13/02/2015

Review: Snow Like Ashes {Sara Raasch}


★★☆☆☆
Written by Sara Raasch
Amazon | Book Depository 

Sixteen years ago the Kingdom of Winter was conquered and its citizens enslaved, leaving them without magic or a monarch. Now, their only hope are the eight survivors who escaped and have been waiting for the opportunity to steal back Winter’s magic. Orphaned during Winter’s defeat, Meira has lived her whole life as a refugee, training to be a warrior. She would do anything to help her kingdom rise to power again. So when scouts discover the location of the ancient locket that can restore Winter’s magic, Meira decides to go after it. But she finds herself thrust into a world of dangerous politics and comes to realize that her destiny has never been her own.
 

This book promised a fearless heroine and a land of magic and evil (not to mention a gloriously pretty cover). Unfortunately, for a book that claims to be so much, it doesn't end up delivering.

The characters in this were bland. Everyone from our heroine Meira to the mighty Sir (the general who raised her), to both of the love interests. And yes, I said both. Because there's a semi love triangle here and it was just another insufferably boring aspect. 

Each of the men felt like cardboard cut-outs, mundane versions of characters I've read about before with dynamics I've grown tired of seeing like: the best friend she has always loved, who she thinks hasn't noticed her. Or the mysterious prince, who surprises her with his selflessness and chivalry. If I'm honest, I found myself skim-reading too much of this book to be invested in either of the potential romances.

The world-building had both good and bad points. It's a richly-crafted universe with warring kingdoms and mystical lockets that hold the key to magic. Really, it's a brilliant idea with limitless potential. But somehow the story got lost in the telling

Raasch didn't take the time to fully explore the world she had created and instead put too much focus on Meira and her desperation to do anything to prove she was worthy. I wanted more magic and riveting action, but instead I was forced to follow the journey of a character I just couldn't bring myself to care about. 

Snow Like Ashes was a decent enough debut, but it failed to keep my interest. Though the writing was solid, an amazing story got lost in fumbling characters and a rushed execution that left little mystery, resulting in a plot that I found hugely predictable. 

"Someday we will be more than words in the dark."

 

Allie has planned out a trio of marvellous desserts for Valentine's weekend. She'll be baking up a storm for love day! And that's not just a metaphor, because when she bakes, the kitchen ends up looking like it's been hit by a hurricane. But hey, the sugar makes the clean-up all worth while.
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49 comments:

  1. Oh, that's a shame. I hate reading books where I don't care about the characters - what's the point in continuing if you just aren't interested in what happens next? The cover is very beautiful though...
    Beth x
    www.thequietpeople.com

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    1. The cover is indeed GORGEOUS. It makes me sad I didn't like it more :(

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  2. I remeber having a few issues with this one too so i completely get where you're coming from but overall I was able to enjoy it more than you. I'm not a fan of bland characters and I specificialy remember finding Miera to be quite bland and "perfect" in many aspects. It erked me.
    Hopefully you're next read is more enjoyable Allie!

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    1. Yeah, Miera was definitely heading to Speshul Snowflake territory. Heading there and planning to be queen

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  3. Aw, it's too bad you didn't enjoy this one because I actually loved it. I felt like I could really connect with Meira, her struggle to be understood by those around her. I also loved the world building, and especially how Winter was good instead of evil. It's also too bad you found this predictable, because I totally didn't see that one plot twist coming up. Do you think you'll try the sequel?

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    1. So many people loved it! I'm literally the oddest one out in Odd Town. It's ridiculous.

      I won't be checking out the sequel, simply because there are so many books out there I'm dying to read. I'm too lazy to pick up a book 'just in case'

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  4. Sorry you couldn't get into this one. Hopefully your next read will be a better one.

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  5. Ermagerd this is BAD NEWS. I was so excited for this book. *wails and flails and collapses* Ah, well, it's on reserve for me at the library so at least I won't waste money if I don't like it, right?!

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    1. I THINK I'M THE ODD BUNNY OUT. Everyone seems to like it but I nearly fell asleep and I'm 99% positive that's a bad sign

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  6. Aw! It's sad that you didn't like this one. Hope your next read will be better.

