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The Library of Fates PDF, ePub eBook


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Title: The Library of Fates
Author: Aditi Khorana
Publisher: Published July 18th 2017 by Razorbill
ISBN: 9781595148582
Status : FREE Rating :
4.6 out of 5

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No one is entirely certain what brings the Emperor Sikander to Shalingar. Until now, the idyllic kingdom has been immune to his many violent conquests. To keep the visit friendly, Princess Amrita has offered herself as his bride, sacrificing everything—family, her childhood love, and her freedom—to save her people. But her offer isn't enough. The unthinkable happens, and Am No one is entirely certain what brings the Emperor Sikander to Shalingar. Until now, the idyllic kingdom has been immune to his many violent conquests. To keep the visit friendly, Princess Amrita has offered herself as his bride, sacrificing everything—family, her childhood love, and her freedom—to save her people. But her offer isn't enough. The unthinkable happens, and Amrita finds herself a fugitive, utterly alone but for an oracle named Thala, who was kept by Sikander as a slave and managed to escape amid the chaos of a palace under siege. With nothing and no one else to turn to, Amrita and Thala are forced to rely on each other. But while Amrita feels responsible for her kingdom and sets out to warn her people, the newly free Thala has no such ties. She encourages Amrita to go on a quest to find the fabled Library of All Things, where it is possible for each of them to reverse their fates. To go back to before Sikander took everything from them. Stripped of all that she loves, caught between her rosy past and an unknown future, will Amrita be able to restore what was lost, or does another life—and another love—await?

30 review for The Library of Fates

  1. 4 out of 5

    Cait • A Page with a View

    The last 25% of this book deserves 5 stars on its own because that was amazing. I had expected the plot to be yet another variation of a princess who's betrothed to an evil guy, feels powerless to change her fate, and is in love with her childhood best friend. But then it ended up going in a totally different direction and I LOVED it. Amrita doesn't know who her mother is or much about her own identity... and ok there's really no way to sum this up without spoiling anything. If you like symbolis The last 25% of this book deserves 5 stars on its own because that was amazing. I had expected the plot to be yet another variation of a princess who's betrothed to an evil guy, feels powerless to change her fate, and is in love with her childhood best friend. But then it ended up going in a totally different direction and I LOVED it. Amrita doesn't know who her mother is or much about her own identity... and ok there's really no way to sum this up without spoiling anything. If you like symbolism and mythology then you'll probably like this! I also loved how there were familiar elements from different religions woven into an absolutely gorgeous world. It's fun to see a new take on those ideas. It also felt like there were some Greek influences and ties to Alexander the Great. The writing & execution could have been stronger in parts, but the creative plot more than made up for that. I'd recommend it if you were a fan of The Star-Touched Queen!! Thank you to the publisher for sending me an ARC.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Samantha

    This had so many good ideas but all of them were so surface level when I wanted to know so much more!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Romie

    I’m so emotional right now. I didn’t expect to love this book the way I did. I expected to like it, sure, but not to fall head over heels in love with it. In this story, we follow Amrita, princess of Shalingar, betrothed to Sikandar, the despotic ruler of Macedon . . . the same guy who ends up killing his former best friend, Amrita’s father. In her journey to find a way to change the past, Amrita meets Thala, a seer, and this is where the story truly begins. Can you tell already I’m having a hard t I’m so emotional right now. I didn’t expect to love this book the way I did. I expected to like it, sure, but not to fall head over heels in love with it. In this story, we follow Amrita, princess of Shalingar, betrothed to Sikandar, the despotic ruler of Macedon . . . the same guy who ends up killing his former best friend, Amrita’s father. In her journey to find a way to change the past, Amrita meets Thala, a seer, and this is where the story truly begins. Can you tell already I’m having a hard time writing this review? I don’t even know where to start, or what to say, because I feel like this book is such a masterpiece that you have to go into the story nearly without knowing a thing. Amrita, at first, can appear as this annoying teenager who can’t accept what’s in front of her. But you can’t help but ending up loving her. In a matter of seconds, her entire life changes, and she’s forced to go on this unexpected journey after having lost the people she loved the most. And if it wasn’t enough, she learns she’s been lied to her entire life, that she isn’t just the person she thinks is. Amrita is strong, extremely kind, and would do anything for her friends or her family. Yes, sometimes you just want to shake her because she spends so much time and effort wondering if some things are true or not even though she’s given all the clues. But once she decides to believe, once she finally realizes there are things on this earth she just can’t explain, once she finally lets go, the story becomes a real rollercoaster of emotions. Like I said, Amrita goes on this journey with Thala. She was offered to Amrita and her father as a wedding gift from Sikandar, a slave capable fo seeing the future . . . let’s just say it doesn’t go well with the people of Shalingar where slavery is condemned. Thala escapes with Amrita and they quickly become friends who can trust and rely on each other. She’s the one who tells about the Library of Fates for the first time to Amrita, the one who reveals the power this library holds, the power to change the past and the future. I’m painfully aware that I’m badly selling this book to you, trust me I know it, but like I said, I don’t want to say too much about it because I feel like it would alter the experience. My only advice is to pick up this book and enjoy the beauty that it is. I wanted to believe that there was magic woven into the world in which we lived, something underneath the surface of what we could see, an entire universe we didn’t quite understand, but that didn’t mean that it didn’t exist.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Stacee

    As soon as I saw the comparison to The Star Touched Queen and The Wrath and the Dawn, I was intrigued and had high expectations...sadly I was sort of disappointed. Amrita and Thala are decent enough MCs. For a Princess on the run and a previously enslaved Seer, I figured there would be some fire, yet they're both sort of bland on the page. Varun is easily the best part of the story for various reasons, but I won't spoil anything. Plot wise, I loved the idea of this and the idea of it is probably As soon as I saw the comparison to The Star Touched Queen and The Wrath and the Dawn, I was intrigued and had high expectations...sadly I was sort of disappointed. Amrita and Thala are decent enough MCs. For a Princess on the run and a previously enslaved Seer, I figured there would be some fire, yet they're both sort of bland on the page. Varun is easily the best part of the story for various reasons, but I won't spoil anything. Plot wise, I loved the idea of this and the idea of it is probably why I gave it 3 stars instead of 2. Everything seemed to come so easily to Amrita. There wasn't any tension or struggle. I didn't feel any bit of anticipation or build up. Overall, it was a fairly quick read with a satisfying ending, but lacked a spark and the excitement I was expecting. **Huge thanks to Razorbill for providing the arc free of charge**

  5. 4 out of 5

    Nina (Every Word A Doorway)

