‘Flame in the Mist’ by Renee Ahdieh.
Publisher: Hodder and Stoughton.
Published: May 16 2017
Page Count: 368 Pages.
Genre: YA, Fantasy.
The daughter of a prominent samurai, Mariko has long known her place—she may be an accomplished alchemist, whose cunning rivals that of her brother Kenshin, but because she is not a boy, her future has always been out of her hands. At just seventeen years old, Mariko is promised to Minamoto Raiden, the son of the emperor’s favorite consort—a political marriage that will elevate her family’s standing. But en route to the imperial city of Inako, Mariko narrowly escapes a bloody ambush by a dangerous gang of bandits known as the Black Clan, who she learns has been hired to kill her before she reaches the palace.
Dressed as a peasant boy, Mariko sets out to infiltrate the ranks of the Black Clan, determined to track down the person responsible for the target on her back. But she’s quickly captured and taken to the Black Clan’s secret hideout, where she meets their leader, the rebel ronin Takeda Ranmaru, and his second-in-command, his best friend Okami. Still believing her to be a boy, Ranmaru and Okami eventually warm to Mariko, impressed by her intellect and ingenuity. As Mariko gets closer to the Black Clan, she uncovers a dark history of secrets, of betrayal and murder, which will force her to question everything she’s ever known
“The only power any man has over you is the power you give him.”
Ok, where do we begin?
This book was just wonderful! This is actually the first book we have read by this author and we are completely in love with this book and the authors writing style! We must get to all of her other novels. As some of you all know, we really enjoy re-telling’s so we absolutely adored this one!
Alright. If we are being completely honest, we really didn’t enjoy this straight away. However, as we slowly came to understand the characters and their world, we felt like we had transported into the book ourselves! The writing in this novel is so beautiful and the plot ideas are just so unique. We did find that there were some gaps in events when the author switched between the different perspectives.
The setting of this re-telling was just fantastic! It was so different to the original Mulan story whilst still portraying many similar values. We literally couldn’t put this book down! We can absolutely say that we are keen for the sequel! Yes please!!!
At the beginning of the novel, we were quite unsure with the characters. In particular, Mariko and her twin brother, Kenshin. We just thought that they both seemed really spoilt and oblivious to everything around them. However, we learned to really like Mariko as her character developed throughout the story. The plot was definitely thrilling and very exciting! We just didn’t know what to expect as the author’s writing is new to us and we couldn’t predict what was going to happen next! We would have loved for the magic system to have been explained as it was a little confusing at times. However, this will most likely be mentioned in the sequel.
Overall, we definitely recommend this book! The author just left us wanting more! We would definitely love to re-read this book in the near future.
Book Rating: 4.5/5 Stars⭐️.
Have you read ‘Flame in the Mist’? Did you enjoy it? We would love to know in the comments😊.
~ Georgia & Morgan.