Review: Snow Like Ashes (Snow Like Ashes, #1) by Sara Raasch

Snow Like Ashes by Sara Raasch

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Received: bought
Publication Date: October 14th 2014
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Genres & Themes: YA, Fantasy, Magic, War, Family, Friendship, Romance,


A heartbroken girl. A fierce warrior. A hero in the making.

Sixteen years ago the Kingdom of Winter was conquered and its citizens enslaved, leaving them without magic or a monarch. Now, the Winterians’ only hope for freedom is the eight survivors who managed to escape, and who have been waiting for the opportunity to steal back Winter’s magic and rebuild the kingdom ever since.

Orphaned as an infant during Winter’s defeat, Meira has lived her whole life as a refugee, raised by the Winterians’ general, Sir. Training to be a warrior—and desperately in love with her best friend, and future king, Mather — she would do anything to help her kingdom rise to power again.

So when scouts discover the location of the ancient locket that can restore Winter’s magic, Meira decides to go after it herself. Finally, she’s scaling towers, fighting enemy soldiers, and serving her kingdom just as she’s always dreamed she would. But the mission doesn’t go as planned, and Meira soon finds herself thrust into a world of evil magic and dangerous politics – and ultimately comes to realize that her destiny is not, never has been, her own.


‘‘It’s too easy to throw balance into chaos.’’


This was an interesting, mostly positive, surprise. I did not know what I was getting into, perhaps, for there are many things I wasn’t expecting to discover.

While, overall, I found Meira to be a good fantasy heroine, there are some specific scenes, that could have been avoided or modifided, making her, somehow, get out of her character—a strong and fierce one. It is that she is quite reckless and there are moments when she can’t control her emotions and acts. I did want her to be acting in a more mature way, during some scenes, because she can get childish at certain moments.

For example:

‘‘Meira, this isn’t going to fix anything—’’
‘‘Don’t care.’’
‘‘I’ve talked to him every day since he announced the wedding; if I can’t change his mind—’’
I grit my teeth. ‘‘I. Don’t. Care.’’

Why don’t you try listening to what he has to say, huh, Meira? Although, this was a little observation. She is still a kick-ass heroine.

There is a love-triangle. I know I shouldn’t be surprised anymore—YA is filled with them—but it’s still disappointing, since I expected another kind of romance. Meira is in love with her childhood friend who has always taken care of her, Mather, but they can’t be together. He’s the next in line to become King of Winter and, well, she’s an orphan. But, then, circumstances are that she meets another prince, Theron. She may not have had the best of opinions on him at first but they slowly get to know each other and she even comes to like him…Well, that wasn’t hard to predict.

The pacing is very slow. I personally didn’t mind it at all because, since there is a war setting, it is very normal. This kind of plot needs slowness to plan and prepare and make us understand the context, so it definitely was alright for me. However, I did think that the plot focused too much on that. At first, I thought it wa going to be overwhelmed with romance, but I was very wrong. I did enjoy the story because of how invested I was. What happened to the Winter kingdom was very sad and unfair and I was agreeing with the Winterians doing whatever they could to get their magic back.

Characterization wasn’t missing in this book at all. They are, of course, some characters you will appreciate and others you will despise—that’s how much it can vary from one to another—but they certainly are well-developed and worth encountering. I personally really liked reading about Theron and how he started to stand up for what is important for him and the people. Incidentally, while I did like his character, I think it would be more interesting if he and Meira, in the sequels, stayed friends and build a strong boy/girl friendship because, effectively, those are possible.

The writing was one thing I liked most of this story. Well-written, in my opinion, as only a certain amount of fantasy authors that risk themselves in this impressive genre know how to write. The kind that will absorb you and won’t let go of your interest, until you reach the last page.

If you find yourself in front of this book, don’t hesitate—it is worth it! I may only have rated it three stars, but I believe it is a good fantasy story that will only improve with its sequels, which I’m looking forward to read.

My review on Goodreads.

