The Mirror and the Maze by Renee Ahdieh

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RATING: 5/5

SYNOPSIS: The events that happened directly before Khalid’s final POV in The Wrath & the Dawn.

PREVIOUS: The Crown & the Arrow The Wrath & the Dawn

 

Just like in The Crown & the Arrow, we get another snippet of what Khalid is thinking when he returns from his trip away from Shazi. I love that you can really see the difference in him from when he is first introduced as well as get more detail on his guilt. This particular story made me feel so bad for Khalid because it really shows how deep his guilt and self-loathing runs. I’m just in love with the way Ahdieh slowly reveals the different sides of Khalid both in The Wrath & the Dawn and in these short stories. I love that Khalid is aware that what he is forced to do is a monstrous act and that he does show remorse while at the same time not allowing the fact that he is cursed be an excuse. He takes full responsibility for his actions. I also like that we see another side of Khalid and Jalal’s relationship. For most of their interactions its just Khalid giving Jalal orders or Jalal giving advice that Khalid doesn’t want to listen to, but this time around he does listen and considers carefully what Jalal has to say. It really shows just how much Khalid has changed for the better since he decided Shahrzad was someone to keep around, even if his intentions was to keep her for just a moment longer. While these short stories haven’t added to the plot that we already know, they have provided some excellent character work for Khalid who doesn’t have many POVs in the first novel. I love that Ahdieh took the time to show readers the further complexities of Khalid’s character and to show just how far he has come from when he is first introduced. These short stories have only made me more eager to get my hands on The Rose & the Dagger!

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