Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Book Review: 'Hero At The Fall' by Alwyn Hamilton

Amani Al'Hiza, aka the Blue Eyed Bandit, and the band of rebels, or what's left of them after the events of the previous book, 'Traitor To The Throne', must travel to the mythical city of Eremot to rescue the Rebel Prince Ahmed and the other rebels imprisoned there, and then rally against the brutal Sultan of Miraji in order to take back the city of Izman and unite the country.

If you're unfamiliar with the world of "Rebel Of The Sands', think of it as the Wild West meets the Arabian Nights, which to be honest, was a major attraction for me. I liked the mix of both cultures in this world, bringing some of the gunslinger action as well as the Middle Eastern magic and mysticism, although this book is more magic and mystical than western than the previous books. With the characters having to deal with issues like religious customs and traditions clashing with progression and modernising, it made for an expansive and more believable world, which I enjoyed revisiting again.

It was good to go back to the main characters of the series again, and by the end, see just how much they had changed over the course of the books. I felt that Amani had changed the most over the trilogy of books; from the selfish, confident swagger when we first meet her in the first book, to what she's become now after the shattering events of the second book, someone who has to overcome her self doubts and needs to believe in herself and those around her a bit more. Considering what she had to go through throughout the books, the events would definitely change a person. It was also interesting to see how she coped with the changes in herself as well as in everybody and everything around her.

'Hero At The Fall' by Alwyn Hamilton is a solid story, full of action and adventure in the desert sands. It does hit some of the familiar YA beats along the way too, making some parts predictable at times, but despite that, there was enough twists and turns to keep me invested in the story and characters until the last page.

It's a good series too, and after the dip in pace of the second book, when Amani was captive in the Sultan's harem, it was back up to speed again as it raced to the conclusion.