Review – The Rose and the Dagger by Renee Ahdieh

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May 1, 2016 by ceresbooksworld

The rose and the dagger


The Rose and the Dagger by Renee Ahdieh

Book two in The Wrath and the Dawn duology


Publication date: April 26th, 2016

Source: Paperback bought in W.H Smith

Rating: Evil Love

Challenge: Fairytale Retelling



The much anticipated sequel to the breathtaking The Wrath and the Dawn, lauded by Publishers Weekly as “a potent page-turner of intrigue and romance.”

I am surrounded on all sides by a desert. A guest, in a prison of sand and sun. My family is here. And I do not know whom I can trust.

In a land on the brink of war, Shahrzad has been torn from the love of her husband Khalid, the Caliph of Khorasan. She once believed him a monster, but his secrets revealed a man tormented by guilt and a powerful curse—one that might keep them apart forever. Reunited with her family, who have taken refuge with enemies of Khalid, and Tariq, her childhood sweetheart, she should be happy. But Tariq now commands forces set on destroying Khalid’s empire. Shahrzad is almost a prisoner caught between loyalties to people she loves. But she refuses to be a pawn and devises a plan.

While her father, Jahandar, continues to play with magical forces he doesn’t yet understand, Shahrzad tries to uncover powers that may lie dormant within her. With the help of a tattered old carpet and a tempestuous but sage young man, Shahrzad will attempt to break the curse and reunite with her one true love.


OMG, this duology is incredibly fantastic, I don’t have words to tell all the great things I think about this book but I will try.

So at the end of the first book, Shazi was taken by Tariq to a camp in the desert, her father, Jahandar has burned the city and Jalal had asked Tariq to take care of Shazi. That was the end, now the beginning of book two, Shazi is pissed at Tariq because he takes her away from Khalid. She’s sharing a tent with Irsa, her sister and she’s not welcome in the group because she had not killed the monster. Tariq and Irsa doesn’t understand why Shazi loves Khalid, after all he is a monster who killed his wives. Jahandar is sick and his daughters are worry for him. Khalid is trying to help his people rebuilt their home, nobody knows who he is but he’s helping.

Shazi is as strong as in the first book, she’s impressive, she’s trying all she can to help Khalid to be free of the curse and for that; she’s going to see Musa. She will meet a new character I like very much, Artan, he will help her and I love his sarcastic tone, he doesn’t hesitate to provocate Khalid. She will finally use the magic carpet; she will also keep a lot of secret from her sister.

Khalid wants to be free of the curse but the thing he desire the most is for Shazi to be happy and safe. He wants her near him but he knows that she’s safer with Tariq for now. He’s alone due to a lack of communication between him and Jalal. This last one is not here for him anymore and that’s sad. I loved Jalal and he’s a little stubborn, because he tells Khalid he’s in love but he doesn’t tell him that it’s Despina.

The story is told by multiple people, Shazi, Khalid, Tariq, Irsa, Jahandar and Omar. It gives more scale to the story, no point of view is leave aside, except the one of Artan (yes I love him very much).

The love story between Khalid and Shazi is beautiful, they are strong and smart, and they love each other even with all the people between them. Khalid is Shazi’s home and the same can be said for Khalid.

The story is interesting because Jahandar has lost his mind, he thinks that his acts are for the safety of his daughters but in the end, it’s the entire contrary. The book is like a drug to him and sadly some people are taking advantage of this.

The relation between Tariq and Shazi has changed, they are friends but it’s different, Tariq is not happy with Shazi’s choice of love and Shazi can explain to him why Khalid has killed his cousin.

There is a good plot and suspense, some characters like Despina, Jalal and the Rajput are less present in this book but the moments of their appearance is important.

The Rose and the Dagger is very well written, with such beauty in Renee’s word, she has real talent for words and I really hope she won’t stop here. The story is well built and developed perfectly, the characters are strong but they are also kind and the Caliph is a very good person. He has a lot of good moments, Shazi too, she’s becoming the Calipha of Khorasan and I love that, I like that she’s fearless, at least in appearances, because she knows that Khalid enemy will take advantage of her in the contrary.

This book is delightful, I wish to read more books like this one because all the important emotions in life are treated in this book, the pride, the jealousy, the love, the revenge and the family bond.

Renée Ahdieh is an amazing author; she has created a beautiful story with a real love story, two people who love each other very strongly. The characters are impressive and I like how the author tells us story with Shazi’s voice.

This duology is a must read, I won’t stop to tell you that if you haven’t read it, you are missing two very wonderful books.

About the author

Renée lives in North Carolina (Go Heels!) with her husband Victor and their dog Mushu. Her YA fantasy novel, THE WRATH AND THE DAWN, will be published on May 12th, 2015. In her spare time, she likes to cook, dance salsa, and wreak havoc on the lives of her characters.
She’s also a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, as well as an active member of theScience Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America.

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