In Ash Princess, we are introduced to princess (or rather, queen) Theodosia. Her mother was killed by the henchman of this mad Kaiser and she was captured and has to live under his rule, only staying alive because she is useful to him. The novel kicks off the drama pretty quickly. Theodosia is from a nation that the Kaiser hates, and every time someone with her own nationality does something wrong, she gets literally whipped for it. The novel is quite graphic when it comes to the physical abuse so if you’re sensitive to that kind of thing, skip this.
As with most YA novels, there is a love interest, or two, or well, why not make it a triangle of sorts? For me, the second love interest didn’t do much, or add anything to the plot. Theodosia seduces the son of the Kaiser in hopes of overthrowing his power, which makes sense to the plot, but her childhood friend still being in love with her does not do much. It also reminded me of the lunar chronicles. Princess Theodosia is a scarred, dark skinned princess, and her childhood friend is a blonde boy. Sounds a lot like Princess Winter and Jacin Clay, right? I’m sure you’d get that reference if you’ve read the series.
The novel was quite easy to read, I finished it in a couple of days, reading it whenever I had time to do so. The language isn’t too simple, nor too complex but it was a bit lacking in some parts. The action scenes were written quite well, but it could be somewhat predictable at times. Ash Princess is Laura Sebastian’s debut novel, and it’s not terrible. It’s not exactly the best novel I have read, but it’s not the worst either. It’s supposedly the first novel in a trilogy, which explains why the ending was the way it was. It ends rather abruptly and really, none of the issues that needed solving are being solved. I suppose I would have to read the sequel whenever that is being released, but I’m not quite sure if I would want to.
I’d rate this book a 5/10. It’s okay, but not great.