Sunday, 29 May 2016

The Wrath and The Dawn [Book Review]

Hi there! 


Title: The Wrath and the Dawn (The Wrath and the Dawn #1)

Author: Renee Ahdieh

Publisher: Putnam’s Sons books for Young Readers
Publishing Date: 12th May 2015
Rating: 4 Stars


*Thank you Soudha @ Of Stacks and Cups for the giveaway win*


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Synopsis: 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?


Inspired by A Thousand and One Nights, The Wrath and the Dawn is a sumptuous and enthralling read from beginning to end.

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Review: The Wrath and the Dawn hit me like a punch in the face I wasn’t expecting. And not the painful kind of punch… the good kind.

There’s a lot of hype surrounding this book. Hype always makes me excited, but it also has the doubling effect of making me wary. I won this book in a giveaway and it wasn’t until a while afterwards that I decided to start this book on a nice, sunny Sunday. I started it in the morning and did nothing else until the book was finished. Already, I’m craving the sequel. I want it. I need it.


Before I even begin to talk about this book, let’s just admire how beautiful it is? If you are going to buy this book, I would highly recommend you go ahead and get yourself the hardcover edition. The pages will be lovely and deckled, the cover is gorgeous and the spine *melts* As soon as you take the dustjacket off you’ll know what I’m talking about. Trust me on this one – I’m someone who doesn’t get hardcovers often – but this one is worth it.

The Wrath and the Dawn is a retelling of A Thousand and One Nights. I was previously unaware that this story also covers Aladdin, and that those two fairytales are supposedly similar? Anyway, this one dips its fingers into both. However, it’s a retelling which means of course some things are going to be different and there is a lot more depth to this one. We get to meet Shahrzad who wants revenge for the death of her best friend who was like a sister to her. Khalid is killing off all the brides he has. Another death for every sunrise.


The reasoning behind why he was doing this was a surprise, so I won’t tell you. But in the end, as much as I disliked Khalid, I also liked him. I loved the internal conflict he faced of curiosity and having feelings for Shahrzad, but also being wary because of what it meant for him to not be killing his bride. On top of that, Shahrzard has a lot of internal conflict as well because she feels herself falling in love with her best friends murderer. That’s not an easy weight of guilt to carry.

There was a very undeveloped love triangle in this one. Before going to the castle, Shahrzad had apparently been with Tariq who was a love of hers from her childhood. In all honesty, I simply found his character annoying all through the novel. He wants to do something noble, which is saving Shahrzad. Sure, I approve of that. But he makes reckless decisions, is far too impulsive and doesn’t listen to any of the advice he receives. He seemed way too childish and was simply a source of aggravation for me.

There were plenty of other characters that made it up for me. I really loved Shahrzad – she was careful and clever. She knew what she wanted and how to deception and manipulation to receive it. She was quick witted and incredibly brave. I had to admire what a strong hearted and minded woman she was. I also liked her handmaid, Despina who seemed a bit more brash but had a good heart buried underneath it all.


The descriptions in this novel were just lovely. We got a good taste of the grounds and the castle, the setting of the story. Also, the foods they eat just sound so delicious and rich. The words dripped with imagery and I just wanted to drink them all up!

Everyone in the novel seems to have some degree of trust issues. When you’re running a country though, or sparking a rebellion in order to save your girlfriend, then I guess it does make a certain level of sense to have trust issues. But this was something I could relate to because it can be incredibly hard to trust people. I believe that’s what brought this novel down to a level that readers could relate to.

As for the plot of the novel… it was good, but a little messy. I Tariq and the plot itself were one of the reasons I couldn’t give this novel the full five stars that I wanted to. I really did like the main plotline, but Ahdieh did try to embed a second plot in there, to do with magic and powers. It was kind of all over the place and not developed well at all. I believe this was inserted in the story for the sake of book two and possibly the finale of the whole series as well… I just couldn’t appreciate it. It was sloppy and it interrupted my enjoyment of reading a bit. I simply wanted to skip over those sections and get on to the romance plotline that I was enjoying.


Many people complain that this novel is too heavily based on the romance. And it is. A Thousand and One nights is a fairytale based on romance, so at least you know what you’ll be getting before you start in on it. And the fact that the romance was a large part of it didn’t bother me – and I doubt it will bother many people as long as they are expecting it.

I did have a few issues with this book, but for the most part it captured my attention until the very end. I just wanted to keep on reading and I was hooked. If a book does that to me, I can already tell it is. The Rose and the Dagger sounds equally as wonderful so my fingers will be itching until I get it!

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 Gif Summary: 



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Links: Goodreads and Amazon!

Olivia’s Question: What was one thing you did in life that was an act of bravery?

