The Kingdom of Copper (The Daevabad Trilogy #2) by S.A. Chakraborty
Published by Harper Voyager on January 22, 2019
Contains 640 pages • classified as Adult Fantasy
Obtained from publisher as ARC
My Rating: ★★★★★
Nahri’s life changed forever the moment she accidentally summoned Dara, a formidable, mysterious djinn, during one of her schemes. Whisked from her home in Cairo, she was thrust into the dazzling royal court of Daevabad—and quickly discovered she would need all her grifter instincts to survive there.
Now, with Daevabad entrenched in the dark aftermath of a devastating battle, Nahri must forge a new path for herself. But even as she embraces her heritage and the power it holds, she knows she’s been trapped in a gilded cage, watched by a king who rules from the throne that once belonged to her family—and one misstep will doom her tribe.
Meanwhile, Ali has been exiled for daring to defy his father. Hunted by assassins, adrift on the unforgiving copper sands of his ancestral land, he is forced to rely on the frightening abilities the marid the unpredictable water spirits have gifted him. But in doing so, he threatens to unearth a terrible secret his family has long kept buried.
And as a new century approaches and the djinn gather within Daevabad’s towering brass walls for celebrations, a threat brews unseen in the desolate north. It’s a force that would bring a storm of fire straight to the city’s gates . . . and one that seeks the aid of a warrior trapped between worlds, torn between a violent duty he can never escape and a peace he fears he will never deserve.
I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
I was fortunate enough to read an early copy of my most anticipated book of 2019 in October and it was hands down the best book I read. I devoured this book and even stayed up until 5 a.m. on a work night to finish. I went to work at 8 a.m. with bloodshot eyes and no regrets because it was totally worth it.
The Kingdom of Copper surpassed my expectations. It picks up where The City of Brass left off, but takes a step further with a time jump that I totally wasn’t expecting. I promise I read that sentence twice because I was a little surprised (and slightly shook) by the time jump. That’s when I knew Chakraborty did not come to play with us and that she was going to up the stakes and take these characters through things that we weren’t prepared for. This book has everything: magic, intrigue, action, fierce characters, and family drama. It tackles oppression and racism and parallels real modern-day issues. Chakraborty does it all and I marveled in that.
So, what did I love about The Kingdom of Copper? Spoiler alert: everything. But if you want specifics…keep reading.
I loved the way Chakraborty expanded this world and each of the characters’ arcs. I loved the risks she took with the plot and that she did a much better job balancing the pacing in this book. She doesn’t make things easy for our beloved characters and I honestly wouldn’t have it any other way.
- Nahri is still the fierce woman we met in the City of Brass, but she’s changed because of the battle. She doesn’t take shit from the men in her life and she’s not okay with sitting by and letting her father-in-law run shit. She takes matters into her own hands and she’s basically the Nahri I’ve always loved, but older. She’s also caring and empathetic and driven. I loved her motivation to pursue her dreams despite her circumstance.
- Ali is still an adorable and somewhat frustrating nerd. I love him, but he’s too naive and idealistic for me. Just when I think he’s learned from his mistakes, he does the same old shit. That irritated me so damn much because I wish he was more cunning. I really thought the time jump would’ve made him more cynical and on top of his game. Sadly, it didn’t. It’s not a point against the book. It’s just the character making costly decisions and being too much of an idealist. I still love him though.
- Dara is…Dara. But different. He’s changed a lot. I wasn’t a fan of that change, but I understand why it was necessary. I don’t like his decisions in this book and I desperately wish he were free from his duty to the Nahids. I know he considers it an honor, but his loyalty to them just breaks my heart.
The world-building is exquisite. Daevabad is still beautiful and captivating. I loved the expansion of this world so much. Daevabad feels bigger and larger than life. It literally jumps off the page and I wish I could explore more of it. Long after Chakraborty is done with this series, there will still be more stories to tell in this world.
Chakraborty writes good shit. I don’t know how else to put it. The woman is just exceptional at her craft, okay? Her writing is so captivating and it lured me into the story and the world so much that I couldn’t put the book down. It saddened me when I had to physically tear myself away from it for important things like work and sleep and food. Honestly, if I could’ve taken time off just to read it, I would’ve. I truly didn’t want to leave the pages because I was so enthralled and hooked to every word. Plus, I think she nicely balanced mundane character activities with plot and action, which made it so much fun and entertaining. And the twists? They’re so incredible and jaw-dropping. I was literally on the edge of my seat for the last 100 pages. I felt so intoxicated by the action.
Overall, the initial review I wrote back in October immediately after I finished it still stands:
The Kingdom of Copper is phenomenal and it deserves ALL THE STARS. It’s even better than The City Brass and I didn’t think that was possible at all. Most series go through a sophomore slump. Not this one though. This was absolutely amazing. God, I love this book and I wish I could live between the pages. I miss the characters so much and I enjoyed every single moment. I know the last book is going to be ridiculously painful given how things ended, but I’m excited. And slightly afraid.
Sidenote: I’m kind of peeved with myself for reading it so early though because I haven’t had anyone to talk to about THAT ENDING. I’m so happy it’s out in the world today because I’ll be free from my prison. *whispers* please read it soon and DM me on social media so we can talk about it*
If you’re in the mood for middle eastern mythology with a diverse cast of characters, scheming, and djinn magic or if you liked The City of Brass, you’ll enjoy this.
I HIGHLY RECOMMEND THIS SERIES TO EVERYONE.
Content Warning: violence, racism, oppression, refugee criss, segregation