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In an Orchard Grown from Ash

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Member Reviews

Rory Power picks right up where she left off and I love it.

Like all great family sagas, their is love and betrayal but the heart of the story is power and who will rule. Straight up, Success-like family drama but set in a fantasy Mediterranean-like setting, with an edge of cutthroat politics, magic and romance.

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In brief, while I still love the concept of this series... an adaptation of Greek myth set to power struggles between both classes and generations... this, if the end as reported, left me dissatisfied

Again, the effort put into the world, the characters, and the reclaimed mythologies is such that I expected more! More story. More development.

Instead, I feel that this series was trumped by low sales and interest.... something all too common in this industry climate.

And yet, I read on. I love this world Rory, and will be pained to see it go!

Thanks to NetGalley for the ARC in exchange for an honest review!

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great book and I enjoyed the characters growth. Loved the friends and how this all worked out. I enjoyed the characters journey to finding oneself and others. I hope to read more by this author again.

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In the end, this was an okay sequel but didn't live up to the first book. It felt like a lot of filler, with characters just sort of floating around without accomplishing much. I think quite a bit could have been cut out and still given us the same story, but at a faster pace.

Rhea was the most disappointing, she was coming into her confidence and power in the first book and now she's demoralized and barely holding things together. She's been set aside and is mostly a figurehead, so I found her chapters to be pretty boring. I was also sad that her relationship with Michali was barely there and mostly filled with guilt and resentment.

Lexos's chapters were okay and had some action and interesting parts. He was kind of whiny though and I wanted him to start being the cunning man we saw before and take hold of his life.

Chrysanthi was my favorite of the story. She didn't necessarily do much until the end, but I liked seeing her explore on her own and have a nice romance.

Nitsos may as well not have been in the story for all that we saw of him. What a waste.

The ending wasn't unexpected, but I hoped things would play out in an exciting way instead of just dwindling to a stop. This came across as lackluster and I wanted more.

I voluntarily read and reviewed this book. All opinions are my own. Thank you to Ballantine, Del Rey, and NetGalley for the copy.

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'In an Orchard Grown from Ash' is a really thoughtful follow-up to 'In a Garden Burning Gold' and a heavy-hitting end to this duology. This story definitely went in an unexpected direction, becoming far less about the political drama that I thought it would and more into the dynamics between the 4 Argyros siblings and their relationship with each other and to their parents and family legacy. In that regard, the novel absolutely shines, painting the demise of this family in a way I found reminiscent of Succession. It's a very emotional novel and I loved the way it navigated the themes of grief, the weight of family expectations, sibling dynamics, and political drama. I personally would have preferred a lot more to the political end of the story, especially since both books touch upon so many interesting power dynamics and political moves, and I was a bit surprised that this second novel set a lot up that wasn't really touched upon. That said, that ultimately wasn't what the novel is about, and shifting to see the story more about the people than anything else reframed it in a way that I found heightened my enjoyment of the book and of the duology as a whole.
For those who want an interesting fantasy story with Succession-like family dynamics and a fantasy Mediterrean-esque flavored setting, with an edge of cutthroat politics, magic and romance, I definitely recommend checking out this series.

*Many thanks to the publisher for an eARC of this one in exchange for an honest review!

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I wish I could say I liked this book better than I did, but it wasn't a DNF at least. I gave it 3 stars because I really enjoyed the entirety if the middle of the book!

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Rory Power just does political intrigue so freaking well!!

You're just going to have to read the synopsis folks! There are so many brilliant moving parts in this duology that I am certain I wouldn't do it justice! Much like the first book every detail of this ever moving plot is important so pay attention!

I found In an Orchard Grown from Ash a fulfilling ending to the Argyros family saga. Power wasn't afraid to go dark with her conclusion and I personally think that is paid off. I felt surprised,engaged, and slightly terrified in a way that few authors can pull off.

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First of all - you must read the first book to understand what is going on. The names, the places, the events - everything starts mid story. I loved the first book, and I was so excited to go back into this fantasy world where gods, their powers, and people bestowed with them intermix and create this intriguing story line. But I did not do a re-read before diving into this book, and it was a mistake.

The story is very smart, but overwhelming. And that's what got me - I had to do an audiobook just to push through it, and even though then did not disappoint the journey to it did.

Like I said, we're mid story, and we are following the siblings after the ordeal of the first book. They are all separated, but also hunting each other, while others are just trying to survive. We're back with a lot of political drama, backstabbing and betrayals, and a lot of murder. Again. It is bloody, and briliant, but not as loveable as the first. Maybe it did suffer from the second book syndrome.

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I have to say this was a fantastic book to round out the duology Argyrosi series. It's hard to talk about the story without giving too much away but I will say that I was quite happy that Chrysanthi really got to shine in this story and I loved how her story line ended. I was sad about some characters, not so sad about others lol. The book did end with a few surprises and a few unanswered questions, so I feel like there could have been another book but I was pretty content with how this one ended. I think if you enjoyed the first book you'll definitely enjoy this one as well.

