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Monday, October 5, 2020

Audio Book Review: From Blood And Ash By Jennifer L. Armentrout

From Blood And Ash
(Blood And Ash #1)
By Jennifer L. Armentrout

Length: Stina Nielsen
Narrator: 19 hours and 46 minutes

A Maiden…

Chosen from birth to usher in a new era, Poppy’s life has never been her own. The life of the Maiden is solitary. Never to be touched. Never to be looked upon. Never to be spoken to. Never to experience pleasure. Waiting for the day of her Ascension, she would rather be with the guards, fighting back the evil that took her family, than preparing to be found worthy by the gods. But the choice has never been hers.

A Duty…

The entire kingdom’s future rests on Poppy’s shoulders, something she’s not even quite sure she wants for herself. Because a Maiden has a heart. And a soul. And longing. And when Hawke, a golden-eyed guard honor bound to ensure her Ascension, enters her life, destiny and duty become tangled with desire and need. He incites her anger, makes her question everything she believes in, and tempts her with the forbidden.

A Kingdom…

Forsaken by the gods and feared by mortals, a fallen kingdom is rising once more, determined to take back what they believe is theirs through violence and vengeance. And as the shadow of those cursed draws closer, the line between what is forbidden and what is right becomes blurred. Poppy is not only on the verge of losing her heart and being found unworthy by the gods, but also her life when every blood-soaked thread that holds her world together begins to unravel.
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Check Out The Other Books In This Series:
(Linked to my review)

My Review:

*UPDATE* Second Re-Read (January 2022): The joke is on me. I swore to myself ever since the fourth book of this series was announced that I would start my reread around 15 days before it released that way I wouldn't feel the intense burn of all those cliffhangers. Here we are a full 36 days before its release. I sped read this book while actively trying not to. Someone gently confront me with the truth because I can't take anything more than that in my fragile state! 😭 I'm going to need to make the next two rereads in this series last a FULL 36 DAYS. I don't think that's a feat I'm capable of. The Book #3 cliffhanger HURT SO DAMN MUCH. I don't want to put myself through all that without having the guarantee of getting answers by diving into the next book. DAMN IT! I did this to myself 😭

*UPDATE* First Re-Read (March 2021): Considering how long the books in this series are, rereading them is a daunting task. BUT it was something I knew I needed to do to keep the story and its details straight in my head. I took my sweet sweet time with this as well. Until I got halfway through it and devoured it like it was oxygen and I was in dire need of it. This stood up so well since I last read it (not even a year ago). I continue to love it. I adore the characters and the world-building even though it is quite info-dumpy in the beginning. Coupled with the writing style, I actually find that it worked out great regardless.

This is one of those books where the author makes you fall for certain characters and then she starts with the incredibly heartbreaking twists. At one point it felt like she was holding my beating heart in her hand and pulled it out of my chest and stepped on it while smiling. I loved this book but I also hate the moral dilemma it presented because I'm confused and heartbroken!

Poppy was a very sheltered girl but not in every way, at least not in the ways she got away with because she sneaked off without anyone knowing. Throughout the novel, she acknowledges that she's very naive and can come off as dense in quite a few situations because of how she was brought up. I liked how bloodthirsty and ferocious she could be. It was a personality trait that I wasn't expecting and loved. I just wish she questioned more of her circumstances before things went array but I understand why that didn't happen due to the consequences of that. 

Everything about Hawke is a MAJOR spoiler. All I'll say is that he's the reason for my moral dilemma and for my heartbreak and for my confusion and, and, and. . .  URGH. *Insert intense swear words here* I'm also proud to say that I did predict a little bit about him while at the beginning of this novel and I didn't want to be right in the first place because SPOILERS.

This book was also the longest audio book I've ever listened to. I was surprised by how great the pacing was. There were some slow parts but they quickly picked up again in no time. The story also doesn't feel like the author is making it drag on for the sake of it. It felt like there was a purpose to everything including how long this book turned out to be. I'm SO glad I got back into reading books by this author in the last year or so because I'd be missing out on so many amazing stories otherwise!

The ending riled me up! It wasn't a cliffhanger but I still needed answers so the book couldn't have ended there. It just couldn't! I can't wait for the next book to come out in audio book because I plan to listen to all 22 glorious hours of it.

The Audio Book:

The narration was great! Though there were quite a few characters (towards the spoiler end that I can't comment about because it'll ruin the story for you) that sounded like they were all one person and that did lead me into getting lost in conversations and relistening to a few sections.

My Rating:

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