An Ember in the Ashes, Book 1

Book review by Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media
An Ember in the Ashes, Book 1 Poster Image

Common Sense says

age 14+

Gripping romantic fantasy in an alternative universe.

Parents say

age 14+

Based on 7 reviews

Kids say

age 13+

Based on 21 reviews

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A Lot or a Little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Community Reviews

age 16+

for those looking for a dark, compelling fantasy story

sabaa tahir reignited my love for reading with her beautiful storytelling skillss. ember in the ashes (the entire series, at that) is a dark and gruesome story that doesn't shy away from the gruesome and horrible oppression and misdeeds of the martial empire. in a transitional period for the nation, where a new emperor must be chosen, laia and elias become unlikely allies. the world is complex and rich, a mix of war and magic and the mystic. the story, however, isn't for the faint of heart. action is violent and there are mentions and sometimes depictions of abuse, slavery, sexism, and sex assault. for those who can stomach this, this is sure to become a favorite.

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models
Too much violence
1 person found this helpful.
age 13+

Know your kid

I read the book to see if it was okay to include in my classroom library (sixth-eighth grade). The book connects well other dystopian novels like the Hunger Games and Divergent. If your child likes these books, then he or she will be fine. I really enjoyed the book. There are several mentions of rape and the boys at the military school speak about visiting brothels several times, but it's never depicted. Also, there are several mentions of rape and one character is viciously attacked in an attempted rape. The relationship between the girls and boys hints at a sexual relationship, but it's not depicted. The adventure is worth it! I wouldn't have a problem giving it to my mature 8th graders, but I wouldn't give it to 6th or 7th graders. The swearing is not extreme.

This title has:

Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
1 person found this helpful.

Book Details

  • Author: Sabaa Tahir
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Topics: Magic and Fantasy, Adventures, Friendship
  • Book type: Fiction
  • Publisher: Razorbill
  • Publication date: April 28, 2015
  • Publisher's recommended age(s): 14 - 18
  • Number of pages: 464
  • Available on: Paperback, Nook, Audiobook (unabridged), Hardback, iBooks, Kindle
  • Last updated: June 19, 2019

Our Editors Recommend

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