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~READ E-PUB ☩ The Sand Daughter ⚖ It Is The Time Of The Crusades, The Islamic World Is Divided And The Franks Have Captured The Holy Land As The Mighty Saladin Struggles To Unite The Warring Clans Of Arabia Against The Invaders, Khalidah, A Young Bedouin Woman Finds Herself The Pawn In A Deadly Plot Involving Her Feuding Tribe And The Templar Knights
Warning SPOILERSIt s kind of tough to rate this book because I enjoyed the parts pertaining to historical fiction but I was not enad by Khalidah or the constant incorrect references to Christians and Muslims praying to a different God Starting with Khalidah, I can see why a lot of people would love her character, but for me she was a distraction from an otherwise enjoyable read Maybe it was because her character seemed too perfect or Mary Sue in an unrealistic manner she has never fought in a battle or been a part of an army, but after getting trained for 3 weeks, she is able to successfully lead a small contingent of elite mounted archers into battle against Turkish Archers and Templar Knights the elite type that guard the King of Jerusalem and survive with barely a scratch than once She gets ambushed by men who are sent to kidnap her home she s run away from having to marry her very obviously evil cousin , and suddenly she s an elite warrior, coming from a long line of s, swishing her sword about and felling her enemiesafter only being trained in secret, probably with a sole attacking instructor I don t mind strong women in literature, by all means, please give me strong women, but I guess I m looking for varieties of them without so many surprising skills all neatly boxed into one package in a tempestuous 16 year old That being said, I liked everything else about her story she travels across the Middle East to find her mother and in so, learns about and teaches the reader a little bit here and there about the history of these Kingdoms, their mythology and beliefs before they were Islamic and the presence of other civilizations Her travel companion is Sulayman, a minstrel, who educates her on how every civilization begins with invaders maybe the Europeans have invaded this land, but before they did the Muslims took it from someone else, who took it from someone else, who took it from someone elseand the list goes on These parts are informative and revealing, and I wish that they were delved into The other character this story follows is Bilal, Khalidah s childhood friend and fellow outcast The background is that they are Bedouins, but have foreign blood Khalidah s mother comes from an unknown land beyond Persia where everyone has gold eyes that she has inherited and Bilal has blue eyes thanks to his not so mysterious European father Well these eyes get Bilal into trouble, and I can actually believe his side of the story than Khalidah s somehowmaybe it s because his character flaws and development is apparent He s a very different person at the end of the story she less so His eyes lead him to be used in the deadly politics around the Kingdom of Jerusalem, to Saladdin s war camp, and finally into the heart of one of the Sultan s younger but capable sons While Khalidah s journey was into history and even myth, Bilal s journey was into the realities of politics and war My major annoyance comes from the depiction of Christianity and Islam as two completely different religions that pray to a different God, despite one reference to both faiths being Children of the Book Maybe it s also because of the news, maybe it s an irrational pet peeve, or even my education, but in the places where I grew up, one of the first things we learned in the religion segment of my elementary school was that those who follow Judaism, Christianity and Islam pray to the same God, but they follow different prophets and therefore, interpretations of that same God s teachings The latter causes debate and conflict, but the former is generally agreed upon In my history classes from around the same time, this seemed to be something that was generally understood back then, which was why under Muhammad s unification of Arabia, Muslims, Jews and Christians paid less taxes than the other non Book believers Even if the taxation system ended by Saladdin s time or if the continuous conflict with Crusaders brought an end to that understanding, it s written in the Qu ran, so the Muslim characters should at least remember that This very fundamental understanding is not really touched upon in this book at all Khalidah always thinks of the Crusaders as praying to a different God, wondering how their God would prefer things to play out There is one conversation between Bilal and Salim where they wonder if maybe the reason why their holy lands are the same and therefore why they keep fighting over it is because their religion is actually the same This conversation is left as soon as it is started because Bilal correctly observes that it does not matter if their religion is the same because the war was never really about religion in the first place Point taken but if the message of this book is also about ending crusades forever which is what it says in the beginning , why not drive home the point with a hammer that yeswe re talking about and praying to the same God here It s even written in the Qu ran that Allah is the same God that the Jews and the Christians pray to With that interpretation, I could maybe understand a Christian character mistakenly believing that Allah is a completely different God and that s why Islam is a different religion and hopefully, since this is a book, being corrected on that assumption , but I can t understand how every single character in this book is living off that assumption Fine, maybe Khalidah and Bilal cannot read the holy book they only learn how to read halfway through this story and maybe they were taught by an ignorant party Salim however, has absolutely no excuse for such ignorance he is Saladdin s son, and therefore a Prince who has been afforded the best education, imams, scribes, tutors and thinkers available in the Islamic World to learn from, and I m sure that he s had to study and read his holy book and pick up a few things from it, even if he didn t like studying Something as big as same God can t be overlooked And yetthere he iswondering hey, I just thought about this and it really disturbs me could it be that our holy places are the same becauseour God is the same We are the same a little late on the uptake there aren t you Salim I kept reading and hoping for a few things 1 Khalidah s character development I