Traitor to the Throne by Alwyn Hamilton
Series: Rebel of the Sands #2
Publisher: Faber & Faber
Published February 2nd 2017
Genres: Fantasy, Romance, Young Adult
This is not about blood or love. This is about treason.
Nearly a year has passed since Amani and the rebels won their epic battle at Fahali. Amani has come into both her powers and her reputation as the Blue-Eyed Bandit, and the Rebel Prince’s message has spread across the desert – and some might say out of control. But when a surprise encounter turns into a brutal kidnapping, Amani finds herself betrayed in the cruellest manner possible.
Stripped of her powers and her identity, and torn from the man she loves, Amani must return to her desert-girl’s instinct for survival. For the Sultan’s palace is a dangerous one, and the harem is a viper’s nest of suspicion, fear and intrigue. Just the right place for a spy to thrive… But spying is a dangerous game, and when ghosts from Amani’s past emerge to haunt her, she begins to wonder if she can trust her own treacherous heart.
I have to start by saying that I liked the first book more… Don’t get me wrong! I really liked this book! But it didn’t have as much action and a lot changed from the last one…
First of all, the Traitor to the Throne and I didn’t start off on the right foot. I just don’t like when a sequel doesn’t start where the last ended. It just doesn’t draw me in easily like a sequel should. It tends to be rushed and it feels more like a wrap-up of happenings than the continuation of a story. Basically in one paragraph the author told everything that passed in the last year like it wasn’t that big of a deal – some got shot, others disappear, but nothing important, you know?! – it felt pretty much like that. Maybe she felt it was better that way, but I am not feeling it.
Also, one of the big points in this series is the world building. And what we loved from the first book – all that dangerous sandy world – is gone. You have a tidy bit in the beginning and then… puff. So that was another thing I wasn’t expecting. It didn’t make the book bad. But it didn’t make it better and added a dash of disappointment to it.
And a last point in my complains is Jin! Where are you?! He appears in a very tiny percentage of the book, this time (with a very weak explanation…). And even when he was… He wasn’t the same sexy, playful person we knew. When he appears he is Amani’s puppy. Hoping she doesn’t die. Being tortured to death with the possibility, but at first opportunity that she says she has to go it’s okay… Oh come on! Where’s that electricity felt in the first book?
Now that that is out of the way, and I am more calm, let’s talk about some happier stuff, shall we?
That cover. That cover is gorgeous! And it’s going to have a special place in my bookshelves because I need to see it everyday! I love the color. I love the gold details and I love the fact that it’s like a window to that world. So that is coverporn right there.
The plot. Not counting with the previous mentions…. I loved all the political stuff that appeared in this one. I loved getting to see the Sultan’s side of the story. What he thinks, what he does. And although sometimes it was really hard to hate him (because he is a freaking cool character!) I deeply believe he is one evil seed. He has plans that would mesmerize anyone. And although it didn’t have much action it was an interesting part to read about. The rebellion is on and off. It seemed a bit weak after seeing the oh so powerful Sultan…
I also did enjoy seeing the castle and to see the world from that perspective. I liked how realistic the harem seemed. Plus, I loved how much magic was present in this book!
This book had way too many characters and way to many sons… So I will talk about the more important ones.
Amani was certainly not my favorite in this one. I liked her in the first book and even in that one we kind of see two sides of Amani. The one that believed that with a gun in her hand, could do anything. And the one that discovered she is all powerful and decided that, after that, she couldn’t be the same person as before. Well, in this book we have trapped Amani. She is helpless, she has to reassure herself that she can actually do something and that thinks she is the smartest because she is a demdji. This book certainly didn’t show much of her best side… Plus she was with doubts about the rebellion and then they were gone! PS: I wanted so much that to continue! To have a twist there. *sigh!*
Like I said, I actually really quite liked the Sultan… I have to admit he is a hell of a character! And I was all up for him… I definitely my soft spot… He is so much better than Ahmed!
The book is full of twists and although some are pretty easy to see through… some of them are pretty good. But… that last one… I didn’t like at all… Is it bad to be excited to read the next book mainly because of the Sultan? Well, I am!
I definitely recommend this book, it has an amazing world full of magic that you wouldn’t want to miss! And I am most excited to see what will happen to the rebellion in the next book!
Which character surprised you more?