Book Review: Hero At The Fall

hero at the fallHero At The Fall
by Alwyn Hamilton
Fantasy
452 pages
Published March 2018

So there is one HUGE spoiler I want to talk about with this book. I will put it WAAAAYYY down at the bottom of this post, below the cover blurb. Don’t read it if you have any intention of reading this book. But I REEEAAALLLY want to talk about it.

That out of the way, this book was great! This is the concluding volume of the Rebel of the Sands trilogy, and it wrapped things up perfectly. I especially liked how she handled character deaths; each one got a short little chapter told in a legendary story kind of way, switching to a third person narrator instead of the first person viewpoint of Amani. The last chapter, telling us what came after the events of the book, was told in the same manner, and I really liked how it tied the book together.

There’s so little I can say about this book without spoiling the previous two! We learn even more about the Djinni in this book, and some of the creation myths of Amani’s people. We get a little more into the politics of other countries, and even a bit of their magic. And ohhhh there are stories to be told there, if Hamilton wants to continue in this world. I’d love to see a prequel based on Sam, and his country could do an entire sequel trilogy!

I think one of my favorite scenes was Amani using her control of sand to sail their ship across the desert. It’s just an amazing visual.

This was one of the best concluding books to a trilogy that I have read in a long time. Fantastic book.

Remember. Spoiler below the cover blurb.

From the cover of Hero At The Fall:

When gunslinging Amani Al-Hiza escaped her dead-end town, she never imagined she’d join a revolution, let alone lead one. But since the bloodthirsty Sultan of Miraji imprisoned the Rebel Prince Ahmed in the mythical city of Eremot, she doesn’t have a choice. Armed with only her revolver, her wits, and the Demdji powers she’s struggling to control, Amani must rally a skeleton crew of rebels through the unforgiving desert to a place that, according to maps, doesn’t exist. As she watches those she loves lay their lives on the line against ghouls and enemy soldiers, Amani questions whether she can be the leader they need or if she is leading them all to their deaths. Then she discovers there’s one death that could end the war for good – but it would tear her and Jin apart. Is she willing to give up the deepest love she’s ever known to save the country that has betrayed her all her life?

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SPOILER ALERT DO NOT READ FURTHER IF YOU DON’T WANT TO BE SPOILED

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Alright. Sure you want to read this?

I really, really appreciated how Amani made the choice she made, between Jin and Ahmed. She knew what Jin would have chosen. So she chose what he would have chosen. I don’t think he could have forgiven her if she’d chosen Ahmed. I was surprised she didn’t realize that would be her death as well; I assumed she knew that when she chose him. At first I thought the Djinni were uncommonly cruel, punishing her for something she didn’t know about, but then I realized they were punishing her for setting Zaahir free, not for bringing the ring with her. I mean, they’re still cruel to make her make that choice. And unreasonable, I think, for imprisoning Zaahir in the first place. But at least they were angry about her choices, not about her getting tricked by Zaahir.

Making her make the choice, though. “We won’t kill you, but you’ll have to pick one of these two men to die. The death of one of them will kill you, too. The death of the other won’t.” Jesus.

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