Books Young Adult Fiction Ashes of Twilight (Ashes Trilogy #1)

Ashes of Twilight (Ashes Trilogy #1) Featured

http://www.yabookscentral.com/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x275s/c5/98/c9/_10634286-1350057974.jpg
 
3.3
 
0.0 (0)
1065   0
Author(s)
Age Range
12+
Release Date
November 13, 2012
ISBN
0312641788
Buy This Book
      
Wren MacAvoy works as a coal miner for a domed city that was constructed in the mid-nineteenth century to protect the royal blood line of England when astronomers spotted a comet on a collision course with Earth. Humanity would be saved by the most groundbreaking technology of the time. But after nearly 200 years of life beneath the dome, society has become complacent and the coal is running out. Plus there are those who wonder, is there life outside the dome or is the world still consumed by fire? When one of Wren's friends escapes the confines of the dome, he is burned alive and put on display as a warning to those seeking to disrupt the dome’s way of life. But Alex’s final words are haunting. “The sky is blue.” What happens next is a whirlwind of adventure, romance, conspiracy and the struggle to stay alive in a world where nothing is as it seems. Wren unwittingly becomes a catalyst for a revolution that destroys the dome and the only way to survive might be to embrace what the entire society has feared their entire existence.

Editor reviews

What I Loved:
The best part of Ashes of Twilight is the writing. Tayler's style suited me well, with pretty sentences and just enough slang that I guessed the book was set in England. By the end of the book, I marked down several quotes I enjoyed. Tayler has a mature writing style, with no abuse of sentence fragments.

Wren MacAvoy wants more out of life. Born a shiner, she climbs out of the mines every day into the more dangerous reaches of her domed world to speculate on what's above. The rulers say that flames fill the world outside, making the dome a necessity, but she does not think she sees flames out there. Wren is a seeker, curious and unwilling to settle for anything, most especially a life she's been told to live and a boy she's been told to marry.

The characters that stole the show were the animals. I just love adorable animals with tons of personality in my fiction, and Tayler included bunches. Even better, none of them die, which there has been altogether to much of in my recent reads. Tayler kills people instead. Cat, a cleverly named cat, is my personal favorite. Pip, a canary, also warms my heart. So do the ponies with whom Wren works in the mines, who would not have survived without her aid. I love Wren and Pace for taking such good care of them, and I love Tayler for not putting animals in just to kill them off tragically.

What Left Me Wanting More:
While I did enjoy Ashes of Twilight, I really wish there had been more to it, something unique. None of the elements herein were unfamiliar to me: the dome, the class hierarchy punishing to those on the bottom-most rungs, the terrible air quality, the mining, the instalove, the abusive guy who wants to marry Wren, the twist regarding Wren's father, or the plot arc. All of this I have read in other dystopian novels, not all together like this, but I would still hope to see something solely of Tayler's creation. I have read a lot of dystopian novels, however, so this might not be an issue for readers without so much knowledge of the genre.

One element which should have been better handled is the inclusion of the biblical references. For whatever reason, the shiners only have one book, The Bible. As such, Wren references scripture a lot, as she does in the first sentence. I never really could see a point made with this. The references come thick and fast at the beginning of the novel, but drop off significantly towards the end, without seeming to impact the plot. These should either have served a plot purpose or be taken out entirely. They were not preachy particularly, just out of place.

Perhaps the worst element is the relationship between Wren and James. He sexually assaults her in an attempt to force him into marriage, and, though she does get mad about that and doesn't fall in love with him, she's too forgiving. Later in the book, she emphasizes multiple times what a great guy he is and that she thinks he'll make some other girl very happy. This reaction makes me VERY uncomfortable.

The Final Verdict:
Ashes of Twilight does have rather a slow pace, but, if you do not mind that, you might enjoy this book. Tayler's debut might work better for those without too much familiarity with the dystopian genre. I probably will try the next book in the series, with hopes of seeing Tayler really break the mold.
Overall rating 
 
3.3
Plot 
 
3.0
Characters 
 
3.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Christina Franke, Editor Reviewed by Christina Franke, Editor December 26, 2012
Last updated: January 02, 2013
Top 10 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (660)

Better for Readers Less Familiar with Dystopian Tropes

What I Loved:
The best part of Ashes of Twilight is the writing. Tayler's style suited me well, with pretty sentences and just enough slang that I guessed the book was set in England. By the end of the book, I marked down several quotes I enjoyed. Tayler has a mature writing style, with no abuse of sentence fragments.

Wren MacAvoy wants more out of life. Born a shiner, she climbs out of the mines every day into the more dangerous reaches of her domed world to speculate on what's above. The rulers say that flames fill the world outside, making the dome a necessity, but she does not think she sees flames out there. Wren is a seeker, curious and unwilling to settle for anything, most especially a life she's been told to live and a boy she's been told to marry.

