Title: Ash Princess
Author: Laura Sebastian
Series: Book 1
Genre: Epic Fantasy
Page Count: 435
Publisher: Delacourt Press, Penguin Random House
Type of Book: Library loan, Hardback, New Release, Highly Anticipated Read
Rated: 5/5 stars
It’s not often that I have books that truly live up to my expectations, but Ash Princess was an epic four and a half hour story that drew me in and didn’t release me for air until the very end. I felt rage for the Ash Princess, loneliness, and yes, I even cried once towards the end-which rarely happens in books. I can count on both hands how many books have made me cry, and this book has now been added to that list. Be fair warned, this has a fair bit of graphic violence, whipping, slavery, and detailed death scenes mentioned throughout this book. It is not for the faint of heart.
Ash Princess was an anticipated read way back when I first created my Anticipated Reads page. I saw it on Amazon, when it was saying that you could pre-order the book. Low and behold, it arrived at my library unexpectedly last week, so I snatched it up planning to read it for the Memorial Day holiday that I had going on at my families house.
It was an excellent choice.
Ash Princess is filled with rebellion, slaughter, broken promises. It’s filled with princesses, kings who deserve to die horrific deaths for all they’ve done, a kingdom in ruins. It’s got all the good things that a fantasy fan, especially those who love graphic violence, would love in an epic fantasy. It’s got maps at the front of the book; there is definitely some epic world-building within as well.
Now on to the book.
“The last person who called me by my true name was my mother, with her dying breath.”
It’s the first line of the book, and it drew me in utterly and completely. I watched as Theodosia watched her mother be murdered before her eyes, her kingdom fall, and herself become prisoner to the Kraiser, a cruel man that rules his kingdom through fear and fear alone.
Fast forward a few years later, when she’s closer to being an adult, and she’s starting a rebellion, plotting her escape, and planning on freeing her people from the tyrannical monster that constantly hurts and abuses her and those she cares for.
The ending was one that I didn’t see coming. Theodosia is renamed “Thora” by the Kraiser, and his people call her by that name, as well as crowning her ‘Ash Princess’, but it’s a fake name with a fake individual. She hides herself away, and slowly…ever so slowly…the people come to her from out of the shadows, and help her back to her throne, so that she may free her people from the mines where citizens go mad from the gems and their powers.
It’s a plot that’s well constructed, characters that are so lifelike you feel as if you’re standing there with them. I loved every moment of this book, and definitely plan on buying it ASAP, because it’s worth getting it so that I can have it to read it again in the future. The twist at the end with what happened to Cress was also awesome. And for those of you doing the Scallywagathon, this also has sirens mentioned within. Granted, they’re a very tiny part of the story, but there you are. It does have pirates, however, though they come in more towards the end of the book than the start of it.
This book was awesome, and I applaud the author for a fabulous job well done!
I look forward to book two “Lady Smoke” which comes out in the Spring of 2019. I cannot wait until it does, and will of course be checking with Netgalley, Edelweiss, and Penguin Random House for an ARC of it, if I’m lucky enough to get my hands on such a copy.
In the meantime, you need to read this book and read it now. It’s definitely worth it! After all, if I give 5/5 stars, it can’t be all that bad, can it? Especially when the back of the book has four words that I know will perk your interest: Princess. Prisoner. Orphan. Rebel
In a land without a Queen, it’s time for a Princess to Rise.
Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book