Review: A Thousand Nights by E.K. Johnston

21524446A Thousand Nights by E.K. Johnston

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
Received: Borrowed
Publication Date: October 6th 2015
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Point of View: 1st Person & Alternative
Recommended Age: 13+
Pacing: Very slow
Genres &  Themes: Young Adult, Fantasy, Retelling, Magic, Sisterhood

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Lo-Melkhiin killed three hundred girls before he came to her village, looking for a wife. When she sees the dust cloud on the horizon, she knows he has arrived. She knows he will want the loveliest girl: her sister. She vows she will not let her be next.

And so she is taken in her sister’s place, and she believes death will soon follow. Lo-Melkhiin’s court is a dangerous palace filled with pretty things: intricate statues with wretched eyes, exquisite threads to weave the most beautiful garments. She sees everything as if for the last time. But the first sun rises and sets, and she is not dead. Night after night, Lo-Melkhiin comes to her and listens to the stories she tells, and day after day she is awoken by the sunrise. Exploring the palace, she begins to unlock years of fear that have tormented and silenced a kingdom. Lo-Melkhiin was not always a cruel ruler. Something went wrong.


Watch your world burn, light of my heart. Tomorrow we will find another one and burn that too.

I almost steered clear of this marvel, fearing that it would turn out to be far too similar to another very special book: The Wrath and the Dawn.

But I decided to look around to see what others had to say about it. And guess what. My fear instantly dissolved when I learned that this is not a retelling of A Thousand and One Nights but a reimaging of it, rather.

And reader, it’s wonderful.

‘‘Come to bed,’’ he said to me again. I turned my heart to stone, and climbed into bed with the viper.

E.K. Johnston is an outstanding storyteller. She mesmerized me with her words, her poetry, her heart. She wove a story worthy of a Disney musical movie.

While it’s true that A Thousand Nights is slow and with little action, it has a ‘‘fairy tale’’ vibe to it that makes it such a delight to plunge into.

The repetition is truly the only element that keeps me from giving it a higher rating but, otherwise, nothing about it enraged me.

I felt as if I were the main character herself—the one captured by the monster. She bares no name and is so brave… Her love for her sister is incredible. Not only does she save her from Lo-Melkhiin’s clutches, but it’s for her sister that she fights and fights and fights, in hope to one day see her again.

She was not of my kind, yet there was some power to her that was not human, not quite. She did not die, and I wondered if I might at last have found a queen for whom I could set the desert on fire.

The ending is especially colourful and not at all what I expected when I first started the book. Sigh. Beautiful. If only the release date to Spindle could come sooner.

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8 thoughts on “Review: A Thousand Nights by E.K. Johnston

  1. I’m curious as to why you only give it 3.5/5 stars, when reading your review it sounds like you’re giving it at least a 4! The repetition only brought it down that much? 😦


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