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my thoughts reading the first 3/4 of this book: okay lots of politics kinda boring, Ettore????, Chrysanthi is the best, Falka making moves 👀

my thoughts reading the last 1/4: HOW DID EVERYTHING GO SO DOWNHILL SO FAST

Needles to say I have mixed feelings.

In an Orchard Grown From Ash is the sequel to In a Garden Burning Gold, about the Argyrosi’s rise and fall from power. The world building and politics were amazing in both books. I especially liked the introduction of new players in the second book, where we learn more about the different ruling families and the saints. I definitely think the sequel should be read right after the first book, because I did forget a lot people and history from the first book. I also really liked the addition of Chrysanthi and Nitsos’ POVs, mostly because there was less Lexos and he irritates me to no end.

Now, for the disappointments…NITSOS. He had so much potential but we only got a couple chapters with him and *SPOILER* he didn’t get a fitting death. It was too quick and nothing was resolved. I was really looking forward to his confrontation with Rhea and it never happened. I guess it contributed to Rhea’a deterioration, but I think he deserved better. Lexos basically did nothing for the entire book but complain, and his reunion with Rhea was way too easy at know, until she went off the deep end. It just wrapped up too quickly.

And even though I loved Chrysanthi so much, it should have been Rhea in the end. She was the star of the first book and I wanted that same energy in. this one.

Thank you NetGalley and Del Rey for this arc.

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In an Orchard Grown from Ash, Rory Power delivers a compelling and poignant conclusion to her mythical epic fantasy duology. She draws us back into the world of the Argyros siblings, a trio of deeply complex and multifaceted characters, now divided by betrayal and a fight to reclaim their lost power.

Power's storytelling is beautiful, the prose layered with dark, atmospheric imagery that immerses readers into the rich tapestry of a realm simultaneously brutal and enchanting. It is a book that requires your full attention, as the narrative is intricately woven with subtle details and various threads that only become clear as they coalesce towards the end. As such, some may find it a little hard to follow, but the reward for those who persist is deeply satisfying.

The strength of In an Orchard Grown from Ash is arguably the character development. As they grapple with their fractured bonds and reckon with their past, Rhea, Chrysanthi, and Lexos evolve in surprising and powerful ways. Power explores themes of power, legacy, and family ties with raw intensity that leaves readers riveted.

The climax of the novel is nothing short of brutal, serving as a testament to Power's fearless approach to storytelling. The complex narrative threads resolve in a denouement that is as shocking as it is profound, shedding light on the book's intricate storyline and leaving an indelible impression.

In essence, In an Orchard Grown from Ash is a darkly beautiful exploration of the cost of power and the weight of legacy. It's a demanding read, but for those who appreciate intricate storytelling and complex characters, it's undoubtedly a rewarding one.

Thank you to Del Rey for providing an e-Arc of In an Orchard Grown from Ash by Rory Power for my review.

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Thank you so much to Random House for allowing me to read and review this amazing 2nd novel for you.

The Argyrosi siblings have lost their father and are torn apart. Betrayal, schemes and war has erupted. The power has shifted to Rhea instead of Lexos, Nitsos has his own selfish agenda, and Chrysanthi is finally exploring the world and coming into her own.

I absolutely adored this book. The world building is phenomenal. Power does an amazing job at creating a world full of possibilities, twists and turns. While I wish Nitsos would have been featured in this book, Chrysanthi really stole the show for me. Her slow burn romance, her banter. She really is the star of this book while Rhea (who I fell in love with in the first novel) was destroyed by her need for power.

I normally do not lean towards books with political rivalries but Power creates a truly magical system that

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An expansive, heart-wrenching ending to the Argoyrosi children's story.

The four Argyrosi children struggle to find their place after the collapse of their father's rule. Rhea and Chrysanthi find that all is not paradise with the Sxoriza rebels, who are happy to exploit their power but leave them out of major decisions. Even Michali, Rhea's lover who she brought back from the dead, no longer has all the qualities that made Rhea fall for him. Meanwhile, Nitsos leverages his outside connections on a quest from kingdom to kingdom, seeking to harness the Saint's power. Lexos finds himself a prisoner, but a connection with a fellow prisoner brings him closer to real power than he ever dreamed.

Though they all split up, the Argyrosi siblings aren't done with each other, and their fates continue to intertwine, even as it becomes apparent that they won't all survive this new power struggle.
I loved Chrysanthi's story in this book. She never really had a voice in the first one, and she's become my favorite character. Of all of them, her ambition is to love her family and build beauty into the world. She finds the perfect grump to her sunshine in Andrija, her bodyguard turned more who accompanies her on the quests Rhea sends her on across the continent.

This book dove deeper into the mythology of the Saints and what happened when they were all killed years ago, which added some interesting context to the story.

The ending really spoke to the corruption that comes from power and how that destroys lives.

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for the advance review copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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This is the second in the Wind-Up Garden duology. I wasn’t exactly impressed with the first book, but, since it’s a duology, I felt invested enough halfway through the story to finish. Besides, it ended with a fascinating turn with Nitsos, so I was excited to see what he would do in the second book. Otherwise, I fully expected to not love this book, and I was okay with that.

