A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Fantasy meant to entertain.
Bringing about change doesn't happen without a lot of hard work and sacrifice. Don't let the sacrifices be for nothing by giving up too soon. You'll learn and grow a lot by watching and listening, and don't hesitate to apply what you've learned when the chance comes along.
Positive Role Models
Amani's now a fully committed member of the rebellion, loyal, brave, and smart. She's learned a lot by watching others and is figuring out how to apply what she's learned as she grows into more responsibility and takes on leadership roles. The rebels remain loyal and brave. Inside the palace, most people are villains or enemies who'll do anything to protect themselves. Most friends or allies on the inside only help in exchange for something they want.
Violence & Scariness
Fantasy violence includes fights with mortals and magical beings on both sides. Magical abilities and fantasy machines are used mostly destructively or to capture and immobilize people. Swords, knives, and guns are used along with some descriptions of hand-to-hand fighting. Blood's mentioned frequently and described as seeping, pouring, spurting, but without more detail than that. The sound of breaking bones is mentioned but not described in detail. Pain is briefly described. Executions by beheading. A past hanging mentions the hangman deliberately tied the nooses so the victims would die slowly. Physical sensations are described when a character almost drowns. Beautiful women are kidnapped and sold into harems where they have no personal freedom and are forced to have children. Blood-soaked cloth from childbirth mentioned.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
A few kisses; one is passionate, and undressing is mentioned. A few brief descriptions of romantic feelings and physical attraction.
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"Ass," "damn," "hell," "whore," "bitch."
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Amani drinks alcohol two or three times, mentions a fuzzy head once. Two or three characters are drugged, once with something on a cloth like chloroform and once with a needle.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Traitor to the Throne is the second in a planned Rebel of the Sands trilogy. It helps to have read the first book. Fantasy violence includes fights with both mortals and magical beings, with weapons such as swords and guns and magical abilities with destructive powers. There's lots of suspense and tension. Much of the setting is the Sultan's harem. The women have no personal freedom, and most are objects for men to enjoy; the only way to survive is to produce sons. There are a few descriptions of physical attraction and a few kisses. Strong language is rare and includes "ass," "whore," "bitch," and "damn."
Is It Any Good?
This second in a fantasy trilogy trades action and adventure for palace intrigue, but there's still plenty of magic and fantasy for fans to enjoy, and plenty of suspense keeps the pages turning. Traitor to the Throne starts out slowly, with the first hundred or so pages devoted to catching the reader up on past events. The large cast of characters can get confusing sometimes as the reader tries to remember who that character was or who did what and when. But when the continuation of the story comes to the forefront, so do the excitement and suspense.
Fantasy fans who enjoy djinni magic will also enjoy the growing backdrop of Arabian Nights-type folklore. The surprise cliffhanger ending will have fans eager for the next installment.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.