One Sentence Review: A book with stunning writing and an incredible fantasy world, but that was lacking in both the character and plot department.
No one is entirely certain what brings the Emperor Sikander to Shalingar. Until now, the idyllic kingdom has been immune to his many violent conquests. To keep the visit friendly, Princess Amrita has offered herself as his bride, sacrificing everything—family, her childhood love, and her freedom—to save her people. But her offer isn't enough.
The unthinkable happens, and Amrita finds herself a fugitive, utterly alone but for an oracle named Thala, who was kept by Sikander as a slave and managed to escape amid the chaos of a palace under siege. With nothing and no one else to turn to, Amrita and Thala are forced to rely on each other. But while Amrita feels responsible for her kingdom and sets out to warn her people, the newly free Thala has no such ties. She encourages Amrita to go on a quest to find the fabled Library of All Things, where it is possible for each of them to reverse their fates. To go back to before Sikander took everything from them.
Stripped of all that she loves, caught between her rosy past and an unknown future, will Amrita be able to restore what was lost, or does another life—and another love—await? (Summary from Goodreads)
Thank you to Penguin Teen for my beautiful copy of Library of Fates to review!
Going into this book, I can’t say that I had tremendous expectations. I haven’t read Khorana’s other book, and just kind of expected it to be our classic fantasy book: the main character launches on some sort of epic adventure and ends up falling in love in the process. While I absolutely loved the world this book was set in and how Khorana incorporated fate and myths, I wasn’t the biggest fan of our main character or the plotline.
Amrita came off as unrealistic to me. Everything came so incredibly easy to her, and the way her thought process worked throughout the book was (at least from my experience) nothing like any teenager I’ve ever met. She was just so wise, and while I definitely admired that she was basically always thinking in life lessons, it made it so that I couldn’t really relate to her at all.
The character I did love was Varun. He was just as intelligent, if not more so, than Amrita, but for his character it made perfect sense (not going to say anything else because spoilers!) All you need to know is that he was fantastic and one of the main highlights of this book for me.
Another aspect of this book I adored was how Khorana wove in myths and fate. The Parable of the Land of Trees had me almost in tears, and I felt that this along with the other tales was what made this book unique and is the main thing I’ll always remember after having read this story.
Overall, although this book definitely had its flaws, I fell in love with Khorana’s ability to craft a beautiful and magical world that I desperately want to visit.
Make sure to come back next Wednesday for a new review!