    I actually really enjoyed this one. I found Miera really relatable but I think that if you don't like the characters, it's already automatically a three star rating at best [that's what i believe]. The love triangle I DEFINITELY agree on. It didn't feel right to me. In fact, I just wanted it over. The romance was kind of meh but I really enjoyed the story overall.

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    1. Yeah, the triangle was just an absolute waste. Why bother with even having it? It added NOTHING and was just tedious and cliché

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  7. Aw, I am really sorry you didn't like this one! I really liked Meira, but that kind of made or broke the book I think, because you spend a LOT of time in Meira's head. I don't mind that, especially since I liked her, but I can see it being a very long book if you weren't feeling her! Hope the next book goes better for you :)
    Shannon @ It Starts At Midnight

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    1. Yeah. I think the fact that Meira bored me just ruined the story because it was HER story and I just . . . didn't care about her LOL.

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  8. Crieeesssss BUT I completely get where you're coming from! THE WORLDBUILDING OH MY GOD. I was so confused and honestly, could have done with half the names that were told to me. I'm a simple gal hahahaha Lovely review, Allie! x

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    1. YES THERE WERE TOO MANY CHARACTERS AND PLACES. I was just like: okay, but only Snowflake Land is important now, so I'm going to ignore everything else so my brain can have a nap

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  9. I'm glad I'm not the only one that felt so meh about this novel. I did not care about Meira at all and it kind of ruined the story for me. I'm also not a fan of love triangles so I don't think I will continue this series.

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    1. You're definitely not the only one! And, dude, don't get me started on the triangle. WHY DID IT EXIST? It literally added nothing but angst to a story that was meant to be fantasy adventure

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  10. Oh I'm sorry you didn't like that one. That one has been on my TBR for a while. Sounds like it had some issues though.

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    1. It was on my TBR for ages too and I was so excited for it. Ultimately, though, it just wasn't my cup of tea :(

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  11. Lovely review, shame about the downsides ! Xx i just wanted to say that I am literally in love with your blog header, it's beautiful! Xoxo Check out my new blog post! I'm in need of some followers, thank you! X http://xbeyoutifulx.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. Oh thank you! It was designed by Hazel @ Stay Bookish – she's AMAZING

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  12. Hmmm... I've heard some mediocre reviews of this one. It looks like it should be good... but I guess its premise is better than the execution.

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    1. That's my thinking. I adored the idea . . . but the way it was told just didn't work for me!

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  13. Oh Noooooooo! I've only read positive reviews for this one, but if you ending up skimming so much of it it must have been quite stereotypical with the tropes. I like the sound of the world though.

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    1. The world is great, Jeann. It's just a shame the characters weren't. Plus YOU KNOW ME AND MY LOVE TRIANGLES -__- I don't know why they exist and I felt like that aspect was far too forced

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  14. Wow, I'm pretty sure this is the first negative review I've read for this book! Haha. I had been debating reading it because, although I'm not much of a fantasy fan, people said it was a good story for contemporary readers since the world-building was so believable. But this doesn't sound worth venturing into a less-than-favored genre. The cardboard cut-out characters sound the worst - I hate it when characters have no originality! Anyway, I'm sorry to hear you didn't love this book like most of the blogging community.

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    1. I AM FOREVER A BLACK SHEEP. Haha, seriously though. I was reading this like 'uhm . . . surely this isn't the same book everyone has been raving about?' It just felt so flat for me.

      I guess I'm just fussy ;)

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  15. Aw, what a shame. I havent read this one yet and I am not going to in a near future since I am not fan of love triangles or flat characters. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Allie!

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    1. Love triangles are the worst. And I find them to be an unnecessary plot device, because usually it leads to neither of the potential suitors being well-developed enough, because their page time is so split

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  16. Aw, I'm sorry this one didn't work for you! I haven't picked it up yet because I wanted to see if that pesky triangle goes away in book 2, but I'm gonna guess not. :/
    I never do well with books if I don't care about the characters, and add to that a boring story.... yeah, that's not gonna work. Hopefully your next read is better, love!