    I read an excerpt on NetGalley and it captivated me immediately, so I decided to read the book. I am a puddle of disappointment, to say the least. I was unbelievably bored and the opposite of invested in the characters' fates and the world. With the tale of the trees being chopped down at the start, Khorana also clearly advocates for climate change and nature awareness, which sounds amazing, doesn't it? Unfortunately, this book was a balloon of hot air – there is no other way to describe it. The I read an excerpt on NetGalley and it captivated me immediately, so I decided to read the book. I am a puddle of disappointment, to say the least. I was unbelievably bored and the opposite of invested in the characters' fates and the world. With the tale of the trees being chopped down at the start, Khorana also clearly advocates for climate change and nature awareness, which sounds amazing, doesn't it? Unfortunately, this book was a balloon of hot air – there is no other way to describe it. The Library of Fates plays with an intriguing concept, namely the mash-up of a fantasy kingdom with the historical world, and entails a lot of elements from Indian mythology. The intriguing storyline I discovered within the first five chapters, however, turned into a wild goose chase with little substance. Instead of a captivating story, I got me some insta-love, underwhelming plot twists, and a rushed climax. I wish I could say I liked this more, as I was so excited for this coming-of-age fantasy with Indian falklore, but The Library of Fates was not for me. ♛ Bland characters. Amrita – princess of Shalingar and heroine of this book – seemed really likeable, at first, but then she started to irk me. She is a mess of naivety and altruism. Her upbringing and later revelations concerning her person can explain these traits to some extent, but she's just no the kind of character I like to read about. I honestly prefer realistically flawed characters over unrealistically good-hearted ones. The side characters, especially the love interests (yes, plural!), were bland as cardboard. Her friend Thala, a seer who'd been held captive by a tyrant king, was the most interesting of the side characters, but Khorana doesn't fully dive into Thala's character either. Most of the characters literally have no distinguishing personality. ♛ Aimless plot. The Library of Fates read as though Khorana had thrown various stories into one without taking care to fully develop them. There were several potentially interesting storylines: Amrita's arranged marriage, the threat of a tyrant ruler, or the mystery of the missing mother. None of those were properly spun to make for a good, engaging story. (view spoiler)[Amrita's arranged marriage is cancelled, which is lucky for her but it therefore didn't create any conflict. The threat of the tyrant ruler was caused by a love triangle (will elaborate further on). And the mystery of Amrita's missing mother is never properly solved. (hide spoiler)] After Amrita flees the palace due to a seizure of power by Sikander, the tyrant ruler of Macedon, the plot goes on a wild goose chase. The Library of Fates entails insta-love (albeit explained), a conveniently disrupted manhunt (or princesshunt, more like), underwhelming plot twists, a travel through time, and a rushed climax. Further, the whole set-up for the antagonist's subplot made little sense to me. (view spoiler)[If his great love choosing his best friend over him was what turned Sikander into a tyrant (which seems grossly oversimplified), then why did he conquer the surrounding kingdoms except for the one his former best friend ruled? Why did Shalingar remain unscathed for so long? I don't understand this logic! (hide spoiler)] I could hardly believe the source of the world's problems was a love triangle. ♛ Unimportant library. So, this book is titled The Library of Fates and said library is mentioned several times throughout the book, but I feel like it played no role in the resolving of the conflict or the book's general plot whatsoever. This book does its title no justice. Like pretty much everything else in this book, it seemed like a marvellous idea thrown into a story without further development. So, it's a hidden library with a keeper that keeps books/records of fates, but what does it do? Why is it important? After going through so many pages, you'd think I have the answer to this, but I don't. ♛ Interesting concept, Indian folklore and mythology, and lush descriptions. Some of the things I loved, albeit unable to make up for the disappointing rest, was the concept, the mythology that influenced the world-building and plot, as well as the lush descriptions of food. It struck me as strange, at first, to mash up a fictional realm with reality, mentioning the Silk Road and Persia in a kingdom that doesn't exist, but I feel like it worked. In an interview, Khorana stated that she borrowed from different traditions and eras to build her world. "Shalingar doesn't exist because there is no mythic utopia in the world, no society or kingdom or culture I could find that hasn't engaged in some sort of transgression against the rights of some population of people." Khorana makes fair few points about minority rights, clashing Macedon's misogynistic society with Shalingar's women-empowering one as well as demonstrating the importance of leaving secluded tribes in peace. I also loved the Indian mythology that inspired this book. Beyond the gods and goddesses, I'm a great fan of the giant spider (ha, no one ever thought I'd say that) whose mouth works as a portal through worlds and time. "Macedonn is a place for the wealthy. If you're wealthy, life is good, but if you're poor, or disabled, if you're a foreigner, or even a woman, Macedon isn't so kind. This country is built on the backs of the disenfranchised." Though Khorana sends some empowering messages with her book, The Library of Fates is far from a captivating story with its shallow characterisations and weak plot. Khorana certainly possesses an intriguing imagination and the skill for lovely prose, but it's not enough to write a good, diverse fantasy. I haven't read The Star-Touched Queen but I got similar vibes from both books with regard to setting and romantic subplot. If you liked Chokshi's debut, The Library of Fates might be of interest to you.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Inge

    Well, colour me confused. To be perfectly honest, I'm not sure whether to recommend The Library of Fates or not. First of all, I have to give credit where credit is due - this book is wonderfully descriptive. I loved the rich passages of scenery, and of the food - I go a little weak in the knees at a good food description, ha! So if you're interested in the cultural aspect, this book gives you value for your worth. The ending - more or less the last third of the book - also changed my opinion of t Well, colour me confused. To be perfectly honest, I'm not sure whether to recommend The Library of Fates or not. First of all, I have to give credit where credit is due - this book is wonderfully descriptive. I loved the rich passages of scenery, and of the food - I go a little weak in the knees at a good food description, ha! So if you're interested in the cultural aspect, this book gives you value for your worth. The ending - more or less the last third of the book - also changed my opinion of the book drastically. What a game changer! I can't say too much about this without giving away spoilers, but that last part really sealed the deal for me. But to get to that great ending, you have to get through some slog. It starts out as a very typical YA novel, with a protagonist who's betrothed to an evil ruler but in love with her childhood best friend, and then there's that other guy she has an electric connection with... All of it felt unnecessary and "already done." By the end of it, yes, some of these things made more sense - but you have to get there first. So do I recommend struggling through a great deal of the book in order to get to this really wonderful storyline? I honestly can't say. It will work for some, less for others. Up to you to decide. Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with a copy

  7. 4 out of 5

    Keertana

    I ordered my first book box because The Library of Fates was included in it. Quarterly's YA box featured Aditi Khorana's latest, along with two other books of her choosing, a letter, notes in the novel, and even bookish goodies. I was so, so desperate to love this book--and I genuinely thought I would love it, otherwise I would never have bought it!--so it really hurts me to admit that The Library of Fates did not impress. I love the concept behind this novel and the mythology and lore in the sto I ordered my first book box because The Library of Fates was included in it. Quarterly's YA box featured Aditi Khorana's latest, along with two other books of her choosing, a letter, notes in the novel, and even bookish goodies. I was so, so desperate to love this book--and I genuinely thought I would love it, otherwise I would never have bought it!--so it really hurts me to admit that The Library of Fates did not impress. I love the concept behind this novel and the mythology and lore in the story are breathtaking. I especially enjoyed Khorana's prose and the manner in which the story felt like a complete arc. However, our protagonist, Amrita, read far too young. I appreciated the sex-positive story line and Khorana's efforts to create a diverse cast and write a story that was heavy on the woman-power. But, all that being said, I just didn't connect with Amrita. I felt as if she was too naive, I didn't understand how she was a princess yet had never stepped foot outside her palace all her life, and in general I wish that she had taken more initiative in the direction her life took. Amrita is engaged to marry her father's college friend, now the conqueror of many kingdoms who holds a long grudge against her father and is set on taking his kingdom for himself. Within chapters, their engagement is broken and Amrita's entire life is upended as she uncovers more about her past, learns of the mother she never met, and is forced to flee with a seer she has only just met, Thala. I felt as if this entire part of the story, which is outlined in the synopsis, took so long. It was slow and once Amrita has to fend for herself, all kinds of mythological interference occur to steer her on the right path. It was all just so convenient. I never felt for Amrita or the stakes because everything felt so easy. It was, after all, just handed her--the paths she had to take, the doors she fell into, the people she met... And, yes, this is a book, it's a constructed plot, but I wanted Amrita to be challenged and figure things out for herself. The Library of Fates is just too much tell-not-show and I couldn't get behind its style. Thala, the secondary character whose friendship is spoken about far too much in this novel, is definitely a much more kick-ass heroine than Amrita. Yet, for all that, I felt as if the lore behind the seers and the politics behind their treatment was largely left untouched. Moreover, I didn't feel deeply for their friendship in the least and found that Thala's knowledge and predictions were the main cause of this tale being so convenient and easy. Thala's friendship was sweet, sure, but it didn't challenge Amrita and I was so disappointed by the two-dimensional nature of their conversations and relationship as a whole. And, of course, the romance! Thankfully, The Library of Fates isn't heavy on the romance and it really takes a backseat. Unfortunately, when it is present, it lacks spark and chemistry and I cared the least about Amrita's romance, partially because Amrita was involved but also because her love interest remains just as two-dimensional. For me, these characters just never came alive and though the world did, I was still left with so many questions about the world-building and mythology and the politics of this realm, too. It seems to be entirely made-up but then there are mentions of Persian fairy tales and the Silk Road. So...just how much of Khorana's world is fantasy and where is that line crossed between history and fiction? I wish I knew more. Now, I want to tell readers to take this review with a grain of salt. I went into this with high expectations since I'm South Asian and an ardent lover of all things fantasy. I have high standards for my fantasy novels in that I need very explicit world-building which contains plenty of politics and I especially want to be able to connect with the characters and feel something. Unfortunately, though, I have to admit that this story is very much fantasy-lite and I wasn't impressed. I think younger readers will find a lot to love in this story and with Amrita's journey from naivety and I also think readers who are less critical of their fantasy can find a lot to enjoy in this too. As I mentioned before, it's beautifully written and the mythology is really unique. But, it just wasn't written in my fate to fall in love with this one, I guess. :/

