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Ash Princess

(Ash Princess Trilogy #1)

3.92  ·  Rating details ·  30,423 ratings  ·  4,077 reviews
Princess. Prisoner. Orphan. Rebel.

Theodosia was six when her country was invaded and her mother, the Fire Queen, was murdered. On that day, the Kaiser took Theodosia's land and her name. Theo was crowned Ash Princess - a title of shame to bear in her new life as a prisoner.

For ten years Theo has been a captive in her own palace. She's endured the relentless abuse and ridi
Paperback, 448 pages
Published April 24th 2018 by Pan Australia
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Laura Hi! I've actually been getting this question a lot and I did a Twitter thread about it. I'm compiling it here so it can be easily found.

"Hey y’all. I’…more
Hi! I've actually been getting this question a lot and I did a Twitter thread about it. I'm compiling it here so it can be easily found.

"Hey y’all. I’m seeing some discussion of the violence in Ash Princess so I want to talk a bit about that so that readers can go in with open eyes. AKA here are some trigger warnings. I’m going to try to be vague enough to avoid spoilers, but there may be some very light ones.

Ash Princess is about a conquered country where the original inhabitants are all slaves. About half of the main cast of characters are or were slaves and they talk very frankly about their experiences, including being beaten, starved, and raped.

To be clear: there is no on-page rape or attempted rape in the book. The discussions of it happening off-page aren’t graphic or explicit.

One of my biggest pet peeves in storytelling is when rape is used as a plot device. I didn’t want to do that here. But at the same time, it would have been been disingenuous to write about colonization without including it.

Though there isn’t on-page rape, there are some scenes where the unspoken threat of it hangs over Theo’s head. There are scenes with uninvited and inappropriate touching.

There is also physical and psychological abuse including one graphic whipping scene. Again, this kind of violence was not something I set out to write and, in all honesty, they were the hardest scenes for me. But again, I felt they were necessary.

Theo’s world is an ugly one and I found its roots in real history. Not including the violent aspects and the ripples created by them would have been, I felt, to gloss over the atrocities of war and colonization that persist to this day in our very real world.

However, the last thing I want to do is to blindside people who already understand that all too well. If anyone has any questions about this, please feel free to reach out to me through DMs."(less)
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Average rating 3.92  · 
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Emily May
Is it better to have your life ended by someone who hates you or someone who loves you?

Ash Princess has a heroine desperately trying to reclaim her stolen throne, a mindlessly evil tyrant who stole said throne, and a love triangle... What's that, you say? You've heard this one before? Yeah, me too.

That being said, to give credit where it's due, it stands out for being compulsively readable and entertaining.

Plot and character-wise, it resembles many other YA fantasies. But I was just complai
Cristina Monica
Apr 12, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I hope you will not fall off your chair if I tell you that you have read this story before.

Maybe once, or twice, or a hundred of times, but you most certainly have.

Girl loses kingdom and family. Girl wants kingdom back and boy helps her. Girl manipulates her way surprisingly mainly into—instead of out of—trouble.

Nothing stands out. Not even the idea of multiple gods and goddesses and gems that hold power that can be used by and on people. There is the illusion of a world-building but it is jus

ARC provided by Penguin Random House in exchange for an honest review.

“My name is Theodosia Eirene Houzzara, Queen of Astrea, and I will endure this.”

Friends, I couldn’t put this down. This was such an addicting and captivating read. This was the first book of 2018 that I read in one day, which is saying something because this book is almost 450 pages. I was just so invested with the romance, the rebellion, and the betrayals, that I couldn’t stop turning the pages.

Ash Princess is La
Feb 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of Red Queen, Falling Kingdoms and Ruined, but this is BETTER
Edit: I accidentally read this as Ass Princess and that’s what I’ll always see when I look at this title.

This book is everything I wanted Red Queen to be. 👏👏👏👏👏👏👏 What a fantastic debut. I loved this so much, I deadass want to reread it and experience all the feels all over again. It was just so addicting and I was unable to put this down!! I devoured this 400+ page book in two days.

Ash Princess is a trope-filled book with a very common story line. Theodosia, or Theo, was six years old when she
C.G. Drews
This was a pretty dark and politically twisty fantasy, and I was pretty sold! It had powerful magic and intriguing world building and I am so there for this.

Seriously tho: world building!
It actually takes time to show us languages and cultures and there were a lot of "fantasy" words flying about, but I didn't get confused. I felt really sucked into the world after only a few chapters. Plus it had a lot of fantastic details so everything seemed super vivid!

It has a lot of "prettiness" in it to
Wendy Darling
3.5 stars

There's no denying:

--This could have been more intricately plotted.
--The characters could have been more developed.
--Some of the violence, because there are repeated beatings, could have been written with more emotional and physical impact
--There is a half-hearted triangle. (sorta? Maybe more of a red herring.)
--After 400+ pages, I'm still not entirely sure how all the magic works.

