9 sept. 2016

REVIEW : A Torch Against the Night by Sabaa Tahir


A Torch Against the Night - Sabaa Tahir
Publisher : Razorbill
Release Date : August 30th 2016
Genres : YA, Fantasy
Pages : 452
Rating : ★★

Elias and Laia are running for their lives. After the events of the Fourth Trial, Martial soldiers hunt the two fugitives as they flee the city of Serra and undertake a perilous journey through the heart of the Empire.

Laia is determined to break into Kauf—the Empire’s most secure and dangerous prison—to save her brother, who is the key to the Scholars’ survival. And Elias is determined to help Laia succeed, even if it means giving up his last chance at freedom.

But dark forces, human and otherworldly, work against Laia and Elias. The pair must fight every step of the way to outsmart their enemies: the bloodthirsty Emperor Marcus, the merciless Commandant, the sadistic Warden of Kauf, and, most heartbreaking of all, Helene—Elias’s former friend and the Empire’s newest Blood Shrike.

Bound to Marcus’s will, Helene faces a torturous mission of her own—one that might destroy her: find the traitor Elias Veturius and the Scholar slave who helped him escape…and kill them both.
So many emotions.

I can honestly say A Torch Against the Night is one of the best sequel I've ever read.
This time; the story is told from Helene's perspective too and even though I wasn't interested in her at the beginning of the book, I learnt to like her and found myself eager to read her journey. She has to make a tough decision : Choose between duty and love. 

She has to prove her strength while protecting everything she has under the threat of the Emperor. Even though I liked her perspective, I didn't feel emotionally invested. I couldn't relate to her and I didn't really care about her pain. It was entertaining but not gripping.
Unlike Elias and Laia's point of view. My heart couldn't keep up with all of the plot twists. The moment I processed an information, Tahir dropped another bomb on me. I've had a lot of theories while reading it... I was wrong about all of them. 

It is so well-plotted. Every page brims with tension. Every character grow. And while this is not the most original storyline, Tahir stands out with her compelling writing.
It's not as brutal as the last book but it's still dark. I loved the new characters introduced but some things never change : I hate the Commandant. She could have the most painful past ever, I'd still hate her. I knew she was awful but it's still surprising to see how far she's ready to go.

This sequel is full of surprises. Many secrets are revealed and pieces of the puzzle slowly come to place. Whether the end is a cliffhanger or not seems to be debated but in my opinion, it is. The end made me keen to read the next book. Seriously, I need it now. How can I wait now that I know what I know ?!

Anyway, A Torch Against the Night is mind-blowing.

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