Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Blog Tour: Traitor to the Throne by Alwyn Hamilton
Review + Giveaway

Blog Tour organized by Penguin Teen
See below for the full schedule


I am THRILLED to be part of the blog tour for Traitor to the Throne. This sequel to Rebel of the Sands does not disappoint. I was once again transported to Amani's world of sand and magic. Read on for more of my thoughts on this second book in a trilogy, and don't miss the giveaway at the end of the post!



Traitor to the Throne
by Alwyn Hamilton
Read: February 19 - 21, 2017
Published: March 7, 2017 by Viking Books for Young Readers
Source: ALA MW 2017 
Category: Fantasy, desert, magic, Djini, Revolutions
Series:  Trilogy, book 2/3

Book Description: Mere months ago, gunslinger Amani al'Hiza fled her dead-end hometown on the back of a mythical horse with the mysterious foreigner Jin, seeking only her own freedom. Now she's fighting to liberate the entire desert nation of Miraji from a bloodthirsty sultan who slew his own father to capture the throne. 

When Amani finds herself thrust into the epicenter of the regime—the Sultan's palace—she's determined to bring the tyrant down. Desperate to uncover the Sultan's secrets by spying on his court, she tries to forget that Jin disappeared just as she was getting closest to him, and that she's a prisoner of the enemy. But the longer she remains, the more she questions whether the Sultan is really the villain she's been told he is, and who’s the real traitor to her sun-bleached, magic-filled homeland.

Forget everything you thought you knew about Miraji, about the rebellion, about djinni and Jin and the Blue-Eyed Bandit. In Traitor to the Throne, the only certainty is that everything will change.

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NOTE: Traitor to the Throne is a second book in a series. See my thoughts on the thrilling first installment, Rebel of the Sands.


I'm always a little bit apprehensive when I start a middle book in a series, especially when I loved the first installment as much as I did Rebel of the Sands. But I shouldn't have worried about this book!  Although Traitor to the Throne does employ the separation trope, this is a very strong sequel. I liked it as much - and maybe more than its 
predecessor.


Amani is my first love of this series. W
hether she is on a mission to a desert town, or unexpectedly finds herself captured and taken to the Sultan's palace, this girl is strong and capable. But Amani is not a typical martyr heroine, offering herself up as a sacrifice in need of saving. She's able and willing to make smart but difficult choices in the name of rebellion. Amani is badass and a survivor, even in moments when her choices are taken away from her. But Amani is not an island to herself, and I enjoyed seeing Amani as part of a larger group, with friends and people she trusts and respects. That is so different from the girl we met in book one.


Although I hated seeing Amani captured, I love that through the experience, Amani's understanding of her world is broadened. Amani gains invaluable perspective when she is taken right to the heart of the ruthless Sultan's palace, coming face to face with the very ruler the rebellion is fighting against. While in the palace, Amani begins to think about what the rebellion means for all sides, as well as how her previous - often rash - decisions have affected others. Some of my formed opinions of characters even changed throughout this book, and I loved the further complexities that gave the story. 


Traitor to the Throne is not always fast paced, but this pacing allows more reflection, and I think that's almost more important for Amani's growth and continued work with the rebellion. Even so, this story is intense. A lot of action is packed in too, especially near the end. These characters are starting a revolution and that means people are going to die - and do die in this story. Very hard choices have to be made, and though they made my heart break, I admired the characters' willingness to make them and keep moving forward. 


The romance was definitely one of my favorite parts of the first book, and continues to be so in this installment, despite the fact that Jin and Amani spend a lot of time apart. While separations are never my favorite, and I love seeing these two work together the most, it wasn't as painful as I feared. Mostly because Amani has Things To Do and she doesn't let herself get pulled into unnecessary angst. I love Jin and I think he's a great match for Amani - they are stronger when working together, but I have to admit to being a little bit upset with him in this story. Jin loves Amani and his brother Ahmed, but his heart isn't in their rebellion and that definitely causes some issues. However, Jin and Amani's love for each other is palpable and this story does have some sweet and swoony moments. I have high hopes for the continued progression of their romance in the final book in this series. (GET YOUR STUFF TOGETHER BOY). 


