Series: Blood and Ash #02
Published by Blue Box Press on September 24, 2020
Genres: fantasy, fantasy romance
Also by this author: From Blood and Ash
Also in this series: From Blood and Ash
Everything Poppy has ever believed in is a lie, including the man she was falling in love with. Thrust among those who see her as a symbol of a monstrous kingdom, she barely knows who she is without the veil of the Maiden. But what she does know is that nothing is as dangerous to her as him. The Dark One. The Prince of Atlantia. He wants her to fight him, and that’s one order she’s more than happy to obey. He may have taken her, but he will never have her.
Casteel Da’Neer is known by many names and many faces. His lies are as seductive as his touch. His truths as sensual as his bite. Poppy knows better than to trust him. He needs her alive, healthy, and whole to achieve his goals. But he’s the only way for her to get what she wants—to find her brother Ian and see for herself if he has become a soulless Ascended. Working with Casteel instead of against him presents its own risks. He still tempts her with every breath, offering up all she’s ever wanted. Casteel has plans for her. Ones that could expose her to unimaginable pleasure and unfathomable pain. Plans that will force her to look beyond everything she thought she knew about herself—about him. Plans that could bind their lives together in unexpected ways that neither kingdom is prepared for. And she’s far too reckless, too hungry, to resist the temptation.
But unrest has grown in Atlantia as they await the return of their Prince. Whispers of war have become stronger, and Poppy is at the very heart of it all. The King wants to use her to send a message. The Descenters want her dead. The wolven are growing more unpredictable. And as her abilities to feel pain and emotion begin to grow and strengthen, the Atlantians start to fear her. Dark secrets are at play, ones steeped in the blood-drenched sins of two kingdoms that would do anything to keep the truth hidden. But when the earth begins to shake, and the skies start to bleed, it may already be too late.
I didn’t think this book was quite as good as the first in the series.
The good things: the developing relationship between Poppy and Casteel; Poppy’s continued growth now that she is without chains; good steamy scenes; Kieran and his family; somewhat interesting world history/building; secrets dropped at unexpected times; the action (when it happens); cliffhanger ending suitable for keeping me interested in the next book.
The less-good things: There is SO MUCH TALKING. Seriously. Every conversation Poppy has ends up as a history lesson. The action in the story is solid, and I wish there was more of it. There’s got to be a better way of getting information into this story than Poppy asking questions and other characters monologuing an answer.
Will I continue to read the series? Probably.
- “Ahhh the subplots (aka gaping plot holes). It felt like tropes were being introduced just for the sake of ticking off that trope. Heartmates? The Guard? These were some really interesting details, but that’s drained when you get next to no information about them. I think that Armentrout should have had a bigger focus on a few central themes – although it did make me smirk sometimes when I spotted the introduction of one and thought I know where this is going…” — Hundreds & Thousands of Books
- “A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire is a highly addicting read. It develops the characters while including just enough action and suspense to move the story along. Once you start this book, you won’t want to put it down.” — Bookish Wayfarer
- “I know this review may seem harsh but I am simply disappointed. The potential is there for this to be an absolutely excellent fantasy series and I don’t want to see that ruined. I think the issue lies with how quickly Armentrout churns out these books. I would rather wait six months to a year and get a really good book instead of a mediocre and poorly plotted one.” — The Book and Beauty Blog