Tuesday 4 January 2022

Book Review: The Ivory Key by Akshaya Raman

The Ivory Key by Akshaya Raman book cover

AD* | Magic, a prized resource, is the only thing between peace and war. When magic runs out, four estranged royal siblings must find a new source before their country is swallowed by invading forces. 

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 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 marriage. Kaleb, falsely accused of assassinating the former maharani needs it to clear his name. And Riya, a runaway who cut all family ties, wants the Key to prove her loyalty to the rebels who want to strip the nobility of its power.

They must work together to survive the treacherous journey. But with each sibling harbouring secrets and their own agendas, the very thing that brought them together could tear apart their family – and their world – for good.

Magical and captivating, The Ivory Key is a wonderful adventure of epic proportions!

The story centres around four siblings in the kingdom of Ashoka. Born to royal parentage, Vira finds herself leading the kingdom after the shocking assassination of her mother. Determined to do right by her people, Vira gets increasingly pressured from all sides. 

Her sister Riya has only just returned after a mysterious spell away from the family, and their brother Ronak is doing all he can to escape an arranged marriage. Last is their brother Kaleb who is imprisoned following the former Maharani's untimely death. It's certainly a complicated family dynamic, but it's explored wonderfully.

In this world, magic is not a limitless resource. It must instead be painstakingly harvested from a closely-guarded location - but the problem is, it's fast running out. The kingdom runs on magic and its people take everyday magical devices for granted, so the last thing Maharani Vira wants is to lose Ashoka's magic forever.

What follows is a thrilling adventure as the siblings must band together to find the ivory key and reclaim Ashoka's magic. However, with plots and subplots aplenty, it seems as though everyone has a hidden agenda. Can the ivory key reunite the siblings too? 

The worldbuilding in this book is extraordinary. With the simplest details, Ashoka comes vividly to life. That isn't all, though, as it expertly combines elements of fantasy, action, and romance - to name just a few. The end result is a memorable read and a brilliant start to a brand new series.

The Ivory Key is a gorgeous, Indian-inspired tale well worth a read!

Rating: 4 stars 

The Ivory Key is available to buy now.

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* I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review

Will you be reading The Ivory Key? Let me know in the comments below! 

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