The City of Brass: A Novel

The City of Brass: A Novel

by S. A. Chakraborty

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062678126
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 11/14/2017
Series: The Daevabad Trilogy
Sold by: HARPERCOLLINS
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 576
Sales rank: 7,573
File size: 3 MB

About the Author

S. A. CHAKRABORTY is a speculative fiction writer from New York City. Her debut, The City of Brass, was the first book in the Daevabad trilogy. You can find her online at www.sachakraborty.com or on Twitter @SAChakrabooks.

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The City of Brass: A Novel 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 28 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is beautifully written with complex and multilayered characters. You find yourself rooting and condemning the actions and beliefs of your favourite characters. Can't wait for book 2
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
An amazing story, with characters who burn brightly. Happy to know it is the first of a trilogy. as I did not want the adventures to end.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Could not put it down
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I need more!
Anonymous 16 days ago
I+loved+that+each+character+was+not+purely+good+or+a+hero.++They+all+had+bias+and+darkness+as+well+as+good.++it+makes+their+misunderstandings++more+frustrating++and+real.+
Anonymous 20 days ago
The City of Brass is one of my favorite reads this year. I read it a few months ago but I didn't have an opportunity to review it until now. I highly recommend this book to a lot of people because I loved it. The story follows Nahri, a con woman, who accidentally summons a djinn warrior during one of her cons. This incident leads to Nahri discovering that she's from a long line of Nahid healers. The djinn warrior, Dara, tells her a little bit about her family, Daevabad, the legendary city of brass, and they set out to find the city. The journey to Daevabad is dangerous and the story doesn't end there. So, let me briefly count the reasons why I enjoyed this book: Intriguing plot with court politics ✔️ World-building ✔️ Lush writing and mythology ✔️ Lovable characters ✔️ The story is narrated from the point of view of Nahri and Alizayd. Nahri is equal parts sassy, fierce, resourceful and lovable. My favorite kind of heroine. Her struggles to adapt to her new reality are depicted about as realistic as you can expect after accidentally summoning a warrior and getting thrown into this magical world. Ali is devout, awkward, and super naive. He's so precious. I loved his relationship with his brother and hated the way his father treated him. The writing for these characters are pretty distinct and they experience a lot of growth and development. The side characters are also written well and there are signs of an LGBTQ relationship, which I hope we see more of in the sequel. Chakraborty brilliantly crafts this story. The writing style is superb and lush. My goodness. Chakraborty's prose is stunning. The book gets better as the plot unfolds and we are introduced to the numerous side plots. There's this mysteriousness about the story that had me flipping pages so quickly. There are flying carpets, swords, and mischievousness. There's some violence, but it's minimal. I was thoroughly entertained and even purchased the audiobook just to continue the story when I had to leave my house. Daevabad jumps off the page. Have you ever read about a fictional world and instantly wanted to travel there? Well this was the case with Daevabad. Chakraborty's world-building is immaculate. Daevabad is intriguing and her descriptions of this world are fascinating. At the heart of the plot is readers discovering this beautiful city as much as it is about Nahri discovering that she is bound to it. My only critique of this book is the pacing. The first half has a lot of world-building and information about Daevabad's history, the different tribes, and the magic system. At times, I had to pause just to absorb everything because of information overload. That kind of dragged the story a bit; however, don't be deterred by that because everything afterwards was super addictive and the ending had me shooked. The City of Brass is an exciting new series and quite the adventure. It's adult fantasy, but it has some crossover appeal. The characters ages range from 18 to immortal. I cannot wait to get my hands on the sequel, which comes out in January 2019. I'm hoping the universe will see fit to bestow me with an early copy.
Anonymous 3 months ago
