Jan 27, 2017

Review--The Rose and the Dagger by Renee Ahdieh

The darker the sky, the brighter the stars.

In a land on the brink of war, Shahrzad is forced from the arms of her beloved husband, the Caliph of Khorasan. She once thought Khalid a monster—a merciless killer of wives, responsible for immeasurable heartache and pain—but as she unraveled his secrets, she found instead an extraordinary man and a love she could not deny. Still, a curse threatens to keep Shazi and Khalid apart forever.

Now she’s reunited with her family, who have found refuge in the desert, where a deadly force is gathering against Khalid—a force set on destroying his empire and commanded by Shazi’s spurned childhood sweetheart. Trapped between loyalties to those she loves, the only thing Shazi can do is act. Using the burgeoning magic within her as a guide, she strikes out on her own to end both this terrible curse and the brewing war once and for all. But to do it, she must evade enemies of her own to stay alive.

The saga that began with The Wrath and the Dawn takes its final turn as Shahrzad risks everything to find her way back to her one true love again.

A word of advice my friends, whenever reading a duology, it’s always best to binge read…unless you have the memory of an elephant! Lol! Needless to say that I wished I could’ve binge read Renee Ahdieh’s The Wrath and the Dawn duology, for The Rose and the Dagger picks up pretty much where we left things. Which was pretty chaotic!

Our star-crossed lovers, Shahrzad and Khalid have been separated when chaos was wrought down upon the city of Rey. Shazi is sent off with Tariq in order to be kept safe. If you’d recall, Tariq was her old childhood crush and possibly boyfriend I guess you could say, before she went to offer herself to Kahlid. Naturally, though, they fell in love and Tariq was pretty much left behind. I actually commiserated for Tariq. He lost his one true love to another man. Shazi has already moved forward but Tariq can’t relinquish his feelings as quickly. I actually worried we would see respite from him, in trying to woo her back to him. Oddly enough, we don’t Shazi makes her feelings and stance very clear. Which I much appreciated this sentiment.  I know it’s odd that I am starting out with this bit of the story, but it’s one that I felt like addressing and since I started at the beginning and this is what came from the beginning you can see how I went on said tangent! Lol!

Shazi has been reunited with her sister Irsa and you would think all would be well. Unfortunately everyone around Shazi is on the whole “Let’s kill Khalid parade”. She’s basically in a camp of soldiers who want to kill Khalid for all he’s done to the young women over the course of time. It’s now Shazi and Khalid’s mission to find a way to end the curse that was put upon him. Too many people have died already.

I’ve forgotten how in this series we get so many different character points of view! And I’ve forgotten how much I enjoyed that too! Lol! Pretty much all the characters get a little page time! I find that I enjoyed reading about Irsa the most! I guess I resonated with her for we are both younger sisters. She had a timid side to her that I also can relate to. But then we get to watch her grow, and she comes along way! I especially enjoyed her bit of romance with Rahim.

This book is a piece of remarkable storytelling! We even get stories within the story at large! I always love hearing about different myths and even the whole “origin” myths when we learn why something is the way it is or how something came to be. That kind of thing. There’s not a lot of them in this story, but the bit that we did get was enjoyable!

A few things that threw me off my game, and is likely to be blamed upon reading these books way too far apart, were some of the new characters. Or maybe we possibly met one of them before, but there were at least two characters that came onto the page that I just couldn’t get an understanding of them. I wasn’t truly aware of who or possibly even what they were. Were they magical related and I just missed something? I can’t be sure. And it’s possible that they were just totally new but I still felt thrown off for not really understanding who they were. The names kind of threw me through a loop as well. Pronunciation being a main factor, because I’m a reader who really likes to know how to pronounce things! Lol! There were a few “vocab” words thrown in there that I wasn’t too sure of for their meaning either, I’d kill for a glossary because Google isn’t always so helpful sometimes! Lol.

Despite those little nuisances, which really didn’t amount to much, I really enjoyed this one! Shazi is a fierce girl and I love her for that! She’s not afraid of speaking her mind and to h*ll with society’s standards on how she should act. I love that about her!

The ending was so emotional. Be prepared for feels! I admit to getting teared up at one point, by the end when yet another wave of surprises and emotions started to flood, it took a lot to keep going! I was a handful of pages from the end and I was thinking, Renee can’t do this to me again, right? I won’t answer that. But I will say that the ending fit the story the way it was meant to!

Though I do wonder what will become of all the other characters. We get an idea of most of their fates, can guess with a few others, but I still wonder about Irsa. Yeah, we little sisters got to stick together! Lol! The Rose and the Dagger brings this magical duology to an astounding finish! It’s definitely a duology you all should read if you enjoy fairy tales and mystical places! It’s an adventure you’re sure to never forget!

Overall Rating 4.5/5 stars



  1. I love this duology so much. I wish I had time to reread it back-to-back. Glad you enjoyed!

  2. I have the first book in duology. I will take your advice and read them back to back as soon as I can fit it in my reading schedule. Glad you enjoyed this. Great review!

  3. I binged this series so I can definitely agree with your assessment! It definitely helped reading one right after the other!

  4. I remember starting this series and then the library due date (no renew allowed) hit me too soon and I never went back to check it out later. Now that both books are out I can read one after the other. Great review--you made me remember and want to start again.

  5. I can see I would benefit by having both books in hand before I read. My prefered way to read.

  6. I agree, I really love binge reading duologies. I need to grab book 2 and then I can read them back to back. I'm happy to see you enjoyed it so much :)

    Great review!

    Happy Reading :)

    Michelle @ Book Briefs


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