I received this book for free from Fairyloot, Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Flame in the Mist by Renée Ahdieh
Series: Flame in the Mist #1
Published by Hodder Paperbacks on May 16, 2017
Genres: Fantasy, Fiction, Retelling, Romance, Young Adult
Format: E-Book, Hardback
Source: Fairyloot, Netgalley
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The daughter of a prominent samurai, Mariko has long known her place—she may be an accomplished alchemist, whose cunning rivals that of her brother Kenshin, but because she is not a boy, her future has always been out of her hands. At just seventeen years old, Mariko is promised to Minamoto Raiden, the son of the emperor's favorite consort—a political marriage that will elevate her family's standing. But en route to the imperial city of Inako, Mariko narrowly escapes a bloody ambush by a dangerous gang of bandits known as the Black Clan, who she learns has been hired to kill her before she reaches the palace.
Dressed as a peasant boy, Mariko sets out to infiltrate the ranks of the Black Clan, determined to track down the person responsible for the target on her back. But she's quickly captured and taken to the Black Clan’s secret hideout, where she meets their leader, the rebel ronin Takeda Ranmaru, and his second-in-command, his best friend Okami. Still believing her to be a boy, Ranmaru and Okami eventually warm to Mariko, impressed by her intellect and ingenuity. As Mariko gets closer to the Black Clan, she uncovers a dark history of secrets, of betrayal and murder, which will force her to question everything she's ever known.
Flame in the Mist is a Mulan retelling and it is amazing. Mariko is a strong, determined young woman. It seems her destiny is to marry a prince. But on the way to her arranged marriage her carriage is captured, her servants killed and she herself, nearly murder. She evades capture and ends up part of the Black Clan seeking revenge.
Mariko is a prisoner turned reluctant ally for the Black Clan as she seeks to find out who was behind her would be murder. She is a strong intellegent young woman. More capable than the world around her will allow. Her brother Kenshin is a Samuri soldier, who is detdermined to find his sister. Alive or dead. And then there is Black Clan’s leader Takeda Ranmaru. He is definitely hiding something but will he be the one to reveal his secrets?
There were some things that I did disagree in this book about. For example there are are so many points where it shown that it is the culture that if if you believe someone is your enemy and it is your right to kill them, why then do you save them? Or you have a powerful weapon and you do not know what it does, why then do you bring to the fight? I just sat there and thought that this is stupid.
However, there was so many positive wonderful things about this book, that there is definitely too many to tell in this review. I loved the vivid descriptions, the characters, the relationships. I adored the mysterious and fantasy side. With the blood sucking trees and the ghosts.
Flame in the Mist was just pure joy filled with Japanese mythology, samurai, secrets, lies and some sexiness. It is a perfect blend of escapism.