The Wrath and The Dawn by Renee Ahdieh
Series: The Wrath and The Dawn
Published May 12th 2015 by G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
Genre: fantasy, romance, young adult, fairytale, retelling, magic, historical fiction
Overall rating: 5/5★
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?
Inspired by A Thousand and One Nights, The Wrath and the Dawn is a sumptuous and enthralling read from beginning to end.
guys, I fell in love with this story.. Its story, romance, people, place and everything in between. It’s such an enthralling novel. Renee Ahdieh has a way with words, she described the world so beautifully and it felt so real, I could imagine the city of Rey and the palace, their clothes and food so vividly. It was magical and stunning and everything that I wanted without even knowing that I wanted it. The Arabic world was intricately crafted, and it was amazing.
Reading was difficult at first since the characters were just introduced without warning, and I had problems with differentiating who is who. But, after that, it gets easier to read.
The romance between the main characters felt so authentic and I was so invested in their relationship, and how it went from hatred to love was so pure and honest. Oh my, I ship them so hard. Even though I was prepared for the romance, I didn’t expect to be sucked into this relationship so quickly.
Shahrzad is such a hard-headed woman, who is so protective and her sassiness and unyielding attitude made me admire her. However, her resolution to get revenge was a little too weak, and it seemed like she didn’t really tried.
Khalid is like an injured soul. He shows a tough front as if he had no qualms on killing his past wives, but in fact, he’s suffering on the inside and he’s the one who hurt the most. But with Shazi, he changed for the better.
I was slightly worried that the romance would undermine the original myth, but Renee Ahdieh managed to do everything so wonderfully. The balance between the romance and the situation was so well established. Overall, I love love love every single part of The Wrath and The Dawn.
the spoiler section will start now, please read the book and come back for the discussion
to start off, what kind of ending is this?! renee made me so pumped up for this couple’s happy ending yet my heart was ripped out of my chest in the span of the last few pages… even though i know it had to be done for the second book, but this cliffhanger is making me anxious of the unforeseeable future. the moment i read that khalid wrote to the families of the girls he was forced to kill because of his condition, but NEVER SENT IT OUT, my heart was crying. and when khalid wrote the last part of shazi’s letter and then BURNT IT, i was crying. my goodness. seriously heartbroken.
the romance between khalid and shazi warmed my heart. khalid was so closed off before shazi came along, and her attitude totally brought khalid’s walls down while his sweetness and thoughtfulness for her also broke her barriers. the way they professed to each other was so like the arabic era and culture, it felt so old-school and it’s sooooooo super cute.
shazi is so protective and loving towards her loved ones, especially because of shiva, that led her to the decision of volunteering. her bad ass attitude always get her in trouble, like the time when she was at the souk and she retorted the guy with ‘tiny cucumber’.
I burst out laughing at that scene. She’s hilarious, and that scene was amazing. she always make me cheer for her when she managed to get back to others in humor and grace. but, she kind of flopped the plan of getting revenge. and she didn’t really try very hard to kill khalid.. so..
khalid’s character developed tremendously. he went from the stoic and unloving person to someone who is capable of showing his emotions and sharing his secret. the number of occasions he showed his devoted and unlimited love towards shazi moved me all the time. it felt like khalid fell in love with shazi very fast, but i didn’t mind it, because their relationship is authentic, in my eyes.
jalal and despina are such strong secondary characters and they support the main characters so effortlessly, and i’m looking forward to jalal and despina’s parts in the second book because he now knows she’s pregnant.
jahandar scares the heck out of me, he’s super creepy and gives me the bad vibes during all his parts. i got weirded out when he was being really skittish about the book he brought out from the library and his blood lust freaks me out. and where is irsa, she was never mentioned again after the start. is she dead?
also, i’m not a big fan of tariq to be honest. tariq can’t get the idea that she might not want to be rescued or she doesn’t have to be saved when she’s already alive for so damn long. he knew her since young and should know that she’s strong-willed. it didn’t feel like he’s in love in her but rather clinging onto the memories when they were younger and refusing to admit that she can actually fall in love with another guy.
i’m absolutely in love with this novel, and i can’t wait to read the rose and the dagger.
let me know your thoughts about the wrath and the dawn! i’d love to know!
“But it’s inevitable. When you meet the one who meet the one who makes you smile as you’ve never smiled before, cry as you’ve never cried before… There is nothing to do but fall.”
(my aesthetic for the wrath and the dawn)