Hi everyone! Today I’m excited to participate in the book tour for The Ivory Key written by Akshaya Raman, hosted by the UK publisher Hot Key Books. The Ivory Key is out today and you can purchase it from your local bookstores & online retailers- links to some of which are mentioned below.
The Ivory Key by Akshaya Raman
Publication date: January 4th, 2022
Publisher: Hot Key Books
Genre: Fiction, Young Adult, Fantasy
Four siblings. A country in ruin. One quest to save them all. Vira is desperate to get out of her mother’s shadow and establish her legacy as a revered queen of Ashoka. But with the country’s only quarry running out of magic – a precious resource that has kept Ashoka safe from conflict – she can barely protect her citizens from the looming threat of war. And if her enemies discover this, they’ll stop at nothing to seize the last of the magic.
Vira’s only hope is to find a mysterious object of legend: the Ivory Key, rumoured to unlock a new source of magic. But in order to infiltrate enemy territory and retrieve it, she must reunite with her siblings, torn apart by broken relationships and the different paths their lives have taken. Each of them has something to gain from finding the Ivory Key – and even more to lose if they fail. Ronak plans to sell it to the highest bidder in exchange for escape from his impending political and unwanted marriage. Kaleb, falsely accused of assassinating the former maharani, needs it to clear his name. And Riya, the runaway sibling who cut all family ties, wants the Key to prove her loyalty to the rebels who took her in.
They must work together to survive the treacherous journey. But with each sibling harbouring secrets and their own conflicting agendas, the very thing that brought them together could tear apart their family – and their world – for good.
First in a duology from an incredible new talent, this Indian-inspired fantasy debut is epic, fierce and magnetically addictive, taking you on a thrilling journey where magic, a prized resource, is the only thing between peace and war.
** Thanks to the publisher for gifting me a copy in exchange for an honest review and for including me in the book tour. **
– My Thoughts –
The Ivory Key is about four siblings reuniting and going on a treasure hunt to save their kingdom.
The lead characters are namely Vira who’s the Maharani of Ashoka, her twin brother Ronak, her sister Riya and their half-brother Kaleb. After their mother’s death, Vira imprisoned her brother Kaleb and in the meantime, Ronak searches for a way to not only free Kaleb but himself from the palace and his duties. Riya, on the other hand, is a part of the rebel group called The Ravens.
The story starts off with the dead body of Vira’s fiancé and while Vira and her bodyguard were trying to think of ways to best salvage the situation, a member of The Ravens spot and capture them. At the Ravens’ camp, Vira discovers that her sister Riya who was assumed dead is actually alive and well … and a part of the rebel group. Vira then offers her to come back to the palace and be a family. Things with the brothers aren’t going so well as Kaleb is still imprisoned and Ronak is to be married without his consent.
However, things seem to take a turn when Riya comes back and soon discovers that there is barely any magic left in Ashoka. After confronting her sister Vira, the sisters along with the now free Kaleb and Ronak set off to find The Ivory Key which is the ‘key’ to unlocking a new source of magic. On the way and back, they will discover so much more than they had expected.
I loved the sibling dynamics and the treasure hunting part of it. The story is also told in four different POVs and I liked seeing their individual perspectives as well. I absolutely love solving puzzles, ciphers and I love reading about them in books which don’t happen often. The language, the pace, and the worldbuilding didn’t feel overly complicated or boring to me but failed to dazzle me. The plot twist, in the end, was also pretty predictable but I’m not mad about that.
Overall, I would recommend the book if you love young adult fantasies more focused on interpersonal relationships and reading stories inspired by ancient India, about secret societies, treasure hunting. This could also be a great book for someone who’s new to the fantasy genre.
– About the Author –
Akshaya Raman fell in love with writing when she wrote her first story at the age of ten. Though she graduated from UC Davis with a degree in biology, she gave up pursuing a career in science to write books. She is a co-founder and contributor to Writer’s Block Party, a group blog about writing and publishing, and has served on the planning teams of several book festivals. She lives in the Bay Area with an actual scaredy cat, and in her free time, she enjoys baking, traveling, and watching too much reality TV.
Thank you for reading! Have you read The Ivory Key yet? If not, is it on your tbr? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!