Book Review: The Ivory Key by Akshaya Raman. null
The Ivory Key by Akshaya Raman. null
Series Number: 1
Published: January 4th 2022
Page Count: 384
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, rumored 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 harboring secrets and their own agendas, the very thing that brought them together could tear apart their family–and their world–for good.

My first read of 2022 and unfortunately The Ivory Key was a DNF (did not finish) for me, which I’m pretty disappointed about. Read on to find out what went wrong!

This book was provided for free by NetGalley and the publishers in exchange for an honest review. Many thanks to and Bonnier UK for the opportunity to review this book.

Content Warnings


From the author’s website:

Graphic descriptions of dead bodies (specifically on page 1 & Chapter 6), high volume of discussion of grief and loss, of family members (specifically parents–the deaths occur off page but are discussed throughout), recovering from trauma, blood, violence, emotional manipulation, alcohol, discussion of identity policing/microaggressions directed toward a biracial character, allusions to human experimentation, discussions of war/an invading country.


Please Note - This post contains Affiliate Links. Click for more information!
This means that as an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programmes I earn a small commission from items purchased using links featured in this post at no extra cost to you. Click here to learn more.
Book Review: The Ivory Key by Akshaya Raman. null

The Review

The Ivory Key has an interesting plot, a great magic system and rich world building based on Indian culture. There’s also LGBT representation as the world Raman has created is one where relationships and marriages between either gender are the norm. So what went wrong? The characters.

I found the characters to be completely flat, and one dimensional, not a single one was compelling. The Ivory Key centres on four siblings, two sisters and two brothers from a royal family. They’re from a matriarchal society which means the two girls have raised to hold the power, and the two boys to support the power. The synopsis promises intrigue and fails to deliver simply because each of the siblings has been written without any depth to them. Each one of them just came off as bratty to me, and at 20% I was not feeling the book. I wondered if it was just me, so I pushed on to 50% expecting by this point of the story to have a better insight into the characters. There was none.

I expected so much from this book, and it just did not reach my expectations. I’m not usually one to be so critical of a book, but not every book works for each reader and this one just didn’t for me.

Book Review: The Ivory Key by Akshaya Raman - My book review for The Ivory Key by Akshaya Raman, the first book in The Ivory Key duology. null

Over to you

Thank you for reading my review for The Ivory Key. What was your first read for 2022?

Don’t forget to check out the rest of my reviews if you’re looking for some more book recommendations 🙂 You can also now sign up for my newsletter to get an email each month with a list of my new reviews!

Try Kindle Unlimited for 3 Months Free!

Kick-start your reading this year and get three months free if you sign up today for Kindle Unlimited!

Support Just Geeking By

I hope you enjoyed this post! If you did please consider sharing it on social media using the nifty buttons at the end of this post <3

If you enjoyed this content please consider helping to support my blog. You can do this in multiple ways (click here to find out how!) or by donating via Ko-Fi to help me reach my current goal.

Buy Me a Coffee at

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.