Thursday, June 29, 2017

Book Review: 'Traitor To The Throne' by Alwyn Hamilton

I enjoyed the first book in this series and looked forward to reading the second, 'Traitor To The Throne'.

And it's a good read, once again told in the first person perspective of Amani, the main protagonist of the series, a Demdji - half human, half djinn - with powers to control the sands and also known as the Blue-eyed Bandit, after her brilliant blue eyes, courtesy of her Demdji heritage, and her, well, banditry and proficiency with a pistol. She's still the smart mouth, risk taker from the first book, but she also matures a bit over the course of the story.

But it was a bit of a slow burn to get going for me, until we get to the Sultan's Palace. Then it's all about the intrigue and politics of the hierarchy of the Palace and the harem as Amani starts to uncover the machinations of the Sultan's plans for the country he holds power over, despite her being under his control and stripped of her Demdji ability to control the sands. There are a few twists and turns that keep the story going and, being the second book in the trilogy, the inevitable set up for the third book. Which of course, goes straight into my To Read list!

As Amani is holed up in the Sultan's harem for the majority of the book, the book is more slower paced and the majority of the characters we were introduced to in the first book, 'Rebel Of The Sands', are relegated to the back seat. But when we do meet them, they are still enjoyable, from Jin, Shazad, Ahmed and others. But we're also introduced to new characters, finally meeting The Sultan, as well as Rahim, Leyla, Kadir, Ayet, Sam and more, with each playing their parts and adding to the story really well.

I also like the Arabic / Persian inspired setting too. I love the old 'Sinbad' movies and 'Traitor To The Throne' certainly conjures up scenes from those films.

I listened to the audiobook narrated by Soneela Nankani, and I really liked her narration. She brought Amani to vivid life, so much so that it felt like Amani herself was telling the story.

Although I don't read much of them, it seems like a typical YA novel, with a bit of romance and adventure all mixed in together, with some good characters and a decent setting. If you enjoyed the first book, I'd recommend continuing on with the second in the series.

****/5