The Wrath & the Dawn (The Wrath & the Dawn, #1) by Renee Ahdieh
Published May 12th 2015 by G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
Genre: YA, Fiction, Fantasy, Romance
My Rating: 3/5 Stars
Okay… unpopular opinion time.
I didn’t hate this book – but it just didn’t move me. I didn’t connect like I was hoping to.
Sure, the premise was interesting (hence it being a retelling), and it was written beautifully with gorgeous dialogue, but the character development was really lacking for me.
Let’s start with Shazi.
I kept trying to connect with her. I tried and tried to sympathize with her… to get inside her head and feel her out. To me, she was a fairly weak character. I get that she put herself into this situation for her deceased friend, and it was all sacrificial, blah blah. But that was really the extent that I got with her. I guess she was supposed to be clever, sassy, and determined… but I just didn’t get enough back story with her apart from her friend’s murder.
Also, can someone please explain to me why Shazi is so special that the Caliph decided to visit her and not the other girls? Did they connect at their wedding? Why was she set apart and get special treatment? I just didn’t get it. Maybe I missed something?
Then we have the Caliph who I really really wanted to like.
I suppose I didn’t dislike him- if anything, he was my favorite character. But even still – his whole mystery was already explained in the prologue even though it was vague (which made the big reveal less dramatic for me.) I was intrigued by him- but I just wanted more depth. I will say this- I did get more backstory on him than Shazi for sure, and that did help. But I think I was expecting an intense and mysterious villain (you guys know I’m a sucker for this…) who left me constantly wondering about his real intentions, desires, etc.
Also.. We get it. He has tiger eyes. For real… I don’t need to be reminded every bloody time I lay eyes on the dude. Don’t get me wrong.. it sounds appealing.. but sheesh!
The whole story is pretty much wrapped around these two.. and I just didn’t feel the chemistry or connection. I would have liked more action… adventure… intrigue… something. Something that had me sitting on the edge of my seat. Instead I ended up skimming the last bit of the book.. wanting to move onto bigger and better things.
As far as the side characters.. they were OK. Nothing mesmerizing.
As I always say- don’t let this deter you. I’m glad I read it… It was not a total bust by any means.
Give it a go if you are thinking about reading it.
Most everyone seems to love this book.. and I’m sure it is for great reasons. Renee seems to be a great author. Maybe my opinion will change as it did for the “Kiss of Deception” series after the second book comes out.