Rating: 3 out of 5

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