Arabian Nights Retelling.. this was really good

The Wrath & The Dawn – Renee Adhieh

Fairy tales, reimagining, retelling, Arabian Nights, young adult, fiction.

Rating 9/10

Shahrzad volunteered to be Khalid’s bride. Everyone knows that each bride was dead by sunrise and she doesn’t care. She wants revenge for her best friend who was murdered by him. The first night she tells him a story but doesn’t finish telling the story. He demands her to finish but she wants to live another day. He let her live another day to finish the story. Second day goes by and he is enthralled by her storytelling. She intends to drag out these stories as long as she needs to create a plan to murder him. Along the way, she loses interest in murdering him and falls for the monster who isn’t really a monster. He is simply misunderstood.

I had read this novel before and wanted to reread it. Mainly because I remembered how good this novel was and how different it was. I love different retellings and I got tired of beauty and the beast retellings even as they all are great in their own ways but it gets repetitive. This is a retelling of Arabian Nights and I loved it. She tells a story every night or so to stay alive and to prolong the possible execution as a form of revenge. She does learn about his history but honestly it should have ended differently. I’m fine with the ending. The author outdid herself in this novel with the characters and interactions. I recommend this if one loves Arabian Nights. Its a fun read and I would go on this journey of rereading it for sure.

…this was fine…

A Heart So Fierce and Broken (The Curse Breaker Series: Book 2) – Brigid Kemmerer

Fairy tales, retellings, fantasy, young adult, fiction.

Ratings 7/10

Grey is on the run with the new information that can get him killed. He is the true heir to Ember Fall. He nearly escaped and murdered the Enchantress who told him the truth of his birth. Karis Luran and her two daughters travel to Ember Fall to try to make a treaty of marriage to solidify the two nations. Lia Mara knows the true intentions of her vicious sister and wants peace between the two-warring kingdoms. Karis Luran meets with Rhen and blackmails him into trying to make a treatise. Rhen doesn’t want any of that. Lia decides into her own hands that led to her to becoming her mother’s pawn. Rhen finds Grey and confronts him about the heir. Grey is the heir but Rhen doesn’t know. The manhunt becomes benevolent. 

I wasn’t fully into the second installment of the trilogy. The writing is amazing, and organization of the different narratives helped build the world in making this world easier to understand. The new characters in this story were interesting and this revealed a lot more than the first book of the magical world. I should say not fully invested as I was with the first book. For those who have read the first book would be into the second book. Someone let me know if the third is good or comment below if I should continue. Convince me in other words without spoiling. I see this series all over TikTok and so many others. For those who are into the first book and are deeply invested in the series then this book is for those who are into it. I just personally am good with having the first book as a standalone because the second book was all over the place for me personally.

before Ariel…

Sea Witch – Sarah Henning

Fairy tales, Hans Christian Anderson, young adult, fiction.

Rating 9/10

Evelyn and her Prince friend, Nik, witnessed their friend drown four years ago. Both still shaken up about it but they mourned for so long. They had grown exceptionally close to each other. One day, there is unease seas that throws Nik into the ocean and later a mermaid saves him. When Evelyn goes to her hidden cove, she notices the mermaid who looks like her deceased friend. Later on, she runs into a girl who is a spitting image of her long-deceased friend. The new girl introduces herself as Annemette. Evelyn takes her to see Nik. Nik and Annemette kick it off while Evelyn turns her attention to the prince’s cousin. After the long day, Annemette confesses that she is a mermaid as well as only has four days to remain on land to find out if the Prince is her true love. She wants to remain on land and never return to the sea. Evelyn promises to help her with just that. What Evelyn doesn’t know is that she is to be made a fool by Annemette because she came back on land fully knowing what had happened to her and craves revenge on her friends who abandoned her.

I have to say that I was not expecting this novel to become dark as it had. I should have seen the signs however that this novel would have taken a turn. I did have had pity in Evelyn because she thought all along that this mysterious girl was their long dead friend and there was ought to be some form of resentment. I enjoyed reading from a perspective of a villain and their origin story. I’d like to think it forms some sort of equal judgement to understand where they are coming from and why they are the way they are. I loved this novel and the little surprises here and there that the author embedded into the plot. This novel is worth reading and I might try to get my hands on the sequel. I loved the writing style for sure. The style was very immersive into the world that Henning took the reader into.