The characters that stole the show were the animals. I just love adorable animals with tons of personality in my fiction, and Tayler included bunches. Even better, none of them die, which there has been altogether to much of in my recent reads. Tayler kills people instead. Cat, a cleverly named cat, is my personal favorite. Pip, a canary, also warms my heart. So do the ponies with whom Wren works in the mines, who would not have survived without her aid. I love Wren and Pace for taking such good care of them, and I love Tayler for not putting animals in just to kill them off tragically.

What Left Me Wanting More:
While I did enjoy Ashes of Twilight, I really wish there had been more to it, something unique. None of the elements herein were unfamiliar to me: the dome, the class hierarchy punishing to those on the bottom-most rungs, the terrible air quality, the mining, the instalove, the abusive guy who wants to marry Wren, the twist regarding Wren's father, or the plot arc. All of this I have read in other dystopian novels, not all together like this, but I would still hope to see something solely of Tayler's creation. I have read a lot of dystopian novels, however, so this might not be an issue for readers without so much knowledge of the genre.

One element which should have been better handled is the inclusion of the biblical references. For whatever reason, the shiners only have one book, The Bible. As such, Wren references scripture a lot, as she does in the first sentence. I never really could see a point made with this. The references come thick and fast at the beginning of the novel, but drop off significantly towards the end, without seeming to impact the plot. These should either have served a plot purpose or be taken out entirely. They were not preachy particularly, just out of place.

Perhaps the worst element is the relationship between Wren and James. He sexually assaults her in an attempt to force him into marriage, and, though she does get mad about that and doesn't fall in love with him, she's too forgiving. Later in the book, she emphasizes multiple times what a great guy he is and that she thinks he'll make some other girl very happy. This reaction makes me VERY uncomfortable.

The Final Verdict:
Ashes of Twilight does have rather a slow pace, but, if you do not mind that, you might enjoy this book. Tayler's debut might work better for those without too much familiarity with the dystopian genre. I probably will try the next book in the series, with hopes of seeing Tayler really break the mold.

Was this review helpful to you? 
 

User reviews

There are no user reviews for this listing.

Already have an account? or Create an account
 
Powered by JReviews

LATEST YABC BLOG POSTS - BLOG TOURS, ANNOUNCEMENTS, AND GIVEAWAYS

View more blog entries

Latest Book Listings Added

Category: Young Adult Indie
They say before seeking revenge you should first dig two graves. But what the hell do they know? When the...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Young Adult Indie
Wyatt Fox and his friend Eli live in a world where everything, from clothes and cars to weather and weapons,...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Young Adult Indie
For high school sophomore Aiden Storm, Jasmine is everything a teenager could ever want in a girlfriend. But all he...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Kids Indie
When Savannah "Van Demon" Diamond comes to town she ruins everything for Mick. She takes over his favorite hang out,...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Kids Indie
All Mick Bogerman wanted to do was teach his little brother how to swim in the coolest swimming pool in...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
cover_file_How_to_Navigate_Zombie_Cave_and_defeat_Pirate_Pete_MBogermanxs.JPG
Category: Kids Indie
Armed with a pitchfork, miner's hat, and map, Mick Bogerman dares to hunt for pirate treasure in Zombie Cave. His...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Fault in Our Stars meets Eleanor and Park in this exhilarating and heart-wrenching love story about a girl who...
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
A Work of Art cover
What if the one who should protect you is the one who betrays you most of all? Tera is seventeen,...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Nina-the-philosopher.jpg
An over-thinking tween suspects grownups don't really know what they're doing. Full of witty observations, logical questions and laugh-out-loud illustrations,...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Young Adult Indie
Luce is too used to people leaving her life. When nineteen year-old Luce receives an unexpected invitation from her...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Emily's House Cover
Category: Young Adult Indie
What Reviewers Are Saying About Emily's House: "Excellent! Five stars! A fun, action-packed book with depth!" ~Great Summer Reads...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
HALF_TheDeepBeneath_COVER
Category: Young Adult Indie
Do you know the dangers that lurk in the Deep Beneath you? H.A.L.F. 9 has taken his first breath...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Emily's Heart Book Trailer
Category: Young Adult Indie
Seventeen-year-old Emily Adams unintentionally unleashed a shadow god's dark energy power into the world and started an Apocalypse. But Emily...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Cover of Emily's Trial by Natalie Wright
Category: Young Adult Indie
Two years ago, Emily journeyed to Ireland and became a modern Celtic Priestess. Emily was entrusted with the powerful magic...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
EggandSpoon.jpg
Elena Rudina lives in the impoverished Russian countryside. Her father has been dead for years. One of her brothers has...
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
What Lacey needs is a miracle. What she gets is a genie with rules. Lacey Linden is hiding the truth...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Young Adult Indie
Three months before she died Daina Harrow faced a bully at school. Six weeks before she died Daina Harrow suffered...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Kids Fiction
In the Okefenokee Swamp grows a rare and beautiful flower with a power unlike any other. Many have tried to...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Gabi Hernandez chronicles her last year in high school in her diary: college applications, Cindy's pregnancy, Sebastian's coming out, the...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Young Adult Indie
Author Shay West’s, The Adventures of Alexis Davenport Series, takes the reader on a journey through time, and follows the...
 
0.0
 
5.0 (1)