Hi everyone! Let’s jump right into today’s post.The Tiger's Watch by Julia Ember
Ashes of Gold #1
Published by Harmony Ink Press on August 22nd 2017
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
The author/publisher provided a free copy of the book for review purposes - thank you! Receiving a review copy does not guarantee a positive review and therefore do not affect the opinion or content of the review.
Sixteen-year-old Tashi has spent their life training as a inhabitor, a soldier who spies and kills using a bonded animal. When the capital falls after a brutal siege, Tashi flees to a remote monastery to hide. But the invading army turns the monastery into a hospital, and Tashi catches the eye of Xian, the regiment’s fearless young commander.
Tashi spies on Xian’s every move. In front of his men, Xian seems dangerous, even sadistic, but Tashi discovers a more vulnerable side of the enemy commander—a side that draws them to Xian.
When their spying unveils that everything they’ve been taught is a lie, Tashi faces an impossible choice: save their country or the boy they’re growing to love. Though Tashi grapples with their decision, their volatile bonded tiger doesn't question her allegiances. Katala slaughters Xian’s soldiers, leading the enemy to hunt her. But an inhabitor’s bond to their animal is for life—if Katala dies, so will Tashi.
This was a great read, albeit it is pretty short, 180 pages, which surprised me as I didn’t realize the length of the novel while I was reading. I loved that it was a quick read because most fantasy books take at least three or four hours to finish and this one probably only took one or two hours to complete. That makes this a great read while commuting or if you only have a little time to read and you’d rather not start a 400-page book. The downside to it being short is I think there could have been a bit more world building because I was left with some questions about the world. Also, it was a bit rushed, cramming a lot into just 180 pages.
I loved that this story’s main character is genderfluid! Even more than that, I love how accepting the other characters are of Taishi being genderfluid. It pretty much went like this:
“By the way, use they, not him.” – Taishi’s friend
“Okay” – Other character
About the Author:
Originally from Chicago, Julia Ember now resides in Edinburgh, Scotland. She spends her days working in the book trade and her nights writing teen fantasy novels. Her hobbies include riding horses, starting far too many craft projects, PokemonGo and looking after her city-based menagerie of pets with names from Harry Potter. Luna Lovegood and Sirius Black the cats currently run her life.