BOOK REVIEW | LEGACY OF ASH BY MATTHEW WARD & NARRATED BY SUZANNAH HAMPTON

Good Evening Bookish Folk!

I have been really bad with the blog this week, I didn’t post my feature Keep It Or Cut It because I had a review to post and I was so busy on Sunday I didn’t manage to do my Sundays Seven post either! So, yes, this week I have been a massive let down!

So, before I go back to work tomorrow I thought that tonight I would get another review written up and out there! Thus, I will be sharing with you my review of Matthew Ward’s book Legacy of Ash, as the title of this post suggests.

Annnnd I have just realise how pointless these little paragraphs are because people definitely read the title and don’t need to be told twice! Oh well…

I picked Legacy of Ash up in a Kindle deal but I pretty much listened to it all via audiobook after listening to a sample of Hampton’s lovely narration.

A few facts about Legacy of Ash:

  • Title: Legacy of Ash
  • Author: Matthew Ward
  • Narrated By: Suzannah Hampton
  • Series: Legacy Trilogy (Book One)
  • Published by Orbit/Hatchette Audio UK
  • Pages: 800
  • Narration Length: 28 hrs 34 mins

Synopsis:

Add It To Your Goodreads!

Legacy of Ash is an unmissable fantasy debut–an epic tale of intrigue and revolution, soldiers and assassins, ancient magic and the eternal clash of empires.

A shadow has fallen over the Tressian Republic.

Ruling families — once protectors of justice and democracy — now plot against one another with sharp words and sharper knives. Blinded by ambition, they remain heedless of the threat posed by the invading armies of the Hadari Empire.

Yet as Tressia falls, heroes rise.

Viktor Akadra is the Republic’s champion. A warrior without equal, he hides a secret that would see him burned as a heretic.

Josiri Trelan is Viktor’s sworn enemy. A political prisoner, he dreams of reigniting his mother’s failed rebellion.

And yet Calenne Trelan, Josiri’s sister, seeks only to break free of their tarnished legacy; to escape the expectation and prejudice that haunts the family name.

As war spreads across the Republic, these three must set aside their differences in order to save their home. Yet decades of bad blood are not easily set aside. And victory — if it comes at all — will demand a darker price than any of them could have imagined. 

Review:

Here are a few things you can expect from Legacy of Ash :

  • A BIG book that is huge in scope;
  • An incredible start (I think it’s my favourite prologue EVER);
  • An EPIC and masterfully complex plot;
  • Warring peoples with a history riddled with injustice and oppression; and
  • An incredible world with even better characters.

A little bit about the narration…

This was actually a narration that I wasn’t sure about upon listening to it initially. At the point of listening to this sample, each time I had listened to a sample I had either hated it straight away or loved it. However, with this one I actually had to listen to the full five minute sample because I wasn’t sure about it. So, if you listen to the sample give it a go. I did end up grabbing the audiobook of this and absolutely loved the narration by Hampton, to the point that I searched her name to see if she had done any others.

I later did this with Steven Pacey and now he is one of my favourite listens, though that could also be heavily due to the fact I am listening to Abercrombie’s First Law Trilogy! But we aren’t talking about that book. So…

On to the full review…

Firstly, I want to start, well, at the beginning. The prologue of this book is cracking. It is actually this amazing start to the novel that is the narration sample text, and it played a heavy part in my picking this up as soon as I did. I listened to it and was instantly grabbed, I read the book within the next two days I think. I wanted to know what happened after, so well done to Ward for starting a book with a marvellous hook.

If you have read any of my reviews about Anthony Ryan‘s books, you may know how much I LOVE a good start to a book. If you hook me at the start, chances are (unless you do a massive screw up) you have me right to the end and Ward succeeding in catching me and keeping me from start to finish!

Legacy of Ash is a chunky boy of a book, it is in my top ten largest books! How do I know this? I just checked on my Goodreads, it’s my tenth largest read book. I think that is pretty impressive. Though, what is even more impressive is the fact that this didn’t feel like a big book. I am always game for a big book when it is done well, as I imagine is the case is for most people, because I want as much of it I can get.

As it is with many larger books, Legacy of Ash is inevitably slower in pace but it is necessary due to this books complexity. Though, having said that don’t think you will be bored, you won’t, this book has a solid plot that keeps you interested throughout with its characters (and there are quite a few), world building and magic system. Ward also combats the common problems one finds with a slower pace through many means, one of which is his plethora of characters as each one is filled with tension and intrigue.

The plot of Legacy of Ash in its most simplest of forms is one of several waring peoples. You have Tressia, the Southshires and the Hadari all thrown in and all with way too much history between them! In the middle of this melting pot of hostility you have a host of incredible characters. Ward did an incredible job of keeping each character distinctive in their personality and their motivations. Not only that, but despite the larger scope of characters in this book, all were relevant and had a significant role to play in the overall plot of the book.

I’m not going to go into detail about each of the characters, because as I have said there are a few of them. Just know you won’t be disappointed, least of all with Viktor. Gosh darn it do I love Viktor!

As my first Matthew Ward book I was very impressed with his prose, I found that I could visualise every aspect of this story. Everything was so well written, and beautifully weaved together. The world building was done magnificently, there was not a single point that I felt that he was to descriptive or his writing was over embellished. The word building is shown through the many character interactions and thoughts, it is naturally infused into all aspects of the story. I think what was most enjoyable was that Ward almost made it is mystery, he gives you just enough and leaves you to unravel the details of these peoples history yourself but without leaving you feeling lost!

