Overall: 4.3/5 Stars
Plot and Themes: 4/5
Awesomeness Factor: 5/5
Review In A Nutshell: As She Ascends is a great sequel, improving on every aspect of the first book.
// As She Ascends Content Warning: Violence, death, anxiety, panic attacks, animal (dragon) abuse mentioned //
– Premise –
As She Ascends picks up right after the first book, Before She Ignites. This book follows Mira and her friends on the run, desperate to save the dragons she loves and the Fallen Isles.
– Setting –
I really love the setting of these books. Each island in The Fallen Isles is so unique and well developed. The religion and mythology behind everything are just as fascinating as the plot. There are also so much more dragons in this book! If you were upset about the lack of dragons in book one, don’t worry. As She Ascends is filled with so many awesome dragons that I absolutely adore.
– Writing –
Jodi Meadow’s writing style has an edge of flair that makes the prose beautiful and vivid, but doesn’t make it feel dense. It’s the perfect combination of easy to read and interesting to read. She also manages to write Mira’s anxiety and counting compulsion so well, and integrate it into every aspect of the writing. As someone with anxiety and OCD tendencies, I loved seeing how it was portrayed and done so well.
Another thing that has been improved from the first book. If you wanted more action or a quicker pace in Before She Ignites, you will be very happy reading the sequel. I went through this book so much quicker than I thought I would. I would blink, and 50 pages flew by. This 500-something page book only took me three sittings to get through (and it would have been two if I wasn’t interrupted).
– Characters –
I love all of these characters. Mira has grown so much from the start of the first book and I’m so happy with the character she’s become. Aaru is such an interesting character as well. This book really fleshes out his personality and gives insight into his past that I was craving in the first. He even has his own short flashback chapters that I adored. His relationship with Mira is the definition of slow burn, but I found myself loving it much more in this book than I did in the first. The rest of Mira’s group are also interesting, but Aaru and Mira definitely stole the show for me.
– Conclusion –
Pros– Fast pace, diverse cast with LGBT and anxiety rep.
Cons– I really could have used a reread of the first book before jumping in. There was a lot I forgot that was important in this book.
Overall- 4.3/5 stars.
As She Ascends is an epic adventure that you will never want to close.