Title: The Wrath and the Dawn
Series: The Wrath and the Dawn #1
Author: Renee Ahdieh
Published: May 12, 2015 by (Penguin Group)
(Amazon / Goodreads)
Synopsis: A sumptuous and epically told love story inspired by A Thousand and One Nights.
Every dawn brings horror to a different family in a land ruled by a killer. Khalid, the eighteen-year-old Caliph of Khorasan, takes a new bride each night only to have her executed at sunrise. So it is a suspicious surprise when sixteen-year-old Shahrzad volunteers to marry Khalid. But she does so with a clever plan to stay alive and exact revenge on the Caliph for the murder of her best friend and countless other girls. Shazi's wit and will, indeed, get her through to the dawn that no others have seen, but with a catch . . . she’s falling in love with the very boy who killed her dearest friend.
She discovers that the murderous boy-king is not all that he seems and neither are the deaths of so many girls. Shazi is determined to uncover the reason for the murders and to break the cycle once and for all
I was incredibly excited to win an ARC for The Wrath and the Dawn from Virginia Boecker on Twitter a few months ago. It sounded like an incredibly interesting fantasy and retelling. I completely devoured the book. It drew me in and took me for a ride with gorgeous writing, a thrilling plot, complex characters and themes.
But despite all that beauty, the plot was full of mystery and suspense. The stakes here are incredibly high. We know our main character's days are number but we can't help but root for her to succeed in her goal for survival. I wouldn't say that it's an action-packed story, but it was definitely a suspenseful one. I flew through the last 100 pages worried about what was going to happen. However there were some things about the plot or narrative style that I didn't love. We do spend most of our time with Shazi but every once in awhile we would get a different perspective. It took a little getting used to. And I don't mean the stories within the story. No, those were great, they all seemed intentional and like they fit with the larger story. I mean when we were taken out of the palace to the group trying to free Shazi. It all ended up making sense in the end but at times it dragged the pacing down a little and took me out of the story. But that may have just been because I was loving Shazi's story so much and I saw her more as the heroine and her own savior.
A lot of The Wrath and the Dawn was a pleasant surprise. It was a book with a captivating world, complex characters, fantastic feminist themes, and a romance that I adored. It was a quick and engaging read that desperately has me wanting more. I now officially cannot wait for more. When does The Rose and The Dagger come out? Get me my time machine!
Buy/Borrow/Bypass: Buy. If you are a fan of YA fantasies and are looking for one that is heavy on the romance with some subtle magic, you must check this one out. It's an engaging and interesting read I would recommend to lovers of the genre and those who are trying to explore fantasy a little bit more. An all around great read and another fantastic 2015 debut.