I'm thrilled to be taking part in the blog tour for "Ashes and Blood" by Katie Zaber.
“I’ll start at the beginning. Long ago, before roads, before we built structures, before medicine
was discovered, before the government was created, before man gained any knowledge, there
were The Five. Independent from each other, The Five had a mutual respect for one another.
They knew their roles in the world and their duty. They were gods…”
An adventure begins when an otherworldly tree captures the attention of Megan and her friends.
The environment morphs around them, transferring them to an exotic planet. Stuck in a rural
town still maimed by the plague, a chance encounter with a familiar face gives Megan and her
friends some security during their adjustment period.
While settling into new, promising lives, they are attacked and stalked by planet Dalya’s
humanoid inhabitants, who focus on Megan. One dark night, after an epic, magical attack, the
Fae King’s knight is sent to fetch Megan. When she wakes up a prisoner, she learns that there
is much more to this strange world, and it is oddly more like her own than she ever would have
It gives me chills to stand in front of the forest that morphed in front of my very eyes. I’m hesitant
to walk through the tree line and down the path. The last time I walked down a path for leisure
was a week ago. We had planned a picnic. Something simple, always easy to organize and do.
It wasn’t hard planning our walk to Brynjar’s cabin today. What could go wrong?
I try hard not to think of all the possible outcomes—from returning to Earth to traveling to a
completely new world.
Sarah and Dana were able to walk by without stopping to take notice or reflect. Ciara paused for
a moment and then smiled gleefully, saying she had a good feeling.
I don’t. I feel dizzy, angry, and like I need to vomit. I don’t want to do this. I don’t want to go into
the woods that changed my life, I don’t want to meet Brynjar, and I don’t want to go back where
it all started.
Where to start? Where to begin where I won't be giving away any surprises?
I don't usually read books for this age anymore, but the blurb intrigued me enough to entice me in. After a while of it sitting in my Kindle, I started to read...and read...and read. In the end, I read the book in one weekend. Deciding how many stars I give a book is not easy and, in the end, it usually comes down to two things.
1) How many times I've looked at the percentage bar at the bottom of my kindle to see how far through I am.
2) How long it takes me to read the book.
I find those two markers to be pretty good indicates of how well I enjoyed it.
I really liked how the parallel world was portrayed - it was clearly magical, but not so different from our world. They had towns, they had nightclubs - that was a lot there that readers could identify with. The worldbuilding, for me, was one of the highlights of the novel.
Anyone who knows me will know I also love a good twist, and this book did not disappoint. I had got an inkling of the twist before the great reveal, but that in itself is a skill of an author: to make the reader feel good about themselves that they managed to crack the code! I don't want to go into too much detail about this, as I don't want to deprive other readers of a little detective work, but... I will go so far as to say I loved the bodyguard character. I thought he was really well portrayed - very 3D, and you were never quite sure which way he was going to turn.
The main character went on a clear journey from start to end. In the first half of the book, I admit I didn't like her. I found she was behaving like a spoilt, self-pitying waste-of-space (I'm very harsh about characters!). However, in the second half of the book, I could see the change happening and I admit that, by the end, I had even begun to like her a little bit.
For me, the book spent a very long time on characterisation. I did like the main character's arc, but I could have done with a little less of the angst and cattiness, and a bit more plot. I got my wish in the second half of the book, and found myself glued to the pages.
So...I think this book is well-deserving of the 4 stars. I would recommend this fantasy book for anyone who'd like a bit of adult escapism...and let's be honest, now's a good time for it!
Meet the Author
Katie Zaber writes new adult fiction. With multiple projects spanning from being transported to
an alternate universe, to past lives, reincarnation, and trapped souls, to prophesied
pregnancies—there are more stories to tell. She lives in North New Jersey with her boyfriend.
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Dalya-Series-110665970357251
You lucky readers are in with a chance of winning a $25 Amazon/BN Gift Code. Take a look at the giveaway information for the author here: