Monday, February 15, 2016

Title: Rebel of the Sands
Author: Alwyn Hamilton
Series: Rebel of the Sands, book #1
Publisher: Penguin
Publication Date: March 8, 2016
Source: ARC received from publisher
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Add to Goodreads
She’s more gunpowder than girl—and the fate of the desert lies in her hands.

Mortals rule the desert nation of Miraji, but mystical beasts still roam the wild and barren wastes, and rumor has it that somewhere, djinni still practice their magic. But there's nothing mystical or magical about Dustwalk, the dead-end town that Amani can't wait to escape from.

Destined to wind up "wed or dead," Amani’s counting on her sharpshooting skills to get her out of Dustwalk. When she meets Jin, a mysterious and devastatingly handsome foreigner, in a shooting contest, she figures he’s the perfect escape route. But in all her years spent dreaming of leaving home, she never imagined she'd gallop away on a mythical horse, fleeing the murderous Sultan's army, with a fugitive who's wanted for treason. And she'd never have predicted she'd fall in love with him...or that he'd help her unlock the powerful truth of who she really is.

This book was everything, EVERYTHING I was hoping for when I read that synopsis. A gunslinging girl. Magical sand horses. Mystical djinni. Rebel princes. I couldn't have asked for a more perfect story. It was just so unpredictable and amazing and wonderful.

Sure, I had some theories that panned out, but they were so far-fetched that I was actually glad when I saw them come to fruition. But the same is true for the theories that didn't come to pass: I was equally as happy to see the direction the author took the story in those instances, as well. The writing is fun and fast-paced and sure to keep you on the edge of your seat. This was a buddy-read for me, but neither my buddy nor I deigned to assign a limited number of chapters to read each night because it was just that type of story, where you just have to keep reading until you either pass out or finish. We read most of it in the better part of two nights, texting back and forth all the while.

I loved the combination of Middle East and Wild West in this book. The setting is a desert, and it works for either type of story, obviously, but it really made this novel. The desert became a character in itself, with the things that dwelled there hidden by day and attacking by night. Usually, I'd find a trek through the desert boring and tedious, but in this book, it was terrifying and kept me glued to the pages.

As did Amani's antics. Amani is my favorite kind of heroine. She wants a better life for herself and she will do whatever she has to -- including posing as a boy and entering a shooting contest -- to achieve her goal. Amani is an expert marksman, but the only appeal she has to the people of Dustwalk is as a wife. She wants out of her one-horse-town and she's not about to fail. One way or another, she will be rid of her uncle and the past that haunts her.

Enter Jin. Amani is instantly intrigued by the foreigner, but she also knows he's her ticket out of this place. I thought I knew who Jin was, and then I didn't, but it turns out I really did. That may sound confusing to anyone who hasn't read the book yet, but it just comes down to me trusting my heart when it came to his character, rather than listening to my head. Jin makes for an amazing love interest, but he's so much more than that because he's so good for Amani. He makes her own up to who she really is, makes her see that she is more than just one thing. And I loved him to pieces for it.

I'm dying to experience more of Amani and Jin's story! I might just have to re-read the book to get my fix for now. There's just so much to this story that I'm sure to have missed in my impatience to see how it ends. Those myths! Those demdji! So compelling! So captivating! Rebel of the Sands is a phenomenal debut...a book you definitely don't want to miss! I had SUCH high expectations for this book, and it delivered on every level.

GIF it to me straight:

About the author:

Alwyn Hamilton was born in Toronto and spent her childhood bouncing between Europe and Canada until her parents settled in France. She grew up in a small town there, which might have compelled her to burst randomly into the opening song from Beauty and the Beast were it not for her total tone-deafness. She instead attempted to read and write her way to new places and developed a weakness for fantasy and cross-dressing heroines. She left France for Cambridge University to study History of Art at King’s College, and then to London where she became indentured to an auction house. She has a bad habit of acquiring more hardcovers than is smart for someone who moves house quite so often.

Find Alwyn:

WebsiteTwitter | Goodreads | Instagram | Tumblr


  1. oh this sounds so incredible. middle east and wild west setting. I have been into the wild west thing as of late. I love it already. I have been quite interested in this book and glad to see your positive feels about the read.

  2. Aaahhh I'm so happy my co-blogger is sending me her ARC when she's read it! :D

  3. I haven't actually read a djinn book yet, so I've got to expectations about this one. I'm glad you enjoyed it - immensely, at that, jen!

  4. I'm so glad you loved this one. I'm really excited to read it. I especially like the sounds of the world. Western meets Middle Eastern sounds fantastic. Great review!
    Cassi @ My Thoughts Literally

  5. I wish this one had an audiobook! I'd pre-order in an instant.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...