Following the success of Rebel of the Sands and Traitor to the Throne by Alwyn Hamilton, the third and final book in the trilogy, Hero at the Fall, was released in North America on March 6, 2018, and promises to be a breathless finale to the New York Times bestselling Rebel of the Sands series. It will have readers on the edge of their seats until the dust from the final battle clears!
When gunslinging Amani Al’Hiza escaped her dead-end town, she never imagined she’d join a revolution, let alone lead one. But after 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 her untameable Demdji powers, Amani must rally her skeleton crew of rebels for a rescue mission through the unforgiving desert to a place that, according to maps, doesn’t exist. As she watches those she loves most 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.
After reading Hero at the Fall by Alwyn Hamilton, I can guarantee that readers will be drawn into the story and won’t want to put this book down until the very last page. With a steadily paced plot that is interspersed with action-packed scenes, rich storytelling, powerful characters, and a slow-burning romance that will sweep readers off their feet.
While I did find Hero at the Fall to be slower read than Rebel of the Sands or Traitor to the Throne, I did still enjoy Hamilton’s storytelling, despite the slower pace of the plot. This may partially be due to the fact that the action scenes were so poignant, powerful, and well-written, that the slow bits in between didn’t feel quite so slow. In addition those “slow bits” were important – they weren’t just filler or otherwise useless nonsense – they were meaningful, and powerful, and equally important as the action bits. This displays Hamilton’s prowess when it comes to storytelling – that she can weave together so many bits of a story into something utterly beautiful. Something that readers won’t want to put down, whether they’re reading the “dull” bits or the action sequences!
One of the things I have always loved about this series is how powerful the characters are, and yet how human they remain, despite their convictions, influence and drive. Amani (the Blue-Eyed Bandit), Jin (the Foreign Prince), Ahmed (The Rebel Prince), Shazad (the Beautiful General), and Sam (the Once Nameless Boy) are all individuals in their own right, and it is nearly impossible not to love each and every one of the character’s Hamilton has crafted – which perhaps make this read all the more heart-breaking. From Amani’s burning passion and will to do right, to Jin’s loyalty and determination, each character is somehow larger than life, yet utterly human, another nod to Hamilton’s exemplary storytelling skills.
“We were burning together as one single flame, bright enough that we could defy the night. Both of us shattering into sand and dust and sparks, until we were both just infinite stars tangled together in the night” – Alwyn Hamilton, Hero at the Fall
Now let’s not forget that slow-burning romance that has been simmering between Amani and Jin since the Blue-Eyed Bandit first laid eyes on the Foreign Prince in Dustwalk in Rebel of the Sands. This is perhaps the definition of a slow-burning romance, and it is certain to sweep readers off their feet and have their hearts pounding in Hero at the Fall, because Amani and Jin are finally done waiting for one another, and when they finally collide the journey to the moment with certainly seem worth it.
“The tales would be imperfect; the legends would be incomplete. But even if the desert forgot a thousand and one of our stories, it was enough that they would tell of us at all” Alwyn Hamilton, Hero at the Fall
Overall, as Hamilton so aptly said in the final lines of this novel, the tale was imperfect – it had more slow bits than I would have like, which may be a turn off to some readers who place a lot of importance on the pacing of a story – but overall, Hero at the Fall was an overwhelming success in my opinion. I did not want to put it down, and I can’t imagine that many other readers will want to either (4/5)!