kind of get it in the end but only with a stretch of my imagination She s always very much the same girl that runs away from her tribe at the age of 16 The only difference is that she s a little war weary at the end of the book and is a little open minded about how she thinks people can live I guess Bilal makes up for it, from being restless, ambitious, stubborn and jealous to a fairly humble, experienced and likeable character 2 I thought that all the obvious misunderstandings about religion would be cleared up in some way maybe a wise old character commenting somewhere, or an epiphany that the characters get when they re essentially living in Edennope As far as I can tell, they will die thinking that I guess that s a realistic depiction of life, but since this is a book, and obviously a book that intended to educate, I was hoping that it would do that on this.It s tough to balance out historical fiction sometimes Some readers get very bored with history, some readers only want the history For me I suppose the Sand Daughter was too light on history I loved what I did get, but I wanted , probably to make up for Khalidah s superpowers. I wanted to like this book, but after a few chapters I couldn t shake the feeling that the primary characters were simply cardboard cut outs running through a familiar script in an exotic locale headstrong daughter of mysterious mother flees unwelcome marriage with the assistance of mysterious stranger and finds out she has a secret destiny.There s nothing wrong with that plot, per se, but if you re going to do it, you need to have strikingly original characters and or vivid dialogue and action in order to make it worth reading Unfortunately, I found neither in this book and had no desire to finish it. I expected something a little romantic and action packed, but it was a bit flat.The Sand Daughter tells two stories, one of a tribal princess who flees an arranged marriage with her cousin to solidify peace between tribes ruled by brothers.She escapes with a mysterious musician and embarks on a long journey to a secret land The journey lasts an eternity Dialogue is wordy, always involving a long story to explain the simplest questions.I was not able to finish it. A very different read to what I normally pick up Beautifully written brimming with lifelike and unforgettable characters, I loved this book The only reason I didn t give it 5 stars is because it did lag in some places, bogged down with passages of description which I felt could ve been cut down somewhat I learned a huge chunk of history about the crusades, which I knew very little about, and found extremely confusing at first with all the different groups people beliefs, but once I had the jist of it, I really enjoyed the background info. The cover blurb crusades as told from the Arab side, and normal people at that, made me grab it First chapter Nice set up, quite interesting, Khalidah and her backstory look quite engaging, as does everyone.And then there s an awful lot of not very interesting incident that keeps happening but no actual plot The characters explain bits of backstory to each other because of the incident and new people appear but you still don t know any about them than you did in the first chapter The very definitely evil crusaders that appeared for five minutes near the beginning had depth of character and were interesting than our heroes That s not good.I ditched it at the halfway point because I d ceased to care. This book is a vividly written account of the crusades from the point of view of a Muslim girl and boy Full of adventure and romance and beautifully acknowledges the great faith and human frailties of both sides Sad that not much has changed in a thousand years I really enjoyed this book, it s Well worth the read. I chose Sand Daughter because I was fascinated by the idea of reading of the Crusades from the viewpoint of the Saracens and it didn t disappoint I particularly enjoyed the many religious comparisons between the Muslim and Christian faiths A strong story with characters who make interesting choices. I quite enjoyed this book It was a little long in some spots, but the story unwound and revealed different layers in some unexpected ways Reading about the Crusades from the Muslim perspective was interesting, too.While there were some totally predictable developments, I was pleasantly surprised to find some completely unexpected And the ending, although bittersweet, seemed to be just what the doctor ordered Anything too rosy wouldn t have fit with the story. This novel takes place during the Crusades At first, there are so many different groups and tribes involved in the story, that one not familiar with the history of the Islamic world or Crusades or Templar Knights will have to do some googling Once the reader figures out who is who, it is a decent enough story about a young woman named Khalidah Khalidah was born into a nomad traveling Arab tribe and is a devout muslim While the Franjs are waging war against the Sultan and those of his religion, Khalidah is escaping an unwanted marriage to her cruel cousin by drugging the entire camp and running away with a traveling singer The traveling singer, Sulayman, means to take Khalidah back to her long lost mother s people, the mysterious Jinn tribe Upon arriving in the strange and beautiful land of her mother, Khalidah must make some difficult decisions Is she ready to lead her people She is next in line for leadership And if she does choose to lead the Jinn, will she lead them into war against the Templar Knights If she leads them to war and aides the Sultan, will she also be leading them to their deaths Meanwhile, a romance has bloomed with Sulayman Does she plan to act on her strong romantic feelings towards the traveling singer UNFORTUNATELY, Khalidah s story is only half of the novel What the summary fails to tell potential readers is that there is another story going on as well Every other chapter is about Khalidah s childhood friend Bilal Bilal is going back and forth among the Franjs and the Sultan s warriors It is thru Bilal s eyes that the Crusades and the drama surrounding it is explained While learning the history tho, readers must also read about Bilal discovering he is gay and in love with the Sultan s son Those not interested in reading about same sex love affairs may want to skip this novel I simply skipped every other chapter to get back to Khalidah s story It was rather slow tho as most of the novel is about Khalidah traveling to Quaf land of the Jinn and having dreams about her mother while the romance blossoms with Sulayman.