Kingdom of Ash by Sarah J Maas {Book Review}

Kingdom of Ash review on
Aelin has risked everything to save her people―but at a tremendous cost. Locked within an iron coffin by the Queen of the Fae, Aelin must draw upon her fiery will as she endures months of torture. Aware that yielding to Maeve will doom those she loves keeps her from breaking, though her resolve begins to unravel with each passing day…

With Aelin captured, Aedion and Lysandra remain the last line of defense to protect Terrasen from utter destruction. Yet they soon realize that the many allies they’ve gathered to battle Erawan’s hordes might not be enough to save them. Scattered across the continent and racing against time, Chaol, Manon, and Dorian are forced to forge their own paths to meet their fates. Hanging in the balance is any hope of salvation―and a better world.

And across the sea, his companions unwavering beside him, Rowan hunts to find his captured wife and queen―before she is lost to him forever.

As the threads of fate weave together at last, all must fight, if they are to have a chance at a future. Some bonds will grow even deeper, while others will be severed forever in the explosive final chapter of the Throne of Glass series.
— Goodreads

Even though I pre-ordered the ebook, and received the hardcover Throne of Glass series for Christmas, I’ve been putting off reading Kingdom of Ash for months. It’s been a long time since I’ve really enjoyed an epic fantasy series with more than three books, and I haven’t been ready to finish the series and let these characters go. I’m still not ready, but my curiosity could not wait any longer.

At 984 pages, you can imagine that there is a LOT packed into this tome. There are a lot of storylines to explore, and ultimately tie up, so the first ~400 pages or so were mostly set up for the climax of the story. Kingdom of Ash also pulls together 6+ viewpoints, so there is a lot of jumping around from place to place, person to person. And the action is all over the place—some geographic areas will be under heavy siege, while others are just hanging out waiting for something to happen. So there is both a lot and nothing happening at the same time in the story, so it’s just a LOT.

In the end, though, the book did its job. It tied up storylines in a pleasing way, and for the most part SJM avoided overly gratuitous sex scenes and convenient plot points. I’m satisfied with how the series ended, and I don’t feel the need for her to write more books in order to feel closure for any of the characters. I gave it 4.5 stars. 

Ashley Fisher