Book Reviews

Book Review: The Tyrant’s Daughter by J.C. Carleson (ARC)

17157466 Expected publication: February 11th 2014 by Random House Books for Young Readers

Format: Kindle Edition, 304 pages

Note: NetGalley was kind enough to offer me an ARC to read prior to its publication. Thank you!

Goodreads Summary: When her father is killed in a coup, 15-year-old Laila flees from the war-torn middle east to a life of exile and anonymity in the U.S. Gradually she adjusts to a new school, new friends, and a new culture, but while Laila sees opportunity in her new life, her mother is focused on the past. She’s conspiring with CIA operatives and rebel factions to regain the throne their family lost. Laila can’t bear to stand still as an international crisis takes shape around her, but how can one girl stop a conflict that spans generations?

Thoughts: After reading the synopsis for this novel I was instantly hooked. You rarely see topics like the Middle East and politics discussed in Young Adult literature. I must confess that I’m an expert at not keeping up with current events on the news, but I’m also not totally unaware of what’s happening on the other side of the world. This book presented an interesting point of view; a country torn apart by war as seen through the eyes of a teenager. It may seem a bit overwhelming, but the author does a wonderful job balancing these unfortunately real circumstances with light hearted and funny moments.

I found myself really liking many of the characters, especially Laila. She was intelligent, funny, caring, and I appreciated the fact that she managed to hold on to some form of innocence and act like an actual 15-year-old, even with the crazy life she had to deal with. This story really focused on finding your identity and looking at world with a whole new perspective. Carleson has created a captivating group of characters that all have a place in the story.

This book wasn’t perfect, but I would absolutely recommend this it to anyone who wants to read something unique. The Tyrant’s Daughter was a pleasant surprise and definitely worth the read.

Once again, Thank you to Random House Books and NetGalley for the chance to review this book.



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