Kicking off the Ice Like Fire blog tour, with an intro to the trilogy by author Sara Raasch and an excerpt from the the first chapter of the sequel to Snow Like Ashes:
Intro to the Trilogy
by Sara Raasch
The SNOW LIKE ASHES trilogy is about a sixteen-year-old girl named Meira who is one of the last surviving refugees from the Kingdom of Winter. In the first book, SNOW LIKE ASHES, she’s trying to help the other refugees free their enslaved kingdom from the tyrannical king of Spring. ICE LIKE FIRE, the sequel, starts three months after the end of SNOW LIKE ASHES, with Meira and her group dealing with the repercussions of everything that happened at the end of SLA (SPOILERS): Winter is now free, the king of Spring is dead, and Meira is the true queen of Winter.
excerpt from Ice Like Fire
Five dented helmets sit lopsided over five equally dented breastplates; five black suns shine, scratched yet distinct, on the silver metal. More soldiers than I could ever take on my own, but as I stand in the center of their ring, boots planted in the snow, I cock an eyebrow at the closest one, the calm that precedes a fight descending over me.
My chakram already rests in my hand, but part of me doesn’t want to throw it just yet, reveling in the feel of its smooth handle against my palm. Dendera thought herself so clever, hiding it where she did—but really, giving it to the Cordellan soldiers was almost too easy. Where else would I go for a weapon if not the weapons tent?
“Do it!” comes a high-pitched squeal.
“Shh, she’ll hear you!” A deluge of shushing follows when I snap my head toward the row of boulders outside my ring of mock enemies. A cluster of small heads ducks behind the largest rock.
“She saw us!” “You’re standing on my foot!” “Be quiet!”
A smile flutters on my lips. When I face the closest of the soldiers again, the pile of snow within the dented helmet and breastplate sags a little, knocked askew by the same gust of icy wind that beats at my skirt. I’m not in battle gear—I’m in a sleeveless gown of pleated ivory fabric, my hair done up in elaborate braids. My “enemies” are stacks of snow that I hastily kicked together and dressed in the discarded Spring armor that litters my kingdom. My audience isn’t an army, but a group of curious Winterian children who followed me out of the city. The chakram is real, though, and the way my body reacts to it makes this almost believable.
I’m a soldier. Angra’s men surround me. And I will kill every one of them. My knees bend, hips pivoting, shoulders twisting and muscles knotting up. Inhale, exhale, spin, release—the moves rise from my memory, as ingrained into my body as the act of walking, despite the fact that it’s been three months since I last threw my chakram.
The blade breaks out of my palm with a hiss that punctures the cold air. It whirls into the closest enemy, rebounds off a rock, knocks into the next soldier, and sings back to my hand. Every taut nerve relaxes and I exhale, long, deep, pure. Snow above, that feels good. I let the chakram fly again, and again, finishing off the remaining soldiers. Cheers erupt from behind me, tiny voices laughing as snowflakes settle over the fallen bodies of my victims. I stay in the position of my last catch, hips bent and chakram firm in my hand, but the illusion is thoroughly broken now—in the best way.
Extracted from Ice Like Fire by Sara Raasch. Published 2015 by Balzer + Bray, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.
About Ice Like Fire
It’s been three months since the Winterians were freed and Spring’s king, Angra, disappeared—thanks largely to the help of Cordell.
Meira just wants her people to be safe. When Cordellan debt forces the Winterians to dig their mines for payment, they unearth something powerful and possibly dangerous: Primoria’s lost chasm of magic. Theron sees this find as an opportunity—with this much magic, the world can finally stand against threats like Angra. But Meira fears the danger the chasm poses—the last time the world had access to so much magic, it spawned the Decay. So when the king of Cordell orders the two on a mission across the kingdoms of Primoria to discover the chasm’s secrets, Meira plans to use the trip to garner support to keep the chasm shut and Winter safe—even if it means clashing with Theron. But can she do so without endangering the people she loves?
Mather just wants to be free. The horrors inflicted on the Winterians hang fresh and raw in Januari—leaving Winter vulnerable to Cordell’s growing oppression. When Meira leaves to search for allies, he decides to take Winter’s security into his own hands. Can he rebuild his broken kingdom and protect them from new threats?
As the web of power and deception weaves tighter, Theron fights for magic, Mather fights for freedom—and Meira starts to wonder if she should be fighting not just for Winter, but for the world.
About Sara Raasch
Sara Raasch has known she was destined for bookish things since the age of five, when her friends had a lemonade stand and she tagged along to sell her hand-drawn picture books too. Not much has changed since then — her friends still cock concerned eyebrows when she attempts to draw things and her enthusiasm for the written word still drives her to extreme measures. Her debut YA fantasy, SNOW LIKE ASHES, the first in a trilogy, came out October 14, 2014 from Balzer + Bray. It does not feature her hand-drawn pictures.