Hi friends, happy Monday! I hope you’re all doing well. Today I’m posting my review of the second novel in the Flame in the Mist duology, Smoke in the Sun by: Renée Ahdieh.Read more: Review: Smoke in the Sun
You can read my review of book one: Flame in the Mist
Smoke in the Sun by: Renée Ahdieh: Mariko has experienced things she never thought she would, one of them being falling in love. When her love, Ōkami is captured and imprisoned, Mariko must do everything in her power to see he survives. This means she must set off on her original path to the palace to be married. Once she arrives, the royal court is not what it seems and secrets begin to unravel as true agendas come to light. Now, saving Ōkami could be a little more complicated than she had first thought as wrongs need to be righted and honour restored to the kingdom. This was a good concluding novel to this duology; all the plots wrapped up nicely and all the questions the reader had were answered. But before everything wrapped up, the plots took the reader on a rollercoaster of emotions. This started off slow like the first novel did, but as the story started to play out the reader got more invested. There was a lot happening, questions that started in the first novel, their answers started to unravel in a slow progression as deceit and evil brought out different sides to the characters. Even though plots took their time to set up, the pacing was still really quick; the reader found themselves flying through the book, wanting to know what would happen next because there were so many moving parts. Ahdieh balanced all the plots really well, sometimes the point of view switch was hard to follow but that didn’t stop the weaving of plots from working. It also helped that her writing was again, really beautiful and poetic that thread everything together. Just like in the first, these characters weren’t all good or bad, but a mixture of both. There were characters who wanted to do good, but doing bad was easier for them and so it left them torn but it left for really good character development and growth. Morally grey characters are some of the most interesting characters and Ahdieh did a great job of giving them qualities that left the reader questioning what their motives were. There were quite a few questionable moments, but that was the fun in reading to find out how everything was going to play out. The new players also added a layer of deception to the plot because the reader couldn’t truly figure them out until the end, but that’s also what made them really compelling. In the end, this duology was entertaining, it was full of great writing and characters who brought a lot of different perspectives to the story.