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At first, I thought I was really going to have a hard time getting into this book. I struggled to get into Ananna's mind and with her dialect. I also couldn't really see where the plot was going to go, or how everything would fit together.
And then she jumps ship and runs away from her planned marriage, and everything just takes off. I actually really enjoyed how she spoke/thought, and it was kind of refreshing to read a book that wasn't written with a very strict grammatical structure.The way Clark puts the reader into Ananna's head is incredible, and I was definitely pleasantly surprised. While she did annoy me at times, and I didn't necessarily agree with all of her decisions, I thought she was very real and dynamic.
Actually, Naji was also a very well developed, dynamic character as well. I enjoyed getting to know him with Ananna, and I even found myself wishing that some of the chapters had been from his point of view. I'd like to know his feelings and his thoughts concerning this whole curse business, and about everything related to it. There are so many unanswered questions I have about him, and I'm really hoping the rest of the series answers at least some of them.
The plot and the pacing also move along much more quickly once Ananna actually decides to run away. While it does take her some time to meet the assassin and then continue on their journey, Clark does a great job with filling the time with all sorts of interesting details that help with the world building. The world is rich and full, and parts of it definitely seem like they're based on real places. The deserts, for instance. Other places though are completely fantastical and magical and really showcase what a vivid imagination Clark must have.
I was a little disappointed in the ending - I thought it was very abrupt and gave very little closer to anything. In fact, I can't really think of anything that was truly resolved. I kept trying to get my Kindle app to go to the next page, but it just wouldn't budge. However, that makes me very excited that this book is only the first in a trilogy, and I will definitely be trying to desperately get my hands on a copy of The Pirate's Wish as soon as I possibly can.
Anyone who is a fan of pirates, assassins, magic, epic adventures, and even some fantasy should definitely check out this book - it's one you won't want to miss! I would definitely give this one a 4/5.