Choas and order are literally living.

A while ago, I was delighted to receive an advance review copy of Raining Embers by Jessica Dall. It has taken me a really long time to post a review, but that does not reflect what the book is. I immensely enjoyed Raining Embers, and I actually had trouble putting it down once I started.

Now…. my review:

The Characters: Raining Embers goes back and forth between the two main characters’ point of view; which offers refreshing transitions in between chapters and makes you wonder just what is going to happen next.

Briar is a stubborn and opinionated. She is the daughter of an aristocratic librarian, but she would rather avoid social engagements of all kinds. In the beginning of the book, she is dealing with a constant headache by drinking and sleeping far too much. (And that headache actually becomes a very important plot point.) She starts out as someone without any plans, but that quickly changes once she is thrown into the plot. She is an interesting character from the start.

Palmer Tash is a orphan who is trying to make his way in the world with as little trouble as possible. In the beginning of the book, he is doing what he needs to do and nothing more. He seems to be waiting without realizing it. As the story progresses, he becomes older and maybe a little bit wiser.

Briar and Palmer’s connection is apparent the moment they are in the some room together. And it only grows and becomes more complex. They are certainly a good team, and they manage to keep each other relatively balanced.

The Scene: The city of Latysia has a distantly Italian resistance feel. As the scenes change, you get a pretty good feel of what their world is like. Raining Embers is most certainly not high-fantasy, nor it is historical fiction. It is a brilliant mix of light fantasy and pseudo-historical fiction.

What I liked: Raining Embers has an underlaying sense of humor that is amazing. I also liked how it is constantly acknowledging that no one is perfect. The book is also filled with strong female characters and men who manage to stand beside them as equals.

One of the great things about Raining Embers is that it turns chaos and order into actual people. Which in turn causes the chaos that you can expect…. with a few wonderful surprises thrown in.

What I disliked: The is a very short list of things I did not like… Because of it’s size, Raining Embers is unable to go in depth, but that fact does not take away from what the book is. It is a book that might make fantasy-purists angry, but that is part of why it is so wonderful.

Would I recommend Raining Embers: Definitively. Especially if you are someone who has not read very much fantasy, or want something different than what you will usually find on a fantasy bookshelf.