Adoulla Makhslood, ghul hunter, the last of his kind, is enjoying a relaxing morning with his tea, when he is approached by the dervish, Raseed, his apprentice and a young boy, Faisal, the nephew of an old flame of Adoulla’s. Faisal witnessed the death of his parents who were attacked by ghuls and Adoulla’s old flame, Miri, has asked for his help to track down the ghuls responsible. As Adoulla and Raseed leave the confines of the city of Dhamsawaat, they cross paths with Zamia, a tribeswoman who has the gift of taking on the shape of a lioness. She is after the same ghuls who have killed her father and her tribe. Together, along with the help of the alchemist Litaz and her husband Dawoud, they must find the person responsible for these heinous ghul attacks while avoiding a power struggle between the ruling Khalif and the hero-of-the-people thief known as the Falcon Prince.
I have to admit I didn’t really give this book my full attention as I should have. Lately I’ve been watching some Dark Shadows, and then I rewatched The Walking Dead to lead up to the season finale. Also, my husband has been watching Supernatural. Do you know how hard it is not to pay attention to that show while you’re trying to read?! It’s all yelling, shooting, scary music that you have to look to see what the heck is going on, then you cover your face with your book because it’s gross then you peek over the top to see what happens next! Anyways, even if I didn’t give this book the attention it deserved I really enjoyed it and I'd like to read more adventures. According to Goodreads, it’s #1 of The Crescent Moon Kingdoms and I’m hoping that means there will be more because there is great world building and characters in this book.
There’s political intrigue as we see people choosing to side with the Falcon Prince or the Khalif, even amongst Adoulla and his apprentice. There’s magic, both good and evil, with its limits and rules that are unique. The action is quick and exciting, which you get to see from different points of view that would seem like it would be repetitive but it's not. There is a hint of romance but it didn’t dominate the story and there are relationships that are not wrapped up neatly in the end. There’s also great dialogue and character interaction that feels natural. Adoulla and his friends Litaz and Dawould have known each other for years and you get a sense of that and it’s very believable. It also has young, headstrong characters balanced out with older and wiser characters. They have all made mistakes and learn from them, they are not perfect yet that’s what makes each of these characters very interesting.
This story is also full of descriptions of the sights and smells that fully immerse you into this world. You really get a sense of the Crescent Moon Kingdoms, without revealing too much. There’s a lot there to be explored. It definitely leaves the story open for more adventures to be told and I’m totally on board to read more.