There is a brilliant movement happening in YA at the moment and Renee Ahdieh is right at the front of it. It is a call for diversity, a call for a new style of heroine, a call for a change in the story. If I could fill this review with the little clapping hand emoji, I would, because I love this idea. I love it even more because it gave us The Wrath and the Dawn.
The Wrath and the Dawn in its simplest form is a reimagining of the tale of Scheherazade and The Thousand and One Nights. In its more exciting form, The Wrath and the Dawn is a beautifully realized love story with a twist.
Our heroine is Shahrzad. She has promised herself to the prince who just murdered her best friend. They say the prince is evil (because he murders his brides after one night of marriage. Intrigued? Read on!). Shahrzad is determined to not only survive the night, but to seek revenge on the prince and avenge the death of her friend. When he comes to her room that evening, she is armed with the only thing she has – a story. She tells a story that is so compelling that she remains alive.
What follows then is the story of Shahrzad uncovering the truth behind the prince’s murderous tendencies and the secret that he has kept for so long. And surprisingly, this unfolds into a deep romance.
Renee Ahdieh’s beautiful writing brings The Wrath and the Dawn to life. Be warned that some are disappointed that this fantasy is less fantasy, action and adventure, and more romance. But I loved it. Shahrzad is a magnificent ball of sass and spirit. The tales she weaves are also brilliant and breathe a story-within-a-story life into an already multi-colored and layered intrigue. A more diverse genre is here and I for one am glad that Renee Ahdieh is standing at the forefront.