Set in a rich, high-fantasy world inspired by ancient Rome, Sabaa Tahir's AN EMBER IN THE ASHES told the story of Laia, a slave fighting for her family, and Elias, a young soldier fighting for his freedom.
Now, in A TORCH AGAINST THE NIGHT, Elias and Laia are running for their lives.
After the events of the Fourth Trial, Martial soldiers hunt the two fugitives as they flee the city of Serra and undertake a perilous journey through the heart of the Empire.
Laia is determined to break into Kauf the Empire s most secure and dangerous prison to save her brother, who is the key to the Scholars' survival. And Elias is determined to help Laia succeed, even if it means giving up his last chance at freedom.
But dark forces, human and otherworldly, work against Laia and Elias. The pair must fight every step of the way to outsmart their enemies: the bloodthirsty Emperor Marcus, the merciless Commandant, the sadistic Warden of Kauf, and, most heartbreaking of all, Helene Elias s former friend and the Empire s newest Blood Shrike.
Bound to Marcus's will, Helene faces a torturous mission of her own one that might destroy her: find the traitor Elias Veturius and the Scholar slave who helped him escape...and kill them both."
This book starts off right where we were left last book. So if it has been a while since you read book one it might be helpful to read a recap or something like that, because it throws you right back into it.
In this book we’re also getting Helene’s POV and I really liked that. She was a important character from book and now we get to know her better and see her thought which I really liked.
I wasn’t sure about her in the first book, but now I really do like her and feel for her. I think out of all of them she had the toughest journey. Laia….. umm I’m torn when it comes to her. Sometimes I can’t stand her and other times I feel bad for her. She definitely grows in this book but still sometimes it feels she is not sure of anything or herself. Sometimes she is like she doesn’t know anything and unsure and other times she almost seems overconfident. I think that was part of me not really likening her at times.
Elias, I liked him and he also had a rough time in this book, but I think he handled it pretty good…… for the most part. I’m super curious to see what will become of him.
I thought the beginning of this book was a bit slow but oh boy did it pick up, the last half of this book I read though in one sitting because I didn’t want to put it down. This book also gave me emotional whiplash for sure. There are so many twist that will make your head spin. It’s filled with action, betrayal, shocking discoveries , heartbreak. The last few chapters were brutal not just the onslaught but also emotionally.
I honestly have to say though sometimes I had a Game of Thrones flashback in some scenes.
Yes, there is romance but I don’t think it takes the foreground all that much. In some parts it is important but others not at all.
Overall I enjoyed this book a lot. I rate it 4.5 ★