Monday, May 5, 2014

Review: The Tyrant's Daughter

Title: The Tyrant's Daugther
Author: J. C. Carleson
Pages: 304
Format: ARC
Release Date: February 11, 2014
Publisher: Knopf Books
Rating: 3 Cows

Goodreads Description:

From a former CIA officer comes the riveting account of a royal Middle Eastern family exiled to the American suburbs. 

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? 

J.C. Carleson delivers a fascinating account of a girl—and a country—on the brink, and a rare glimpse at the personal side of international politics.

The Tyrant's Daughter was another book that I recently read and found the premise better than the actual story. The description gave me high hopes for this books but in the end I was left feeling a little disappointed. While not a terrible book, it was one that didn't appeal to me as much as I hoped.

I loved the idea of a teenage girl fleeing to America and finding out that her father was actually a tyrant, rather than the kind, loving man she had always pictured him as. I was fascinated with this idea and was curious to see how this girl would react when she learned of this. I was also curious to see how she adapted to American customs. Unfortunately, I was disappointed with what I got. I wanted more of an reaction/outrage to what Laila learns about her father. I wanted her to want to change her country.To fight to help take her country back and save her people. I wanted her to urge her brother to be a better leader than her dad and uncle had been. I also thought Laila adapted too well to American customs. I thought she should have been a little more resistent to American culture.

There were times where I really loved Laila but then other times I was very frustrated with her. She would have these moments where she was strong and wanted to challenge some of the customs she was born into and then there were moments where she treated Ian and Emma like crap. I just didn't get it. I realize she had a lot going on but she made me so angry when she ignored them. Toward the end, I did start to warm up to Laila more as I felt she learned and grew as a character. 

I loved both Emma and Ian. Emma really tried to be a friend to Laila even when Laila wasn't that great of a friend to her. Ian was so kind and understanding with Laila. He always tried to help her whenever he could.

One thing I really loved about The Tyrant's Daughter was the writing style. I loved the way this book was written and how easily it flowed. I loved the descriptions and word choices. The Tyrant's Daughter was written in such a way that readers will be fly through them. While not exactly what I was wanting, The Tyrant's Daughter is a good read and I am interested in reading whatever Carleson writes next.


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