This is the series I've been obsessed with as I mourn the end of Queen Sarah J. Maas's Throne of Glass series (the seventh and final book Kingdom of Ash was released on October 23rd and is available in the Teen Room: YA F Maa-- check the new side of the A-frame).
A patron requested that I order Reaper at the Gates earlier this summer, and I was reading book reviews about it, it piqued my interest, so I started with number one in the series: An Ember in the Ashes.
Elias, the other narrating protagonist, is a "snowflake" amongst the Masks. He wants to escape their brutality and single-mindedness, but realizes he can't do it without cunning. Tahir drops the reader into Elias's story at what would not be the typical entry point. Instead, he has already done all of the planning and preparations to escape and then is thwarted by the Trials. Again, a fresh of breath air to build Elias's characterization but avoid the generally dull exposition of planning to escape.
Thirdly, the romantic tension between Elias, Helene, Laia, and Keenan is a breath of fresh air. There's not an obvious ship, and that release is a relief in a YA world of love triangles.
I'm now a little more than half-way through Reaper. It's a little slower than the first two, and I hate that Tahir is resorting to the cheap trick when authors have one narrator per chapter and switch between those points-of-view by ending every single chapter on a cliffhanger.
Some characters' POV/narration/chapters I prefer over others, but you may enjoy different ones; it all depends on where you are in life and how and which characters you connect with most because even though Laia, Elias, and Helene are battling for good, they are each on a different quest in finding that good. We'll just have to see how it all ends up!
And that's not likely to happen at the end of Reaper as there is a fourth book in the works. It'll be the final in the series, and then I'll have to find another kick-butt female protagonist's story to devour.