Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton
Release date: March 8th, 2016
Genres: YA, Fantasy
Source: Uppercase Box
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.
Without a doubt, this book has been my favourite of 2016! It was just so perfect in every way. As soon as I finished it I wanted to reread it again and again and again, it was that good!
I was honestly really, really nervous going into this book. As soon as I saw the cover I knew I had to have it. Just look at the cover. Gorgeous right? It’s seriously one of the best covers I have ever seen in a long while. But I kept wondering if my excitement was just going to come crashing down around me. I didn’t want another repeat of Truthwitch. But seriously, why did I even freak out? It completely exceeded all of my expectations.
So, what made it so amazing? First, it’s a blend of Arabian Nights and the Wild West. When you first hear this you automatically think what?! No, but really these two worlds fit perfectly together. It’s a world where technology such as trains and guns coexist with Djinni and magic. It’s mainly set in the desert which is why these two genres or settings work together. The desert is the perfect embodiment of what this story is about – it’s a struggle, harsh and only the strongest survive.
Amani is everything I adore in a lead character. She’s feisty, strong, self confident and man can that girl use a gun! Her world is tough, especially for a woman, and she has had to endure so much to survive her dead end town of Dustwalk. I really respected Amani and the development she makes throughout the book. I saw a lot of myself in her or at least what I would like to be.
And Amani’s love interest Jin?!?!?! I LOVED him so, so much! He’s just perfect in every way. He’s just so swoon worthy! I loved how he interacted with Amani. They were just so darn cute together! I appreciated that they developed a friendship first before anything. It wasn’t love at first sight, which is the best type of love and probably the most believable in my opinion.
And the ending? It’s made way for an even more intriguing sequel with more problems that the characters will have to overcome. For a debut, the author has written with such ease and believability. I am so excited for what will come next. If you haven’t read this book, you really, really need to!!