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May 28, 2024

The Ashen Tomb by Gillian Grant ~ a Review

by MK French

When the lost tomb of the Ashen Emperor is rediscovered, all the countries of Avedolon send representatives to claim the secrets and riches hidden inside. Three in particular are willing to do just about anything to get what they want and don't care who stands in their way. The Summoner is a resurrected princess with magic and a need for vengeance. The Weed is a killer posing as a knight. The Warder is a powerful magic user hoping to free himself and the Weed from their masters, with his sanity on the line. With multiple trials within the tomb and horrors awaiting the representatives, this trio bands together to survive. They have to survive not just the tomb, but the other factions and their own fears of betrayal.

Amazon affiliate links are used on this site. A free book was provided for an honest review.

book cover of fantasy novel The Ashen Tomb by Gillian Grant
May 2024; Indie; 9798986858920
ebook; fantasy

The story is heavily influenced by the 1999 classic The Mummy, and I love that about this book. It's framed as a story being told, and we get to see Reece's POV (the Weed), Sarea (the Summoner), and Folke (the Warder). Together, the three form an uneasy alliance to make their way into the tomb. Spirits, traps, hungry creatures, and rival teams make it too difficult to go alone. The descriptions are very detailed, giving us a clear idea of the dangers they're enduring. Folke and Reece don't trust anyone, given their time working for the Lost Ring band of thieves, and need a reward to buy their freedom. Sarea is looking for answers to mythical questions, which at first seem like nothing but stories from over three hundred years ago. Eventually, we learn who she really is, and the secret actually buried in the tomb along with the lost king. The Duel serves a purpose, and the known history of the world has served to bury that history. It's a much bigger problem than a single tomb, with death as its reward.

This is the first book in a new series, where magic, mercenaries, thieves, and royals exist, with different understanding of the mysteries of Avedolon. The average person doesn't know about the Duel, leviathan, or the gods that shaped the world. We get to see the trio in action, root for them, get stung by betrayal, and shocked by the turn of events toward the end. There will be more books, and I'm sure it'll be just as exciting as this one. 

Buy The Ashen Tomb at Amazon

Born and raised in New York City, M.K. French started writing stories when very young, dreaming of different worlds and places to visit. She always had an interest in folklore, fairy tales, and the macabre, which has definitely influenced her work. She currently lives in the Midwest with her husband, three young children, and a golden retriever.

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