An Ember in the Ashes

An Ember in the Ashes - Sabaa Tahir “Life is made of so many moments that mean nothing. Then one day, a single moment comes along to define every second that comes after. Such moments are tests of courage, of strength.”

Laia is a slave.

Elias is a soldier.

Neither is free.

A world inspired by ancient Rome, brutal and harsh. Two different characters struggling with their reality, one ready to escape and the other stuck in a nightmare. A compelling story, dual POV and a complex plot. It took me a while to come in terms with the fact that this amazing story is written by a debut author. All characters are extremely well developed and the smallest actions speak volumes through the story.

“You are full, Laia. Full of life and dark and strength and spirit. You are in our dreams. You will burn, for you are an ember in the ashes.”

We follow the path of two main characters; Laia and Elias.

When Laia’s brother is arrested for treason, Laia is forced to make a decision. In exchange for help from rebels who promise to rescue her brother, she will risk her life to spy for them from within the Empire’s greatest military academy.

There, Laia meets Elias, the school’s finest soldier—and secretly, its most unwilling. Elias wants only to be free of the tyranny he’s being trained to enforce. He and Laia will soon realize that their destinies are intertwined—and that their choices will change the fate of the Empire itself.


This story is so engrossing I must say Sabaa Tahir is a master storyteller. I can only imagine what she's going to do in the sequel of this series. All the blood, loss and complicated affairs have left me wanting for reunions and battles and whatever Sabba decides to throw at us.

“There are two kinds of guilt. The kind that's a burden and the kind that gives you purpose. Let your guilt be your fuel. Let it remind you of who you want to be. Draw a line in your mind. Never cross it again. You have a soul. It's damaged but it's there. Don't let them take it from you.”


“The sword point is my priest. The dance of death is my prayer. The killing blow is my release.”

4 Stars