My Rating:★★★★1/2 – 4.5 stars
My Songs: Demons (Imagine Dragons Cover) by Khaled Siddiq & Siedd
These songs are personal to me, they remind me of this book (they may be songs that were popular during the time that I read this, with lyrics that relate to this book or it might just be random)
Synopsis: One Life to One Dawn. In a land ruled by a murderous boy-king, each dawn brings heartache to a new family. Khalid, the eighteen-year-old Caliph of Khorasan, is a monster. Each night he takes a new bride only to have a silk cord wrapped around her throat come morning. When sixteen-year-old Shahrzad’s dearest friend falls victim to Khalid, Shahrzad vows vengeance and volunteers to be his next bride. Shahrzad is determined not only to stay alive, but to end the caliph’s reign of terror once and for all. Night after night, Shahrzad beguiles Khalid, weaving stories that enchant, ensuring her survival, though she knows each dawn could be her last. But something she never expected begins to happen: Khalid is nothing like what she’d imagined him to be. This monster is a boy with a tormented heart. Incredibly, Shahrzad finds herself falling in love. How is this possible? It’s an unforgivable betrayal. Still, Shahrzad has come to understand all is not as it seems in this palace of marble and stone. She resolves to uncover whatever secrets lurk and, despite her love, be ready to take Khalid’s life as retribution for the many lives he’s stolen. Can their love survive this world of stories and secrets?
Review: I really wanted to give this book five stars but there was just one thing… one tiny thing that made it lose half a star. Otherwise, this book was perfect. It’s about the Caliph of Khorasan and a girl called Shahrzad. The Caliph named Khalid marries a new bride every night only to kill them at dawn by being hung by a silk cord. Shahrzad’s best friend was chosen to become one of Khalid’s brides and was killed on the next dawn. Out of revenge Shahrzad volunteers to become his bride and plans to kill him. To avoid being executed at dawn, Shahrzad tells the Caliph a story that she promises to end the next night. This allows her more time. During this time she discovers that Khalid has demons of his own and is trying to fight them. She finds that there is more to Khalid than a murdering boy-king. Shahrzad and Khalid start to fall in love however both of them have secrets that they haven’t told each other and when they do, their whole story will change.
Shahrzad is a fierce, passionate girl fueled by revenge and hatred to kill the Caliph of Khorasan, The King of Kings, Khalid ibn Al-Rashid. Shahrzad is in love with another however her duty to avenge her friends death by ridding Khorasan of their murdering king is more important. Khalid is a boy with the power of a king. He is troubled by his mothers brutal death and has been traumatized for years. Shahrzad, after being saved from execution, starts to see him as the person he is rather than his reputation.
I was actually pretty reluctant to read this book. I had wanted to for ages but I knew that there was going to be a love triangle somewhere. There is one thing that you don’t know about me yet (which could be labeled as an unpopular opinion is ) I flipping hate love triangles; with a passion. I find them so annoying and I seriously have no idea why it’s just so irritating but a love triangle can totally deter me from reading a book. That being said when I read this book I could actually bear the sections where the love triangle was important and to be honest I didn’t mind it. Renée wrote theses section really well and rather than making it over romanticised like so many other books and make it a subtle battle between the rivals. Renée actually gave the two a real fight, with swords! Can I just say that the amount of swordsmanship in this book is amazing!?
My only problem with this book is that there are too many foreign words that I don’t know (which to me was quite shocking as I am familiar to middle eastern and Asian culture). I had to have my phone beside whilst I was reading this book to search for what each term meant. I understand that there have to be some foreign terms but there were so many. I didn’t know until I had actually finished the book that there was a glossary at the back of the book. I felt that I should have known sooner. But even if I had used the glossary I would have had to use my phone anyway because there was very academic vocabulary in this book (most of which I had never seen before in my life). I don’t know if this is just because of my stupidity or if these words are actually unknown to most people but that is the only reason that this book didn’t have 5 stars. Also, I still can’t picture what a rida’ is, I’ve looked it up online but I can’t find one that men wear. If someone could show me a picture of what a rida’ is I will be forever grateful.
What I loved about this book was Renée’s writing style. She captures emotion of the characters so well that I can feel the emotion too. I also like how she slowly develops characters throughout the story for example Despina’s and Jalal’s character. Saying this, everyone’s characters is looked at deeper and develops throughout the whole book. She can describe anything and I can picture it perfectly whether it be food, lavish clothes or regal palaces. Her words just captivate you. I ‘liked’ Shahrzad…but sometimes she did annoy me. Sometimes I was like ‘Don’t kill Khalid’ or ‘Couldn’t you just forgive him’ but I know that if this actually happened to me I would probably be having a war inside myself. So basically as a spectator, I probably judge Shahrzad too harshly.
Overall, I loved this book but because there were so many words that I didn’t know (and that it actually became a problem) I couldn’t give this 5 stars. Also my favourite scene from the book has to be the first half of the chapter ‘A Silk Cord And A Sunrise’. I’m so glad I bought the sequel with this book. I will do a review on the sequel soon too!