A Thousand Nights

By E.K. Johnston

Rating: ☕️ ☕️ ☕️

Summary: The story follows a young girl who offers herself as a bride to Lo-Melkhiin, a king who has killed three hundred of his brides before reaching her. The young girl knows that Lo-Melkhiin will want to take her sister as his bride, and unable to face the certain death of her sister, the young girl offers herself instead. (Fun fact: no other character in this book is named, except for Lo-Melkhiin)

As the young girl goes to live with him, she discovers that Lo-Melkhiin is actually possessed by a demon, and has no control over his body or actions. She also discovers that she has more powers and capabilities than she thought. Fighting for her life by weaving stories every night, the young girl ensures her survival night after night, a feat that few of Lo-Melkhiin’s previous brides had accomplished.

The young girl, with her powers of magic, sets out to save the king, and end the reign of a monster.

Review: I went into this thinking that it would be similar to The Wrath and The Dawn duology (AKA one of my favorite books ever), and it was nothing similar to that duology. However, reading this book just confirms for me that I love every re-telling of The Arabian Nights.

The young girl in this story is hard not to like; she is gentle and kind, but not weak. She is selfless, but not careless. And, when faced with the opportunity to sacrifice herself in place of someone else, she does not hesitate to do so. I do wish the author had included how she adjusted to the “new life” at the end of the book.

I enjoyed reading about her discovery of magic, and how she eventually went on to control it, but I enjoyed the parts of the book where the demon was speaking the most; the demon was cruel, and very easy to hate, but there was a part of me wishing that we could get more chapters about him. There were times when I felt bad for him, and times when I thought that perhaps he’s not a one-dimensional villain. He’s a multi-faceted character whose thoughts, though very dark, were interesting to read.

Overall, this was a good read, and I recommend it to anyone who is looking for a retelling of The Arabian Nights!

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