Review – Smoke in the sun by Renée Ahdieh

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September 9, 2018 by ceresbooksworld


Smoke in the sun b Renée Ahdieh

Book two in Flame in the mist duology

Publisher: G.P Putnam’s sons

Publication date: June 5th, 2018

Source: Hardcover

Rating: 5 hearts




For weeks, seventeen-year-old Mariko pretended to be a boy to infiltrate the notorious Black Clan and bring her would-be murderer to justice. She didn’t expect to find a place for herself among the group of fighters—a life of usefulness—and she certainly didn’t expect to fall in love. Now she heads to the imperial castle to resume a life she never wanted to save the boy she loves.

Ōkami has been captured, and his execution is a certainty. Mariko will do what she must to ensure his survival—even marry the sovereign’s brother, saying goodbye to a life with Ōkami forever.

As Mariko settles into her days at court—making both friends and enemies—and attempting Ōkami’s rescue at night, the secrets of the royal court begin to unravel as competing agendas collide. One arrow sets into motion a series of deadly events even the most powerful magic cannot contain. Mariko and Ōkami risk everything to right past wrongs and restore the honor of a kingdom thrown into chaos by a sudden war, hoping against hope that when the dust settles, they will find a way to be together.

Set against the backdrop of feudal Japan, Smoke in the Sun is the breathless, romantic, not-to-be-missed fiery conclusion to a spell-binding adventure.


Okami is now a prisoner of the emperor, Mariko will marry the emperor’s brother as agreed, she will also have to try to save the man she loves before his execution.

Renee Ahdieh really has an extraordinary gift for telling stories, the story is exciting, we are taken into the life of Okami and Mariko.

Mariko makes the decision to marry Prince Raiden in order to be able to the Black Clan, I love her way of seeing others, she is full of compassion, even while living in the palace she does not treat her servants badly. She managed to gain Raiden’s respect, which was not won.

Okami will have time to think while he is locked up and he will also have time to make decisions about his future. I love Okami, he is respected by his people and the decisions he makes are always respected for a good reason. His love for Mariko is pure.

We have the views of several characters in this volume and I loved each of them. We see Yumi, Raiden, Tsuneoki, Kanaka and Kenshin.

I don’t liked Raiden, at the beginning of the book he is heartless and has a blind trust in his brother even if the latter does not always treat him with respect. But as the book evolves, he changes slowly but surely.

Yumi is Tsuneoki’s sister, she will help Mariko, she tries to prove to her brother that she can be part of the Black Clan.

Kenshin will behave in a strange way with Mariko, he is however his twin brother but the tension between them is palpable. This will not prevent him from protecting her anyway even if he thinks what she is doing is treason against the emperor.

I really liked the story, the characters, the fact that it happens in feudal Japan times is just great. I had a really good time reading this duology and I really recommend it.

Quick word: An exciting adventure in feudal Japan.


Okami est maintenant prisonnier de l’empereur, Mariko va se marier au frère de l’empereur comme convenu, elle va aussi devoir essayer de sauver l’homme qu’elle aime avant son exécution.

Renée Ahdieh a vraiment un don extraordinaire pour raconter des histoires, l’histoire est passionnante, on est emporté dans la vie d’Okami et Mariko.

Mariko prend la décision de se marier au Prince Raiden afin de pouvoir le Black Clan, j’aime sa façon de voir les autres, elle est pleine de compassion, même en vivant au palais elle ne traite pas ses servantes n’importe comment. Elle réussit à gagner le respect de Raiden, ce qui n’était  pas gagné.

Okami va avoir le temps de réfléchir pendant qu’il est enfermé et il va aussi avoir le temps de prendre des décisions quant à son avenir. J’adore Okami, il est respecté par son peuple et les décisions qu’il prend le sont toujours pour une bonne raison.

Nous avons les points de vue de plusieurs personnages dans ce tome et j’ai aimé chacun d’eux. Nous voyons celui de Yumi, de Raiden, de Tsuneoki, de Kanaka et de Kenshin.

J’ai bien aimé Raiden, au début du livre il est sans cœur et a une confiance aveugle en son frère même si ce dernier ne le traite pas toujours avec respect. Mais au fur et à mesure du livre, il évolue, lentement mais surement.

Yumi est la sœur de Tsuneoki, elle aidera Mariko, elle essaie de prouver à son frère qu’elle peut faire partie du Black Clan.

Kenshin va se comporter de manière étrange avec Mariko, il est pourtant son frère jumeau mais la tension entre eux deux est palpable. Cela ne l’empêchera quand même pas de la protéger quoiqu’il arrive même si il pense que ce qu’elle fait est de la trahison envers l’empereur.

J’ai vraiment aimé l’histoire, les personnages, le fait que cela se passe au Japon à l’époque féodale est juste génial. J’ai passé un très bon moment en lisant cette duologie et je la conseille vraiment.

En bref : Une aventure passionnante dans un Japon à l’époque féodale.

About the author

Ahdieh always enjoyed reading as a young child, and found herself drawn to fantasy, romance, and other young adult novels. As a child of mixed race, since her mother was from South Korea, she found herself drawn to novels that supported diversity. She drew inspiration from a variety of authors, such as Paulo CoelhoIsabel AllendeF. Scott FitzgeraldRabindranath TagoreDiana GabaldonNaguib MahfouzAnne RiceSalmon Rushdie, and Libba Bray

On May 12, 2015, G. P. Putnam’s Sons released The Wrath and the Dawn, which is the first novel in her duology. For this novel, she envisioned a re-imagining of One Thousand and One Nights from The Arabian Knight series, which is a famous collection of Arabian, Indian, and Persian folktale. She also drew inspiration from her husband’s family, who are Persian. Due to the success of this novel, she soon released the sequel The Rose & the Dagger on April 26, 2016. Though she first imagined this series as a trilogy, her publisher encouraged her to focus on a duology, as to not tire out the series. This led her to create three other short stories that take place in the same world as her duology, but follow the paths of different characters. These three short stories were all released within a few months of each other in 2016.

On May 16, 2017, Ahdieh released Flame in the Mist, which is separate from the world she created for The Wrath and the Dawn. For this novel, she found inspiration in strong female characters, such as Hermione Granger and was highly influenced by Mulan. Since she felt out of place at times as a mixed race child, she finds herself creating novels that expand on different perspectives and wants to create characters that show varying levels of strength

Her current agent is Barbara Poelle of the Irene Goodman Literature Agency.




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