Ahdieh, R. (2015). The Wrath and the Dawn. New York, NY: G.P. Putnam’s Sons.
This title is also available in Kindle and Audible formats
Awards/Honors: Nominated for the 2015 Goodreads Choice Awards for YA Fiction; Junior Library Guild Selection; Indie Next List Top 10 Pick
A young woman seeks to end the pattern of murders of each of the king’s new brides.
Khalid is the young Caliph of Khorasan with a deep dark secret and is feared by his people. Each day he takes a new bride and each morning she is executed. Shahrzad is the next bride in line and she vows to break the cycle after her best friend met the same horrible fate. Will her charm and wisdom help her make it through the dawn?
The Wrath and the Dawn is filled with a beautifully colorful culture and sprinkled with magic. Ahdieh masterfully weaves her tale with plenty of mystery and some well-placed cliffhangers. This book is a fantastic retelling of the classic A Thousand and One Nights (also known as Arabian Nights).
Be sure to check out the playlist that Renee created for this book on 8Tracks
Lawrence, M. (2015). The Alchemist’s Daughter. New York, NY: Kensington.
Paperback-Per FTC guidelines, I received this book free of charge as part of a giveaway. All opinions are my own.
This title is also available in Kindle format
A young woman in 16th Century London attempts to solve a murder while trying to clear her own name.
Bianca Goddard is the daughter of a lowly alchemist in Tudor London. She owns an alchemy shop selling various medicinal tonics and rat poison that she creates using her knowledge of herbs and plants. When a companion suddenly turns up dead, Bianca becomes the Constable’s lead suspect. With the help of some unlikely friends, Bianca works hard to solve the mysterious murder and clear her name while dodging local law enforcement before she becomes the next victim.
Mary Lawrence did a great job depicting the poorer side of 16th century London. I enjoyed this book because it focused on the dingy slums of London, rather than most books that spend more time highlighting the royal family. It is dramatic, intriguing, and who can resist a good murder mystery? I would recommend this book because it has a strong, intelligent female lead with a cadre of interesting sidekicks and Lawrence does an excellent job of portraying the time period. It is more suited for a high school audience or older and would be appropriate for a high school library or historical fiction section of a public library. This book is going to be part of a series about Bianca Goddard, so look out for the sequel!
Watch this interview that Mary Lawrence did with WCSH6 Portland