It turned out to, more or less, be as I expected. It wasn’t bad, but it definitely wasn’t quite for me. There were some romantic subplots in this one, most of which just bothered me. I was glad to see a sapphic romance pop up, but I just felt disappointed with the whole way it unfolded. The one I did love was between Chrysanthi and the man sent with her to protect her. It was so sweet and so low-key. Seriously, I loved Chrysanthi. She’s delightful and fun and, if the whole duology had been based around her, I think I would have liked it a lot more. Unfortunately, I’m not sure who this series was supposed to be about.

The first book makes it seem like this duology is about twins Lexos and Rhea, one of whom is the heir and the other basically brings the spring. I enjoyed them well enough in the first book and was mildly interested enough to see what they would do in the second one after what they did in the first. But, suddenly, it wasn’t just Lexos and Rhea. All four siblings, the twins, Nitsos, and Chrysanthi, all get a good amount of page time, so I couldn’t tell who this series was supposed to revolve around. In the end, it didn’t really matter. Lexos’ story was interesting in that it revealed a lot of history, but I found him annoying and I was disappointed by him. I also greatly disliked Rhea for a lot of the same reasons. Both twins felt spoiled and entitled and they just acted childishly whenever they didn’t get what they wanted. I very much disliked Rhea’s story and the way she treated people. I wouldn’t follow her if you begged me. Nitsos was the one I was really interested in, but I was massively disappointed with the way his character and his story were treated. It’s like the author thought of something interesting for him, and then just decided against it and made his story mildly interesting but mostly boring and practically useless. Fortunately Chrysanthi saved this book for me. She’s just delightful and I absolutely loved her. She’s stuck having to deal with her entire family and everything she’s known suddenly changing, and she really handles it well. She felt like the most mature character despite being the youngest, but her heart really is lovely.

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for a review copy. All opinions expressed are my own.

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WOW. Not at all the ending I was hoping for. It’s a completely unexpected closure for a great story.
How far are you willing to go in your search for power? Turn against your own family, betray them and your friends and allies?

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I read the first book in this duology and looked forward to revisiting these characters.

Unfortunately, this book let me down. I still enjoyed the political intrigue and power dynamics set up in this world. They were complex and ridden with tensions that moved the plot along naturally. This book, however, halted that tension by being incredibly, mercilessly slow. Not much happened in this book. About halfway through, I found myself skimming the rest of the book because it was just taking too long to get through with very little progress to the story. The ending confirmed for me that skimming did not cause me to miss much of anything.

I will definitely read more by Rory Power, but unfortunately the final book in this duology didn't work for me at all.

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This sequel is undeniably a beautifully written and engrossing novel, it occasionally suffers from pacing issues. The story unfolds at a measured pace, which allows for character development and atmosphere building, but at times it may feel slow for readers seeking more rapid plot progression. While the focus on politics and family dynamics is the driving force of the narrative, some readers may long for a deeper exploration of the fantastical elements introduced in the first installment. However, the complex characters and their emotional journeys more than compensate for this, creating a compelling story that will resonate with readers long after the final page is turned. This conclusion to the duology is a must-read for fans of complex storytelling and those seeking a compelling blend of politics and emotion in the realm of fantasy literature.

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While I appreciated the effort that went into this tale, my love for "In A Garden" does not translate well. It short, it felt like it just dragged, was overcomplicated, and didn't pay off. I may give it a try again, but on first read, it does not charm the same as the first book.

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Thank you to the publisher for sending me an arc in exchange for review.

After immediately loving In a Garden Burning Gold, I was curious to see where the sequel would end up and i was not disappointed.

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In an Orchard Grown from Ash is a adult fantasy novel and the sequel to In a Garden Burning Gold.

In this sequel (and conclusion to the duology) the Argyros siblings find themselves in separate parts of the land and with different agendas. Rhea is considered a living saint by the rebel group she joined but has little power politically or magically and her abilities are beginning to turn on her. Lexos is imprisoned in a mysterious old house surrounded by water with only one other occupant. And after his betrayal in the first book Nitos has an goal of his own and Rhea entrusts Chrysanthi and her guard to find him before he completes his mission.

Like the first book this one has a lot of political maneuvering, family angst and lust for power. Rhea is the most difficult POV to read because it’s clear that after pulling Michali from his grave that their relationship is altered beyond repair and her magic is corrupted. Lexos is entertaining to follow as he tries to keep up with a new player introduced that has his own goals. Nitos is also a challenging character as he continues to be the arrogant younger sibling and the most villainous. I enjoyed Chrysanthi’s POV as she’s the most lovable and humorous of the four plus she also gets a slow burn romance in this one.

The world-building, magical system and political rivalries were not easy for me to keep up with in this duology but I still really enjoyed it. An Orchard Grown From Ash is definitely a dark conclusion to the Argyros family and their story and although some losses were quite abrupt I appreciated Rory Power not pulling any punches with her characters.

4 stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

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