[620]: Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton

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This book was like a bag of chips. Once you start, you won’t be able to stop. It was so easy to read with a story so addictive that you’d want to savor all its sandy glory. Prior to reading this book, I was worried that it would not be for me because my experience with this type of trope was limited to The Wrath and the Dawn. And I’m not going to lie I haven’t been able to finish that since I tried months and months ago. The story was as dry as the desert heat and I had a hard time following the story. But Rebel of the Sands surprised me. I liked it. I liked it a lot.

ABOUT THE BOOK

This is a story about one girl’s hopes and desire to find her place in the world; a world so unlike the one she knows. Where food is as abundant as the kindness she seeks. And where girls are respected and valued. She longed to be free from the shackles of her aunt’s cruelty and the sickening desire of her uncle to make her one of his wives. In her town, there are only two possibilities for a girl like her: to wed or end up dead. Forever a slave to the men of her family. She’s a self-taught sharpshooter, skilled and precise. So when she finally makes her escape, she’ll be sure to carry a gun with her.  When she meets the equally skilled foreigner at a shooting game, she saw her chance at freedom. But the foreigner had ulterior motives.

Through him, the adventure that she sought was more than she could ever bargain for. Fleeing on a mythical horse, she’ll find out that the foreigner is wanted for treason by the Sultan’s Army. But that doesn’t stop her from falling in love. What she doesn’t know is that Jin has the key to figuring out who she truly is and the role she must play in a war Jin and the Rebel Prince has been waging against the Sultan and his sons.

MY THOUGHTS

This book far exceeded my expectations. I never thought it was anything about magical, powerful shifters, or humans with extraordinary powers. It’s about a kingdom torn by an ambitious ruler who would sell his country to the foreigners if only to gain more power. It’s about a girl who believed in herself and her worth. Who would unselfishly risk her life to save others. Amani is an empowered, inspiring character. Nothing held her back on her quest to seek her own freedom. And she was not boy-crazy – which is refreshing considering how many heroines have been allowed to be distracted by the easy, charming smiles of their counterparts. Nope. While all she wanted is to be free in the beginning, she found a greater calling once she was at the rebel camp. She knew in her heart that she had to help out the people that she left behind because not helping would mean more death for her countrymen. Unlike her trust in Jin, she didn’t dare doubt her allegiance to the rebels. She stayed true even though she couldn’t grasp the truth about who she is at first.

The author was very skilled in giving us a bit of everything. She combined magic, fantasy, and romance into one engrossing story. Great debut, Ms. Hamilton. I for one, can’t wait for the next saga. There’s still so much to know about Amani. So much to know about where her relationship with Jin would go.


GOODREADS SUMMARY | Viking Books for YR | March 8th, 2016