The Kingdom of Copper, S.A. Chakraborty – Book Review

Hello Humans! Today’s review is for a book that I have been hotly anticipating since I read the first book in the series last year. The Kingdom of Copper is the second book in The Daevabad Trilogy, the first book being The City of Brass. I gave the first book five stars and I was excited to have the opportunity to read the second book, which I started on Valentine’s day because apparently, that’s my idea of romance…

The Kingdom of Copper

Goodreads Summary:

Nahri’s life changed forever the moment she accidentally summoned Dara, a formidable, mysterious djinn, during one of her schemes. Whisked from her home in Cairo, she was thrust into the dazzling royal court of Daevabadand quickly discovered she would need all her grifter instincts to survive there.

Now, with Daevabad entrenched in the dark aftermath of the battle that saw Dara slain at Prince Ali’s hand, Nahri must forge a new path for herself, without the protection of the guardian who stole her heart or the counsel of the prince she considered a friend. But even as she embraces her heritage and the power it holds, she knows she’s been trapped in a gilded cage, watched by a king who rules from the throne that once belonged to her family and one misstep will doom her tribe.

Meanwhile, Ali has been exiled for daring to defy his father. Hunted by assassins, adrift on the unforgiving copper sands of his ancestral land, he is forced to rely on the frightening abilities the marid, the unpredictable water spirits, have gifted him. But in doing so, he threatens to unearth a terrible secret his family has long kept buried.

And as a new century approaches and the djinn gather within Daevabad’s towering brass walls for celebrations, a threat brews unseen in the desolate north. It’s a force that would bring a storm of fire straight to the city’s gates . . . and one that seeks the aid of a warrior trapped between worlds, torn between a violent duty he can never escape and a peace he fears he will never deserve.

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I’m pleased to say that I ended up really loving this book too, and also gave it five stars, I would say to anyone planning on reading it who, like me, can’t quite recall what happened in book one, it does mean that the beginning of the book is quite slow and confusing as you try to wrap your head around who’s who and what is going on. I would suggest either re-reading The City of Brass or giving yourself the space to read the beginning in a non-stressful environment. I did not take my own advice and tried to read this book while waiting for a delayed plane – not very relaxing, in fact quite terrible, and I couldn’t for the life of me work out what was going on. I picked the book up when I was in less of an exhausted and confused state and everything not only made sense but was absolutely amazing.

The use of dramatic irony in this book is amazing (side note, I know I talk about dramatic irony a lot but it’s one of my favourite writing techniques so leave me be). The way that the three points of view are set out is so clever, allowing the reader to sometimes discover something immediately before it would have been useful to another character, or otherwise building the tension by having small time jumps where you realise that while you were following one character another is in danger. Just phenomenal and certainly one of the best parts of this series as a whole.

I genuinely couldn’t pick a favourite storyline out of Nahri, Ali and Dara, I really couldn’t. For those wondering the book is certainly weighted more towards Ali and Nahri – largely because their story overlaps the most so those wanting more Dara might have to wait until book three, but the story as a whole is just so lovely. It reminds me a little of the (albeit very few) Brandon Sanderson books I have read, that sense that while small things are taking place in the lives of these characters, they have consequences far beyond what one might consider. The narrative about rebuilding the hospital is a framework around which a wider political game is being played out. It’s masterfully done and it truly draws you through the book – you barely notice how long it is you’re so keen to find out what happens next.

This book is just so rich and so dense – but not in a bad way – you get a full sense of where you are, from the feel of the actual setting to the emotional states of the characters, that’s part of what makes it so hard-hitting when something terrible (or something good) happens, you’re so connected to the story that it feels like a personal blow rather than something that happened to someone else.

In case you couldn’t tell, I’m pretty darn excited about this book. Stick with it through the beginning and it will be amazing I promise. I’m so pumped up for the third instalment in this trilogy, and I can’t wait for the new series from this author (PIRATES). But in the meantime, I think I’m going to schedule in a re-read of these two books for later in the year so I can enjoy them to their fullest…does that justify buying hardbacks of both?

My rating: 5/5 stars

I received a free digital advanced review copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

The Kingdom of Copper is available now!

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What say you? Will you be reading The Kingdom of Copper? What kind of mood do you need to be in to read a longer book? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.

J

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