Mayor’s Book Review: A Torch Against the Night (An Ember in the Ashes)

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Available: August 2016

Genre: YA Fantasy, Dystopian

Recommended Age: 14+

Quick Take:

The much anticipated sequel to An Ember in the Ashes delivers the same thrilling adventure and romance in a thought provoking dystopian setting. If you love YA fantasy, read this book!!


This book picks up where the first one left off. Elias and Laia are working together to break into Kauf to save Darin, Laia’s brother.  There’s quick paced action and fantastic chase scenes along with an unfolding story about the Martial Empire and the origins of this dystopian world.  Readers are rewarded with more backstory about Elias’ family, Helene, and Keenan that draw us deeper into this creepy and mysterious world.

My Favorite Part: 

Ms. Tahir has created a new world with complex characters that show courage and love as they struggle with commitments to family vs. country vs. self.  There’s a common theme that we often see in dystopian novels of good vs. evil. But, none of these characters are purely good or purely evil so it’s not always clear who to root for in this story. I loved watching for clues to see which characters might be working for the “good side” or secretly working against the good guys. The twists and turns of the plot and strong character development kept me turning the pages very quickly.


Who Should Read This Book:  

I highly recommend this book to mature YA readers.  It is fast paced with lots of action, fighting, plot twists and intermingled love triangles.  Read the first in the series before you read this one.  There is rape, consensual sex, and violence so it’s not for middle grade or young YA readers.

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