  8. 5 out of 5

    alice (arctic books)

    That was, well, unexpected. It was full of twists and turns, fate and love. RTC.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Aila

    This review can be found on Happy Indulgence. Thank you Penguin for the review copy! With a lush, opulent world, breathtaking plot, and endearing heroine, The Library of Fates was a wonderful read. I think the mention of The Star-Touched Queen in the blurb is very apt for this one - I can see aspects reminiscent of the former, and not just because of the foundation of Indian folklore for both worlds. No doubt, fantasy readers will adore The Library of Fates and the journey that Amrita embarks on. This review can be found on Happy Indulgence. Thank you Penguin for the review copy! With a lush, opulent world, breathtaking plot, and endearing heroine, The Library of Fates was a wonderful read. I think the mention of The Star-Touched Queen in the blurb is very apt for this one - I can see aspects reminiscent of the former, and not just because of the foundation of Indian folklore for both worlds. No doubt, fantasy readers will adore The Library of Fates and the journey that Amrita embarks on. I could also gush on and on about the ending, and the smile I had after I read the last page. I haven't heard much about this book until recently and I think it deserves much more attention! The story starts with the introduction of Princess Amrita of Shalingar, a quiet kingdom based on Indian culture. She’s preparing for the arrival of the guest Emperor Sikander, the ruler who expanded the Macedonian empire, and her arranged marriage to him. Upon arriving, however, Sikander’s cruel machinations lead to the downfall of Shalingar and Amrita suddenly becomes a fugitive in the nation she grew up in. Raised in a heavily sheltered life, Amrita was really easy to like as a character. She’s quite selfless and definitely cares for the people of her kingdom. Amrita is a flawed character as well, as readers can see that her cautious attitude makes her hesitant on actions. This caution stems from fear, whether it’s for the consequences her actions would instill or how it would affect the people she loves. Amrita is also biracial, being half Shalingar (the Indian-inspired kingdom) and half Macedonian. Reading in her first person POV narrative was really enjoyable. However, Amrita is also quite ignorant on the world outside her home and quite clueless when she finds herself on the run. Luckily, she creates a bond with Thala, an oracle who was enslaved by Sikander for her prophetic abilities. The two girls work together towards the Library of All Things, where Thala tells Amrita that it holds the power to change their fates. I wanted to choose my own future. I didn’t want to be Sikander’s bride. What I wanted was too impossible to say aloud, too dangerous, too fraught. Amrita is a bit unbelieving at first. The grandiose world of The Library of Fates has a historic backdrop, with references to ancient civilizations such as Anatolia and the Silk Road. Although the creation of the world is rife with magic and folklore, the closest to “magic” that she has encountered is the prophetic abilities of oracles such as Thala. However, as Amrita meets new people in her adventure towards the Library of All Things and discovers secrets hidden in her past and kingdom, she may just start believing in the myths that she grew up hearing. I wanted to believe that there was magic woven into the world in which we lived; something underneath the surface of what we could see, an entire universe we didn’t quite understand, but that didn’t mean that it didn’t exist. The journey that Amrita takes physically is a fun adventure with gorgeous settings and unveiled mysteries, but the internal journey Amrita’s character takes was also extremely phenomenal, and one of the stand-out points of the story. She starts the book off with everything: doting father, peaceful kingdom, loving court who are basically like her family, and even a developing crush. After Sikander’s invasion, however, she starts losing each of these, one by one. But on her journey towards the Library of All Things, Amrita may also discover her gaining others things, even as the loss heals into a scar. I might have been ready for death but if I wasn’t Amrita, who was I? If I wasn’t the collection of my experiences, then what was left of me? I really adored her friendship with Thala, the oracle that escapes with her. While Amrita is cautious and wary, Thala has no regrets with her actions. We see her pain when she recalls being taken away from her family by Sikander, and her support for Amrita as the princess without a kingdom deals with her own losses. There is a romance that occurs, but it’s very light and not expanded on. It’s a romance that deals with two souls finding each other again, against all odds. It’s a romance rich with history and love and loss and sacrifice. Although there is quite little development in the pages-wise (I felt like it was put aside for the plot progression), there is no doubt that the romance has layer and depth that makes it compelling despite the page time. The story really packs a punch in the 300-pages that The Library of Fates encompasses. There’s a physical journey, a mental journey, and a steady plot and pace ready to make readers gasp at surprising twists. The writing was melodic and easy to follow; no purple prose too, for readers that are wary of that! I finished this book quickly, but no doubt have plans to turn back to it - especially with how the story will linger in my mind for months to come. The Library of Fates was stunning. I’m trapped in between a 4 and 4.5 for a rating because I feel like some aspects of it could have been expanded, thus giving me more of a connection while reading. One of the biggest things is Amrita’s relationship to others; for example, the love for the people who work with her father was there, but fleetingly. I do think that the non-stop plot got in the way of such development. Another would be the romance, which I feel could have had more expansion while the two characters were together. However, Amrita’s gradual character growth and learning journey was great to see, even as the plot itself kept me surprised and captivated. Fantasy readers will love this one, and I highly recommend it to readers looking for an introspective, strong heroine who is ready to change the world she lives in. -------- EDIT: yay! I emailed the author about fixing a historically derogatory term for Romani in a description in the book, and she managed to change it before first printing! Woohoos all around :) -------- With a lush, opulent world, breathtaking plot, and endearing heroine, The Library of Fates was a wonderful read. I think the mention of The Star-Touched Queen in the blurb is very apt for this one. No doubt, fantasy readers will adore The Library of Fates and the journey that Amrita embarks on. Quick point: one thing that hindered my enjoyment was the use of a derogatory term for Romani, briefly in a description. I've emailed the author about fixing it so I'll keep updates! It's still a while away from publication so here's hoping it gets changed.

  10. 5 out of 5

    chloe (semi-hiatus)

    4.5 stars I just finished reading this book and now I have no idea what to type because this book stunned me so much. Update: *takes a deep breath* Oh hey, I'm back. Don't worry, I'm going to write a review. Continue reading. What I liked: The Author's Note really touched me. Aditi Khorana talked about equality for all. Being Asian and female myself, I could really relate to what she wrote. Her writing is beautiful and I was captivated from the very beginning. And we will. Because we're not broken. 4.5 stars I just finished reading this book and now I have no idea what to type because this book stunned me so much. Update: *takes a deep breath* Oh hey, I'm back. Don't worry, I'm going to write a review. Continue reading. What I liked: The Author's Note really touched me. Aditi Khorana talked about equality for all. Being Asian and female myself, I could really relate to what she wrote. Her writing is beautiful and I was captivated from the very beginning. And we will. Because we're not broken. And we won't be silenced. It is up to us to build webs of goodness wherever we go, up to us to uproot injustices and expose them to the light. So be brave, keep fighting, and I will fight alongside you. The cover is so fabulous. WOULD YOU LOOK AT THAT! Ombré pink? I am so in love. The story started with a beautiful and meaningful parable - The Parable of the Land of Trees (The uglified version of the story, told by Chloe (AKA the queen of ugly storytelling: So there's a land where there are magical trees that know how to speak. Of course the stupid humans have to ruin everything and chop them down. The end.) The world building. Shalingar and Macedon sound like places I would love to visit. Aditi described the beautiful cities in great detail and it's truly amazing. Indian/Hindu folklore. Several Indian mythological creatures appeared in the story, such as Makara and vetala. I love reading stories with tiny bits of mythology in them, because by doing that, I can learn more about other countries' cultures and that's very exciting. Aditi Khorana's detailed and beautiful writing! The sentences are overflowing with adjectives and I could clearly picture the described scenes in my head. Pillared colonnades buttressed a high roof that curved like a rust-colored sail over the lofty complex. The main character, Princess Amrita. She's kind and loves her people so much that she's willing to sacrifice herself, and that is really admirable. Thala and Amrita's friendship. The two girls support each other through the whole journey and always have each other's backs. That is something I rarely read about in YA books - girls helping girls. What I disliked: The ending. Ughh. Why did everything have to change? Actually, the ending is so beautiful but it is so bittersweet. I am a huge fan of happy endings and the ending of this book broke my heart (... andddd this is why I rated this book 4.5 stars instead of 5). I really want to be more specific about why I disliked the ending but I don't want to spoil this book for you. Final thoughts: Would highly recommend this book, especially if you're a fan of mythology and fantasy. Also I will definitely read more of Aditi Khorana's work because her writing is so magical.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Acqua

