Together with Jasmine from How Useful It Is, I read The Wrath & The Dawn by Renee Ahdier. You can read her review here. The Wrath & The Dawn is the first book in a retelling of 1001 Arabian Nights.
In a land, far away, where a boy-king rules, a new bride is brought to him each night and at each dawn she is killed. Until one day, Shahrzad’s best friend is killed and she leaves her loving fiance to marry the king. To seek revenge, to survive.
*I didn’t post the real synopsis because that one contains way too many spoilers.
Do you like the main character(s) and why?
Jasmine: I don’t like Shahrzad because she’s too moody. She wants revenge but she doesn’t do what she comes for. Even before her feelings goes where it doesn’t supposed to go. She doesn’t take risks. She doesn’t explore forbidden grounds to seek secrets. She doesn’t know anything after staying there for months.
Lia: I loved Shahrzad (aka Shazi), she was the best thing about this book. She is incredibly brave and “gifted with a silver tongue” as they say in the book. She has a way of turning things her way. I admire her for her ways and she definitely made it to my list of favourite bad-ass female protagonists.
“So you would have me throw Shazi to the wolves?”
“Shazi?” Jalal’s grin widened. “Honestly, I pity the wolves.”
What could have been improved in the book?
Jasmine: I wish there were more adventures and challenges. Khalid needs to stand out since he’s one of the main characters. It seems Jalal has taken over the spotlight. If the rug was not introduced further or given any background, why not explain further about the book and sacrifice of the hare.
Lia: I didn’t really like the parts written from Tariq’s perspective, simply because I don’t really like his character. I don’t know what it was but I just was very indifferent about him. But you can’t keep those parts out because they’re quite important for the story. Another thing that could be improved is maybe the pacing of the book, a bit more action might have made it just a little better.
Would you reread, burn or rewrite this book?
Jasmine: I might not re-read but I am interested to read the sequel. I expect book 2 to have more details since book 1 is lacked of it.
Lia: Reread! Also I can’t wait to read The Rose & The Dagger (I already considered ordering it right away)
When I was young I always went to a theme park in the Netherlands called “de Efteling”. In this theme park there’s a ride based on the Arabian fairy tales, you go in a boat and go past all these Arabian people and things, and that is one of my favourite rides ever. I literally know the song of that ride by heart! Anyway this book left me feeling like I was in that ride all the time. I love the magical feeling in the story.
Overall I think The Wrath & The Dawn is a wonderfully written book with great characters. I loved the main character and how conflicted her emotions were. I felt the same way about Khalid. Also the ending was great, the plot twist, it really added something to the story. I think there’s a lesson somewhere in there, you shouldn’t judge too quick.
“No individual can reach the height of their potential without the love of others. we are not meant to be alone Shahrzad. The more a person pushes others away, the clearer it becomes he is in need of love the most.”
I loved Shahrzad’s wittiness, she is quite funny and I found myself laughing multiple times (which is rare). The story is written so beautifully, when I was reading, sometimes I just reread certain sentences because they were just so pretty. Renee has a way of writing that makes me a little jealous..
I am giving this book ★★★★☆ (4.5 stars out of 5), and I would recommend this book for anyone who loves retellings or stories that take place in a completely different world than you (probably) know.