28 July, 2018


Title: Smoke in the Sun
Author: Renée Ahdieh
Series: Flame in the Mist #2
Genres: Fantasy, YA
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton
Release: June 5th, 2018
Source: Kindle Edition
Pages: 432

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BLURB: The highly anticipated sequel to Flame in the Mist - an addictive, sumptuous finale that will leave readers breathless from the bestselling author of The Wrath and the Dawn

After Okami is captured in the Jukai forest, Mariko has no choice - to rescue him, she must return to Inako and face the dangers that have been waiting for her in the Heian Castle. She tricks her brother, Kenshin, and betrothed, Raiden, into thinking she was being held by the Black Clan against her will, playing the part of the dutiful bride-to-be to infiltrate the emperor's ranks and uncover the truth behind the betrayal that almost left her dead.

With the wedding plans already underway, Mariko pretends to be consumed with her upcoming nuptials, all the while using her royal standing to peel back the layers of lies and deception surrounding the imperial court. But each secret she unfurls gives way to the next, ensnaring Mariko and Okami in a political scheme that threatens their honor, their love and very the safety of the empire.

EXPECTATIONS: The first book wasn't the best ever but I liked it more or less. I was hoping for some changes in this book but they didn't happen.

THE WORLD: Same world as in the first book. A fantasy version of feudal Japan.

CHARACTERS: Also the same as in the first book. We get to see a bit more of the secondary characters though. Thank you for that. 

ROMANCE: This is going to get repetitive but... same as in the first book xD There aren't any triangles or anything. It's all straight forward.

GOOD: Hmm I guess the secondary characters even though the villain is included and I hate him so much but it was a nice break from the protagonist's POV.

The world building and writing was good on both books too. Nice!

BAD: Mariko is still annoying in this book but I think a bit less than in the first. She realized she wasn't as smart as she thought. I'm glad Ōkami never holds her back. He always supports her crazy decisions. Unfortunately, I am not sold on Mariko and probably never will be. Mulan was just better. I said what I said.

The plot was a bit chaotic for my liking. There were so many things going on in different chapters and POVs that it felt like nothing was going on at all. Has that ever happened to you? You get overwhelmed by all the small things and you lose sight of the big picture? That's what happened to me. I wasn't able to digest and truly appreciate the small plot things because I was too busy trying to skip them in order to get to the point.

Oh and also even though the secondary characters were more interesting I didn't even like them. Except the members of the Black Clan and Yumi. Those were the best ones.

OVERALL: 3 stars. Maybe I'm being too harsh because I love Mulan, she's always been my favorite so I am very attached. Maybe that's why I couldn't stop comparing the re-telling to the cartoon? (Only character-wise, the plot was completely different). Anyway, this book will pass without a fuss.

What do you think about SMOKE IN THE SUN?


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