An Ember in the Ashes


Under the Martial Empire, defiance is met with death. Those who do not vow their blood and bodies to the Emperor risk the execution of their loved ones and the destruction of all they hold dear.

It is in this brutal world, inspired by ancient Rome, that Laia lives with her grandparents and older brother. The family ekes out an existence in the Empire’s impoverished backstreets. They do not challenge the Empire. They’ve seen what happens to those who do.

But when Laia’s brother is arrested for treason, Laia is forced to make a decision. In exchange for help from rebels who promise to rescue her brother, she will risk her life to spy for them from within the Empire’s greatest military academy.

There, Laia meets Elias, the school’s finest soldier—and secretly, its most unwilling. Elias wants only to be free of the tyranny he’s being trained to enforce. He and Laia will soon realize that their destinies are intertwined—and that their choices will change the fate of the Empire itself.


Praise for the New York Times and international bestseller An Ember in the Ashes:

“This novel is a harrowing, haunting reminder of what it means to be human — and how hope might be kindled in the midst of oppression and fear.” — The Washington Post

An Ember in the Ashes could launch Sabaa Tahir into JK Rowling territory…It has the addictive quality of The Hunger Games combined with the fantasy of Harry Potter and the brutality of Game of Thrones.”—Public Radio International

An Ember in the Ashes glows, burns, and smolders—as beautiful and radiant as it is searing.”Huffington Post 
“A worthy novel – and one as brave as its characters.” —The New York Times Book Review 

A “deft, polished debut”  Publishers Weekly, starred review

“I was so engrossed with this book that I missed a connecting flight. If that doesn’t convince you to read An Ember in the Ashes, I don’t know what will. An explosive, heartbreaking, epic debut that will keep you glued to the pages. I hope the world’s ready for Sabaa Tahir.”

—Marie Lu, New York Times bestselling author of the Legend trilogy and The Young Elites

“With An Ember in the Ashes, Sabaa Tahir shows us light in darkness, hope in a world of despair, and the human spirit reaching for greatness in difficult times.”

—Brandon Sanderson, New York Times bestselling author of the Stormlight Archive series 

An Ember in the Ashes is available now from the following publishers (international dates may vary):

United States: Razorbill/Penguin.
Brazil (Portuguese): Verus/Grupo Record
Bulgaria (Bulgarian): Ciela Norma
China (Simplified Chinese): Beijing Huaxia Winshare Books
Czech Republic (Czech): Host
Croatia: (Croatian) Lumen
Denmark (Danish): Alvilda
France (French): Pocket Jeunesse/Universe Poche
Greece (Greek): Psichogios
Hungary (Hungarian): Cartaphilus
Indonesia (Indonesian): Haru
Israel (Hebrew): Keter Books
Italy (Italian): Nord
Japan (Japanese): Hayakawa
South Korea (Korean): Moonhak Soochup
Germany (German): Luebbe
Georgia (Georgian): Palitra
Lithuania (Lithuanian): Alma
The Netherlands (Dutch): Luitingh-Sijthoff
Norway (Norwegian): Fontini
Poland (Polish): Muza
Portugal (Portuguese): Editorial Presença
Romania: Grupul Editorial Art
Russia (Russian): AST
Serbia (Serbian): Vulkan
Slovakia (Slovak): Ikar
Slovenia (Slovene): Ucila
Spain (Spanish): Penguin/RandomHouse
Sweden (Swedish): B. Wahlstroms
Taiwan (Complex Chinese): Fantasy Foundation Productions /Cité Publishing
Thailand (Thai): Amarin
Turkey (Turkish): Epsilon
Vietnam: Nha Nam Publishing
United Kingdom (English): HarperCollins/Harper Voyager

Buy here:


Barnes and Noble  (audiobook)