    The Library of Fates is a standalone fantasy book inspired by Indian and Macedonian history. It's set in the fantasy kingdom of Shalingar, whose princess Amrita is going to marry Emperor Sikander for political reasons - but even that may be too little to stop him from conquering her kingdom. What drew me to this book - apart from the beautiful cover - was the writing: the author's note at the beginning was wonderful, and the chapter right after, which is a fairytale/prologue, almost made me tear The Library of Fates is a standalone fantasy book inspired by Indian and Macedonian history. It's set in the fantasy kingdom of Shalingar, whose princess Amrita is going to marry Emperor Sikander for political reasons - but even that may be too little to stop him from conquering her kingdom. What drew me to this book - apart from the beautiful cover - was the writing: the author's note at the beginning was wonderful, and the chapter right after, which is a fairytale/prologue, almost made me tear up in a few paragraphs. And the writing was, for the most part, as beautiful as I wanted it to be: there were descriptions of food that made me hungry, magical descriptions that almost felt like a painting, and stories within stories. The ending itself established a circular narrative which is perfect for the themes of the novel and what it had to say about time and fate. But, ultimately, The Library of Fates fell flat in some aspects. Here's the thing: descriptive writing can only do so much. The Library of Fates reminded me of Traci Chee's The Reader, a YA fantasy novel which disappointed me in pretty much the same way this month: they are YA books that manage to be at the same time very well-written and not. Of course I loved the setting, its atmosphere and its mythology, and the themes this book dealt with - not losing hope, choosing without selfishness and taking fate into your own hand to overcome hardships - were very interesting and not what I see in the average YA fantasy. On the other hand, the dialogues were often awkward and the pacing wasn't the best - everything felt too sudden, too quick and too slow at the same time. The main character of this novel, Amrita, is the only one who is actually developed; all the other characters, including the two love interest which form a very unnecessary but not that relevant or irritating love triangle, felt like props in her story. And while this book is not character-driven because there are no characters interesting enough to carry the story, the plot wasn't that interesting either. Parts of it felt too convenient, and while I understand that this is a story about fate, many things felt forced - including the romance. Also, while The Library of Fates is a very unusual book because of its plot and themes, it was surprisingly predictable - I guessed all the plot twists without even needing to know there were twists ahead. If you love atmospheric writing and don't mind bland characters, this book might work for you, but while I did like some aspects of it, I was also disappointed.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Danielle (Life of a Literary Nerd)

    “I didn’t know then what I know now: that everything - my father, this moment, every experience that molds and shapes us - is ephemeral, evaporating into the air before we have a chance to grasp onto it, before we can truly even understand what it means.” The Library of Fates is an emotionally gripping and magically captivating read. Filled with a rich culture and endearing characters, Aditi Khorana’s world is vividly brought to life. We follow Princess Amrita as she goes on a journey to find “I didn’t know then what I know now: that everything - my father, this moment, every experience that molds and shapes us - is ephemeral, evaporating into the air before we have a chance to grasp onto it, before we can truly even understand what it means.” The Library of Fates is an emotionally gripping and magically captivating read. Filled with a rich culture and endearing characters, Aditi Khorana’s world is vividly brought to life. We follow Princess Amrita as she goes on a journey to find herself and challenge fate, along with Thala, the seer on a quest of her own. Things I Liked : The book opened with a parable that I LOVED. The Parable of the Land of Trees was so beautifully magical and perfectly setup the moral of the story. It’s a lesson of sacrifice and selflessness that resonates through the entire story. It was definitely one of my favorite parts of the story and created a really strong start! I personally really loved the writing. I found it to be very full and beautifully vivid. It was descriptive in a poetic way, with incredible imagery, but it never felt too flowery. A lot of personality came through and the world became real. The relationships were also all really well done. I loved Amrita and Arjun’s relationship and completely bought their connection and history. I wish we got to see more of Arjun though. I loved the tumultuous partnership between Amrita and Thala. They are forced together together and must make the best of a bad situation, while neither really knows what they're supposed to be doing. Amrita’s journey is so great. She is so distraught after Sikander’s siege and she doesn’t really know who she is. Through her journey she finds that self discovery is a lifelong process, influenced by your choices and actions, not your family. You are your own person, you decide who you will become. She begins to accept the magic in the world around her. I also really loved the mythology and fantasy elements. The oracles, the Syballines, the vetalases, the Library of Fates, Maraka . They were all really well integrated into the story, and kept me engaged! There was a fantastic full-circle feeling to the story. The resolution was bittersweet and emotional, but felt perfect for the characters. Things I Didn’t Like : I thought the transitions between chapters was kind of abrupt. They were often not as fluid as I would have liked. I also would have liked for some scenes or characters to be expanded and fleshed out more. I felt like some scenes moved rather quickly, and I would have liked to live in the moment a little longer. This was a great story, and I was an emotional wreck for the last 50 pages. It’s a beautiful story of love and fate. Amrita goes through an incredible journey and discovers her own power and strength. The world is vivid and fantastical. This was one of those books that just really leave you completely satisfied. I received a copy of the book from Penguin’s First to Read program in exchange for an honest review.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Bitchin' Reads

    This is one of those books that plants a seed of trailing, growing thoughts into your mind. It made me question how I view conflict in my life and how to better identify the moments in which something went wrong and how to correct the wrong. It's also a beautiful story with interconnected story lines you would not expect. True to the author's heritage, I believe she captured that amazing and rich culture well with this story. Aditi Khorana, thank you for writing this morsel of a story. And thank This is one of those books that plants a seed of trailing, growing thoughts into your mind. It made me question how I view conflict in my life and how to better identify the moments in which something went wrong and how to correct the wrong. It's also a beautiful story with interconnected story lines you would not expect. True to the author's heritage, I believe she captured that amazing and rich culture well with this story. Aditi Khorana, thank you for writing this morsel of a story. And thank you for your author's note at the beginning. I can see how this book very much reflects more of what we need in this world. I only hope that others heed that same wisdom.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Heidi Heilig

    A troubled kingdom--an inescapable fate--ancient mythology--that's basically everything I ever wanted in a book. Open LIBRARY OF FATES and be transported to the mythical, magical country of Shalingar, where mystical vetalas, troubled oracles, irreverent goddesses, and megalomaniacal kings battle for control of love, fate, and an addictive substance called chamack. Amrita must unravel the mysteries of her past to save her kingdom, but in doing so, she herself might come unraveled. The twists and t A troubled kingdom--an inescapable fate--ancient mythology--that's basically everything I ever wanted in a book. Open LIBRARY OF FATES and be transported to the mythical, magical country of Shalingar, where mystical vetalas, troubled oracles, irreverent goddesses, and megalomaniacal kings battle for control of love, fate, and an addictive substance called chamack. Amrita must unravel the mysteries of her past to save her kingdom, but in doing so, she herself might come unraveled. The twists and turns of the story are heartbreaking in this gorgeous, sweeping fantasy so rich in myth, you can practically taste it.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Meli

