Published on: February 2nd 2017
Published by: Penguin Books
Series: Rebel of the Sands #2
Genre: YA Fantasy
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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.
Being approved for an ARC of this book is possibly one of the best bookish things to ever happen to me. I BEYOND LOVED the first book and must have read it at least 10 times since it’s release, so getting an early copy was a dream come true!
My favourite thing about Rebel of the Sands was the world building, it was phenomenal! I didn’t think it could get any better but this book just kept on giving us more and more of this incredible world Hamilton has created. The history, the creatures, the myths, the magic, the places; Hamilton’s talent really shines in this book and I envy her world building talent.
“I fought with everything in me. But everything in me was Demdji. And Demdji couldn’t tell lies.”
We start this book nearly a year in the future and so much has happened in that time. Amani has grown so much as a character and is now a confident and important member of the rebellion. Her strength is really tested in this book, and not just because she ends up kidnapped and prisoner in the Sultan’s palace, but her relationships with both familiar and new to us characters are also tested. Hamilton creates a great balance of strength and vaulnerability in Amani the entire book which makes her both a believable and very likeable character.
“I forced my tears to dry. I forced myself to remember I was a desert girl. I didn’t have water to spare.”
Amani’s relationship with Jin has to be one of my all time favourites and this book did nothing to change that. They have a pretty interesting dynamic in this book, they are still together but at times it seems like they are slightly scared of the things they are feeling for the other because when things get difficult (like one of them gets seriously injured) the other one disappears because they don’t want to have to sit there and watch the other, this person that they love, potentially die. Even so they are a pretty strong couple in this book and I can’t wait to see how they develop further in the next one.
We get all our favourite secondary characters from the first book and some new ones and I loved seeing how their relationships with Amani and each other had developed. Some of my favourite scenes were those which featured the rebellion all together just hanging out together.
“All that I am I give to you, and all that I have is yours. My life is yours to share. Until the day we die.”
This book has more twists and turns than a rollercoaster and I really had no idea what was going to happen next. People who I thought I could trust I couldn’t, and vise versa. People were dying and then not dying. It was just crazy, but in the best way possible. Everything came as a complete surprise and I had no idea how the story was going to end, and even that was incredibly done. The whole story just flowed perfectly and once I had picked the book up there was no way I was putting it down.
“Drop the gun, Bandit.”
“There’s only one man who gets to call me that,” I said. “And you’re not near as good looking as him.”
As a writer Hamilton’s talent makes me sick with envy but as a reader I get butterflies every time I pick up one of her books. This book definitely does not suffer from second book syndrome, instead it continues to build the story perfectly and has left me desperate to get my hands on the next book.
Re-Readability: Hells Yeah!
I would recommend this book to fans of: fantasy world, stories with rebellions, kick ass female characters, slow burn romances, characters with magic