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Throne of The Crescent Moon by Saladin Ahmed
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Throne of The Crescent Moon (original 2012; edition 2012)

by Saladin Ahmed, Phil Gigante (Reader)

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5173919,606 (3.51)1 / 65
Member:raekevins
Title:Throne of The Crescent Moon
Authors:Saladin Ahmed
Other authors:Phil Gigante (Reader)
Info:Brilliance Audio on MP3-CD (2012), Edition: MP3 Una, MP3 CD
Collections:Your library
Rating:***
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Throne of the Crescent Moon by Saladin Ahmed (2012)

  1. 10
    The Will of the Wanderer by Margaret Weis (electronicmemory)
    electronicmemory: Arabian Nights-flavored fantasy, and both are enjoyable adventure stories.
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Showing 1-5 of 39 (next | show all)
It tool me a while to get to this even though lots of people I read had been raving about the book. The book does things with the usual fantasy setups and makes it fresh. Almost all the main characters are older, there are a few young people but they are certainly being mentored or taken care of by the older people in the book. The setting is in the desert instead of some "medieval forest" and the monsters correspond with this setting. I enjoyed the book and the story and I will be looking for the next book out in the series. A well written fantasy and a nice change of pace for most of it out there.
( )
  Glennis.LeBlanc | Jul 8, 2014 |
3.5 stars

it was fun, author showed a great understanding of growth character and their relationships. A great understanding of love. He had a great villains' villain. it was fun wished it was larger so the author could expanded more on background histories of some of the other characters like the Prince and the dude with the dirty kaftan. Would definitely read if there was a follow up book. ( )
  seaofsorrow | May 20, 2014 |
Y’know. I had this whole 2,000 word review all typed up where I ranted about a review of this book that, essentially, called it misogynistic and shit writing. But I don’t feel like editing that crazy rage-fest.

So here’s what I’ll say instead: that review was wrong. So very, very wrong. I admit, there was one moment while reading this book where I had a fly-off-the-handle-feminist moment. Then, I took a step back, a deep breath, and realized that one stray thought by a character balanced against the incredible ass-kicking action of all the females in this book makes my initial knee-jerk invalid.

Does this novel fail the Bechdel test? Erm. Without double checking to be 100% sure, I’m gonna say – yeah, it does. Are there about a bajillion other fantasy novels out there that are also Bechdel fails but that are just as worthy of a read? Also yep.

So why read this one? Because it’s worthy in a different way. Ditch your European-grown fantasy roots and saddle up for something a little more “birthplace of civilization” flavored. Did I fall in love with this novel? I have to admit that, no, I didn’t. Did I enjoy it? Yep, quite thoroughly actually and I found it completely worth the time I invested in it.

There’s just one piece of my rage-fest rant that I have to relate here. One of the beefs the review I read had (and to which I am not going to link to here) was that one of the main female characters is a sort of were-lion and her powers are inaccessible to her during menses. So, of course, there was a bit of feminist rage about “OMG why does she have to be powerless three days out of the month simply because she’s a woman that’s so misogynistic!!!1!one” (paraphrasing, not a direct quote).

To which I say:

1) Traditional mythology, fable, and even other fantasy books all have tons of references to a woman’s power being tied to her menstrual cycle. This is not new, and ranting simply because a MAN dared to use it as a plot device is, frankly, in my opinion very silly.

2) Why do we even have to look at it as “She’s being stripped of her power for being a woman!” at all? For one: her power is being limited, which can only be a good thing. She is still a bad-ass, shape-shifting lion who kicks ALL KIND OF ASS during all the crazy fight scenes. (Seriously – super exciting fight scenes!) Remember “absolute power corrupts absolutely”? How about, “unlimited power makes for a boring fucking character”? (Hm. Sounds like something Chuck Wendig would say, but I digress.) Her power is being limited in a way that not only makes sense within the confines of the world, but it’s being done in such a manner that she’s forced to look at the world not as an animal but as a human being and, yes, a woman. Which brings me to my next point…

3) Why is it okay for other fantasy writers (even men) to write werewolves as creatures who are tied to the same sort of lunar cycle but not in this case? Because this author came right out and tied it to menses instead of being coy about it? Honestly, I’d rather have it this way. At least it gives some sort of vaguely scientific reasoning – more so than “the moon made her turn into a monster!”.

Creating a strong feminine character doesn’t mean stripping her of everything that makes her a woman. In fact, that’s quite the opposite. I see the author here creating a character who, while being constrained by the fact that yes, she is actually female, works within those limitations to become that much more powerful. Which is how it works in real life, isn’t it?

Bottom line: do you want another cookie-cutter, leather-wearing, bed-hopping Bond knock-off with an X chromosome or would you like to maybe see an actual girl dealing with all the things a girl has to deal with? Which includes, for those unwilling to face it (both in fantasy reviews and in modern politics!), menstruation and thinking about child-bearing.

Argh. I swore I wouldn’t rant, and I did it anyway.