Olivia-Savannah x

33 comments:

  1. Sounds interesting!

    Yeah, Aladdin - and Ali Baba as well, actually - were supposedly two of the stories that Shaharazade told the caliph/sultan/whichever dude it is in that version of the story, to stop him getting bored with her and killing her off (because clearly the way to prevent murder is by telling bedtime stories... as you do!)

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    1. Ooh these are things I didn't know until now! Thanks for enlightening me :3 Well, I guess this author decided to take those two stories and incorporate them into the retelling plot as well. Hehe, well, if I had no better idea I guess I would tell bedtime stories as well!

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    2. I suppose bedtime stories are worth a shot at that point!

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  2. Hi, Olivia - I'm also wary to read books that have a lot of hype. Sometimes it's well worth it, but sometimes it's just not. I think the book I enjoyed least that had a lot of hype was The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt. To me, it just had too much fluff. Great review on this one. :)
    @dino0726 from 
    FictionZeal - Impartial, Straightforward Fiction Book Reviews

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    1. They always make me so nervous but it's a 50/50 chance that I will like it as well. Oh, a shame about The Goldfinch! I loved that one a lot - but I didn't like her other novel... The Secret History.

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  3. I've tried on so many occasions to read this book, but I just couldn't get into it. I don't know if I'll ever try again, but I'm not losing hope. :)

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    1. A shame that this one didn't work out for you, but at least you've given it a shot.

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  4. I'm glad you enjoyed this book! I read it last summer, and like you, I did have a few problems, but I did really enjoy it. It was such an intricately woven and beautiful tale, and I loved the character of Shazi. She was so brave and strong, even when going through tough times. I hope to pick up the sequel soon! Your book photography in this review is so gorgeous, too <3

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    1. It's good to enjoy a book overall. That's how I felt with this one from beginning to end. Shazi was such a strong character which is why I loved her! Thank you, Denise <3

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  5. This one is on my TBR list. I'm super glad to hear you enjoyed it, even if you did have a few issues with it! I've heard some very mixed reviews, so it's nice to read positive reviews that build up the hype a bit more. :)

    Shaunna @ Books Over Bros

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    1. I can't wait for you to read it as well! I was surprised by how much I ended up appreciating it.

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  6. I have been dying to read this book! I hope to get it soon. Acts of bravery? Giving blood. I'm no fan of needles and blood, but I've been donating for 15 years now.

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    1. It's really good that you overcome that fear in order to help others. Good on you, Lekeisha ^.^

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  7. I read A Thousand and One Nights and loved it so I would be interested in reading The Wrath and Dawn. It's the sort of book I would be drawn too. I love fairy like tales. :)
    Incidentally I am reading a book by Salman Rushdie also mentions A Thousand and One Night. So far so good.

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    1. Seeing as you liked the original I would be interested to know what you made of this one. I haven't read the original novel myself! And the fairytale aspect was handled very well.

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  8. I'm a major romance novel, so I don't mind if a book's focus is its romance. But, in defense of this book, there was some major magic happening in the background! So happy you've read this one Olivia! I just bought the sequel! :D

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    1. Then I don't think you will mind that. But yes, definitely some magic business going on on the side too. I really want to the sequel! Here's hoping you enjoy it :D

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  9. A good punch kind of book is a must read. :)

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  10. it does seem like a book that captures one's attention completely...and that is always good!

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    1. All the best books manage to do that for me!

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  11. I've seen a lot of people talk about this book, but I wasn't sure I wanted to read it, since the idea of Khalid killing all his brides didn't appeal to me... Especially because I didn't know if there was going to be a romance involving him and how it was going to work. But you make it sound really interesting! And I have been in the mood for books with more romance in them.

    I wasn't aware there was a love triangle in this though *sigh* oh well, we'll see :P

    I'll definitely add this to my tbr list :D Thank you for the wonderful review, Olivia!

    Lipstick and Mocha

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    1. I know, that side of things sounds difficult. But you do get to see his reasons and you don't get to see too much of the active killing? I think you should try it. But yeah... that love triangle was annoying >.>

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  12. Messy plot, meh. Still sounds pretty decent.

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    1. It was pretty organised, I just didn't like the subplot myself. Maybe I'll appreciate it more when it comes to the forefront in the sequel.

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  13. I bought this and I'm still on the fence about reading this. Should've just borrowed it. I really have an odd feeling I won't like this one as much as I expect to.

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    1. I'm not sure it is going to be something for you, but it's still worth trying?

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  14. [ Smiles ] Your personal library keeps growing!

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    1. It just never seems to stop. This book was a brilliant addition ;)

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  15. I still haven't read this one - maybe this summer!
    Thanks so much for stopping by! Jen @ YA Romantics

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  16. Nice review Olivia! I hope you'll enjoy TRATD and you'll be able to give 5 stars hehe :D

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    1. I'm really looking forward to when I get to read it!

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