Author: Kimberley Griffiths Little
Provided Synopsis: In the unforgiving Mesopotamian desert where Jayden’s tribe lives, betrothal celebrations abound, and tonight it is Jayden’s turn to be honored. But while this union with Horeb, the son of her tribe’s leader, will bring a life of riches and restore her family’s position within the tribe, it will come at the price of Jayden’s heart.
Then a shadowy boy from the Southern Lands appears. Handsome and mysterious, Kadesh fills Jayden’s heart with a passion she never knew possible. But with Horeb’s increasingly violent threats haunting Jayden’s every move, she knows she must find a way to escape—or die trying.
With a forbidden romance blossoming in her heart and her family’s survival on the line, Jayden must embark on a deadly journey to save the ones she loves—and find a true love for herself.
Set against the brilliant backdrop of the sprawling desert, the story of Jayden and Kadesh will leave readers absolutely breathless as they defy the odds and risk it all to be together.
Review: Location, location, location! Everything about the settings of this story was incredible. I love a book that can really throw me into the world of the character, and the descriptions of the Mesopotamian desert climate along with the way of life for those in tribes or in cities made for a fascinating read. If you are interested in a story that will place you within a world different from the typical young-adult books then I would recommend this one in a heart beat.
Now, in terms of the actual storyline, the main character is named Jayden. Upon our introduction to her she is inducted into her tribe’s status of womanhood with a performance of a dance. Jayden’s marriage is to bring her riches and will eventually make her the queen of the tribe, yet she despises and fears her intended. When her family must travel to an oasis she meets a stranger named Kadesh and begins to fall in love with him.
As you know, I am picky when it comes to my love stories, thus I was left a little disappointed with the progression of things thus far. To be fair, I can envision Jayden and Kadesh becoming an even greater love story, but at the moment I feel as if they are in a state of attraction rather than the love they profess for one another. Some may disagree with me on this, yet I maintain my opinion that things can — and probably will — improve as this series goes by and they spend more time with one another. The moments are there; now I just want them to know more about each other and spend more time with each other to make things complete.
There is more to this story than the love between Jayden and Kadesh, however. The highpoints include Jayden’s love and commitment to her family and her faith. She is a courageous female character learning to take steps to live the life she wants for herself rather than the one others wish for her. All of the tragedies she must overcome made my bond with her stronger, and I find myself ready to return to the desert with her as soon as possible. Even though the ending of book one was predictable this is one of those moments where I want to kick myself for not doing research on a book: this book is the first of a trilogy, and it is hard to imagine waiting around for the next two books to be released.