The theme for this month’s Monthly Motif Reading Challenge is Diversify Your Reading. Here are 3 of my favorite non-Western Cultural Fantasy Books that you should absolutely add to your reading list.
The Wrath and the Dawn, Renee Ahdieh
This book is a retelling of the Arabian Nights story, where a king takes a wife, but she has to tell him stories every night to survive. The author of course put her own spin on things – and came up with a winner! The book feels authentic to it’s setting and while not a perfect book, I enjoyed it and recommend it to fans of fast paced, young adult books.
[Buy The Wrath and the Dawn @ Amazon]
The Killing Moon (Dreamblood #1), N. K. Jemisin
Jemisin is a MASTER! A master at World-building – imaginative histories with detailed descriptions … a master at character building – making me feel like I know them and am 100% invested in what happens to them … and a master at sucking me into a story set in an alternative ancient Egypt – leaving me wanting to read more and more, even after it’s finished.
In the ancient city-state of Gujaareh, peace is the only law. Upon its rooftops and amongst the shadows of its cobbled streets wait the Gatherers – the keepers of this peace. Priests of the dream-goddess, their duty is to harvest the magic of the sleeping mind and use it to heal, soothe – and kill those judged corrupt.
[Buy The Killing Moon @ Amazon]
Throne of the Crescent Moon, Saladin Ahmed
At first I was going to the say that the strengths of The Crescent Moon are the well developed characters & the wonderfully imaginative World. But the more I think about it, the more I realize that what I love is not necessarily either of those 2 things, but it’s how incredibly descriptive everything is … without seeming to be so. It’s not the World building that thrilled me, but the details of living in that World – the life of the people of the city of Dhamsawaat. We’re not just given glimpses into what everyday life is like – but a portal through which we can view everybody from the main characters, to the vendors in the Square – at least, that’s how the author made me feel.
[Buy Throne of the Crescent Moon @ Amazon]
Have you read any of these books – or any books by these authors? Which book(s) would you add to this list?
// Comments //
Those books are definitely outside my usual sphere, but Throne of the Crescent Moon does sound like one I might enjoy trying.
Shannon @ It Starts at Midnight
I LOOOOVED The Wrath and The Dawn (and The Rose and the Dagger, too)! Such a phenomenal series, I cannot wait for Renee’s next book! I have not heard of the other two (though I do have a book by N. K. Jemisin that I just got as a gift and cannot WAIT to get to) but The Killing Moon absolutely sounds like something I would love. Throne of the Crescent Moon may be a little *too* high fantasy for me (sometimes it overwhelms me 😉 ) but your description of it makes me want to give it a chance anyway! Thanks so much for sharing these, I am adding them to my list!
@Shanon Throne of the Crescent Moon definitely won’t overwhelm. You’ll fall in love with the old cranky ways of the main character, promise 🙂
Alicia @ A Kernel of Nonsense
I love The Wrath and the Dawn duology. Ahdieh is such a beautiful writer. I cannot wait to read more from her. I just bought The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N.K. Jemisin. I hear she is simply amazing and I’m looking forward to picking up all her books.
@Alicia I only read the 3rd book in The Hundred Thousand trilogy and it was so good. I’m slowly working my way through all Jemisin’s books.
I liked The Wrath and the Dawn but for some reason never felt the desire to read the second book in the duology. Did you read it?
@Anne I haven’t read the 2nd book yet, but plan on it for this year. i’m interested to see where they go with the series.