18 thoughts on “Review: Snow Like Ashes (Snow Like Ashes, #1) by Sara Raasch

  1. Hmmm. I wonder if it’s better than The Young Elites?? I will read this! I’ve seen positive reviews from Reviewers I trust (including you!!) so maybe I’ll like it. And you mentioned that the writing is good.. And good writing is really what makes me love a book! 😀 Great review as always Lola, can’t wait to read it ❤


  2. Glad you enjoyed this one! I’m really excited for this book so hopefully I won’t mind the love triangle, they do usually tend to annoy me… great review and yay for a kick ass heroine!


  3. So happy you liked this one! Now I’m more eager to read it myself. I personally like slow-paced books if they explain everything nicely to the reader and with high-fantasy slow pacing is sometimes necessary for that. I mean, the world building has to be good and understandable. I’m also glad to hear the love triangle was secondary in this book and not the main thing. I sometimes think authors only include love triangle because it appears to be the general rule with YA and I don’t get it. I hope the love triangle will be well managed throughout the series.

    Awesome review Lola!


  4. So often tough heroines act rashly without thinking things through. It must be an easy weakness to give them. I don’t mind love triangles as long as she isn’t just leading the guys on because she can’t decide. I love books with good characters and the world just sounds so awesome! Nice review Lola! 🙂


  5. yeah now we usually have a lot of love triangle now in YA so I’m not surprised anymore but when it’s well done it’s ok for me. I’m curious about the main character but I’m afraid to be annoyed by the childish side but well, we’ll see. I heard great things about this one so I need to try one day0


  6. Sorry it wasn’t that much of a hit BUT I’M GLAD YOU ENJOYED IT EITHER WAY! The pacing was a tad slow and overwhelming at first but when she got into the nitty gritty, wow, Raasch had me mesmerised! Fantastic review, girly! x


  7. I always feel a hit or miss with love triangles and they usually either make or break a book for me.

    It’s nice to know this book has a kick-ass heroine! I always love those.


  8. I have seen this one around and usually people tell me to go for it as it seems like a kind of read I’d enjoy. I’m a bit scared of that love-triangle but yeah the question is how much is that going to bother me. We shall see. But Meira seems like a character I need to meet. Great review, Lola 🙂


  9. I don’t often read YA anymore, but I’m really tempted to try Snow Like Ashes. The only thing that truly bother me in this story is the love triangle. Love triangles *sighs*. Why do we have to suffer them in almost every YA books. Many the reason why YA love them so much is because they’ve witnessed tons of love triangles in their lives, lol.
    I also hope that Meira isn’t a medieval version of Rachel Morgan from The Hollows because I really couldn’t stand her.

    Anyway, I’m intrigued by this book. Whenever I have time, I’ll definitely try to read it.


  10. Wooooo I love your reviews Lola! I’ve definitely seen mixed reviews for Snow Like Ashes, but I do want to try to read this if it’s at the library or something. BUT YA, I feel like for fantasy, as long as the world pulls you in, then the characters don’t HAVE to be THAT amazing, but it’s still a plus.


  11. This was one of my most highly anticipated reads for this month, so I am so glad to hear you liked it! 😀 It’s a shame the love triangle was so predictable and cliche, but I guess I can begrudgingly deal with it if the rest of the book is solid. And even if the protagonist had some moments where she stepped out of character, she sounds like a solid protagonist regardless. Thanks for sharing and, as always, fantastic review! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Wow Lola! Desppite your 3 star review I still reallyyyyyyy want to read this one. I think because of your review is that I want to read it. Ha. The love triangle sounds kind of meh but I’ll tolerate it if the rest of the story is great. Lovely review!


  13. I think I ended up giving this one four stars (my review is going up later this week) but I totally understand your three star rating. This one was a lovely surprise and Sara Raasch’s writing Is absolutely beautiful! That being said, I did have a few problems with this book but I still highly recommend it to people since It was an enjoyable Fantasy read. Lovely review 🙂


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