The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh
The kingdom of Khorasan is ruled by a monstrous boy-king. Each night, Khalid Ibn al-Rashid, the Caliph of Khorasan, the King of Kings, takes a new bride. And on the dawning of each new day, he takes her life.
Sharzad al-Khayzuran is Khalid’s next bride, but she is different from the rest of the young women who have died at dawn. After the King of Kings cruelly stole her best friend Shiva’s life from the world, all Sharzad can think of is vengeance. Vengeance for the dozens of lives the caliph has stolen and the dozens of mourning families, but especially for Shiva’s family, including Sharzad’s childhood sweetheart Tariq. So, with revenge in her heart and hate in her eyes, Sharzad volunteers to be Khalid’s next bride. She knows she will not survive the night – but, if she has her way, nor will the monster king.
But Khalid is not what, or who, she expected. Spinning a spell of stories designed to keep the caliph enchanted by her tales and entranced by her beauty, as well as her own self alive past the dawn, Sharzad hopes only to live long enough to discover the caliph’s weaknesses and destroy him. Instead, she finds herself reluctantly intrigued by the serious, quiet, extraordinarily gifted swordsman and king – a king whose shoulders seem perpetually bowed under the weight of his worry for the welfare of his kingdom and its people. The same people who weep for their lost daughters and riot in the streets as the list of murdered brides grows longer.
As each new dawn is gifted to her by the caliph, Sharzad begins to see that all is not as it seems on the surface. Khalid is haunted by a dark secret – a secret so terrifying, he cannot speak of it. But how can she help the man who murdered her best friend? And how can she forgive herself for beginning to care about him?
A re-imagining of the 1001 Arabian Nights, The Wrath and the Dawn is a lushly romantic, sumptuous feast for the senses. Lose yourself in a world whose long marble halls and plush carpets (and maybe a magic one too!) are scented with roses and lilac, turmeric and mint, and where magic is lurking around every corner. Absolutely perfect for a long holiday weekend in the sun, you’ll definitely want to add this to your vacation bag!