Blog Tour – Tiger’s Watch by Julia Ember – {Review + Giveaway}

Posted August 21, 2017 in blog tour / 0 Comments

Blog Tour  -  Tiger's Watch by Julia Ember  -  {Review + Giveaway}

Blog Tour  –  Tiger’s Watch by Julia Ember  –  {Review + Giveaway}The Tiger's Watch (Ashes of Gold, #1) by Julia Ember
Published by Harmony Ink Press on August 22nd 2017
Genres: Family, LGBTQ, Young Adult
Pages: 180
Format: eBook, Paperback

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I voluntarily reviewed an advance review copy of this book I received for free from the author in exchange for my open and honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Sixteen-year-old Tashi has spent their life training as a inhabitor, a soldier who spies and kills using a bonded animal. When the capital falls after a brutal siege, Tashi flees to a remote monastery to hide. But the invading army turns the monastery into a hospital, and Tashi catches the eye of Xian, the regiment’s fearless young commander.

Tashi spies on Xian’s every move. In front of his men, Xian seems dangerous, even sadistic, but Tashi discovers a more vulnerable side of the enemy commander—a side that draws them to Xian.

When their spying unveils that everything they’ve been taught is a lie, Tashi faces an impossible choice: save their country or the boy they’re growing to love. Though Tashi grapples with their decision, their volatile bonded tiger doesn't question her allegiances. Katala slaughters Xian’s soldiers, leading the enemy to hunt her. But an inhabitor’s bond to their animal is for life—if Katala dies, so will Tashi.

Review

The Tiger’s Watch by Julia Ember is the first book in her Ashes of Gold series. The book follows Tashi, a magical practitioner called an inhabitor who is bonded to a golden tiger called Katala. As Tashi is captured and forced to serve Xian, the commander of the invading regiment, Tashi is dragged through a pendulum of emotions as Tashi spies from the inside and fights from the outside through Katala. The more Tashi learns about Xian and the history behind the inhabitors powers the more things get complicated.

In the portions where dialogue and action were in the forefront of The Tiger’s Watch I found myself avidly reading. Xian is both brutal and driven, while also being compassionate to Tashi. Tashi’s tale gains complexity as actions taken through Katala affect the people in the camp, both friend and foe.

In the portions of The Tiger’s Watch that were more exposition, I struggled. There was too much telling that was unnecessary and I would have liked for it to be revealed through other means. Also, would have liked more backstory and world-building to help get into the story more as a reader.

I do appreciate the added aspect of Tashi being gender non-binary. As the main protagonist, I felt that once through the beginning exposition, the story improved as Tashi as a character began to flourish. Tashi’s dilemma in how to handle the revelations of the inhabitors powers, the relationship with Xian as well as another inhabitor, Pharo, who is dying because of his bond to an elderly wolf and the debate of what Tashi’s priorities should be made The Tiger’s Watch an interesting and enjoyable story.

Overall, I do recommend Tiger’s Watch as it left me interested and wanting to know more about what will happen to Tashi, Xian, Pharo and Katala.

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Giveaway

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About Julia Ember

Originally from Chicago, Julia Ember now resides in Edinburgh, Scotland. She spends her days working in the book trade and her nights writing teen fantasy novels. Her hobbies include riding horses, starting far too many craft projects, PokemonGo and looking after her city-based menagerie of pets with names from Harry Potter. Luna Lovegood and Sirius Black the cats currently run her life.

Julia is a polyamorous, bisexual writer. She regularly takes part in events for queer teens, including those organised by the Scottish Booktrust and LGBT Youth Scotland. A world traveler since childhood, she has now visited more than sixty countries. Her travels inspire the fantasy worlds she creates, though she populates them with magic and monsters.

Julia began her writing career at the age of nine, when her short story about two princesses and their horses won a contest in Touch magazine. In 2016, she published her first novel, Unicorn Tracks, which also focused on two girls and their equines, albeit those with horns. Her second novel, The Seafarer’s Kiss will be released by Interlude Press in May 2017. The book was heavily influenced by Julia’s postgraduate work in Medieval Literature at The University of St. Andrews. It is now responsible for her total obsession with beluga whales.

In August 2017, her third novel and the start of her first series, Tiger's Watch, will come out with Harmony Ink Press. In writing Tiger's Watch, Julia has taken her love of cats to a new level.

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