Snow Like Ashes by Sara Raasch
Published by: HarperCollins
Genre(s): YA, Fantasy
Buy it: Amazon
“Someday we will be more than words in the dark.”
Wow, I loved this book! Solid, solid read.
Snow Like Ashes is about a world called Primoria, which is split into 8 different kingdoms. There are 4 kingdoms of eternal season (Winter, Spring, Summer and Autumn), and 4 kingdoms that cycle between the 4 seasons (just like normal, in our world). Each of these 8 kingdoms has 1 royal conduit which is basically a magical object that can be used by either the King of Queen of said kingdom to help aid their people and their people only. The catch is that each conduit is either male-blooded or female-blooded, meaning that depending on the conduit, it can be used by only a female or male. So, if your kingdom’s heir is a male and your conduit is female-blooded, you have a problem.
When Snow Like Ashes begins, it’s been 16 years since Spring destroyed Winter’s female-blooded conduit. One half of it is constantly moving around so the Winterians have no idea where it could end up next, and the other half is hidden. Our main character, Meira, is one of the few Winterians who survived/escaped when Spring attacked. She and the other refugees are on the hunt for the 2 halves of the conduit. Unfortunately, Winter’s heir is a male (King Mather) so finding the conduit ultimately wouldn’t do them any good since it is female-blooded (meaning it can only be used by a female) so that creates another problem all on it’s own.
I really love this world. The idea of having a world based off of the four seasons is so interesting and unique (the only other world I can think of that’s somewhat similar is Game of Thrones). I felt like the world-building was done so well, considering how complex it is. She told us just enough information to keep us wanting more, but not so little that it was confusing.
I loved learning about the different characteristics of each Kingdom. For example, the Winterians have icy blue eyes, white hair, and are super pale. The Autumnians have dark skin, dark hair and dark eyes. And the people of Spring have blonde hair and green eyes. It makes sense.
There is a slight love triangle, although it doesn’t take up much of the plot at all. I know a lot of people hate love triangles, so this might be an issue for them, but I personally don’t mind them. I think it keeps things interesting. And with this specific love triangle, both of the love interests are extremely likable (although I do have a preference between the two). 🙂
The only problem I had with this book (and the reason I docked 1/2 a star) was that it was super predictable. I saw the “plot twists” coming from a mile away.
If you haven’t read this book yet and you’re looking for a YA fantasy that’s full of adventure and a rich, unique world, then I would highly recommend picking this up! I am definitely looking forward to Ice Like Fire, the sequel, which comes out later this year!