Excuse me, a YA fantasy inspired by medieval India? Featuring an amazing POC on the cover? You know I am ALL HERE for that. Hunted by the Sky is a book that had such detailed world building and has mouth watering food descriptions. Keep reading this book review of Hunted by the Sky to read all my thoughts on this magical book.
Gul has spent her life running. She has a star-shaped birthmark on her arm, and in the kingdom of Ambar, girls with such birthmarks have been disappearing for years. Gul’s mark is what caused her parents’ murder at the hand of King Lohar’s ruthless soldiers and forced her into hiding to protect her own life. So when a group of rebel women called the Sisters of the Golden Lotus rescue her, take her in, and train her in warrior magic, Gul wants only one thing: revenge.
Cavas lives in the tenements, and he’s just about ready to sign his life over to the king’s army. His father is terminally ill, and Cavas will do anything to save him. But sparks fly when he meets a mysterious girl–Gul–in the capital’s bazaar, and as the chemistry between them undeniably grows, he becomes entangled in a mission of vengeance–and discovers a magic he never expected to find.
Dangerous circumstances have brought Gul and Cavas together at the king’s domain in Ambar Fort . . . a world with secrets deadlier than their own. Exploring identity, class struggles, and high-stakes romance, Hunted by the Sky is a gripping adventure set in a world inspired by medieval India.
(Disclaimer: I received this book from Edelweiss. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)
Hunted by the Sky is inspired by ancient India. It’s a world full of prophets and magic that is outlawed and dangerous. This dual POV story examines ambition, desire, love, and sacrifice. What will we do to achieve our goals? For love, for revenge, for justice? Motivated by their different dreams, throughout Hunted by the Sky we can observe what our dreams can do to our ethics, our love, and our ideas. My absolute favorite element of Hunted by the Sky is the world building.
The world building of Hunted by the Sky revolves around their different beliefs and and magic, but also the way the non-magi and even those with magic are being treated. There are stories that change the fabric of our lives, impact our history and customs, and can inspire hope and fear. At the same time, the world of Hunted by the Sky also examines the different oppression and treatment of people in the society depending on their magic or potential. Are we persecuted for our potential, for the power we have to speak out, or for the role we might play in the future?
To me it’s always so interesting to see how different books are marketed. I was buddy reading this with Fanna and she was saying she had seen it promoted as being more romantic. I hadn’t seen that, only knowing it was based on medieval India. It makes a difference how books are framed. I would say that while there is romance, it isn’t a large part of the plot, instead focusing on each character’s journey and the overall story.
I already mentioned that Hunted by the Sky is a dual POV story. On the one hand we have Cavas who is motivated by his love for his father and Gul who has revenge in her heart. While they seem so different, they are both so determined to pursue their goals and forced to look at the consequences of their ambition. How do we exist in a world where we see the injustice around us? How do we react?
Hunted by the Sky is the first of the Wrath of Ambar duology. The pacing for this series opener was something that almost gave me whiplash. The beginning felt slow as we got to know Cavas and Gul and then all of a sudden it felt like everything was happening and quickly! Almost like all of a sudden a landslide that will sweep you into the next book. I still don’t think I know how to process the last 20% given all the revelations and action.
Hunted by the Sky is a story about power. Discovering our power and history, our bravery and determination, and our ability to sacrifice. Find Hunted by the Sky on Goodreads, Amazon, Indiebound, Bookshop.org & The Book Depository.