Bookish – Saba Tahir’s An Ember in the Ashes(#1)

I had lost my appetite to read more since 2 years. I still remember those times when days and nights were all one with my head into a book. I do not remember how fast I used to cover them, books after books. I could remember the effect it had though. Getting into the skin of a character, visualising the story with me playing a relatable role, everything was in my head but it felt good. It felt evolutionary every time when I completed a book. But that was 2 years ago. Within these 2 years, I had tried hard to start a book and complete it, but the hardest part was to reach the last page of it. I realise now, all the distractions from social media grew with time. Now, when the world stands still, I did some good amount of research to start with a fantasy book, also choosing fantasy means not getting a hint to put it down, if you’re still, then there’s something wrong with the manuscript.

When I started with ‘An Ember in the Ashes’, initially it felt all brutal but gripping. I couldn’t leave it without turning the next page, every single moment eagerly curious to check what happens to the determined Laia, If the brave soldier Veturius would be able to save himself and the Empire, Would the disciplined soldier Helen sacrifice her love? Everything looked pretty unsettling but thrilling, gripping and nothing to stifle upon. The world created by the author is seemingly made up of Hogwarts’s adventures facing Game of thrones’s brutality building with Hunger Games’s scenes.

I was taken aback when I saw I had reached almost 50% of the book without even realising how long I have been reading, that’s how captivating the book was. Tahir’s writing never disappointed me since I was always looking into a broader picture of the story. This book relies on very strong character development sequences, brutal actions building relations and most importantly a very strong scenic background. Blackcliff school might give you an impression of Hogwarts but once you dwell into the characters, it becomes trivial. There are excerpts where a man demeaning a woman's physicality and the hero defying her is nothing new to read but it gives some weird character building tips to the story. How every story is ruled by a strong villain, this one carries a very strong ruler, The Commandant, who can easily give Cersei Lannister and all other super villains a knock to win.

I loved the fact how shades of a woman are defined with roles, how fear is handled here with regards to death, how humanity can still thrive with moral losses. Power, fear, love, death, everything intertwines in this compelling fantasy series.

“Fear is only your enemy if you allow it to be. Too much fear and you're paralyzed. Too little fear and you're arrogant.”
― Sabaa Tahir, An Ember in the Ashes
Courtesy: Goodreads
“Fear is only your enemy if you allow it to be. Too much fear and you’re paralyzed. Too little fear and you’re arrogant.”
― Sabaa Tahir, An Ember in the Ashes
Courtesy: Goodreads

The moment I completed this book, there was a sigh. A relief, I can never imagine, how blissful it felt for ten seconds. That’s the happiness of completing a task when you start with a goal and that can only happen when your interest aligns with the mission. I am happy for a fact I chose this book where I didn’t regret for a minute. Super excited and eager to start the next one from the series. Whether a beginner to reading or fantasy genre reading, this New York’s bestseller is highly recommended.

Happy Reading 🙂 !

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