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Presented by State Library Victoria

Flame in the Mist (Flame in the Mist #1) by Renée Ahdieh

You know that moment when you just need to read a book and you pick it up because theres so much around it and then read it and discover that it’s not as great of a read as you hoped it would be?

Well yeah that describes this book.

Although written well with incredible world building that lifted my initial review from a 3 star to a 3.5 rating, I found that there was so much I disagreed with in this book and it just broke my heart a little because I spent months just wanting to read it and eagerly looking in its direction on the bookshelf.

But what is Flame in the mist about you ask? well it’s basically about this girl named Mariko who after being attacked joins a bandit group to uncover who was behind her ambush. Disguised as a man, Mariko infiltrates the ranks and gets closer to her enemies only to uncover a web of lies that secrets that could change her world as she knows it.

So first up: in the actual blurb it says that she disguises herself as a peasant boy (Okay yeah sure it’s set in an ancient Japan-esque vibey setting around what I thought to be around the 19th century where women didn’t have as much of a voice as we currently do present day) and yes I do applaud the author Renée Ahdieh for writing a book with strong feminist views.

Mariko for one was written to be a feminist herself with her wits and intelligence on her side she knew what to do next and it was highly emphasised in the book that she was a courageous and strong female main character.

(view spoiler)

But I just wanted to know more about Mariko more than “Oh she’s so smart. She’s smarter than her brother” I wanted to know what she did in her spare time and I wanted to have more of a motivation behind her joining the Black Clan. I can’t wait to read the second book to see if there would be more backstory for the clan or if there would be as abrupt romance in the sequel.

Actual rating: 3.5 stars


julianne Centre for Youth Literature

Yep I know that book hype disappointment well. It's the pits! The only cure is to read another book with no hype and love it and feel as if you have uncovered a treasure. Keep reading!

6th Feb, 19

Thank you! I've read heaps since Flame in the mist and can tell you that they were all amazing! I still think I may read the sequel soon just to see if I enjoyed it more than this book

6th Feb, 19