Let's get to the heart of the question: should you read this book. YES! Hands down YES! "Tell me why nena, but don't tell me what HAPPENS." OK *Sucks in deep breath.* - brooding warriors who SLAY - magic cities with potions, betrayals, curses, revolts, and death - flying carpets - demonic monsters that you would dive into their murderous waters to learn more about - royal intrigue - world building that touches on known and imagined religions, languages, cities, customs, magics, and wars - non westernized settings and inspiration from non westernized legends/stories - characters that draw you in and then stick in your mind even after you put the book down, like Nahri the thief with magic up her sleeve. "He was an easy mark. Nahri smiled behind her veil, watching the two men bicker as they approached her stall." Pacing is a little slow in the beginning (compared to rest of book), but it established what Cairo life is like, and what our MC Nahri is like. Unless you're just not interested in seeing Cairo during this old old time, it could be considered slow, but I'd disagree. I was sucked in the minute Nahri picked a gullible mark to swindle, until the final pages. Once her adventure really gets under swing with a "lunatic fire creature" we call Dara (name said with a melancholy sigh and with a small hint of longing), the POV does switch to Ali. The switch jarred me a bit, but eventually people start getting chopped up, and things picked back up. Even in the middle of the action, the author digs into the heart of her main characters (Dara aside, because SECRETS). I feel like I could tell you why I would be friends with Ali, why I want to be a thief like Nahri, and I can even tell you why I sympathize with the "usurper" king sitting on the throne (who never gets a POV but the author is so talented you feel like you did). But why should I take all the fun from you when you read a be a part of the adventure and the characters yourself?
Anonymous 3 months ago
Can't wait for the next book to come Out!
Anonymous 4 months ago
Interesting plot
Raine23611 6 months ago
Oh. Oh my. Why did I read this book before book 2 was released? Drowning in tears of my own regret. The writing. The characters. The setting. The pacing. The EVERYTHING. I couldn't have more love for this book. Chakraborty is a mastermind of adult fantasy and I cannot wait to read her next book. The depth of her world-building is on par with C.S. Friedman. It's the first time I've read another author who could make me fall so completely in love with every part of the story. So. Well. Done.
pooled_ink 8 months ago
pooled ink Reviews: Well first of all it’s an impressive debut novel to be sure! The imagery, the plot, the writing, it unfolds with such unique flavor and grandeur that it’s to be commended. I certainly enjoyed the fresh take on this fantasy tale as it not only is inspired by Middle Eastern culture but is actually rooted and suffused with it. Egypt, Islam, and Middle Eastern myths are not mere facets to the story but are the story’s heart from whence the story blooms. That being said it was easy to enjoy while reading but just as easy to put down and step away. My favorite aspect of this book was the world-building however it could admittedly become quite dense and overly-detailed in the writing, but the imagery and concepts were breathtaking. If you're able to persevere and utilize a determined imagination then you'll likely get swept away by it all. THE CITY OF BRASS is a novel proud with magic, myths, and destiny. Spun together with an expert pen, adventure and politics whisk the reader away in this desert tale of family, oppression, fate, and love. Boldly told and adorned by a delicate hand, this historical fantasy deserves the praise it receives.
Anonymous 11 months ago
I loved this book sooooooo much! The world was intricate and wonderfully described. The characters were all amazingly fleshed out and multi-faceted with their own motivations and goals that were weaved together with a fluidity that is rare to find(in my opinion). I was on the edge of my seat from page 1, and scared my dog as I screamed my way through the book. The plot took some unexpected twists and turns that were highly refreshing. As much as I love Nahri and Ali (Ali more so towards the end of the book, to be fair), my favorite character was -------- (I can't tell you the name, as that is not revealed in the synopsis or for a while in the book and I don't want to spoil as it is pretty relevant to the plot). I love this character sooooo much, and everytime they were in the story I was completely enamored of the layers and depth of personality (not that the other characters do not have depth and layers to their personalities, but wooooooooo buddy). I could literally go on forever about this book, and I highly, highly recommend anyone go out and get this book. I cannot wait for the sequel, The Kingdom of Copper, to come out in January 2019! So if you haven't read it yet (or you want to reread it), you have time to get yourself, your mom, dad, sibling, cousin, extended family, friend(s) a copy of this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
One of the best books I've ever read. Each step of the way Chakraborty weaves an immersive tale full of moral gray areas and political intrigue. This has easily become my favorite book and I can't wait for the next installment of the series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
