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Mirage (Mirage, #1)

I received ARC in exchange for an honest review,

Full review posted

I just arrived back home after a long trip and I have the feeling that I have already forgotten how to write a decent review, so please don’t hate me if this review ends up being a mess. (I have only one free week left before college starts and I’m not feeling ready enough).
……………………………………………………………………………………
Mirage is one of those books that since the first time you hea

I received ARC in exchange for an honest review,

Full review posted

I just arrived back home after a long trip and I have the feeling that I have already forgotten how to write a decent review, so please don’t hate me if this review ends up being a mess. (I have only one free week left before college starts and I’m not feeling ready enough).
……………………………………………………………………………………
Mirage is one of those books that since the first time you heard of it, you are almost a 100% sure you will enjoy it. Fortunately, I will talk about exactly about the amazing journey that it was having the chance to read this book.

The book follows the story of Amani, a girl who lives in a galactic system under the rule of the Vathek empire, an empire famous for its ruthlessness and brutality. This eighteen-year-old girl has always dreamed of a world in which everyone is again free and able to live and experience their culture through art, especially poetry. However, everything is taken away from her the day she is kidnapped by the empire and taken away from her family with not apparently explanation.
It is until she is taken to the royal palace when she discovers she has been kidnapped to be used as a replacement for the half-Vathek princess Maram. What she never expected, was to look the same as the princess.

Despite the punishments and the insufferable pain induced by Maram as an attempt “mend” her, Amani is convinced that good things will come from this and fights against it in the hope to see her family once again. What she doesn’t know is that this will be the beginning of a destiny long ago written, of an impossible love and of learning to let things go by their own way.

Worldbuilding:

This is without any doubt the thing I love the most about this book. As far as I know, and I could inform me, this is a Moroccan inspired story, set in a not so distant events that actually happened in Morocco around the 1960s (when I read something I’m not familiarized with, I had to do my own research and that is something I absolutely love in books).

Everything is so well described and the historical parts match perfectly with the sci-fi style the author created into this book, that it feels you are actually experiencing and intergalactic historical adventure. Full of myths, subtle magic, fantasy, culture and advanced technology.

If you read this book (which you should do), I truly recommend you enrich your knowledge by reading some information about Moroccan history and culture. It will make the experience even better.

Writing style:

It is almost as good as its worldbuilding.

With such amazing narrative, Somaya Daud has created an unforgettable, compelling and magical book. She has weaved the exact amount of anxiety, intrigue, and heroism to create the perfect story. Each emotion thought and action is so well described that it becomes impossible not to get immersed in each character’s life.

Despite the above mentioned, do not expect it to be a fast-paced book. Daud takes her time to create each scenario that sometimes you may even lose the interest, but do not worry, it’d be worth your time and patience at the end.

Characters:

The weakest aspect of the book.

The book goes mainly around 3 characters, and that’s the only thing we get to see and know. (Of course, there are some others, but for me, they were partially mentioned, so they don’t truly count). Such a rich story and world, lacking more character development, I don’t know, I think we have a problem right here, honey.

Maram: she is without any doubt my favorite character. I did like how the author created such an amazing changing personality in her, how she made her look and feel like something real and palpable, something truly human.
In her, you will be able to find a great evil and a cute girl, but it will be only throughout the reading, that you will learn more about who she truly is and the course of all her actions.

Amani: she is a very good and well-developed female character. I feel honored and happy to finally have the chance to read a book with a strong female character who decisions are not only based on pride and pretense but on reason and common sense.
It was quite a journey to see how much she grows and how her passion never dies. The hope of finding her purpose gives birth to a new personality in her that makes her become a memorable character with a memorable story. I only wish she hadn’t fallen prey to the wretchedness of love.

Idris: not my cup of tea. Like seriously, there hadn’t been a more boring and useless character in the story of YA novels.
If he hadn’t existed there wouldn’t have been a typical love interest and maybe, just maybe, there would have been something beautiful and amazing between Amani and Maram (I actually thought the author was going that way).
I didn’t get to know him pretty well; his personality was merely sketched and not well established. I do hope I get to know more about him in the next book.
That’s where my concern with the author resides; maybe Daud focused too much into the worldbuilding that she forgot to pay attention to the second most important part of a book and what gives it its essence.

Overall, despite my not so great experience with the characters in the book, I truly recommend you to read this book and I you are completely allowed to hit me if you don’t like it. (Of course, I’d like to know first why you didn’t like it).


Mirage (Mirage, #1)

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