Review: The City of Brass

by S.A. Chakraborty

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Thank you to Illumicrate, Netgalley and the Publisher for the chance to read this book in exchange for an honest review.
Publish Date: 8th March 2018

Title: The City of Brass
Author: S.A. Chakraborty
Publisher: Harper Collins
Book: #1 of The Daevabad trilogy
Genre: (Historic?) Fantasy
Found: Illumicrate box
Rating: 5 Voodoos

Discover this spellbinding debut from S.A. Chakraborty.

‘An extravagant feast of a book – spicy and bloody, dizzyingly magical, and still, somehow, utterly believable’ Laini Taylor, Sunday Times and New York Times bestselling author

Among the bustling markets of eighteenth century Cairo, the city’s outcasts eke out a living swindling rich Ottoman nobles and foreign invaders alike.

But alongside this new world the old stories linger. Tales of djinn and spirits. Of cities hidden among the swirling sands of the desert, full of enchantment, desire and riches. Where magic pours down every street, hanging in the air like dust.

Many wish their lives could be filled with such wonder, but not Nahri. She knows the trades she uses to get by are just tricks and sleights of hand: there’s nothing magical about them. She only wishes to one day leave Cairo, but as the saying goes…

Be careful what you wish for.


I received a copy of this book in the November Illumicrate box and intended to read it before the publish date. It’s taken me longer than I hoped to read it but then Netgalley sent me an email telling me it was available to review and I jumped at the chance to not only have access to a digital copy but to have another platform to share my review. Luckily my request was granted and I was able to get through the second half of the book a lot faster! Honestly, multiple versions of a book really seems to be the way to go.

I have so many feelings about this book.
I wasn’t sure that it would be my kind of thing to start off with as it starts off in Cairo, but it’s not historical like I feared and it was pretty captivating right away. I’m not sure why it took me so long to read! Except that maybe it had something to do with the book having a steady pace. You could see things building and twisting but nothing seemed quite frantic. And then everything happened at once and I’m still wide eyed and reeling!
There’s obviously so much history here – these guys have been at odds – if not out right war – for centuries and we’re suddenly given so much in the epilogue!! I want book 2 was out so that I could keep going! (careful of the other W word…)

This is told in two points of view. Ali – the prince of Daevabad and Nahiri – the not-quite-human girl brought up in the human world alone. As is quite common, their narratives start off worlds apart and they slowly get closer together. What was nice was that they were not love interests to each other as is also rather common.
I found it hard to work out what side I wanted to/ should be on – there seems to be so many! And each side has a differing view of the others. I am obviously lacking in a lot of information, this is going to be a trilogy after all, but at the very least – so far- I am on Nahri’s side.
I can see several ‘loose ends’ floating about that I want to come together so badly, but that epilogue though!
Is she? Isn’t she? What’s with the water? How did they know? What do these others know? What’s going on? I might just wait for all 3 books to be in my possession before I enter this world again. Just so that I can stay in it for as long as possible.
That is, of course, if I can resist jumping back in when book 2 comes around!
I probably wont…

I would say this was for fans of the Rebel of the Sands series and maybe the Girl of Fire and Thorns series too.
It has a similar atmosphere.

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