FRIDAY FIRSTS

[FRIDAY FIRST] From Blood and Ash by Jennifer L. Armentrout (Blood and Ash #1)

For Friday I have this bookish meme, Friday First, in which I feature my current read and dive into it a bit more. I came across this article over at Tenacious Reader’s blog and fell in love at the spot, so I was excited to write it myself as well. 

| What kind of article is Friday First? |

It will feature the first few sentences/paragraph of my current book and my first impressions as well. It’s meant to be a quick and easy way to share a bit about what I am reading, and I would love to hear others join in sharing their current reads as well.

The format is really simple. Include a quote. Include first impressions, it will not be a long drawn out analysis of the text or grand speculation of what is to come. Just a brief overview of how I’m feeling about the beginning of the book.

| Today’s Book |

From Blood and Ash by Jennifer L. Armentrout 
#1 in Blood and Ash
Genre: Fantasy Romance
Published by: Blue Box Press 
Pages: 634, paperback

About From Blood and Ash:

A Maiden

Chosen from birth to usher in a new era, Poppy’s life has never been her own. The life of the Maiden is solitary. Never to be touched. Never to be looked upon. Never to be spoken to. Never to experience pleasure. Waiting for the day of her Ascension, she would rather be with the guards, fighting back the evil that took her family, than preparing to be found worthy by the gods. But the choice has never been hers.

A Duty

The entire kingdom’s future rests on Poppy’s shoulders, something she’s not even quite sure she wants for herself. Because a Maiden has a heart. And a soul. And longing. And when Hawke, a golden-eyed guard honor bound to ensure her Ascension, enters her life, destiny and duty become tangled with desire and need. He incites her anger, makes her question everything she believes in, and tempts her with the forbidden.

A Kingdom

Forsaken by the gods and feared by mortals, a fallen kingdom is rising once more, determined to take back what they believe is theirs through violence and vengeance. And as the shadow of those cursed draws closer, the line between what is forbidden and what is right becomes blurred. Poppy is not only on the verge of losing her heart and being found unworthy by the gods, but also her life when every blood-soaked thread that holds her world together begins to unravel.

| First Paragraph |

“They found Finley tis eve, just outside the Blood Forest, dead.” 
I looked up from my cards and across the crimson painted surface to the three men sitting at the table. I’d chosen this spot for a reason. I’d… felt nothing from them as I drifted between the crowded tables earlier. No pain, physical or emotional. 

Normally, I didn’t prod to see if someone was in pain. Doing so without reason felt incredibly invasive, but in crowds, it was difficult to control just how much I allowed myself to feel. There was always someone whose pain cut so deeply, was so raw, that their anguish became a palpable entity I didn’t even have to open my senses to feel- that I couldn’t ignore and walk away from. They projected their agony onto the world around them. I was forbidden to do anything but ignore. To never speak of the gift bestowed upon me by the gods and to never, ever go beyond sensing to actually doing something about it. Not that I always did what I was supposed to do.
Obviously. 

But these men were fine when I reached out with my senses to avoid those in great pain, which was surprising, given what they did for a living. They were guards from the Rise- the mountainous wall constructed from the limestone and iron mined from the Elysium Peaks. Ever since the War of Two Kings ended four centuries ago, the Rise had enclosed all of Masadonia, and every city in the Kingdom of Solis was protected by a Rise. Smaller versions surrounded villages and training posts, the farming communities, and other sparsely populated towns. What the guards saw on a regular basis, what they had to do, often let them in anguish, rather it be from injuries or from what went deeper than torn skin and bruised bones. 

Tonight, they weren’t just absent of anguish, but also their armor and uniforms. Instead, they donned loose shirts and buckskin breeches. Still, I knew, even off duty, they were watchful for signs of the dreaded mist and the horror that came with it, and for those who worked against the future of the kingdom. They were still armed to the teeth.
As was I.

| First Impression |

 I’m currently on page 166/634 and so far it’s definitely fun to read! In the beginning, I have to say that it took some time to get acquainted with the author’s way of writing in this book, because it’s not what I was expecting to get when starting an Armentrout book. It has quite long sentences and the writing is really elaborate. So yes, that took a couple of pages to getting used to haha. On the other hand, this way of writing really adds depth and detail to the story, especially seeing it’s a 1 POV story telling. And once I was a couple chapters in, I couldn’t flip the pages fast enough and it’s been a fast-paced read for me ever since. 

I’m curious to see how the story is going to develop further from now on. So far, the details put out there of the workings of this world are interesting and the story-line is still building. The fantasy/paranormal elements that I got aquinted with already are interesting and give out a promise that it’s going to be a fun and wild ride – I’m hoping I’ll be right haha. I like the characters so far as well; one more than the other of course. Regarding the story-line, it has been a bit predicting so far, so I’m hoping there’ll be some surprising plot twists still coming my way. Seeing it’s a 600+ pages counting book, I have hopes that this is going to happen. 

Overall, I have a positive first impression of the book. At this point though, I don’t think it’ll be a 5 star read for me, but definitely a solid 4. I’m curious to find out what rating I’ll actually give when I’m finished.

What are you currently reading and did it start out good? Love to hear your thoughts about your current read!

Thanks for reading!

With Love, 

                    Melissa

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