I loved how this story developed. However, I do think some of the official cover copy was overstated a bit. There were definitely revelations and surprises and moments of reflection, but not exactly what I anticipated from my first look at the book's description. Thankfully, I'm very happy and excited about where this story took me and its characters. 


This is a book and series that I adore and highly recommend. I'm dying for the finale now! 

Love Triangle Factor: None 

Cliffhanger Scale: Medium - This book stops in a moment that is both quiet and intense. You'll know what I mean when you get there, and you will be desperate for the next one! 
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About the Author



Alwyn Hamilton was born in Toronto and spent her childhood bouncing between Europe and Canada until her parents settled in France. She grew up in a small town there, which might have compelled her to burst randomly into the opening song from Beauty and the Beast were it not for her total tone-deafness. She instead attempted to read and write her way to new places and developed a weakness for fantasy and cross-dressing heroines. She left France for Cambridge University to study History of Art at King’s College, and then to London where she became indentured to an auction house. She has a bad habit of acquiring more hardcovers than is smart for someone who moves house quite so often. Follow her at @AlwynFJH.

Author Links: Website | Twitter | Goodreads | Instagram 


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Follow the Tour


 Week One:


3/6 – The YA Book Traveler – Mood Board
3/7 – Tales of the Ravenous Reader – Author Q&A
3/8 – Love is Not a Triangle – Review
3/9 – Mundie Moms – Review + Favorite Quotes
3/10 – Butter My Books – Guest Post

Week Two:
3/13 – Brittany’s Book Rambles – Guest Post
3/14 – The Eater of Books! – Favorite Quotes
3/15 – Two Chicks on Books – Author Q&A
3/16 – Lost in Lit – Review
3/17 – My Friends Are Fiction – Review

Week Three:
3/20 – The Yong Folks – Author Q&A
3/21 – The Book Addict’s Guide – Traitor Candle
3/22 – Seeing Double in Neverland – Review
3/23 – Bookworm Everlasting – Review
3/24 – Fiction Fare – Guest Post

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Giveaway

Enter for a chance to win one (1) grand prize set of Alwyn Hamilton’s books, including a paperback copy of Rebel of the Sands and a hardcover of Traitor to the Throne, or to win one (1) of five (5) paperback copies of Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton (ARV: $10.99 each).

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Enter between 12:00 AM Eastern Time on March 6, 2017 and 12:00 AM on March 27, 2017.  Open to residents of the fifty United States and the District of Columbia who are 13 and older. Winners will be selected at random on or about March 29, 2017. Odds of winning depend on number of eligible entries received. Void where prohibited or restricted by law. 

LINK to Rafflecopter form if you can't see it below.


Follow my @loveisnotatriangle instagram for other bookish snaps.

8 comments:

  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  2. Great review! Thank you. I love what you said about their love, how it was bearable because Amani have things to do!! Awesome! I really look forward to it! Thanks!

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  3. So excited for this book! Thank you

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  4. Eeep! I'm glad you enjoyed this book! The Jin/Amani separation was so mean - but I think the author wrote it really well. Hopefully book three is solid, in terms of the pair. I can't wait to see Amani break the world (not literally of course) in book three!

    Wonderful review, Lauren! Have a fabulous week. =)

    Alyssa @ The Eater of Books!

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  5. I adored Rebel of the Sands! I liked the heroine, her escape for a better life and genies!! :D

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  6. Gorgeous review Lauren :D Yesss for enjoying this book so much. <3 I haven't read it yet, because I'm nervous, haha. But I do hope that I will love it too :D You make it sound so amazing. Sigh. And eee, I adore this author :) Thank you for sharing your awesome thoughts sweetie. <3

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