    Inhalt Amrita, die Prinzessin von Shalingar, soll zum Wohle ihres Volkes den Herrscher Makedons heiraten: Sikander. Dieser ist ein alter Bekannter ihres Vaters, aber die beiden sind schon lange keine Freunde mehr. Sikander hat Armut und Sklaverei in seinem Land gefestigt und wenn Amrita nichts tut, wird es in Shalingar nicht anders sein. Mit der makedonischen Sklavin und Seherin Thala ist sie bald gezwungen zu fliehen und ihr Schicksal selbst in die Hand zu nehmen, denn Amrita ist zu größerem bes Inhalt Amrita, die Prinzessin von Shalingar, soll zum Wohle ihres Volkes den Herrscher Makedons heiraten: Sikander. Dieser ist ein alter Bekannter ihres Vaters, aber die beiden sind schon lange keine Freunde mehr. Sikander hat Armut und Sklaverei in seinem Land gefestigt und wenn Amrita nichts tut, wird es in Shalingar nicht anders sein. Mit der makedonischen Sklavin und Seherin Thala ist sie bald gezwungen zu fliehen und ihr Schicksal selbst in die Hand zu nehmen, denn Amrita ist zu größerem bestimmt ... Protagonisten Amrita hat einen Geliebten, Arjun, und eigentlich will sie nur mit ihm glücklich sein. Er und seine Familie waren immer in ihrer Nähe und sie denkt ständig daran, wie diese Menschen sie beeinflusst haben und welche Rolle sie gespielt haben. Sie hat noch nie etwas über ihre Mutter erfahren und würde sie gerne finden und möchte natürlich mehr über sie erfahren. Sie glaubt zunächst nicht an die Dinge aus den Märchen und hält sie alle für Hirngespinste, aber mit der Zeit muss sie sie ernster nehmen, weil so vieles darauf hinweist und manche Dinge einfach nicht mehr zu leugnen sind. Manchmal fand ich Amrita etwas zu impulsiv, falls man es so ausdrücken kann. Sie tut viele Dinge, wenn sie sich danach fühlt oder wenn andere es ihr auftragen, aber sie denkt meistens nicht lange darüber nach. Thala wurde jahrelang versklavt und als Orakel dazu missbraucht, Sikander zu mehr Macht zu verhelfen. Sie möchte ihr eigenes Schicksal ändern und endlich frei sein und dafür nimmt sie alles in Kauf. Sie braucht Amrita, um an ihre Ziele zu gelangen und versucht sie zum Handeln zu bringen. Handlung und Schreibstil Ich dachte erst, dies sei der erste Teil einer Reihe, aber es ist doch nur ein Einzelband. Am Anfang hatte ich dann andere Erwartungen und habe manche Dinge anders eingeschätzt, daher war ich auch ein wenig enttäuscht, wie schnell dann plötzlich alles ging. Das ist natürlich meine Schuld und nicht die des Buches. Doch das erste Drittel war vergleichsweise ereignislos, bereitete den Hauptteil vor und war in der Inhaltsbeschreibung mit den ersten zwei Sätzen abgeschlossen. Der Klappentext verriet meiner Meinung nach schon viel zu viel, eigentlich so ziemlich alles, sogar die letzten Seiten hätte man schon vorhersehen können. Daher war es eben nicht so spannend. Das Buch war nicht besonders lang, und das war auch nicht schlecht, denn ich hatte nie das Gefühl, es wäre in die Länge gezogen gewesen. Dafür hätte die Reise und Flucht meinetwegen auch länger dauern können. Das Buch konzentriert sich wirklich nur auf Dinge, die für die Handlung von Bedeutung sind und schweift nicht ab und verliert sich nicht in langen Erklärungen. Das fand ich ganz gut, weil es das Buch auch weniger anstrengend gemacht hat. Das Ende hat mich nicht sehr überrascht, aber ich mochte die Charaktere schon genug, dass es mir sehr gut gefallen hat. Fazit Ich fand "Amrita - Am Ende beginnt der Anfang" ganz nett, denn es erzählt seine Geschichte, nicht mehr und nicht weniger. Es ist kurz und knapp, behandelt kein Thema länger als nötig und konzentriert sich auf das Wichtigste. Die Inhaltsangabe verrät aber viel zu viel und daher fand ich das Buch leider kaum spannend.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Taryn Pierson

    Amrita is being forced into marriage with a much older monarch from a backward-thinking kingdom. She and her childhood love hatch a plot to run away together before the wedding, but Amrita’s destiny turns out to be a whole lot bigger than escaping into obscurity with a boy. Pro tip: the Author’s Note alone is worth the price of admission. It’s at the beginning of the book, don’t skip it! More book recommendations by me at www.readingwithhippos.com

  17. 4 out of 5

    Danielle

    4.5/5 review to follow

  18. 4 out of 5

    Lilly (Lair Of Books)

    Rating:★★★★ 4 Stars FULL REVIEW CAN ALSO BE FOUND ON LAIR OF BOOKS: https://lairofbooksblog.wordpress.com... *HUGE thanks to Penguin/Razorbill & Aditi Khorana for the eGalley copy of The Library of Fates in exchange for an honest opinion PLOT he Library of Fates took me on a journey full of growing pains, sacrifice, friendship, and fated love against the backdrop of a vibrant colorful land full of hope. The introduction to this story starts with the very special bond between father and daughter. Rating:★★★★ 4 Stars FULL REVIEW CAN ALSO BE FOUND ON LAIR OF BOOKS: https://lairofbooksblog.wordpress.com... *HUGE thanks to Penguin/Razorbill & Aditi Khorana for the eGalley copy of The Library of Fates in exchange for an honest opinion PLOT he Library of Fates took me on a journey full of growing pains, sacrifice, friendship, and fated love against the backdrop of a vibrant colorful land full of hope. The introduction to this story starts with the very special bond between father and daughter. Princess Amrita is the daughter to the ruler of the country of Shalingar who loves his people and goes above & beyond to keep them safe, free, and prosperous. However, while on a visit the Emperor Sikander sets his sights on Shalingar, Amrita volunteers her own hand in marriage to keep the peace. Amrita’s father did not want this for his daughter & tried everything in his power to reverse his daughters fate. Although Amrita and her father have a tight bond, there are still many secrets he is keeping from her regarding her mother who he refuses to speak about. As a result of tragic events that take place during the Emperors visit, Amrita is forced to go on the run far from the palace walls & her beloved country of Shalingar. She does not go alone, as a true testament of her character & beliefs, she saves the oracle who was enslaved by the emperor. Thala has been mistreated since the age of 9 when she was first ripped away from her home by the emperor. She has been forced to take the drug Chamak to enhance her visions (Think Grishas/Six of Crows) & serve the Emperor. Although Amrita is forced to leave everything & everyone behind, she is focused on finding a way to defeat the emperor & warn her people of the dangers to come. Thala on the other hand is seeking for a way to reverse their fate by finding the Library of All Things. The only ones (besides the Emperor) in their way are themselves. Amrita is a non-believer of all things magic/fables and Thala believes whole-heartedly. This unlikely pairing embark on an adventure that will leave them changed forever… CHARACTERS Although there are many characters along the way shaping Amrita’s fate, these are the ones that stood out the most for myself… The Amrita we meet at the start of this story isn’t the one we see by the time we read the last sentence. She has been forced to run for her life leaving behind her home & all those she loved. She has no real destination in mind and we see her & Thala tough it out, really shedding her life as a princess. Also, she is having a hard time accepting the possibility that the fables her father imparted her with as a child may actually be closer to reality. She’s on a path that will challenge her to grow & make some tough decisions regarding her fate & those of her people. Amrita was the most fleshed out character we get in The Library of Fates and following her journey full of twists & turns was unpredictable and satisfying. Amrita’s father Chandradev, I am a sucker for father/daughter relationships and so I can’t speak about characters without showing Chandradev some love. A father who loved his country & his people but fought hard to not have to sacrifice his daughter to a tyrant. Chandradev also won my <3 for being a lover of folklore/mythology, telling Amrita stories that always made her wonder. I’d love to see more father figures like Chandradev on the page seeing as they are scarcely written. Thala was an interesting character to get to know, she has a lot of hurt and pain when she is gifted as a slave to Amrita by the Emperor. Shalingar did NOT believe in enslaving people & so when Thala arrived, Amrita and her father were immediately appalled at the offer. This set the tone for Tala’s journey beside Amrita, their friendship very unlikely yet strengthening from the minute they set off. This friendship was slow building & met with many bumps on the road which made it more authentic. WRITING & FINAL THOUGHTS The first half of this book reads very differently than the second half. At first I really did think I was getting the same story we’ve all read before…you know? the one where the princess is forced to marry a megalomaniac while her true love comes to her rescue? YEAH that’s the one! Whelp, I can assure you the this was NOT that story! The Library of Fates took such an interesting turn at the midway point leaving me enamored with the way Khorana wove fate into this story. The belief that there are many different versions of ourselves living many different lives all at the same time following the threads of their own fate really intrigues me. I docked it one star only because I felt it didn’t really find its footing till after the half-way point which is about the time I started to really fall in love with this story. I also would’ve liked to have been given some answers regarding Amrita’s mother but won’t go into detail for fear of spoilers. Overall I really enjoyed this read & the world Khorana has created, lush with Persian influences & steeped in Indian folklore. I reccomend The Library of Fates to those who’ve ever wondered whether our fates are written for us or if it’s entirely within our control…& for those who believe in magic ;)

