Cover reveal and excerpt from Renee Ahdieh’s SMOKE IN THE SUN

The sequel to FLAME IN THE MIST by Renee Ahdieh has a cover and an excerpt!

Renee Ahdieh, author of YA novels The Wrath and the Dawn and The Rose and the Dagger among others, is back with a highly anticipated sequel. Smoke in the Sun is the follow-up to the much loved Flame in the Mist, which explored Japanese mythology as well as amazing female warriors.

Smoke in the Sun will follow Mariko, who is back in the imperial city of Inako among people she cannot trust, including the prince she’s betrothed to, uncovering more terrible secrets behind the crown and working to fight back against their tyranny.

Check out the cover and read an excerpt from Smoke in the Sun below!

Tall and Proud and Hapless

This was a scene from a story she’d heard before.

A young woman in her rightful place, ensconced at the Golden Castle. Betrothed to the son of the emperor’s favorite consort. Bestowing honor to the Hattori name.

The scented water in the wooden furo felt the same as it did at home. Like heated silk sliding across her skin. The hands scrubbing at Mariko’s arms and shoulders did so in much the same way they’d done at home — without mercy, until her pale skin shone like that of a newborn child, pink and raw and perfect. A servant with permanent lines of judgment marrying her brow yanked a comb inlaid with mother-of-pearl through Mariko’s hair in much the same way her nursemaid had when she was younger.

It all felt so similar.

But if Mariko could be certain of nothing else now, she could be certain her life would never be the same again.

Under her brother’s watchful care, they’d arrived to Inako late last night. To an imperial city cloaked in mourning. To streets teeming with whispers. Today was the funeral of their emperor, who had died suddenly, beneath a veil of suspicion. Upon discovering his body, the empress’ wailing was said to have been heard across all seven maru. Even beyond the castle’s iron-and-gold-plated double gates. She’d screamed murder. Raged at all those nearby, accusing them of treachery. It had taken a flock of maidservants to soothe her and begin ushering her toward her tears.

Toward final whimpers of resignation.

But beneath this hushed intensity seethed something sinister. Last night — when the second pair of gates leading to the castle had creaked closed behind their convoy — the air around Mariko had stilled. The faint breeze blowing past the woven screen of her norimono had sighed a final sigh. An owl had blared across the firmament, its cry ringing off the stone walls.

As though in warning.

Here in Inako, Mariko would not be granted a moment’s respite. Nor did she wish for one. She would not allow herself anything of the sort.

For deep in the bowels of the same castle, the last in a line of celebrated shogun awaited his impending doom: the final judgment of the imperial city. And the lies this city wore — lies cloaked in silk and steel — shimmered beneath the surface, ready to take shape. No matter the cost, Mariko would mold them into what they should have been from the start:

The truth.


Here is a synopsis of Smoke in the Sun, taken from Goodreads:

The highly anticipated sequel to Flame in the Mist–an addictive, sumptuous finale that will leave readers breathless from the bestselling author of The Wrath and the Dawn

After Okami is captured in the Jukai forest, Mariko has no choice–to rescue him, she must return to Inako and face the dangers that have been waiting for her in the Heian Castle. She tricks her brother, Kenshin, and betrothed, Raiden, into thinking she was being held by the Black Clan against her will, playing the part of the dutiful bride-to-be to infiltrate the emperor’s ranks and uncover the truth behind the betrayal that almost left her dead.

With the wedding plans already underway, Mariko pretends to be consumed with her upcoming nuptials, all the while using her royal standing to peel back the layers of lies and deception surrounding the imperial court. But each secret she unfurls gives way to the next, ensnaring Mariko and Okami in a political scheme that threatens their honor, their love and very the safety of the empire.

Smoke in the Sun arrives in bookstores on June 5, 2018. You can pre-order a copy via Amazon.


About Author

Kait is a New Englander, a YA book and adaptation lover, and a Slythindor, as well as a red velvet and red wine enthusiast. She likes to like things. Catch her on Twitter: @kaitmary

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