The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh | Book Review

The Wrath and the Dawn

So….this book.

I had this book on my post Top 10 Hyped Books I Want to Read for my first Hype or Like Friday post. Super glad to say that I’ve already knocked out 5 of the books on there. Super sad to say that of those 5, I’ve hated 1, didn’t finish another and this one….was okay.

Let me start off by saying I definitely see what people love about this book. It’s different, fast paced, diverse. It has an eclectic group of characters. But there was just something that didn’t click with me.


One Life to One Dawn.

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?

Inspired by A Thousand and One Nights, The Wrath and the Dawn is a sumptuous and enthralling read from beginning to end.


Let’s start with our main character, Shahrzad aka Shazi. At first, I thought she was awesome. I loved her wit and snark and sass. But then as the story went on, it seemed like she was forcing it. That it was all just for show so she doesn’t show Khalid that she’s scared. Another thing that bothered the crap out of me was how paranoid she was the whole time. Someone could say “Shazi, you look nice today” and she’ll be like ~~~omfg they know I’m trying to kill the caliph omgomgomg~~~. It just got old fast.

Khalid wasn’t bad. Honestly, I probably would have hated the book if I didn’t have a soft spot for him. But really… I have no clue why I do. He wasn’t anything special. He treated Shazi like he was a 13 year old boy who has never been with a girl before. Although, I have to admit there were a few scenes where I was like omfgyespleasemore.

“Some things exist in our lives for but a brief moment. And we must let them go on to light another sky.”

I. hated. Tariq. He’s the equivalent to Mal from the Grisha trilogy. You can just go away and never come back and I WILL BE SO HAPPY. He was just a little dick. Like I understand that you’re trying to save the girl you love and blahblahblah but he was just a pushy asshole.

I couldn’t really follow the whole magic system. I honestly feel like it was unnecessary to the story and I would have enjoyed it more without it. But y’know, we gotta have twists or it makes reading not fun. I didn’t call the twist, but I still wasn’t impressed with it. I thought it as kind of dumb, but again… that is just me.

“And he smiled a smile to shame the sun.”

One thing I DID enjoy was the writing. I would love to read more work by Ahdieh. The way she explains things like clothing, scenery, food… it made me feel like I was there. I could image everything she was describing in my head and it was beautiful. This book was so quote-worthy. I swear I highlighted a paragraph every other page or so. Her writing is delicious.

This is just a very character driven novel and unfortunately, I couldn’t really connect with them. I wish that I did because looking back at my notes and seeing all the quotes that I loved just makes me so sad. They are probably some of my most favorite quotes from books. I really hope that Ahdieh comes out with a new series soon. I actually might end up reading The Rose and the Dagger just because I need more of her story-telling. Maybe by then I’ll be able to attach to the characters more.

“When you meet the one who makes you smile as you’ve never smiled before, cry as you’ve never cried before…there is nothing to do but fall.”

I’ve been debating over and over what I rating I should give this. I felt so dissatisfied when I first finished this that I gave it a 2, but now looking over my notes and just rereading the quotes… I think it deserves at least 3 stars.


Let me know if I should give The Rose and the Dagger a shot and if you think I’d like it better than this. Though I’m sad I didn’t enjoy it as much as I thought, I am glad that I did end up giving it a shot.

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11 thoughts on “The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh | Book Review

    1. I would still give it a go!! I really feel like what I didn’t like about the book was all just me. Like I said, I totally see why so many people have fallen in love with this.

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  1. You’ve got me really interested in The Wrath and The Dawn! I know that it’s a pretty overhyped book, and I actually had no intention of reading it, but omg I love scenes where you just go omfgyespleasemore, you know?
    I also love character-driven novels – hopefully I can connect more with them than you did? :S

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    1. There were few scenes like that, but they were there! Her writing is enough alone to read it though! Hopefully you will have a better experience with this book than I did. <33

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  2. I’m so excited for this one! It’s too bad you didn’t love it like most people I’ve talked to, but I’m glad you found some aspects to enjoy anyway. I’m not too bothered when I can’t connect to characters (I put much more emphasis on plot), and I LOVE unlikable characters, but I am a bit worried about the magic system. I gravitate more toward realistic fiction, whether contemporary or historical, so magical elements have to be REALLY good to capture my attention. So I’ll keep your thoughts in mind going in! I was excited to hear, though, about all the beautiful descriptions – that part of your review keeps my expectations high. Thanks for the honest thoughts, and I hope you enjoy The Rose and the Dagger if you decide to give it a shot!

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    1. I’m glad I didn’t hate it! I actually ended up reading one of the short stories last night. I like having a great plot, too, but I just can’t get anything out of the story really if I don’t feel any connections in it. The magic system was strange and unneeded, in my opinion. It is worth the read for her writing alone. Thanks so much for reading and commenting. Hope you enjoy it!

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