Author: Renee Ahdieh
Series: Yes (The Wrath and the Dawn #1)
genre: YA Fantasy, Retelling, Romance
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?
Smooth. That's the word I'd use to describe this book. It was a beautiful and smooth read about a boy-king who marries and kills his brides come dawn – (A Thousand and One Nights retelling). It wasn't slow and it wasn't extremely fast paced and what made it beautiful is the writing – the language was fluid and elegant which read like a fairy tale itself.
Shahrzad is your typical YA Fantasy heroine, headstrong and full of confidence & resolve who thinks she can accomplish the impossible. Not that I hate that but there was definitely instalove going on. You come in with revenge running through your veins against the man who murdered your best friend and then just flip and fall in love? Whatever happened to all that resolve? I get the undeniable connection and instant attraction, I just wish she'd held out a bit longer before she declared herself 'in love'.
I loved Khalid, I 've always loved question-mark characters. You never know where they stand and you constantly question some of their actions. I was very irritated by him and some of the decisions he'd made or failed to make for most of the book but heck, I loved him nonetheless. It might have been pity love now that I think about it.
My favourite part, of course, is the whole mystery behind the deaths of these girls. Now, whenever I read any book, my head is constantly coming up with these out of the world, too-far-out-of-the-box theories trying to figure out mysteries or secrets (really, once when I couldn't determine who the person was so I came to the conclusion that the protagonist, who was clearly alive is actually dead – that he'd killed himself then resurrected. Needless to say, I was wrong. So very very wrong. And this is just the tip of it). So the fact that I couldn't piece any of the mysteries together surrounding these deaths only made it that much gripping.