ARC provided by the Publisher via NetGalley
My thanks to Amulet Books
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Amara is never alone. Not when she’s protecting the cursed princess she unwillingly serves. Not when they’re fleeing across dunes and islands and seas to stay alive. Not when she’s punished, ordered around, or neglected.
She can’t be alone, because a boy from another world experiences all that alongside her, looking through her eyes.
Nolan longs for a life uninterrupted. Every time he blinks, he’s yanked from his Arizona town into Amara’s mind, a world away, which makes even simple things like hobbies and homework impossible. He’s spent years as a powerless observer of Amara’s life. Amara has no idea . . . until he learns to control her, and they communicate for the first time. Amara is terrified. Then, she’s furious.
All Amara and Nolan want is to be free of each other. But Nolan’s breakthrough has dangerous consequences. Now, they’ll have to work together to survive–and discover the truth about their connection.
It took me a while to finally finish reading this book (8 days). Since fantasy in general is not my thing, let alone high fantasy, it was a struggle for me. I’m glad, though, that I decided to take it slow because I couldn’t seem to read more than 20 pages in a row. By taking my time reading this book slowly, I enjoyed it a lot.
I have to say this book was completely different from most of the books I have read. I enjoyed how the two worlds were linked.
In general, I thought the storyline was very intriguing. We had a boy who lost his leg when he was six and a servant girl whose tongue had been cut off because in her world, the servants were not allowed to talk, read, or write. She had the responsibility to protect a runaway cursed princess. Whenever Nolan closed his eyes, he saw through Amara’s eyes and felt what she was feeling, including the pain and suffering that Amara had to endure.
I had a little problem with this book when the explanation on how Nolan was able to get inside Amara’s mind was provided. And all the magic things kind of bored me at times, especially when it got near the ending.
The ending was nice, anyway. I hope there had been more conclusive ending for Amara, though.
Personally, I think the contrast between the main characters, Amara and Nolan, made the book interesting.
– I liked that Amara was loyal and brave. She knew when to fight back and when to just let go. What she had to suffer through was heartbreaking.
– Nolan was such a nice guy. I loved that he tried to help Amara even he knew the consequence he might face afterward.
– Maart made me cry. I wish there had been more scenes featuring Maart, but since he wasn’t an important character, there wasn’t much about him.
– Jorn repulsed me. He was a very, very cruel man. I don’t know if the explanation in the end on why Jorn was like that was enough.
– Cilla, the princess, was not a very strong character, but she was cool in the end.
I haven’t read many high fantasy books, and I didn’t enjoy most of the ones I’ve read. So it’s safe to say, fantasy is not my forte.
It was a struggle for me to finish this book. Frankly, the writing was nice (a little messy around page 300), but the pace was a tad too slow for my liking. I had to put this book down several times because it didn’t seem to go away. I’m glad I didn’t drop it completely, though, because I ended up liking it okay by the end.
I liked the alternating between Nolan’s and Amara’s points of view. Nolan’s point of view was a little nicer and easier, whereas, Amara’s point of view was full of messed up stuff, since her world was pretty much equally effed up. Most of the book focused on Amara and her world, so chapters told from Nolan’s POV were rather slow.
At first I thought the twists were really good. Then not so much because I was a little lost along the way. To me, I think the first half of the book was so much better than the second half. When the talk about “travelers” was added, I wasn’t impressed and a little confused. However, I did like the ending. It was quite nice.
Besides, I don’t think it was that necessary to make Amara’s character bisexual. Nothing against that, just I don’t think it was important for the story.
Overall, it was a very nicely-written book with a lot of complicated scenes. I enjoyed Nolan’s point of view more than Amara’s, maybe it was because it was easier to read since he didn’t live in Dunesland. I enjoyed the world building – seeing Dunesland through Amara’s descriptions.
Those who enjoy reading fantasy books with the stories taking place in another world might find this book fascinating.