And yet...I enjoyed it! It doesn't hurt that the book starts off with a doozy of an act, one that clearly
Mar 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018

Theo is so strong, and actually a normal character who relates to things normally which i loved, felt i could relate to her a little better. Magic, kings, war and spying. i could barely put it down! I'm so excited for the sequel already and i can't believe i have to wait another year!

And I know it had a love triangle, but it was so believable for me.

And the struggle, omg. And the humiliation. Jesus Christ.

Theo reminds me a little of Tris from
Aug 13, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
So earlier this year I took a trip to the south of France, notably the Périgord, which is filled with lovely relaxed people with sun-kissed skin and floaty skirts, a nice contrast to my jumpy pasty ass (I was in the middle of an existential crisis and musing over whether or not to quit my job and become a starving artist, and The Results May Surprise You!).

While I was there I went to this antiques shop filled with retro fridges and dusty comics and amazing vinyl albums from the 80's, from befor
Helena of Eretz ✰

Everyone who compared this to the Winner’s Curse was pretty on the money, except that it was reversed. It’s as if we’re following Arin’s story, rather than Kestrel’s.

Me likey. I can’t wait to start Lady Smoke!

Apr 15, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
Ash Princess by Laura Sebastian is the first book in the young adult fantasy series, Ash Princess Trilogy. This is one that is on the darker side with violence, abuse, slavery and a hint of rape so beware to those with issues with these triggers. There is also a hint of a love triangle involved with the main character, a boy from her past and the son (prince) of her captor.

The story begins as we meet Theodosia Eirene Houzzara who by all rights should be the Queen of Astrea. However ten years bef
shady boots
--2.5 stars--

This book was... fine. It wasn't horrible, it wasn't particularly great, it was just okay. It reads like literally any YA fantasy book you've ever read. If you're looking for something groundbreaking or innovative, then there's nothing to see here. It felt like the author had a YA Fantasy 101 handbook to refer to during the writing process. Like, there isn't a single thing I can think of about this book that gives it its own identity. Feels like it was made by a machine that figured
Aug 24, 2017 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Please tell me "Prinz" is a typo in the synopsis and that it's not how they spell prince bc I don't think I could cope with that tbh xD
pssssstt i know it's german for prince now. thanks(:
Korrina  (OwlCrate)
Yay! First book of 2019! Pretty solid fantasy read. A little bit tropey at times, but it didn't stop me from enjoying the story. I was rooting for this character and I wanted her to make it so badly. The plot kept me invested from start to finish, and I look forward to reading the sequel.
Nenia ✨️ Socially Awkward Trash Panda ✨️ Campbell

Instagram || Twitter || Facebook || Amazon || Pinterest

In YA, everyone piles onto the bandwagon of the latest trends. A few years ago it was dystopian fiction but now we've a glut of fantasy on our hands. As someone who loves fantasy, this should be a good thing, but the YA machine keeps churning out subpar, derivative works that are less good world-building and action-heavy plots than wallpaper fantasy settings for tepid romance.

In this regard, ASH PRINCESS is no exception.

I'm really annoye
Ben Alderson
May 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
So glad I read this book. Really enjoyed the politics, magic and character in this one. I also could not predict what was to happen in the story. Something that is rare for me these days. Regardless if it took me a week to finish I would happily read this one over and over.
Candace Robinson
I'm just going to open up and say this book is just a jumbo of every other YA fantasy book thrown together, especially Ruined by Amy Tintera, which is a book that I loved. It also had Red Queen vibes. I think if this would have been my first YA fantasy book, I would have probably liked it a lot more. Also, throw in my most hated trope, sort of a weird love triangle, and you already have me annoyed. Actually, I'm not even sure if it was a triangle, but there were multiple kisses going on.

Cindy ✩☽♔
Mar 09, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"We are not defined by the things we do in order to survive."

This book definitely helped pull me out of my book funk, so praise 🙌

*Review to come*
She gets to her feet and I know that I should rise as well and curtsy, but I’m frozen in place. “Some advice, little lamb? Next time you close a window, make sure it doesn’t open a trapdoor beneath your feet.”
She’s halfway to the door when I find my voice. “I don’t know what I’m doing,” I admit, barely louder than a whisper.
The Kaiserin hears me, though. She turns and regards me with that disconcerting, unfocused stare of hers. “You’re a lamb in the lion’s den, child. You’re surviving. Isn’t
Sep 07, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dark
My 500th! Yay!!
May 13, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4 stars

"Now it's time for a queen to rise."

