Memories of Ash by Intisar Khanani Blog Tour
Welcome to my stop along the Blog Tour! If you would like to check out the rest of the tour just click on the banner above. Make sure to enter the AMAZING Giveaway at the end of this post for your chance to win a Kindle Fire and a swag bundle!
Title: Memories of Ash
Series: The Sunbolt Chronicles, Book Two
Author: Intisar Khanani
Cover Designer: Jenny Zemanek
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Release Date: May 30, 2016
Publisher: Purple Monkey Press
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In the year since she cast her sunbolt, Hitomi has recovered only a handful of memories. But the truths of the past have a tendency to come calling, and an isolated mountain fastness can offer only so much shelter. When the High Council of Mages summons Brigit Stormwind to stand trial for treason, Hitomi knows her mentor won’t return—not with Arch Mage Blackflame behind the charges.
Armed only with her magic and her wits, Hitomi vows to free her mentor from unjust imprisonment. She must traverse spell-cursed lands and barren deserts, facing powerful ancient enchantments and navigating bitter enmities, as she races to reach the High Council. There, she reunites with old friends, planning a rescue equal parts magic and trickery.
If she succeeds, Hitomi will be hunted the rest of her life. If she fails, she’ll face the ultimate punishment: enslavement to the High Council, her magic slowly drained until she dies.
Before me the water lies smooth, no ripple disturbing its crystalline surface. Upon that polished expanse gleams the spell-cast image of my mother. Dressed in a pale pink kimono embroidered in shades of rose, she kneels before a tea tray, hands on her lap and face raised toward me. I have her eyes, though my skin has the desert tint of my father’s people. Her lips, neither too full nor too thin, grace her face in harmony with the gentle roundness of her cheeks, while my own features remain hollowed by the fire that once consumed me from the inside out. By her very stillness I know she has detected some trace of my spell, the ties of blood and kinship that I have used to seek her out through the shields that surround her.
“Let it go, Hitomi,” Stormwind says gently.
I release the tenuous thread of my casting with unexpected relief. I have attempted this spell half a dozen times now, but not once have I taken it to completion. I could have done it today had I not paused to observe her. The bitterness on my tongue has the singular taste of cowardice to it.
My mother’s image breaks apart, replaced by the faint reflection of trees overhead. I watch the water’s movement over the multi-hued stones covering the lake bottom. In the early morning light, they’re every color of the earth: the burnished yellow of evening sunlight, a dreamlike lavender, grays dark as storm clouds and light as hope, reds both as bright as blood and as dark as death. The colors of life lie beneath the water, calling to me as if I might reach out and recover the memories I lost in ash nearly a year ago.
This book was outstanding and deserves a standing ovation! I can’t stop thinking about how fantastic and fun this was. The first book in the series was interesting and creative, but this one blew the first book out of the water! This book picks up basically right where the first book leaves off and it’s non-stop action and adventure from the first page to the last. It was so much fun to read.
Just when you think it can’t get any better, it does. New characters, and more mythical creatures are introduced in this story. The magic is whimsical and imaginative. The plot line thickens and the characters become even more fleshed out.
Hitomi is a wonderful heroine. She is caring and puts others first. I really fell in love with her in this book and she is EASILY becoming one of my favorite YA female characters. The world building in this book is spectacular. I can see everything in my mind perfectly. The story flows perfectly. It was fast-paced and kept me reading and on the edge of my seat. I did not want to put this book down for anything. I enjoyed every moment of it.
This is a story that can easily be enjoyed by everyone. It was written in a tasteful manner without needless profanity. It was well thought out. This is one of those books where you will savor every moment and will want to read all over again. There’s no sappy romance in this story and you will not miss it one bit! This book was so perfect it doesn’t even need the romance. This is one of those book that will make a non-reader become a reader. This type of book makes you forget about watching television. You don’t need to watch a show or movie when you can read a book like this and see everything come alive in your mind.
When it comes to reading books in a series I can usually wait patiently for the next book to come out. I’m not one to go all crazy in waiting. That is so not going to be the case this time. I DO NOT want to wait for the next book in this series, I need it now! I will be highly anticipating and impatiently waiting to get my hands on the third book.
First Book in the Series
The winding streets and narrow alleys of Karolene hide many secrets, and Hitomi is one of them. Orphaned at a young age, Hitomi has learned to hide her magical aptitude and who her parents really were. Most of all, she must conceal her role in the Shadow League, an underground movement working to undermine the powerful and corrupt Arch Mage Wilhelm Blackflame.
When the League gets word that Blackflame intends to detain—and execute—a leading political family, Hitomi volunteers to help the family escape. But there are more secrets at play than Hitomi’s, and much worse fates than execution. When Hitomi finds herself captured along with her charges, it will take everything she can summon to escape with her life.
I’m going to keep this review short and sweet, just like this book!
This was a great introduction to a series! A truly unique story unlike any other book I have ever read. I loved that it was clean and didn’t have unnecessary foul language. This book was proof that a story can still be enjoyable without all of that. While I do enjoy a romance book from time to time I was thrilled that there wasn’t a sappy romance thrown into this novel. I think it would have taken away from the book. This story was fantastic without it.
The characters in this book were colorful and full of surprises. There are a bunch of mythical creatures as well. Some you will recognize and some new ones as well. The story line was creative and interesting and kept my attention the whole way through. It was action-packed fantasy full of magic and mayhem. The descriptive writing was vivid, the world-building was excellent!
Though this book was under 200 pages, it never felt that way at all. There was so much going on that it felt so much longer than it was. So if you are planning on passing on this novel because of it’s lack of pages and thinking it won’t be worth the money, I promise you it’s worth it! It reads like a full length novel. Also, it will just get you more excited for the second book in the series because you will get double the pages!
About the Author:
Intisar Khanani grew up a nomad and world traveler. Born in Wisconsin, she has lived in five different states as well as in Jeddah on the coast of the Red Sea. She first remembers seeing snow on a wintry street in Zurich, Switzerland, and vaguely recollects having breakfast with the orangutans at the Singapore Zoo when she was five. She currently resides in Cincinnati, Ohio, with her husband and two young daughters.
Until recently, Intisar wrote grants and developed projects to address community health with the Cincinnati Health Department, which was as close as she could get to saving the world. Now she focuses her time on her two passions: raising her family and writing fantasy. Intisar’s current projects include a companion trilogy to Thorn, following the heroine introduced in her free short story The Bone Knife, and The Sunbolt Chronicles, an epic series following a street thief with a propensity to play hero when people need saving, and her nemesis, a dark mage intent on taking over the Eleven Kingdoms.
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