book reviews

Hunted By the Sky Review

Hunted by the Sky (The Wrath of Ambar #1) by Tanaz Bhathena

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Release Date: June 23rd, 2020

Genre: YA, Fantasy

Rating: 4/5

Gul has spent her life running. She has a star-shaped birthmark on her arm, and in the kingdom of Ambar, girls with such birthmarks have been disappearing for years. Gul’s mark is what caused her parents’ murder at the hand of King Lohar’s ruthless soldiers and forced her into hiding to protect her own life. So when a group of rebel women called the Sisters of the Golden Lotus rescue her, take her in, and train her in warrior magic, Gul wants only one thing: revenge.

Cavas lives in the tenements, and he’s just about ready to sign his life over to the king’s army. His father is terminally ill, and Cavas will do anything to save him. But sparks fly when he meets a mysterious girl–Gul–in the capital’s bazaar, and as the chemistry between them undeniably grows, he becomes entangled in a mission of vengeance–and discovers a magic he never expected to find.

Dangerous circumstances have brought Gul and Cavas together at the king’s domain in Ambar Fort . . . a world with secrets deadlier than their own. Exploring identity, class struggles, and high-stakes romance, Hunted by the Sky is a gripping adventure set in a world inspired by medieval India


I was provided this ARC by Fierce Reads but my review is unbiased.

I don’t know how to begin this review because this was such a surprise and so fun! I mean can we just start by talking about how absolutely GORGEOUS the cover is? The cover just immediately had me interested especially because it’s just rare to see such an unapologetically brown girl looking so fierce on the cover!

And she doesn’t just look fierce, she IS fierce throughout the book. I mean you can see from the synopsis that Gul is out for revenge for the murder of her parents. PLUS she has magic?! LIKE YES PLEASE. MORE BROWN GIRLS WITH MAGIC. THANKS.

I loved seeing Cavas’s perspective as well and it was so interesting to see how their paths crossed. Their relationship was really fun to see because though I’m not usually an insta-love person and this doesn’t COMPLETELY qualify as insta-love and yet I stan them so hard! Also they invented hot and cold relationships, fight me. (I buddy read this with my good friend Ikram over at Readlogy and she said this and I wholeheartedly agree.)

I loved the world building especially with the mythology and how the different words were so familiar with meanings! It’s always great to see some familiar language roots in world building and magic!

On top of the beautiful world building, I loved the characters! They were strong but also made questionable decisions and I felt love and frustration for them all! I was constantly waiting for something to happen especially because Gul is a very rash decision-making Queen that made me sooo anxious because I was afraid for her!

Also can I just say that THERE SHOULD HAVE BEEN A WARNING FOR THE ENDING?! She really just ended like THAT?! I was NOT PREPARED FOR IT TO END. And now I have to WAIT FOR MORE?! AAHHHH.

This definitely had me feeling all kinds of amazing magic vibes reminiscent of An Ember in the Ashes and We Hunt the Flame. I would recommend this to anyone who loves really intriguing and unique magical systems, a girl out for revenge, a love-hate relationship, cinnamon roll boys that deserve a hug, and screaming at book characters for making decisions.

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