I'm gonna be honest: This was better than Red Queen


I know, I know, that's such a bold claim to make. But I stand by it. Ash Princess was a surprisingly good read. I knew it had the same tropes as most YA fantasy does: Rebellion, princesses, love triangle, etc. But I was invested in the story as well as Theodosia's character development.

This took me a while to read not because it was boring, but because of finals. I read in-between studying but once fina
May 09, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley, fantasy
This dark YA fantasy is the debut novel of Laura Sebastian, it is the first of a planned trilogy. 16 year old Theodosia Houzzara has suffered the nightmare of 10 long years as a prisoner of the Kalovaxians and the tyrant King Kaiser. Her mother, the Queen, was murdered in front of her eyes when she was 6, the country was conquered, land taken and resources pillaged. Theo is shamefully known as the Ash Princess, and her people have been enslaved, any murmurs or acts that challenge the dismal mise ...more
Abbie (boneseasonofglass)
*I was given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review from the publisher (macmillan)*

*This does not affect my views or opinions*  

To start off with, the writing was wonderful. It was so well written, it flowed so well, was descriptive, but not overly so.  The pacing was spot on, and the world building was wonderful. The characters were all well developed too, and I liked them and had interest in whether or not they survived from pretty early on in the book.

However, the thing is, it a
Aug 24, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of ToG, Falling Kingdoms & Kiss of Deception.
Shelves: arc, 2018-releases

Hey Ya’ll!

I received this ARC of Ash Princess, coming out April 24 of 2018, from a Goodreads giveaway and I picked it up immediately when it arrived at my house. This book, as you’ll read in other reviews, started out trying to be the Falling Kingdoms series. I’m not even going to lie, the first maybe 15% wasn’t that unique. But by the end of the book it had come into it’s own and earned itself a 5 star rating from me, which as you guys probably know not many books get. A book really has to blow
destiny ♡⚔♡ [howling libraries]
This is just not happening right now, but I do think I might enjoy this some other time, so I'm setting it aside for now. I think I just need to get over this ridiculous burnout I have RE: "lost royals" stories in YA fantasy.
Nessa Richardson

Wow! I have to say; this completely exceeded my expectations. I went into this thinking that I'd probably be bored, but boy was I wrong. Laura Sebastian is an excellent writer. From the way she constructed the words to the way she made the story flow is... *chef's kiss*

I loved the universe that the Ash Princess was built in. Elemental powers from stone gems? Maybe I'm just a newbie to the YA world, but that made me giddy. I ravaged this book because I was just very immersed in the world.
Jun 18, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
2.5/3 stars

This wasn't horrible but the similarities to Ruined by Amy Tintera are so much that I am side-eyeing a bit. The plots and characters were almost identical.
The romance played a big part in this book and it was so bland I ended up skimming those scenes.

I probably won't continue this series since it added nothing new to so many YA fantasies I've read before.
I received ARC in exchange for an honest review.

There are enough princesses in the YA literature world. Do we really need more?Maybe we do need more princesses like this one Full review posted.
This is such a hard book to rate. While I was reading it, there were moments when I wanted to give it 2 stars, then 4 which finally led me to gi
Sep 07, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
This was such a fun and fast read! I really enjoyed this book and now I can’t wait for the next one!!! This is why I used to wait until an entire series is published before reading the books, but I just can’t seem to help myself lately! It’s nice to read recently published books so you can have discussions with others who are also reading it for the first time. And avoiding spoilers is a lot easier this way as well. Anyway, back to the book! I thought that this was definitely an original plot th ...more
I have 0 feelings for this book. I don't even know how to rate it ;-;
• Lindsey Dahling •

This book has a lot of potential (which is why it gets 2 stars instead of 1), but it’s so poorly written that all potential is thrown right down the drain, garbage disposal on. The narrator repeats herself so often, that after awhile I legitimately just started skipping paragraphs when I could sense she was about to soapbox about the same things again.

The other thing the writing will do is info dump CONSTANTLY. And for NO REASON. The narrator will be having
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I write YA books and I'm also entrusted with taking care of other people's children. I write books about girls who are strong in all different ways, usually with a healthy dollop of magic and a few dragons.

I live in NYC with my extraordinarily fluffy dog, Neville.

Other books in the series

Ash Princess Trilogy (3 books)
  • Lady Smoke (Ash Princess Trilogy, #2)
  • Ember Queen (Ash Princess Trilogy, #3)

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“We are not defined by the things we do in order to survive. We do not apologize for them,” she says quietly, eyes never leaving mine. “Maybe they have broken you, but you are a sharper weapon because of it. And it is time to strike.” 68 likes
“I was a princess made of ashes; there is nothing left of me to burn.
Now it's time for a queen to rise.”
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