An Ember in the AshesBook - 2015
INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTELLER
"This novel is a harrowing, haunting reminder of what it means to be human--and how hope might be kindled in the midst of oppression and fear." -- The Washington Post
" An Ember in the Ashes could launch Sabaa Tahir into JK Rowling territory...It has the addictive quality of The Hunger Games combined with the fantasy of Harry Potter and the brutality of Game of Thrones ." -- Public Radio International
"An Ember in the Ashes glows, burns, and smolders--as beautiful and radiant as it is searing."-- Huffington Post
"A worthy novel--and one as brave as its characters." -- The New York Times Book Review
A "deft, polished debut" ( Publishers Weekly , starred review), Sabaa Tahir's AN EMBER IN THE ASHES is a thought-provoking, heart-wrenching, and pulse-pounding read. Set in a rich, high-fantasy world with echoes of ancient Rome, it tells the story of a slave fighting for her family and a young soldier fighting for his freedom.
Laia is a slave.Elias is a soldier.Neither is free.
Under the Martial Empire, defiance is met with death. Those who do not vow their blood and bodies to the Emperor risk the execution of their loved ones and the destruction of all they hold dear.
It is in this brutal world that Laia lives with her grandparents and older brother. The family ekes out an existence in the Empire's impoverished backstreets. They do not challenge the Empire. They've seen what happens to those who do.
But 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.
From the critics
Age SuitabilityAdd Age Suitability
sarahbru17 thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over
green_alligator_2498 thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over
QuotesAdd a Quote
There will be so much more in between. So much uncertainty. I don't know if we'll survive the catacombs, let alone the rest of it.
But it doesn't matter. For now, these steps are enough. These first few precious steps into darkness. Into the unknown.
Fear can be good, Laia. It can keep you alive. But don't let it control you. Don't let it sow doubts within you. When the fear takes over, use the only thing more powerful, more indestructible, to fight it: your spirit. Your heart.
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.
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.
SummaryAdd a Summary
A young girl has her brother taken from her and she is willing to do anything to get him back. She joins the rebellion in hopes that they will help her. She is sent to be the slave of a cruel master. She struggles to survive and pass on the information to the rebels. Will she save her brother in time?
In a world inspired by ancient Rome, Laia is a Scholar, a member of a conquered people who were once the greatest minds on earth. Laia ekes out a living making jams with her grandmother, while her brother and grandfather provide health care to the needy. Until one night when her brother is accused of spying on the Martial Empire for a rebel group. Laia’s grandparents are murdered in front of her face and her brother is thrown in prison. Laia only escapes this fate buy running away. Ashamed of how she has behaved she tries to barter with the rebel group for her brother’s freedom. But they ask for a price that could mean her life, spying on the greatest military academy in the kingdom.
Meanwhile Elias is about to graduate from that same military academy. Most of his classmates are elated to have survived (not everyone does) and are eagerly anticipating the freedom that military service seems to be in comparison to the strict rules of the school. Elias, however, is looking for a truer and longer lasting freedom. He plans to escape the school, and military service on the night of the graduation ceremony. Until he is selected as a candidate to be the next emperor. Now he has to compete in a series of games, against his friends, that will determine the next emperor, and cost the losers their lives.