One of my favorite things about this book is that our heroes are mostly old people (there are a couple of young ones, a displaced youth and an apprentice, but they are rash and young and smartly idiotic in the way that only teenagers really can be). It’s refreshing to see a fantasy that ISN’T a coming-of-age story. Our hero, Adoulla, is around sixty and world-weary and feeling ready for his long-overdue (at least in his opinion) dirt-nap when we meet him. There is a charm to the elderly in that they are fearless and unafraid of looking foolish (whether it is being overly sentimental about worldly possessions or absurdly proud of their own flatulence). This book captures that perfectly, and I hope to have 1/10th the sass at that age that any of these characters do.

Just read this book. Especially if you enjoy unique fantasy settings, such as N.K. Jemisin’s The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms or Brandon Sanderson’s A Way of Kings. It’s worth it, and it’s a fraction of the size of other door-stopper fantasies written by the likes of Rothfuss, Jordan, Sanderson, et al. You can read it in a weekend, form your own opinion, and wedge your mind open just the tiniest of fractions. It’ll be good for you. But don’t take it from me. Read the damned book already and stop taking advice from opinionated strangers on the internet! ( )
1 vote kiaras | Oct 22, 2013 |
I enjoyed Ahmed's "Throne of the Crescent Moon". But I wanted to like it so much more. I didn't feel particularly swept up in middle eastern Islamic culture the way I did while reading Effinger's [b:The Audran Sequence|7347941|The Audran Sequence|George Alec Effinger|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1261635761s/7347941.jpg|9095265] or the more recent [b:God's War|9359818|God's War (Bel Dame Apocrypha, #1)|Kameron Hurley|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1303144535s/9359818.jpg|14243275] by Hurley and I think that comparing it to the 1001 Nights is unfair. As an iconic work of folklore and literature "Throne" simply isn't in that class. Ahmed's book read more like a fairly standard European genre young adult fantasy that had perhaps been loosely translated into another setting. It was still a good bit of writing, particularly in light of it's being Ahmed's debut novel. But aside from the weaker than expected setting, the book also suffered somewhat from some less than solid characters and a disappointing climax, which felt rushed and unsatisfying. I did like the primary characters for the most part, Dr. Adoullah Makhslood and his partner Raseed. The book was well written but his prose is not particularly beautiful or stylistic. As a newer author Ahmed may still be finding his voice and, if so, I find this novel to be a promising start. I look forward to his next effort. ( )
  tockenboom | Sep 29, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 39 (next | show all)
Set in a quasi-Middle Eastern city and populated with the supernatural creatures of Arab folklore, this long-awaited debut by a finalist for the Nebula and Campbell awards brings The Arabian Nights to sensuous life. The maturity and wisdom of Ahmed's older protagonists are a delightful contrast to the brave impulsiveness of their younger companions. This trilogy launch will delight fantasy lovers who enjoy flawed but honorable protagonists and a touch of the exotic.
added by Christa_Josh | editLibrary Journal, Jackie Cassada (Jan 1, 2012)
 

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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Saladin Ahmedprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Chan, JasonCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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To my parents, Ismael Ahmed, and the late Mary O'Leary, who introduced me to the fantastic world of books; to my wife, Hayley Thompson, who supported me in countless ways as I wrote this one; and to my children, Malcolm and Naima, who make this broken world beautiful enough to keep living and writing in, this is for you.
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Nine days. Beneficient God, I beg you, let this be the day I die!
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From Saladin Ahmed, finalist for the Nebula and Campbell Awards, comes one of the year's most anticipated fantasy debuts, THRONE OF THE CRESCENT MOON, a fantasy adventure with all the magic of The Arabian Nights.

The Crescent Moon Kingdoms, land of djenn and ghuls, holy warriors and heretics, Khalifs and killers, is at the boiling point of a power struggle between the iron-fisted Khalif and the mysterious master thief known as the Falcon Prince. In the midst of this brewing rebellion a series of brutal supernatural murders strikes at the heart of the Kingdoms. It is up to a handful of heroes to learn the truth behind these killings:

Doctor Adoulla Makhslood, "The last real ghul hunter in the great city of Dhamsawaat," just wants a quiet cup of tea. Three score and more years old, he has grown weary of hunting monsters and saving lives, and is more than ready to retire from his dangerous and demanding vocation. But when an old flame's family is murdered, Adoulla is drawn back to the hunter's path.

Raseed bas Raseed, Adoulla's young assistant, a hidebound holy warrior whose prowess is matched only by his piety, is eager to deliver God's justice. But even as Raseed's sword is tested by ghuls and manjackals, his soul is tested when he and Adoulla cross paths with the tribeswoman Zamia.

Zamia Badawi, Protector of the Band, has been gifted with the near-mythical power of the Lion-Shape, but shunned by her people for daring to take up a man's title. She lives only to avenge her father's death. Until she learns that Adoulla and his allies also hunt her father's killer. Until she meets Raseed.

When they learn that the murders and the Falcon Prince's brewing revolution are connected, the companions must race against time--and struggle against their own misgivings--to save the life of a vicious despot. In so doing they discover a plot for the Throne of the Crescent Moon that threatens to turn Dhamsawaat, and the world itself, into a blood-soaked ruin.
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Three superheroes in the Crescent Moon Kingdoms bound together by a series of magical murders must work together in a race against time to prevent a sorcerer's plot from destroying the world.

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