Rebel of the Sands Book Review

With the upcoming release of "Traitor To The Throne" I thought it was about time to post my review of "Rebel of the Sands". This was one of the few books that I`ve read as soon as they were released, but sadly, I forgot to post the review on time. Better late than never. "Rebel of the Sands" by Alwyn Hamilton was definitely a cover buy, but it ended up being my favourite book of 2016. Hamilton magnificently combined magical and western elements, turning them into a unique story, with a bad-ass female protagonist. It`s a strong debut, and I am not surprised that this book won the Goodreads Choice Award for Debut Goodreads Author. (wow, that was a long name)
"Rebel of the Sands" by Alwyn Hamilton

When we first meet Amani, our main character, she`s dressed as a boy in order to enter a gun competition. She wants more than anything to escape Dustwalk, a dead-end town where being a woman is similar to a death sentence. As the story unfolds we find out more about Amani`s past, of how her mother was stoned to death after killing her husband. We meet her awful aunt and her disgusting uncle, who plans to marry her. All these tragedies turned Amani into a tenacious and strong-willed woman, that will do anything to change her fate.

Soon after Amani makes her escape she reconnects with Jin, a charming and mysterious guy whom she met at the shooting competition. There`s little-known information about Jin, and trusting him might prove to be a mistake. But they decide to work together and soon Amani finds herself thrust into a political conspiration that will affect her entire future. Soon afterwards our protagonist is faced with a difficult choice: join the rebellion or continue on with her escape plans. While some parts are predictable, the end is filled with some shocking revelations. (the part where they reveal Amani`s true identity was brilliant)

While we did not find out many things about the magical system, I`m sure they will be addressed later on in the trilogy. Other than that, I can`t say that I have any complaints. I enjoyed the plot and I can`t wait to find out more about the Sultan. While he`s the big, bad guy of the story I can`t help but feel that there`s more to his story. Based on the title, I think that the second book will bring some interesting revelations and change the dynamic of the story.

Overall, "Rebel of the Sands" is a fast-paced, entertaining book and I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys fantasy novels. It does suffer from some tropes, mainly the whole insta love issue, but the romance is executed in a realistic manner. Falling in love doesn`t change Amani overnight and she still remains true to who she is. It`s an empowering and compelling story, one that will remind you how bad-ass we ladies can really be.


  1. sounds like a great read! I must try reading a trilogy at some point and it might as well have some romance in it :p
    Pam xo/ Pam Scalfi♥

  2. I love when a girl runs around dressed as a boy... this book definitely got better nearer the end when magic was relied on and used more. A good review!