Set in feudal Japan, Flame in the Mist unveils the dark secrets of notorious families, narrates their bloody battles and follows the journey of one young woman with the power to alter the empire.
Mariko is the only daughter of the noble and prominent Hattori family. And at 17, she’s off to the imperial city to meet her future husband—the emperor’s son—for their arranged marriage. But Mariko’s caravan is attacked in the dark forest by the infamous bandits known as the Black Clan, and they slay everyone except for her—their target. Mariko manages to escape, both with her life and a newfound thirst for revenge. After tracking the Black Clan for days, Mariko disguises herself as a young farm boy and gains their trust. She’s determined to learn why they wanted her dead, find their weaknesses and destroy them from within. But she never expected the Black Clan to value her intellect or offer her the freedom she’s never had. She also didn’t expect to fall in love with a ruthless murderer.
As author Renée Ahdieh did with her debut, The Wrath & the Dawn, Flame in the Mist explores a young woman’s power and strength to effect great change in a patriarchal society. And the realistic stories, fascinating culture and complex relationships of Ahdieh’s fictional characters—explored in actual, historical settings—are completely enrapturing.
Justin Barisich is a freelancer, satirist, poet and performer living in Atlanta. More of his writing can be found at littlewritingman.com.