Welcome back to my re-reading series!
In my introduction to this series (which can be found here), I decided to start with The Jasmine Throne by Tasha Suri, as the sequel is out this month (at the time of writing this, I have finished my arc of The Oleander Sword!) I have reviewed this book in the past, so it will be interesting to see how my thoughts have changed, if at all.
Exiled by her despotic brother when he claimed their father’s kingdom, Malini spends her days trapped in the Hirana: an ancient, cliffside temple that was once the source of the magical deathless waters, but is now little more than a decaying ruin.
A servant in the regent’s household, Priya makes the treacherous climb to the Hirana every night to clean Malini’s chambers. She is happy to play the role of a drudge so long as it keeps anyone from discovering her ties to the temple and the dark secret of her past.
But when Malini bears witness to Priya’s true nature, their destinies become irrevocably tangled. One is a vengeful princess seeking to steal a throne. The other is a powerful priestess seeking to find her family. Together, they will set an empire ablaze.
- Explicit violence including immolation and self-immolation
- Gender-based violence (this does not include sexual assault)
- Homophobia and internalised homophobia
- Suicidal ideation
- Abusive family dynamics
- Child murder
- Body horror (plant-based, cosmic)
- Forced drug use and depictions of addiction/withdrawal
When I first read The Jasmine Throne back in 2021, I found myself enjoying it for a number of reasons. First and foremost was the world building – I love a good bit of world building and I really enjoyed seeing what felt like a much bigger world compared to the world of The Books of Ambha. I loved the intricacies of each kingdom, from the broader differences in religion to the smaller differences in the weapons each kingdom uses. It’s that attention detail that I really enjoyed and it made the world of The Jasmine Throne feel more real.
Having said that, The Jasmine Throne doesn’t really stray very far out of Ahiranya, which isn’t a bad thing. Instead of focusing heavily on the world building in book 1, The Jasmine Throne instead focuses more on the characters and introduces some of the key players in the series. This does mean that The Jasmine Throne is quite a slow book (which I had forgotten about!) – it does feel like not much happens, but again, it’s not a bad thing. Not only does it give you time to really get to know the characters, but it allows you to really take in the details and savour the writing.
I have to say, reading it again this time round, I found myself enjoying it more and I think that was a) because I knew what was going to happen (therefore, less anxious about the fate of some of my favourite characters!) and b) knowing that I had the sequel lined up and ready to dive into!
I’m glad to say my thoughts haven’t changed that much – this is a book that still enjoyed reading and finding little things that I missed the first time round. There is so much I could say about this one, but I’ll stop here before I waffle on too much! Let me know in the comments if you’re planning on reading this any time soon!
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