The Smoke Thieves by Sally Green

The Smoke Thieves has five interwoven main characters and storylines.  There is Princess Catherine of Brigant who lives in a world where women are second class citizens and the men are basically arseholes.  Then there’s her guard Sir Ambrose, seemingly the only worthwhile Brigant man.  Catherine is about to be shipped off for an arranged marriage but cannot stop herself thinking about Ambrose.  There’s a servant from Calidor, March, his people were decimated in a war between Calidor and Brigant and he is out for revenge.  Tash is a young demon hunter on the Northern Plateau who dreams of simple things like buying pretty grey boots.  Finally, there’s Edyon, he’s a young man adrift in the world, held back by his own beginnings. 

I’ll admit I found it difficult to get into this book.  I can deal with lots of character perspectives but starting a story with five perspectives can be a bit much.  However, I persevered and have to say I found myself loving this book.  Once I got into it and started to see how the different storylines were intertwined it was really amazing.  I’m seriously impressed with the author, they did an amazing job of bringing characters together in a natural way. 

My favourite character was not actually one of the mains though which now that I think of it is pretty weird.  In fact, you don’t even meet him until almost 300 pages in! Anyway, my favourite character was definitely Prince Tzsayn, he was so sarcastic and gallant.  My boyfriend kept catching me smiling to myself whenever I was reading a scene with him in.  I’m hoping for more for Tzsayn in The Demon World (not sure how I’ll cope waiting until August to read it!). 

Out of the main characters though it’s difficult to choose between Catherine and Edyon.  Catherine grows so much in the book.  I loved seeing her stand up to her brother and become a strong character.  Edyon is just so sweet though, he kept getting himself in trouble over and over again, but I never felt frustrated with him. 

I think the characters are my favourite thing about this book.  Sally Green managed to create these wonderfully believable characters with their own distinct voice and I got seriously invested with all of them. 

The story definitely kept me on my toes, especially once I’d gotten in to it.  The last half is quite fast paced as the storylines come together and questions are answered.  I found myself reading the last hundred pages very quickly because I just wanted to find out what happened. 

As always, I hate a cliff-hanger.  It is my fault for not checking whether the next book was out though.  Overall, I think this is a great book suitable for anyone interested in YA fantasy.  I found it similar to some of the later throne of glass books due to the number of perspectives and the way the story linked together.  I gave it a 5/5 rating!

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