Rising From Ash by Jax Meyer

“It takes great courage to advocate for your own needs.” – Ash.

What was the book about?:
If you’re running away from your past, your present, yourself, then a particularly awesome place to do that is Antarctica, right? No, actually. When astrophysicist Ashley Bennett, and cook Phoenix Murray first meet at the Antarctic research station, they can’t help but push each other’s buttons. Phoenix doesn’t understand that her confident sexuality puts Ash on edge while Ash’s curt formality triggers Phoenix’s insecurities about her upbringing. But living at the bottom of the world means there’s nowhere to run, and as they find common ground, their differences aren’t nearly the hindrance they thought. Where they are is perhaps where they are meant to be, as they explore their true selves, and perhaps see in each other the possibility of a completely transparent relationship, just like the ice which surrounds them.

Featured Tropes: Slow-burn, asexuality, sexuality spectrum, 

Book Strengths:
The setting is clever. It’s difficult to say whether this slow-burn romance,  where the MCs engage in an intricate analysis of trust and sexuality would have  realistically occurred in their hectic, laden with distractions everyday lives. But because it’s set in Antarctica, where it is absolutely not hectic, or laden with distractions, Ash and Phoenix can solely focus on their budding relationship. Intimacy comes from the steps that two people take to truly romance each other, and without whacking us over the head with the Sexuality Textbook, Meyer lets us learn about this aspect through the eyes of Ash and Phoenix.

Book weaknesses:
It’s quiet. I mean, the text structure, sentences, even word choices are quiet and considered. They’re used as a foil against the turmoil of Ash and Phoenix’s thoughts and prior experiences. It didn’t feel like a weakness for me because it made sense. But it may be for some readers who are looking for more action or drama.

Character Chemistry:
Oh yes. Absolutely. Phoenix and Ash should not work. On paper or any other surface. But they seriously do. Because they talk to, and learn from each other and it gets really sexy and then there’s kissing and…

Heat Rating: 2
Look, if we’re working with an allosexual (I learned this word from this novel. Yay, lesfic ftw) rating scale, then Rising From Ash is a 2, because there is sex in this book, and it’s beautiful. But see comment above in character chemistry for pure burn factor.

Conclusion:
I loved this book. It shows two people with their own insecurities and fears, learning to trust each other, so that they can really see themselves for who they are and who they can be.

Star Rating: 5 stars

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