Daastan’s Books Alike Readathon

Daastan is back with another interesting reading activity for you all. We present you with our very own books alike readathon recommendations. Now you all must be wondering what does this gigantic mouthful phrase means. Worry not! This is Daastan’s version of “If you liked this book then read this…” 

Often times when we finish a great book or series, we feel hungover. Consequently, we end up with a desire to read a book as great as the one we just finished. To cater to that desire, we have made a list of some of most loved “book alikes”, meaning the books that carry the same vibe, trope, setting, etc.

1. The Sands of Arawiya Duo-logy

Hafsah Faizal’s “Sands of Arawiya” is set in a picturesque Arabia inspired land with magical artefacts and shapeshifting shadows. The found family trope paired with enemies to lovers and throat-to-knife scenes in this series keeps you at your toes.

“A thousand leagues and a thousand sands. For you, a thousand times I would defy the sun.”

We Free the Stars (Book # 2 in Sands of Arawiya Duology)

Hafsah Faizal’s debut duo-logy is a perfect treat for young adult fantasy lovers who seek adventure. Therefore, if your Sands of Arawiya fever is still not over, read…

The Wrath and The Dawn – Renée Ahdieh

First on the list is without a doubt “The Wrath and The Dawn” duo-logy by Renée Ahdieh. It is an exciting and exotic retelling of the Arabian Nights, where 16 year old Shahrzad and 18 year old Khalid – the Caliph of Kharosan concoct a story of love amidst violence, deception and magic.

“The more a person pushes others away, the clearer it becomes he is in need of love the most.”

The Wrath and The Dawn (Book # 1)

The aforementioned mentioned excerpt from the book, does it not sound like Nasir Ghameq? Need we say more after it. The story also features pirates, sirens, magical curses and a strong female protagonist.

The Assassin’s Curse – Cassandra Rose Clarke

“The Assassin’s Curse” is a speculative fictional debut by Cassandra Rose Clarke. The series follow the tale of a runaway bride and an assassin sent to kill her. When her parents want to marry her off to an allying pirate clan, Ananna of the Tanarau abandons ship. Ananna wants to captain her own ship, not serve as second-in-command to her attractive but ignorant fiance. Her escape, however, has severe implications when she hears that the spurned clan has dispatched an assassin to track her down.

“You don’t realize how much you miss something till it comes back to you, and then you wonder how you went so long without it.”

The Assasin’s Curse (Book # 1)

Reign the Earth – A.C. Gaughen

Last on the list is “Reign the Earth”. It is an instant buy for those who love the fantasy books of Cassandra Clarke, Sabaa Tahir and Renée Ahdieh. Shalia – the daughter of the desert becomes Queen of the Bone Lands, willing to give up her freedom in order to protect her family when a war appears on the horizon. However, prior to her coronation, Shalia realises that she has the power to bend the earth to her desire.

“I want to stand beside you. I want to learn to fight with you. I won’t accept you as a protector. But I will accept you as something else. Something far greater. Because with whatever scraps of my heart are left, I love you…”

Reign the Earth — A.C Gaughen

In this gripping fantasy world, see Shalia fight for herself, her family and people in the face of betrayal and hatred.

2. The Outlander Series

The Outlander books have not only been a favourite among readers but after its TV adaptation, the masses were overjoyed too. The plot line is stretched across two timelines; 18th century Scottish Highlander era and 20th century post war life of a combat nurse. The book is rich with Scottish history as it features the Jacobite Movement and the Battle of Culloden. Moreover, amidst her forked lives, Claire – the protagonist finds herself in a love triangle, witchcraft and a reality foreign to her own.

“Ye are Blood of my Blood, and Bone of my Bone,
I give ye my Body, that we Two might be One.
I give ye my Spirit, ’til our Life shall be Done.”

The Outlander Series

However, despite the many reasons Outlander books are loved, some are of the opinion that these books contain a lot of gore and bloodshed. To solve that problem, we have for you a list of alternatives that carry the same vibe as the Outlander series.

The Lost Queen Trilogy

“I swear on sword and stone, every bone in my body adored this”, Brittany Lee on Google reads. The book is set in 6th century Scotland and falls under the genre of folklore, war, magic, royalty and romance. Moreover, the book explores the Legend of Arthur from a feminist lens exploring the coming-of-age experiences of Languoreth and her twin brother Lailoken, who we now know as Merlin.

“For there are bound to be days in every lifetime dark enough to drown what little light we might gather.”

The Lost Queen — Signe Pike

In terms of language the book is descriptive, lyrical and atmospheric. Furthermore, this elaborate use of language delivers some powerful romance and action scenes in the novel.

The Rose Garden by Susanna Kearsley

After the death of her film star sister Kateriana, Eva finds herself back in the childhood home to spread her ashes. Upon arriving, the lamenting ghosts of her pasts begin to re-surface. Eva puts aside her grief in order to understand the whispers of past, not only her own – but of those who lived there centuries ago. There she soon finds herself falling in love with Daniel Butler, a man who lived – and died – long before her.

‘When I meet a wind I cannot fight,’ he said, ‘I can do naught but set my sails to let it take me where it will.’

Books recommendations
The Rose Garden — Susanna Kearsley

In her prose, Susanna weaves intricately the instrumental elements of 18th century life. In addition, her book radiates a hauntingly beautiful gothic aura.

3. The Hate You Give

In her book “The Hate You Give” Angie Thomas explains racism in the US through the lives of young adults. The role of young people is major one in changing the narrative for people of colour all around the world. They are a hope for a better tomorrow.

the hate you give

“Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter moves between two worlds: the poor neighborhood where she lives and the fancy suburban prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is shattered when Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer.” — Goodreads 

“It’s dope to be black until it’s hard to be black.”

In this Black Lives Movement inspired novel, a young girls fights an unjust and racist system to avenge the death of her bestfriend. If you enjoy this book or enjoy literature that talks about racism and injustice, you should read “Long Way Down” and “Brown Girl Dreaming”. 

Long Way Down – Jason Reynolds

Jason Reynolds novels narrates the story of a young boy trying to avenge the death of his brother. The books dives into the life of Will, after he witnesses the murder of his brother Shawn. Shawn’s death leaves Will traumatised and vengeful. Challenged by his circumstances, he resorts to something he has been taught all his life about dire situations. “No crying. No snitching. Just Revenge.”

Long Way Down — Jason Reynolds

“I’m beginning to think I’m bound to love stories told in verse. Long Way Down was masterfully written, with an ending that left me breathless.” — Lauren Lanz for Goodreads

“Just remember, when
you’re walking in the nighttime,
make sure the nighttime
ain’t walking into you.”

We hope you enjoyed our book alike recommendations. For more literary goodness, stay tuned!

Noor Hashmi
Noor Hashmi is a student of literature at Numl University. She is an aspiring poetess. She runs a blog by the name of “Diaries of Huda” sharing her journey through poetry. In her free time, she loves to paint and bake.

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