Monday, 21 September 2015

ARC Review: A Thousand Nights by E.K. Johnson

A Thousand Nights
Behind 336 Pages
Released: 10 November 2015
Genre: Fantasy
Publisher: PanMacmillan Australia
Buy Me: Amazon  |  Angus and Robertson  |  Booktopia  |  Bookworld  |  Book Depository  |  Fishpond
At the Other End:
Lo-Melkhiin killed three hundred girls before he came to my village, looking for a wife.

When Lo-Melkhiin - a formidable king - arrives at her desert home, she knows that he will take her beautiful sister for a wife. Desperate to save her sister from certain death, she makes the ultimate sacrifice - leaving home and family behind to live with a fearful man.

But it seems that a strange magic flows between her and Lo-Melkhiin, and night after night, she survives. Finding power in storytelling, the words she speaks are given strange life of their own. Little things, at first: a dress from home, a vision of her sister. But she dreams of bigger, more terrible magic: power enough to save a king . . . if only she can stop her heart from falling for a monster.

Emily Kate Johnston is a forensic archaeologist. She has lived on four continents, including summers spent in Jordan experiencing the desert first-hand. Her inspirations come from her work, travels and her university studies in Biblical Hebrew and Arabic. She loves telling stories, and has been doing so across different mediums for over ten years.

Find E.K:

Website  |  Goodreads  |  Twitter
A fantastic world with a brilliant voice to tell the story. this is one book you don't want to miss.

Just letting you all know, I haven't actually read the original book that this was based on, so I don't actually know if things are the same or different from the original story.

I absolutely loved the fantasy elements in this book, and I didn't expect it at all. In total, this book was a complete surprise for me which really just made me fall in love with it. Even though we don't know anyone's name (except for Lo-Melkhiin) it doesn't deter me from liking the book any less. It makes you feel detached from the story, but to me it felt like that's how you are supposed to feel reading this. Sure, you're supposed to get immersed in it, but it feels like it's a legend that should be told over a few nights as if you were part of their time. What it also does, is it makes you get more of a feel for their culture. I know it will annoy some readers that you don't find out their names, but it brings their culture more to life because with the people that they meet, they don't even know their names, so it brings you closer to the story and makes it more authentic.

I really loved the main characters voice and how she told the story. Sure, she used long sentences and description, but it kind of added that extra magic and fantasy to the story, especially because it is folklore as well. She was such a strong and wise character, that I felt like I was in awe at the things that she said and how she handled herself. I honestly felt like applauding her a few times on her manner and what solutions she came up with. This is a character that I could definitely get used to more often. Too bad that this is a standalone.

The only thing about this book was that there wasn't actually much going on for quite a bit. Sure, things do happen and it makes you wonder about it all, but it made it feel like it was all going extremely slow. I could put this book down easily and not really get too lost in it.

The setting and the world that this story is built upon is fantastic and absolutely beautiful. From the culture to the creatures, the history and the world around them, this book really shines and makes everything feel like more of a fantasy than it really is meant to be. Who would think that you could fall in love with a desert?!

The ending to this book was seriously epic. I loved every minute of it, and the main character really was willing to do everything that she could to make the world a better place. She was completely selfless and would put herself at risk to save everyone.

I just want to point out that there isn't a love with Lo-Melkhiin, but more of an understanding when she realizes what is happening to him and the cost of his life to everyone else's. She is bound by duty to help the people, and bound to her new marriage to Lo-Melkhiin even in the end. You can practically see the hope that she has that he will be better and that his mother will be happy to have put her trust and faith in her. I believe that after what happened in the end, because he is now himself again that they will grow to love each other as their true selves are revealed.

I really liked the ending. I didn't expect the ending or the events leading up to it, but it finished it in a way that suited the main character, and is something that you would have expected after reading this book about her. It is left a bit open, but what is left to the imagination is basically saying for us to finish the story ourselves, and it really suits this book.

This is a fantastic stand alone that you all must read. I can't exactly say that you will love/like it if you've read the original story,  but for those of you like me, I hope you give this amazing book a shot.

This novel was received for review via PanMacmillan Australia. This review is entirely my own, no bribery or any deals have been made to sway this review or change my personal opinion of the novel.


  1. the original story is a good one, but I am keen on this one as well.

    1. That's great! Let me know what you think of both books once you've read this one as well :)


Thanks for leaving a comment, I love hearing what you have to say and talking to you all!