Saturday, June 27, 2020

ARC Review: Empire of Gold by S.A. Chakraborty

Title: Empire of Gold (The Daevabad Trilogy #3)
Author: S.A. Chakraborty
Publication Date: June 30, 2020
Publisher: Harper Voyager

Pages: 784
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Reviews for book 1 & book 2

Daevabad has fallen.

After a brutal conquest stripped the city of its magic, Nahid leader Banu Manizheh and her resurrected commander, Dara, must try to repair their fraying alliance and stabilize a fractious, warring people.

But the bloodletting and loss of his beloved Nahri have unleashed the worst demons of Dara’s dark past. To vanquish them, he must face some ugly truths about his history and put himself at the mercy of those he once considered enemies.

Having narrowly escaped their murderous families and Daevabad’s deadly politics, Nahri and Ali, now safe in Cairo, face difficult choices of their own. While Nahri finds peace in the old rhythms and familiar comforts of her human home, she is haunted by the knowledge that the loved ones she left behind and the people who considered her a savior are at the mercy of a new tyrant. Ali, too, cannot help but look back, and is determined to return to rescue his city and the family that remains. Seeking support in his mother’s homeland, he discovers that his connection to the marid goes far deeper than expected and threatens not only his relationship with Nahri, but his very faith.

As peace grows more elusive and old players return, Nahri, Ali, and Dara come to understand that in order to remake the world, they may need to fight those they once loved . . . and take a stand for those they once hurt. 

And THAT is how you end a trilogy. I was absolutely scared going into The Empire of Gold. I loved the first two books so much, and I've seen so many series end on a rough note, that I just didn't want the same to happen here. I wanted to go out still loving this one with my whole heart and I'm so pleased to report that I absolutely do. S.A. Chakraborty has earned a spot on my all time favorites shelf.

I was a bit unsure at the beginning of this book with two of the main characters being back in the human world. The first chunk of this story takes place with Nahri and Ali in Cairo and I was definitely eager to get back to the magic, but I ended up loving the relationship development between these two!

Dara, of course, was my favorite from the first two books and I loved every second he was on the page. We all know Dara is super problematic, but he grows so much throughout this series and this book takes him to another level. His chapters were much more dark and grim, but necessary. His relationship to the city and the Nahids was fascinating as it unfolded and I loved the complexity of his character growth.

So, so much happens in The Empire of Gold. Ali and Nahri travel to multiple new locations and we have the chance to meet so many amazing, new characters! This finale deserved every one of its 784 pages and I would have loved to have had a little more. It isn't often that I'm obsessed with a series that isn't romance heavy, but S.A. Chakraborty made me fall completely in love with every one of these beautiful characters as well as Daevabad.

As sad as I am to let this world go, I am so pleased with how everything was wrapped up. I wasn't sure how she'd pull it off, but she did it perfectly! I really have nothing more to say without just fangirling about how perfect this book and series are. I can't wait to read it again!