  19. 4 out of 5

    Tj

    "It takes...a recognition that you'll never be the hero of the story" "So you choose to be the monster" Do you know the big D that I keep on having but I didn't like? It's the big DISAPPOINTMENT. This book has such a lovely cover that I cannot not read it. It already pulled me in with just looking at the cover, and the title is so enticing, it's saying: COME HERE AND READ ME. So, I did. And oh, what a big freaking disappointment. The writing is good but everything else was just upsetting. So, l "It takes...a recognition that you'll never be the hero of the story" "So you choose to be the monster" Do you know the big D that I keep on having but I didn't like? It's the big DISAPPOINTMENT. This book has such a lovely cover that I cannot not read it. It already pulled me in with just looking at the cover, and the title is so enticing, it's saying: COME HERE AND READ ME. So, I did. And oh, what a big freaking disappointment. The writing is good but everything else was just upsetting. So, let's go and roast the hell with this book. (I'm sorry for being mean, I just hated this) PLOT: Princess Amrita is about to sacrifice herself for the greater good-the safety of her father, her friends, the one she loves and the entire kingdom. She will marry the monstrous emperor Sikander to protect Shalingar. BUT-Sikander is not the person who you can make trades with because he wants not just Amrita but to claimed the kingdom as well, so Sikander killed the majaraja but Amrita and a seer, Thala, managed to escape. They have to find the Syllibines to warn about the siege and to ask for help from the Keeper of the Library of All Things. It's pretty interesting right? Maybe a good story will come out, I mean a library that records all life of every person that is existing in the entire universe and the one who can go there will be able to alter a person's life by just rewriting the story. Isn't that a good plot? But don't be mislead, because it's the same YA fantasy cliche nonsense. Yes, it is somehow near the plot but everything is hilarious IN A BAD WAY. STORYLINE: One of the worst storyline that I have the pleasure to read. Actually that's just an exaggeration, it's not the worst (but is definitely not compelling at all), it's just a big fat disappointing story. Too fast paced, it's like the author tried to squeezed a trilogy into a standalone story and it has an insubstantial story flow. CHARACTERS: Every single characters are so bland, no personality whatsoever. NADA. -Amrita is poorly written, without any determination, and is a two-faced biatch. Look, I know it's a really bad insult but she claimed to love her bestfriend, Arjun but after a few more days when she met Varun she felt something, like a spark or a pull that tugged her towards him. And that's not just it. Since she was able to run away from Sikander, she and a seer, Thala, that she helped escaped went to a journey to fix the possible war. The thing is, she considered Thala as one of her friends but when Thala was having trouble being conscious one day, Amrita was only thinking that if she loses Thala, she'll be going to the mountain alone and SHE CAN'T DO IT ALONE BECAUSE SHE'S SCARED. WHAT?! Instead of being scared that she's going to lose Thala (her friend), she's scared of being alone to do her job. *sigh* -Varun. One plain cliche male character that emphasizes the epitome "love can wait for hundred of years". I just don't have any feelings for him, none at all. He can die for all I care. I knew him already when he showed up because DUH, this book is freaking predictable so you'll know everything that will possibly happen once you read it from the beginning. *FAKE SHOCKED FACE* -Arjun and those other characters that doesn't matter. Sikander is just one evil villain because of a love triangle that has gone worst. Thala is a Seer who sees everything but in the most needed situations does not. Great. CONCLUSION: If you hate nonsense uninteresting plot with non-shocking plot twist and bland characters that you might hate to the core then don't read this, but if you like them then do go on. The story is really not just for me. It doesn't affect who you are as a reader but it only mean that we have a huge variation when it comes to fantasy stories. Will never recommend. P.S It felt like it was all rant and not a really good review, oh well. *shrugs*

  20. 4 out of 5

    chri

    2.5 The cover is absolutely lovely - I love the pink-to-purple ombre! Inside, The Library of Fates tells the story of a girl shaken from her everyday life; the entrance of a tyrant; reincarnation and a race to rescue her family and her kingdom. The incorporation of Indian mythology is rich and immersive, and though the story isn't anything new, the writing is quiet and beautiful and draws its own course. And as for the plot? The Library of Fates read as a gorgeous fairytale of sorts, an adventur 2.5 The cover is absolutely lovely - I love the pink-to-purple ombre! Inside, The Library of Fates tells the story of a girl shaken from her everyday life; the entrance of a tyrant; reincarnation and a race to rescue her family and her kingdom. The incorporation of Indian mythology is rich and immersive, and though the story isn't anything new, the writing is quiet and beautiful and draws its own course. And as for the plot? The Library of Fates read as a gorgeous fairytale of sorts, an adventure at the very least, at the beginning. However, toward the latter half, things took a rather scattered and confusing turn, which I really probably would've been okay with had it not also come with Amrita's love interest, one of the more abrupt instaloves I've come across this year (his appearance also made me super sad because you could feel genuine chemistry between Amrita and her childhood friend! I was rooting for them! But I digress), and too many awfully convenient plot points for the main character. It wasn't an awful read by any means, but neither was it a particularly great one.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Susana

    Two stars in my "dictionary" means that it was readable, not that I liked it. Because I didn't... FRC (...) The thing with book comparisons is that sometimes you are left wondering if they didn't get the wrong book... like when someone decided to say that the Star Touched Queen was the perfect read for people who loved Calaena, "I am going to kill you all... not" PLEASE. -_- Look, I am a avid The Star-Touched Queen fan. I loved the writing, the story, the whole Indian mythology; that means that I had Two stars in my "dictionary" means that it was readable, not that I liked it. Because I didn't... FRC (...) The thing with book comparisons is that sometimes you are left wondering if they didn't get the wrong book... like when someone decided to say that the Star Touched Queen was the perfect read for people who loved Calaena, "I am going to kill you all... not" PLEASE. -_- Look, I am a avid The Star-Touched Queen fan. I loved the writing, the story, the whole Indian mythology; that means that I had sky rock expectations for this story which as you guys can see for the rating, were completely crushed. I understand that the writer wanted to keep Amrita faithful to her background; as such she sounds very naive and young... well, at certain things, but with the consistency of a mousse, the girl became extremely annoying to "deal" with. Also, almost right from the start, the author decides to get the girl a romance with her bff, so there can be some cannoodling. The passage from best friends to best friends with benefits was extremely fast, which made it even more dificult for me to care about those two. In fact, the whole "romance" felt more new adult than actual YA, something that I found strange. The writing...well it is readable, but not that great. Not Star Touched Queen great, so if you didn't like STQ's writing, maybe you'll like this one :D The plot Evil dictator _ pleonasm much?_ visits Amrita's kingdom with the intention of gaining control of some obscure substance _ honestly, I could have used more info here. Soon enough, Amrita decides to be a bargain chip between her father's kingdom and evil dude, Sikander (actually an old friend of her father), gifts are exchanged, and Thala appears. Thala is what made me keep reading, she is a seer and a slave owned by Sikander. Maybe if the story had been all about her, I wouldn't have felt like I had eaten some sour lemons by the end of the story... As for Amrita, most of the times I just wanted to shake her and tell the girl to start moving! But with no actual plot, (view spoiler)[the whole library of fates quest ends up being a faded dream (hide spoiler)] everything just dwindled to "special ones"characters Amrita of course, guys, because apparently the bff (view spoiler)[just wasn't the one... not compared with reincarnation bs, which once again makes romance development unnecessary! (hide spoiler)] Then there was the (view spoiler)[time travel thing (hide spoiler)] , that felt... strange, and lacking. Honestly this was just too much of a mess for me.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Insi Eule

