Monday, 14 September 2015

Review: Ice Like Fire by Sara Raasch

Title: Ice Like Fire (Snow Like Ashes #2)
Author: Sara Raasch

Release date: October 13th 2015
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Format: eARC
Pages: 320

Source: Edelweiss

It’s been three months since the Winterians were freed and Spring’s king, Angra, disappeared—thanks largely to the help of Cordell.

Meira just wants her people to be safe. When Cordellan debt forces the Winterians to dig their mines for payment, they unearth something powerful and possibly dangerous: Primoria’s lost chasm of magic. Theron sees this find as an opportunity—with this much magic, the world can finally stand against threats like Angra. But Meira fears the danger the chasm poses—the last time the world had access to so much magic, it spawned the Decay. So when the king of Cordell orders the two on a mission across the kingdoms of Primoria to discover the chasm’s secrets, Meira plans to use the trip to garner support to keep the chasm shut and Winter safe—even if it means clashing with Theron. But can she do so without endangering the people she loves?

Mather just wants to be free. The horrors inflicted on the Winterians hang fresh and raw in Januari—leaving Winter vulnerable to Cordell’s growing oppression. When Meira leaves to search for allies, he decides to take Winter’s security into his own hands. Can he rebuild his broken kingdom and protect them from new threats?

As the web of power and deception weaves tighter, Theron fights for magic, Mather fights for freedom—and Meira starts to wonder if she should be fighting not just for Winter, but for the world.

I'm glad to say that Ice Like Fire definitely lived up to my increasingly high expectations. It was just as good as Snow Like Ashes, though I still prefer the first book. There was so much that happened in this, and I loved that we got to see so many of the other kingdoms.

Now that Meira has taken up her responsibilities as Winter queen, she's realized that it's a lot harder than she thought. Building up an entire kingdom from ruins is no easy feat. But Meira is up for it, and she has the advice of the close friends she grew up with. Except for Mather, who's been avoiding her for months. Theron is by her side, though, and does his best to stand up against his father. But when the magic chasm is finally uncovered, Meira and Theron discover that they're on opposite sides, and Meira will do whatever it takes to stop Theron and the Cordellians from opening the chasm and giving power to everyone in Primoria.

This sequel is really long, much longer than I'm used to, and I'll give you a little warning - there's a lot of politics in it. I don't really like politics in YA (or in general either) so some parts dragged a little for me. There was less doing and more talking. But there are a lot of action-packed scenes that redeemed everything! Sara Raasch writes action like no other. I love how she sucks me into the book at the first hint of an action scene!

I liked Meira even more in this book, if that's possible. She has a completely different role now, but though she misses being a warrior, she knows she has to be a queen for her kingdom. She has to be diplomatic and get as many allies as possible, even if that means wearing extravagant gowns and travelling across Primoria to talk to other leaders. And giving up her beloved chakram.

In the beginning I didn't really like Mather or Theron. Mather acted like a little child, and he just wouldn't fight for Meira despite what he felt. Theron makes decisions regarding Winter without concerning Meira, and he does some other stuff I didn't like. Mather gets better as the book progresses, thank god. He gets some sense into himself, and then really starts fighting for Winter. Theron, unfortunately, I did not warm to at all. I loved him in the first book, so that was really disappointing for me. He has the potential to be a really lovable character.

We meet quite a few new people in this, some I loved and some I hated. It's really intriguing to see how the other leaders run their kingdoms, and how that reflects the kind of people they are. We're going to see more new places in the next book, and I can't wait!

*Thank you to HarperCollins for providing me with an eARC for review*

Rating: 4/5

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