Dangerous circumstances have brought Gul and Cavas together at the king's domain in Ambar Fort . . . a world with secrets deadlier than their own.
Partial synopsis provided by Goodreads.
Series: The Wrath of Ambar #1
Author: Tanaz Bhathena
Publication Date: June 23, 2020
Publisher: Fierce Reads
Page Count: 384
Format: Physical ARC
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
My Rating: ★★★★
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 received an ARC of this book from FierceReads in exchange for an honest review. Thank you! In no way does this affect my rating or review.
All included quotes have been taken from an ARC and may not match the finished publication.
Content Warning Indentured Servitude, Animal/Cage Fighting, Animal Cruelty, Death, Murder
The sky will fall, a star will rise
Ambar changed by the king’s demise
Her magic untouched and unknown by all
Marked with a star, she’ll bring his downfall.
Hunted for the star birthmark on her arm, magi child Gul witnesses the murder of her mother and father at a young age as they tried to protect her from the sky warriors. Girls with birthmarks hadn’t always been hunted by the king. When King Lohar ascended the throne of Boohmi, a prophecy was foretold that a girl with a star-shaped birthmark would be his undoing. Without knowing more, the King passes a terrible decree that allows for girls with birthmarks and magical abilities to be taken and drained of their magic.
”Kill Major Shayla,” I whisper. “Kill Raja Lohar.”
Gul, scared and on her own, hides in a stable where she is found by Sisters of the Golden Lotus, a group of women that take it upon themselves to help those in need. In this moment, Gul discovers that she is a Whisperer, and can speak with animals.
After being taken under their wing, Gul learns how to use warrior magic, but struggles immensely. She grows frustrated with her lack of progress but learns the truth about her magic and why she had struggled with it. On a journey of vengeance for her slain parents, she also discovers that her journey challenges her to have confidence in herself.
”You have magic in you, daughter, and it is strong. Always remember that–even when I am not there to protect you.”
It is not long after that Cavas’ point-of-view is introduced. The son of a widowed father, Cavas is destined to become part of the king’s army. With no status and no options, Cavas much do what he can to provide for his ailing father. One night, he happens to meet Gul at the capital’s bazaar and the two are instantly attracted to one another.
Certain sufferings harden you more than others.
Their budding acquaintance is challenged though, as Cavas, a non-magus discovers that Gul can wield magic. Prejudice between these two classes is evident in the book’s history and culture. Those without magic are referred to with derogatory terms and aren’t appreciated for being who they are. This is all the more reason why Cavas desperately works to get out of the tenements with his father.
Deeply relevant to present-day discussions, Hunted By The Sky has something for everyone. Inspired by an Indian landscape and Hindu beliefs, a battle for equality against cultural and socioeconomic differences finds its way to the center of this entire story. Despite it being endowed with magic, the structure of this tale houses a very important message for its readers: no matter what life a person was born into, we are all valuable and have a little magic of our own. This fact unites everyone fictionally, and factually. Whether you enjoy magic-wielding protagonists, rich world-building, Hindu mythology, real-life applicability, or even the paranormal, this book has something for you.
Sexual content: Minimal, but there are references to a “flesh market” where people sell themselves into indentured servitude.
My Rating: ★★★★
My Blog ¦ Bookstagram ¦ Twitter ¦ Pinterest ¦ Facebook
View all my reviews