14 October, 2015


Title: Snow Like Ashes
Author: Sara Raasch
Series: Snow Like Ashes #1
Genres: Fantasy, YA
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Source: Kindle Edition
Pages: 432

Add to GoodReads // Buy on BookDepository

SYNOPSIS: Game of Thrones meets Graceling in this striking fantasy tale of dark magic, dangerous politics, and discovering your true self. Sara Raasch’s debut fantasy is a lightning-fast story of loyalty, love, and controlling one’s destiny.
Sixteen years ago the Kingdom of Winter was conquered and its citizens enslaved, leaving them without magic or a monarch. The Winterians' only hope for freedom is the eight survivors who managed to escape, and who have been searching for the opportunity to steal back Winter’s magic and rebuild their kingdom ever since.

Orphaned as an infant during Winter’s defeat, Meira has lived her whole life as a refugee. Training to be a warrior—and desperately in love with her best friend, Winter’s future king—she would do anything to help Winter rise to power again. So when scouts discover the location of half of the ancient locket that can restore their magic, Meira decides to go after it herself—only to find herself thrust into a world of evil magic and dangerous politics, and to realize that her destiny is not, never has been, her own.

Snow Like Ashes has been a topic of discussion recently as well. It's included in the new it group of The Wrath and the Dawn, Red Queen, An Ember in the Ashes, A Court of Thorns and Roses, The Young Elites, and Throne of Glass. Maybe I forgot a few but I think you get the idea. So, being in the it group I had high expectations obviously and it didn't disappoint :)

THE WORLD: Sara sets us in an imaginary world, Primoria, but this world is divided in kingdoms which is nothing new in YA literature right now. However, there are 8 kingdoms in total: 4 are "normal" kingdoms called Cordell, Yakim, Ventralli, and Paisly, which are not mentioned at all or very little, and the other 4 are the season kingdoms Spring, Summer, Autumn, and Winter. This world also features magic! This magic was "locked" so to speak a long time ago by the 8 kings and queens (4 and 4, this is important in the book) of these kingdoms in a way that the magic would be stored in an object like a locket and the kings/queens would have access to it to help their kingdoms and their people. Once the king/queen dies the magic passes to the heir of the kingdom and it's always 4 and 4, meaning in 4 of the kingdoms the magic only passes down to the male heir and in the other 4 it passes to the female heir so that it's always balanced. Oh, and a little note: if the magic is used for bad things then "shadows" are created and I think they represent the evilness itself you know but they're real. These shadows are a bit like creatures that try to lure you to their evil side and basically posses you.

CHARACTERS: Meira is the main character of the story. She is an orphan girl, one of the 25 Winterians who survived and escaped the massacre caused by the evil Spring King, Angra. She is 16 years old and now part of the only 8 free Winterians left. The leader of this group is Sir, whose mission is to steal back Winter's locket which was cut in half by Angra when he invaded Winter and killed the queen, Hannah. On this group we have one of our male protagonists, the heir to Winter's throne, Mather, who as a male has zero value except for being able to have a female heir in the future because Winter's magic passes down on the female line. Bad luck, Winter. Anyway, Mather is super important and it is said in every chapter of the book "Winter will live as long as Mather lives". Meira and Mather are in fact really good characters, they're both brave and loyal. Meira is badass and has a very strong opinion of herself but she sometimes doubts her abilities, well she's human. Mather is an interesting character as well but his emotions and opinions are not described in detail so readers have to read a bit between the lines... one of his flaws is that he can be easily convinced (given a good reason) about things and that's also an important flaw as you will see. Further into the book we meet the other male protagonist, Prince Theron (of Cordell), who is not a pompous silly prince. He knows how to be a good king and he reads/writes poetry which made a lot of my friends swoon. I don't particularly care about that... anyway you will see that the situation he, Meira, and Mather end in is not exactly elegant but Theron handles it gracefully.

LOVE: love triangle alert. I knew it. There is always a love triangle *sigh*... it is not the focus of the book either but it's definitely there. Well, my problem is that I like both ships which doesn't happen often so now I'm curious about what happens in the second book.

PLUS: the characters and the story are well developed. The revelation at the end of the book was (although not so surprising) satisfying at least. GO PLOT TWISTS! Also characters are well developed, you see them grow and I quite liked that.

MINUS: there are many similarities to other books, not very original, but that's nothing I care about. In the end all books are similar to others so it's no big deal. But, you get sucked into this world and probably will forget about similarities and who copied who! The love triangle hint also bothered me, even though I would be happy with both choices... I just have an aversion to love triangles impossible to get rid of.

OVERALL: 4.5 stars. Snow Like Ashes is a very entertaining YA book and quite action packed! If you liked books such as Graceling, TOG, ACOTAR, etc then you will like this book. It has so much potential! Do you want to know the best thing? THE SECOND BOOK CAME OUT YESTERDAY SO NO MORE WAITING!!!


What did you guys think about SNOW LIKE ASHES?