Book: Rebel of the Sands
Author: Alwyn Hamilton
Reviewer: Sammi B., 9th Grade
Amani Al’hiza lives in the country of Miraji where the only thing besides guns and violence is desert as far as the eye can see. Unfortunately, to add to everything else, this is a world in which women have absolutely no rights whatsoever. At the risk of marrying someone of the very unwanted variety, or possibly even getting murdered, Amani disguises herself as a boy to be able to compete for a prize that would allow her to achieve her dream of escaping her doom. As she surprised everyone with her miraculous shooting abilities, Amani meets Jin, a foreigner, with whom she escapes in a rather dangerous way.
In the first of the trilogy, Alwyn Hamilton does an incredible job at creating a world in Rebel of the Sands that enhances all of the aspects of a typical fantasy novel to a whole other level. I was pleasantly surprised by the twists the author made with all of the typical tropes that can get boring after a while. Teens alike will likely be enthralled by the suspense in this book along with its trickles of discovering one’s self after suppressing for so long under the pressure of life.