Thank you to Harper Teen and Netgalley for the review copy in exchange for an honest review. This does not change my opinion in anway.
Book: The Theft of Sunlight (Dauntless Path 2) by Intisar Khanani
Release Date: March 23rd 2021
Tags: Fantasy | Young Adult | Companion Duology | Disabled MC | Mystery
Trigger/Content Warnings: Human Traficking | Physical Abuse | Emotional Abuse | Attempted Murder | Assault | Ableism
Other books in this series I reviewed
Brambles | Thorn
I did not choose this fate. But I will not walk away from it.
Children have been disappearing from across Menaiya for longer than Amraeya ni Ansarim can remember. When her friend’s sister is snatched, Rae knows she can’t look away any longer – even if that means seeking answers from the royal court, where her country upbringing and clubfoot will only invite ridicule.
Yet the court holds its share of surprises. There she discovers an ally in the foreign princess, who recruits her as an attendant. Armed with the princess’s support, Rae seeks answers in the dark city streets, finding unexpected help in a rough-around-the-edges street thief with secrets of his own. But treachery runs deep, and the more Rae uncovers, the more she endangers the kingdom itself.
The Theft of Sunlight is the first book in a companion duology to Thorn, which was released last year. Some of the subjects that were in the background in Thorn are now getting a more center focus. One of them being the dissapearence of so many children out of the kingdom.
Rae is a no nonsense kind of girl which happens often when you grow up in a small town. Even more so when people see your disability as a weakness. She has a club foot. She wants to be seen for herself and not for the foot that she has. But she sees it tainting people’s view of her very often. Her disability is a theme thorughout the book as it is so much a part of her life.
We follow her from her small town to the main city and the royal court when she goes to visit her cousin. There she gets tangled up in the web of the politics of courts when she becomes the attendant of the foreign princess Alyra. And while she doesn’t really want that, she can’t help herself trying to get to the bottom of who is taking children from the kingdom.
Rae is just great to follow as she mostly has a good head on her shoulders. However she really doesn’t know when to let go of things. She is strong but gentle to those around her. She will not let you hurt those she loves. That in combination with her kindness is what seems to draw others towards her even though I don’t think that is something she really realizes herself. She doesn’t always see her own worth, always down playing it.
I got so swept up in the story of finding the lost children with Rae, that even though I had a pretty good idea of who the traitor was for instance, it never took the tension out of the story for me. Intisar always manages to keep a momentum going in a story. Taking the time to let things fall into place but still going forward.
Which is why it was horribly annoying to realize that this book ended up on a type of cliffhanger without even any kind of smooching for Rae. I say boo! I need to know what happens next!
While it is a companion duology, it is also a continuation of Thorn in its own way. So I would suggest you read Thorn before picking up The Theft of Sunlight. You get a better feeling for some of the background themes of the book like the abuse of Alyra. It is also very interesting to see how Alyra is faring after the events of Thorn, and seeing her from someone else’s perspective after having that adventure with her.
So Theft of Sunlight is just another great book by Intisar Khanani. Very worth it to invest in.
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