    Hat mir überraschend gut gefallen! Hätte nicht gedacht, dass es mir so gut gefallen würde und bin froh, dass ich dem ganzen eine Chance gegeben habe. Das orientalische Setting war toll und es gab einige schöne, philosophische Aspekte über das Schicksal, Vergangenheit und das Leben selbst. Wirklich gut! Bekommt von mir 4,5 Sterne.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Kav (xreadingsolacex)

    THE LIBRARY OF FATES is the book I've wanted my whole life. A novel that Western society is excited about that is based on Indian mythology, with an Indian setting, and Indian characters - A.K.A. perfection. At first, I was thinking - this'll be a four star read, but as I went further into the novel, I discovered the amazing plot the author developed that just blew me away. I don't want to get too much into it as to avoid spoilers, but trust me, the story she carves is one that you don't want to THE LIBRARY OF FATES is the book I've wanted my whole life. A novel that Western society is excited about that is based on Indian mythology, with an Indian setting, and Indian characters - A.K.A. perfection. At first, I was thinking - this'll be a four star read, but as I went further into the novel, I discovered the amazing plot the author developed that just blew me away. I don't want to get too much into it as to avoid spoilers, but trust me, the story she carves is one that you don't want to miss. I really appreciated the relationship between Amrita and Thala, it was the first part of the novel that I fell 100% in love with and I just continued to adore it as the novel went on. I found it to be the most developed and genuine relationship in the novel that we got to see progress. Speaking of, I really enjoyed the characters in this novel. Whereas we mostly got to discover Amrita, we did get these bits and pieces of other characters that I think really contributed to the fantasy-ness of the novel and I really enjoyed seeing that throughout the novel. Basically, you don't want to miss out on this book. I wish there was more I could say, but I don't want to give any spoilers, so I'll leave it at this.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Dani - Perspective of a Writer

    Check out more reviews @ Perspective of a Writer... Emperor Sikander has turned his sights on Shalingar, the country of his friend and decided he will wed the man's daughter. She is not certain she can accept that outcome but it does give her the opportunity to learn about her mother who disappeared when she was born. Setting events into motion Amrita is on the run with the oracle Thala, a slave to Sikander and the drug chamak to find the Library of All Things where one can change their fate. Alo Check out more reviews @ Perspective of a Writer... Emperor Sikander has turned his sights on Shalingar, the country of his friend and decided he will wed the man's daughter. She is not certain she can accept that outcome but it does give her the opportunity to learn about her mother who disappeared when she was born. Setting events into motion Amrita is on the run with the oracle Thala, a slave to Sikander and the drug chamak to find the Library of All Things where one can change their fate. Along the way they warn the chamak harvesters the secretive Sybillines who live in the Jakkara caves... Okay, first things first... I have to clarify my rating (not a good sign I know)... While I have chosen to rate the book 3 stars it is NOT due to the quality of the book... that is 2 stars. Once I read the end (which most readers concede is decent even if they didn't like it) I understood what the author was trying to write. My hypothesis is that she was trying to embellish the creation of a goddess. With this understanding A LOT of the story makes more sense. So because the story had a point, was a standalone and not a series plus was creative I gave it an additional star. The premise of explaining how a human girl can become a goddess idolized by entire countries is pretty neat. It is almost a retelling of Indian folklore if Maya was a real Indian god. (I don't know if she is or not, there was no note in the book from the author saying what was fact or fiction. I do not approve of calling something folklore or otherwise linking it to reality and there not be a note from the author explaining where fact and fiction begin.) In any case if the book were better written this could be a really great story! I really appreciated that this story was not dragged out into three books though I think if the writing and story craft were stronger it could have been a duology (breaking when they leave the caves). There is definitely a beginning, middle and end though. It wasn't a formless story with no plot. Things were shallow, feelings and perspectives shifted for no reason, not much happened at major plot points but there was an attempt for milestones to be reached and a journey to have been made. A serious problem was the writing. It felt like a news article at times. A really well written news article where a summary of events needed to be explained but where readers don't want all the details. They just want a really, really good summary. So at times I marveled a book that was ALL TELLING could read so well and at other times I wanted to scream that this writer of obvious experience could not put me inside the character!! Amrita was a girl I wanted to love... A princess, sheltered, with a loving father and a desire to be a good leader for her people. Plus she is a POC in a world populated with many POCs!! While not exactly diverse I LOVE the cultural aspect of her life and I wanted to know more! Yet she contradicted herself at the turn of nothing. At certain points it was decided that her perspective had changed and there was no motivation developed to reflect that shift. This inconsistency of character continued through the entire book and became quite tiresome. (Mild spoilers - BEWARE!) For example she says at the beginning that she doesn't believe any of the parables or stories told to her growing up that had magic or fantastical elements. This is followed by her insistence that what the oracle told her could not be true even though now the oracle had proof! Then suddenly later Amrita believes the oracle and explains how one of her father's advisors taught her to be logical while this other mother figure taught her the stories... Now come on... she told us herself that she doesn't believe any of it and now we are to believe she sort of half believed? Well if you grew up logical then you should be able to evaluate when you are making the same mistakes as your father. A logical person would put that together see the pattern. He didn't believe the oracle though she pointed out the signs and they as political leaders would have been able to understand what those events together signified (invasion). Now Amrita does the same thing at odd with her "logic" that suddenly appeared. This is compounded by the her meeting a boy she talks to on the road so now the stories don't sound so lame and unbelievable... that is convenient when the oracle who can see things couldn't convince her... Now if this book had been written using showing all these inconsistencies could have worked because Amrita didn't know she was holding ideas inside her self that are at odds with each other. If we were shown she believes because she has a symbol of Maya supposedly treasure by her mother that she herself treasures that would hint that there is belief there that she doesn't acknowledge or tells herself it is about her mother when it is really about beliefs she doesn't realize she has. Her "logic" side could have been developed through a conversation with her father's advisors and Arjun whom she thinks she loves. They could talk about how she was always skeptical as a little girl and how nothing has changed. She could have argued that if she were allowed outside the palace she could learn for herself if she really believed or not. These kinds of details are necessary to show us the truth behind the character. I wanted to LOVE the world too... fact of the matter is I don't even know what the time period was... it may have said on the opening page but there weren't enough environmental clues to really tell me... I believe it was set in a historical time. It seems to be based on Alexander the Great and his life. The temple should have told us but really it could have even been modern times... several times really tall buildings were mentioned as if they may have been skyscrapers...? It was all murky... nothing was described really well so you knew what was being talked about. Not that the description wasn't there at all... there were some beautiful emotive elements at times, it was just useless to me. A couple of the settings though were brilliant! I loved the stepwell setting, Temple of Rain, acting like a cistern to collect rain but acting as an ancient site when not full. The markings showing her the way out was great. Also the Sybillines home in the Jakkara Caves was really well described and developed as well! There was a touch of magic in this but very, very light. There is the oracle and her ability. Amrita could talk to nature like in the stories and they could grant her aid. The vetala she meets has the ability to come to where ever she is. And she meets Makera the spider who created the world and his magic is nifty. I wished this could have been this magnificent tale of friendship between a princess, Amrita and an oracle, Thala. There needed to be more plot though and Amrita couldn't start out loving Thala just because she was a slave. Many feel great sympathy for slaves (we have many sex slaves around the world) but that doesn't mean they love them as a friend as soon as they meet. Friends need to get to know the person first, go through trials and moments where they have to take a leap of faith and trust. The friendship with Thala and Amrita started off wrong but later after two experiences it almost worked but we are back to being overly exaggerated... By the end I did feel like they went through a lot together but it was an inconsistent journey that didn't inspire confidence in their friendship. This felt like a stack of cards that were bound to blow over at any time. This was no more truer than the end of the book where Thala is unable to use her power then suddenly is able to again (very contrived!) The oracles' power was creative but when she could and would use it and when she couldn't was not developed well and felt very random. Basically when Amrita had to have Thala help she did and when it was better for Amrita not to know Thala "couldn't" help. All very convenient. I was warned of fears of instalove and I poo-pooed them because I thought they were talking about Arjun her childhood love. They were talking about Varun whom she met on a road and instantly felt a connection to that instantly turned to love and feeeeeeeeels that were not supported. This quasi-love triangle was quite painful as it didn't work and again was all over the place! I liked the difficulty that Arjun was put in but he was very convenient as well acting as a red herring. I LOVED the idea of the vetala and that they were driven away from the humans due to their need of a body. I knew right away about Saaras, the white bird but I loved him anyway and how he carried notes for her. What I wanted to read was how Amrita found who she was because someone held a vision of her that she no longer remembered and how she was able to see that too and make the right choices for herself (not how this person that loved the person Amrita was in the past found her again. It was lame.) I hope you are starting to see that I really appreciated many elements but that they weren't used to their best affect. I loved Amrita's potential journey even though she was all over the place. I loved the magic that was only sparingly or sporadically used. I loved the culture of the world that wasn't fleshed out very deeply. I loved the back history of her love interests which was touched on in the slightest of ways. I was so happy to see a friendship with a fierce slave girl! Throw in a magical spider and it could have been oh so beautiful... BOTTOM LINE: An inconsistent but incredibly creative goddess retelling! Thanks to Penguin First to Read program for providing me with an ARC in exchange for an honest review. ______________________ You can find this review and many others on my book blog @ Perspective of a Writer. See my special perspective at the bottom of my reviews under the typewriter...

