Happy Tuesday everyone! Sorry I didn’t post again last week, buuut I’m back! All of my classes have been super busy with literally every assignment being due last week, so I’ve been spending time on that. Now that it’s over, I’ve finally got some time to read, which means that I have a brand new book review for all of you!
I have seen From Blood and Ash EVERYWHERE on Instagram. I’m not even joking, I swear every fifth picture I come across features this one. And whenever people talk about their most anticipated releases of this year, The Crown of Gilded Bones is always on it. So, I was like, “hey, the synopsis doesn’t sound all too interesting, and paranormal isn’t normally my thing, but why not read it??” That was actually the conversation inside of my head, but I’m glad I went against all of my rationale and gave it a try! It is totally worth all of hype it has been getting, and it is definitely my favorite read of the year so far.
So, let’s get started on all of my thoughts!
In this book, we meet Poppy, who is forced to live a strict, solitary life, waiting to be given up to the gods, as a “Maiden.” She was a perfect strong, female lead to this story, and I loved watching her grow throughout the book. Although her actions could be rash at times, I loved how forceful she was about doing things her way and defying the rules set out for her. At the same time, she remains empathetic in a world that doesn’t want her to be that that way. She is one of the very few people who can take away others’ pain and suffering, which she does continuously through the book, even at her own risk of being discovered for what she is truly capable of.
We also have our favorite royal guard, Hawke, who is such a lovable character. He is a charming, cold, considerate, swoon-worthy killer, which are words that probably shouldn’t be used in the same sentence. He definitely gives me “Rhysand” vibes from A Court of Thorns and Roses, and I love him for that. It was especially interesting to see little pieces of him reveal themselves throughout the story, to see who he was underneath his tough exterior. He also has such an intriguing complexity that makes you want to root for him
even when you probably shouldn’t.
And their ROMANCE! This book had the absolute perfect forbidden enemies-to-lovers romance that made the whole story. There was so much sexual tension between the two, further accelerated by the forbidden-ness, which all made their dynamic so compelling. You can sense it right from their very first meeting, and I really loved the way it carries through the story. They’re each incredibly complementary characters. There is also a minor enemies-to-lovers aspect to it, which I thought was a great addition. It’s one of my absolute tropes (for a reason!!), and it just works really well with the already heightened tension. Plus, combined with the most entertaining witty banter, it makes for an even more entertaining read. I mean, just their conversations alone are enough for me to keep reading.
I also loved that romance wasn’t all too centric to the story. I sometimes find that the plot falls flat to the characters, but I thought that the story and worldbuilding supported them well. I found the actual concept of the story to be interesting and well-developed, with the slowly uncovered lore being one of my favorite parts. The book is on the slower side in the beginning, which lowered my rating, and it did get boring for a bit because of how long it took to explain everything. There are so many different types of creatures and structures of society in this that are very different from our own, that it just takes a long time to get it! It honestly took me the entire book to fully understand everything, but I am glad for it. The complexity of everything, including all of the ancient history, pushed the story forward, and made it truly unique.
There’s also a couple of big plot twists towards the end of the story which I loved! I know that a bunch of people “saw it coming,” but I am the most oblivious person when it comes to these things (I swear it was embarrassing to see how many people found it to be incredibly predictable) so I personally found it to be incredibly surprising. It twisted the story in a way that I hadn’t suspected, and definitely introduced new topics and themes that would be explained towards the end of the book and throughout the following book (which I actually just finished two days after reading From Blood and Ash)!
I also enjoyed the comparisons between Poppy’s society and religion. There are discussions that force Poppy to confront the lies embedded in her entire life, which were interesting to read about. There is secrecy and deception that veils what is truly going on, and it was interesting to discover the reasonings behind various events earlier in the story, that hadn’t been apparent (to me, at least) before.
I did feel like that cliffhanger at the end was put there for the sake of having a cliffhanger. Especially that last sentence. I’ve seen it in the second book too, and there just isn’t enough buildup to it! It might be because I wasn’t reading closely enough, but it was just so random, and it even took me a while to understand why it was going on in the second book. It did do it’s job though, since I bought the e-book off of Amazon ten minutes afterwards, but I just wish it made more sense.
Anyways, that’s my review! Sorry it was a little bit on the shorter side, it’s usually hard for me to find enough to talk about to make it longer haha. I hope you all enjoyed it, and I’d highly recommend this book, especially if you were a fan of ACOTAR! It is definitely my favorite read of 2021 so far, and I think it’s totally worth the hype.
On an unrelated note, we just got snow here, and it’s so exciting! We got over a foot of it, which is a crazy amount, and it’s super pretty to see all the trees covered in it. It’s our first big snowfall of the winter season, and I’m happy we got some at all this year (if you ignore the shoveling that comes with it)! Anyways, I hope you have a great Tuesday wherever you are! 🙂