I don’t want to harp on too much so I will end it with saying that Legacy of Ash is more than just an epic fantasy, it is a magnificent story with strong themes of overcoming the past, loyalty and friendship. It has memorable and incredibly written character all of which are living in an utterly enthralling world.


You know the drill, on to the rating…

THE RANKS: 

BUY THE HARDBACK | BUY THE PAPERBACK | BUY THE EBOOK | LIBRARY RENTAL OR SALE PURCHASE

You know, this is going to be a BUY THE HARDBACK! I think I put this as a 4 stars on Goodreads initially but after reviewing it and realising how much I really enjoyed this book and what a masterpiece it is, I will have to change it to FIVE!


AGAIN Thank you for reading AND SEE YOU SOON!


BOOK OF THE MONTH | NOVEMBER

Hello Book Folk!

It is that time again where I talk about the books I have read. I would usually say this month, but it is now December because I’m a little late with this post.

I have read eight books in November along with one or two little rereads but I don’t count them. The books I have read this month have been pretty chunky books so I am super pleased with this months reads, I definitely put Lockdown 2.0 to good use.

Oh my lord!! I have just worked it out and I read a whopping 4,656 pages in total this month across my eight books, but only ONE of those books can claim BOOK OF THE MONTH!

I have a feeling this month is going to be so hard! My hardest month yet I do believe, so many of these books have been such incredible reads each with their own strengths! Check out below to see what books I have read and understand the struggle I face…

WHAT HAVE I READ THIS MONTH?

LEGACY OF ASH by MATTHEW WARD

Check it out on Goodreads

Review Link: RTC

My Thoughts:

I really enjoyed this book, the audiobook was great and it made for a really good listen. Legacy of Ash is pretty big in scope and has a lot going on with a number of characters but it had me from the beginning. I’m all about the hook and this book hooked me straight away!

It is a brilliant epic fantasy and one that the veterans of the genre will love!

BOOK 1 & 2 OF THE BLOOD AND ASH SERIES

by JENNIFER L. ARMENTROUT

Check it out on Goodreads

Review Link: NO REVIEW INTENDED.

My Thoughts:

Well, what can you say about these books? They are typical to the genre they are in, and are easy fun read. They are absolutely riddled with issues and honestly I could complain to the high heavens about them but you always end up wanting to read more.

THE BLADE ITSELF by JOE ABERCROMBIE

Check it out on Goodreads

Review Link: RTC.

My Thoughts:

I really enjoyed my experience with this book. I had actually started this book before but stopped reading but I am really glad I picked it back up. I started it again from the start and really enjoyed it. The characters are great and are totally worthy of the praise they get from the book community and the world was great too!

Abercrombie shows his talent as a writer numerous times in this book and I thoroughly enjoyed this book despite being significantly slower in the plot department.

BOOK 1 & 2 OF THE LAST WAR TRILOGY by MIKE SHACKLE

Check it out on Goodreads

Review Links: We Are The Dead | A Fool’s Hope

My Thoughts:

Oh my days! What an incredibly journey it was to read these books. I read them back to back and thoroughly enjoyed my time in Shackle’s world. He is such a talented writer. These books showcase bloody violence, incredible characters and outstanding world building. They are books NOT TO BE MISSED!

VOICE OF WAR by ZACK ARGYLE

Check it out on Goodreads

Review Link: Voice of War Review

My Thoughts:

I really enjoyed this book and can happily tell you the audiobook is phenomenal too! Zack has given us an incredibly beautiful and well thought out world in Voice of War and one with an even cooler magic system! The characters are fab and the plot is one that has you always reading more!

THE STONE KNIFE by Anna Stephens

Check it out on Goodreads

Review Link: The Stone Knife Review

My Thoughts:

I really truly loved this book, it is inspired by the mesoamerican history and was utterly refreshing to read. I love the topic of mesoamerica so I was chuffed to find this gem on NetGalley! Anna does not disappoint, her characters are brilliant and she has created an utterly realistic and well grounded world in which they reside ming for an incredible read.


Ok, so the bit of the post you actually wanted to read…

You know, I said that this month was going to be hard, and I guess in a sense it is because this month was an epic month of reading for me. Some of the books I have read have been incomparable and are winners in their own right. If I could, I would name more than one Book of the Month…but I can’t!

Although, in terms of a winner…any books of the same series will be counted as one seen as though that is the way I have set them up in this post!

Todays winner is going to be chosen based off of which one got an immediate response from me, a response that was stronger than the other books, you know? No, ok…

Well, while I was writing my thoughts for each one of these books, only one had me excited all over again just thinking about how I could describe what a joy this book was. I will always find several enthusiastic words to describe this author and their writings! There is no caveat with todays winner, I would recommend it to everyone, even people who don’t read the genre!

So, without further ado, this months BOOK OF THE MONTH goes to..

BOOK 1 & 2 OF THE LAST WAR TRILOGY BY MIKE SHACKLE


Well that’s is fellow book friends! Thank you for reading, feel free to comment here or on Twitter if you have read and loved/hated any of my reads this month. Also, let me know what your favourite read was this month.