  25. 5 out of 5

    Taylor Knight

    The plot and concept of this book slayed my life. I loved the plot (and cover) of this book so much! The Library of Fates has such a stunning concept and I fell so in love with it. I also really loved the Indian culture that was incorporated into this book. It was really beautiful and I thought it added so much to the story. I liked the main character, Amrita, well enough. I adored her friendship with Thala. It was so great to see an awesome fictional friendship between two girls. I really liked t The plot and concept of this book slayed my life. I loved the plot (and cover) of this book so much! The Library of Fates has such a stunning concept and I fell so in love with it. I also really loved the Indian culture that was incorporated into this book. It was really beautiful and I thought it added so much to the story. I liked the main character, Amrita, well enough. I adored her friendship with Thala. It was so great to see an awesome fictional friendship between two girls. I really liked the writing style for the most part but there was a few places that felt like it could have been a bit better. Some spots in this book weren’t as developed as others but to be honest, the plot was so amazing, I didn’t mind at all.

  26. 4 out of 5

    pi

    Actual rating 3.5/5 This is a beautiful and original fantasy book based on Indian folklore, and it's so refreshing to read a story that reflects Eastern traditions. It's also very interesting to read a YA novel that explores colonialism and intersectional feminism. So please, don't sleep on this book! Give it a chance and you won't regret it!! My favourite thing about this book is that Aditi Khorana presents a strong female main character who wants to choose her own future (and she does!), but she Actual rating 3.5/5 This is a beautiful and original fantasy book based on Indian folklore, and it's so refreshing to read a story that reflects Eastern traditions. It's also very interesting to read a YA novel that explores colonialism and intersectional feminism. So please, don't sleep on this book! Give it a chance and you won't regret it!! My favourite thing about this book is that Aditi Khorana presents a strong female main character who wants to choose her own future (and she does!), but she's not violent. I mean, there's nothing wrong with that, but I really appreciate the change. I like that there are stories that show that it's not all about power, or physical strength, but it's also about resilience, about making difficult decisions. And I love that Amrita is not focused on revenge, that she tries to makes things better, that she's so respectful and connected to nature, animals, and life itself. Another thing that I like is that "The library of fates" focuses on female friendship, that the reader gets to see girls who fight together and support each other, because we don't hear this kind of story often enough. It's an action-packed book, yet thought-provoking, about the things we create when everything seems lost, about sacrifice, and about the different possibilities life has to offer.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Patty

    10/28/2016: HELLO BEAUTIFUL!!!!

  28. 4 out of 5

    Krysti

    This story has so much intellectual depth, which is exactly what I was expecting from Aditi after reading MIRROR IN THE SKY. Aditi begins writing her books by focusing in on the themes she wants to include in the story, and in THE LIBRARY OF FATES, we really get to explore the ideas of fate, destiny, and the path not taken. There is also some commentary on refugeeism and the utter devastation and challenges that come along with truly losing absolutely everything. I loved the tone and imaginative This story has so much intellectual depth, which is exactly what I was expecting from Aditi after reading MIRROR IN THE SKY. Aditi begins writing her books by focusing in on the themes she wants to include in the story, and in THE LIBRARY OF FATES, we really get to explore the ideas of fate, destiny, and the path not taken. There is also some commentary on refugeeism and the utter devastation and challenges that come along with truly losing absolutely everything. I loved the tone and imaginative world building throughout this story. It so perfectly matches the beautiful book cover, which itself has all kinds of wonderful Easter Eggs that are applicable to the story. I also adored the mythology that Aditi created to accompany this story. It was beautifully imagined, and I deeply admire the way she gave women such prominent and vital roles in the mythology of this world. Amrita was such a fantastic main character. Her love for her people and selflessness was inspirational and heartwarming, and it was a pleasure watching both her journey through the plot of this story as well as the mental and spiritual transformations she undergoes throughout the novel. It was also incredibly refreshing to watch two wonderful female characters, Amrita and Thala undertaking a journey of such epic proportions. This story is absolutely lovely. I am so glad I had the opportunity to read it and can't wait to see more from Aditi in the future.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Atlas

    Super excited for this one http://atlasrisingbooks.blogspot.com/...

  30. 5 out of 5

    Austine (NovelKnight)

    I should have paid closer attention to the comparison titles for this novel. I wasn't big on The Star-Touched Queen (though loved the sequel,  A Crown of Wishes ) and unfortunately The Library of Fates fell in the same category of the former. This book reads like an extended story you would see in a book of folklore and that's not necessarily a bad thing but it left me underwhelmed for a novel. For starters, I cared little for the characters. Amrita is discovering where she belongs in the world a I should have paid closer attention to the comparison titles for this novel. I wasn't big on The Star-Touched Queen (though loved the sequel,  A Crown of Wishes ) and unfortunately The Library of Fates fell in the same category of the former. This book reads like an extended story you would see in a book of folklore and that's not necessarily a bad thing but it left me underwhelmed for a novel. For starters, I cared little for the characters. Amrita is discovering where she belongs in the world and went on quite the whirlwind adventure, but the entire time I never felt anything toward her. No fear for her life in danger or hope for her potential future with one of the love interests (I'll get to that in a sec), or even curiosity at how her friendship would change with the oracle Thala. Amrita became the blank slate while the characters around her had emotions, responses that didn't require counsel, desires that drove them forward. But I never felt the princess had these things. They were stated -- what she wanted and what she needed to do to achieve it -- but I couldn't feel it in her character. Then there's the romances. I hesitate to even call it a love triangle especially since the first one is all "I love you's" and planned elopements which are all but forgotten when the second guy comes around. Both read a bit insta-lovey (more the second than first but the first didn't have the development with the reader to read true for me). I'll say that I liked how the protagonists were girls building a friendship while working toward related but separate ends. The romance, though I wasn't a fan, didn't impact a lot of the scenes where it was just Amrita and Thala interacting. Their friendship taking up page space was good even though I didn't find much in their individual characters. Where I see the comparison to TSTQ come in is with the world-building and writing. Though not as intricately beautiful as I found TSTQ, the writing here is detailed and brings forth a world both fictional and real. I traveled across lands, encountering a world of diverse people filled with the influence of Indian folklore promised in the synopsis. This lasted for the beginning portion of the book until the writing became awkward in several sections. It's an easy read from a technical perspective, and I was able to push through to the end where the story improved a bit but was too rushed to make an impact on the rest of the book. Honestly, this book was such a quick read but I finished it feeling... nothing. It wasn't a particularly engaging story and while the writing was alright, it didn't quite reach the same level as its comparison titles for me. Which is a shame. I've really loved how more and more YA fantasies are coming out based on non-European mythology and folklore but I haven't been enjoying most of them. Fingers crossed for more in the future but this one just wasn't working for me.

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