The Maiden is chosen at birth, they must live a life of solitude, never to be touched, can’t be looked upon, and never to be spoken to. An entire kingdom’s future rests on Poppy’s shoulders, yet she isn’t quite sure what she wants. Right now she would like to be able to enjoy life, and fight back against the evil that took her parents life.
Then she meets Hawke, a gorgeous guard who becomes honor bound to ensure her safety until the day of her Ascension. They have an instant connection, and he makes her feel things she shouldn’t feel as the Maiden. As this test of her faith is happening, Poppy also finds herself caught in the middle of a fallen kingdom trying to rise again.
I knew nothing about this book, but kept getting it recommended to me because of how much I like Sarah J. Maas’ books. I ended up completely loving From Blood and Ash, and finished it in 24 hours. (It also helped that my area got hit by a tropical storm, so I had lost power and I had no other distractions.) Poppy and Hawke have such great chemistry, and I love the world that Jennifer L. Armentrout built in this novel. I also enjoyed the slow trickle of information, you find out things as Poppy does. Poppy has a lot in common with many young adult fantasy heroines, but I really enjoyed the exploration of her sexuality. That often isn’t seen or maybe done off-screen in other novels, but fully explored in From Blood and Ash. I did figure out the one major twist beforehand, but it didn’t hinder the book for me at all.
I recommend this book if you love fantasy and romance. It definitely checks off both those boxes. I can’t wait for the sequel which comes out September 1st!