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    1. Yeah, I'm not going to pick up book 2 to find out. I mean, don't get me wrong. I'm not saying this was an awful book. It wasn't. I just could not get into it for some reason and the two male characters vying for the MC's attention didn't help matters :(

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  17. Eww, cardboard cut-outs? I'm not sure I like the prospect of that. Hope your next read will be better, Allie! :)

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    1. I'm reading Fairest right now and it is FOR SURE better! I love Marissa Meyer's characters SO MUCH. Even her villains are amazingly well-developed

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  18. Oh no! I've been wanting to read this for a while now, but it sounds so poorly executed and not the read I was hoping it would be. It almost sounds as though the storyline was just too busy and didn't leave room for proper world building and character development. If it can't engage the reader, I can imagine you would have felt as though you wasted your time reading this one. Lovely review Allie, going to move this one to the backburner until I have nothing better to read. Unfortunately already bought a copy a few months ago. Hopefully your next read is much more engaging <3

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    1. It was actually the opposite . . . the world wasn't busy enough! There was so much potential, but it all got a little neglected in favour of Miera's potential love life

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  19. Aw, sorry to hear that you didn't enjoy like you'd hoped. I did but overlooked cliches

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    1. Glad you liked it – so many people adore it, I'm the odd one out LOL

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  20. I'm sorry that you weren't able to enjoy this one more Allie, I loved the whole world that Raasch had created and wished that had been explored more, and I did have a few issues with how things went down towards the second half, felt some of it was unnecessary. And for some reason I thought this book was a standalone, not full convinced about picking up the second book :( Thank you for your honest review!

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    1. Yeah, I don't think I'll pick up the second book either. I just worry how much focus will be on the romance. Though I did love how bad-ass Meira's ending was, I doubt the second book will go in the direction I want it to.

      WE CAN BE ODD ONES OUT TOGETHER <333

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  21. I'm almost the same! I couldn't bring myself to care about most things in the story. I liked the writing and even though I didn't care that much I liked the main characters. But I was not a big fan of the execution. And the characters felt very unreal even if they were likeable.
    Great Review!

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    1. Yeah, the characters just felt a little bland in comparison to the world. I felt like not enough time had been taken to craft them properly

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  22. How sad! I really loved this book. Did you get surprised by the twist? I kinda was, but I can relate that the characters were a bit bland but it was only for the beginning, I kinda got used to it so I was able to adjust well. :) I'm so sorry you disliked it :( Hope you try the sequel.

    www.lite-rate-ture.com

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    1. I saw that coming to be honest, and a part of me was a little disappointed. I hoped they wouldn't go that route, because it kind of sent the MC into speshul snowflake territory and I just wish she could have been bad-ass without having a whole 'destiny' planned out for her

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  23. YES. I'm sorry you didn't like this one more but I'm glad someone else feels the same, I felt like a total black sheep in a sea of four and five star reviews. Bland and boring is exactly how I would describe it as well, which is deceiving because the cover reminds me of an epic fantasy. Another one of my peeves was how convenient everything was and how stuff always worked out perfectly for the main character. Nice review!

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  24. Noooooo! Oh dear, I am so sad to hear that you didn't enjoy this one. I've been seeing so many glowing reviews, my expectations were getting pretty high. I am so pleased I found your review before starting to read it, at least you will have me lowering my expectations quite a bit before I start it. Hopefully lower expectations will mean I end up enjoying it a little more, but who knows. I hate when books with stunning covers disappoint, and they often do.

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  25. Oh dang that is really too bad..I had started this one and set it aside for other review books I don't know if I'll go back to it now.

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  26. Yikesss, I've read so many positive reviews about this one - the premise and cover are so catchy though but thank you for the honest review x Hopefully you run into a five star book soon :) Benish| Feminist Reflections

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  27. I really loved the cover and premise of this novel, I read it and never really finished it.. It was just boring and fell flat for me you know? Like you, I skimmed a lot too, love the honest review x <3 Benish | Feminist Reflections

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