When will the next book be out?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Historical Cairo, a dangerous journey across the desert, and the djinn city Daevabad... There are few books that tick all of my boxes the way THE CITY OF BRASS does. This book is wonderfully researched and filled to the brim with an enchantingly built world. The pacing, too, is excellent with just enough information given to keep the story engaging and compelling. It is steeped in mythology to the point that I even forgot we ever inhabited the "real world" in the first place. However, as usual, my favorite aspect was the characters. We have Nahri: thief, healer, con artist and veil-wearing BAMF who accidentally uses magic she knows nothing about. Along the way she learns more about her legacy, thanks mostly in part to Dara, the grumpy Daeva warrior of legend. Their relationship in particular - which builds slowly over their time traveling from Cairo to Daevabad - gave my angsty heart everything it ever wanted. "She stomped toward the forest. If I die out here, I hope I come back as a ghoul. I will haunt that arrogant, wine-soaked daeva until the Day of Judgment." We also are privy to the goings-on in Daevabad through Prince Alizayd, and learn about the less than ideal state of affairs. Tensions are high between the different djinn tribes, and the relationship between shafit (mixed djinn-humans) and full-blooded djinn even more so. Ali is trapped between his moral compass and loyalty to his family, a position that is even more fraught with anxiety once Nahri and Dara arrive. If all of this sounds complicated, it's because it is. But it never once feels dense. Chakraborty has a way of crafting characters and a world that at once feel familiar and legendary. There is a weight there, an anticipation that is prominent throughout as an undercurrent. All of our protagonists are fleshed out to the fullest, making their flaws just as endearing as their strengths. Most impressively, they all sit on issues differently, which means that as problems arise, the tension is palpable. By the last quarter of the book, I was holding my breath, frantically trying to read between tear-soaked eyes. I am rarely taken this strongly by debut series openers, but if this first book is anything to go off of, Chakraborty will be an author I'll be reading for many years to come.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this more than I thought I would! I cannot wait for the sequel.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book! I found myself completely immersed in the world, and could not put it down. I can't wait for the sequel!!
eclecticbookwrm More than 1 year ago
I devoured this book and enjoyed every single minute of it. Easily my favorite read of 2017. This book fires on all cylinders: captivating, fast-paced plot, gorgeous prose, and setting, and wonderful characters that leap off the page. I will read everything by S.A. Chakraborty.
padfoottonks More than 1 year ago
AMAZING! It was so great to read a book with muslim characters and the fact that it was set in 18th century Cairo and is genre'd as historical fiction made my nerdy little heart so happy! I do recommend referring back to the glossary in the back when things get a little confusing. These characters are so multi-faceted and the world is so consuming! GIMME THE NEXT BOOK ASAP. ALSO PROTECT ALIZAYD AT ALL COSTS!!!!!
LittleFoxAndReads More than 1 year ago
The City of Brass is an #OwnVoices Muslim fantasy set in 18th century Middle East. It’s a sprawling, intricate world of magical creatures and kingdoms, with a focus on the fire elementals—djinns. It’s a beautifully diverse book that features POC characters. The writing is gorgeous and vividly captures the richness of this magical world. The story unfolds through two POVs but introduces so many great characters. The main characters of this first book are: ► Nahri : She is a con-artist in Cairo. Having grown up on the streets alone without an inkling of her childhood life, she does anything to get by. Nahri has always had an ability to heal people. She thinks nothing of it, assuming it is just a natural talent, but rumors have spread of her ‘psychic abilities’ and Nahri, being the clever hustler she is, uses that to her advantage. She performs sham rituals and leads ceremonies when she really doesn’t believe in magic at all. It is during such a ceremony, that she accidentally calls on a djinn warrior and sets off a whole army of demons and ghouls after herself. ► Dara : He is one of the greatest djinn warriors in history. He is guarded and extremely mysterious, but one thing is clear—he has a violent past that haunts his every step. Being the loyal soldier he is, Dara agrees to help Nahri escape to Daevabad, the city of brass, the only place she could be safe. ► Ali : Alizayd is the second character with a POV. He is the younger son of Daevabad’s current king. He was trained his whole life to serve his older brother, the crown prince, without question. But Ali disagrees with the workings of Daevabad. He loathes how shafits (djinn-human or mixed blood djinns) are treated and secretly funds a rebel group of the city. This gets him caught between the warring factions of the city. This book is so complex and just so smartly incorporates difficult and incredibly important topics like systematic oppression, cultural/religious/racial tension, the long-lasting effects of war and all the blind hate and mistrust that comes with it. My praise for this book is never-ending but there are some small details that cemented my love for it: – Everything is complex af. There are no clear-cut villainous characters or groups of people. Throughout the whole book, I could not decide who to side with. All the characters are messed up too so it made for a really stressful read. – ALIZAYD IS EVERYTHING. He is not at all a likeable character. I mean he is grumpy 80% of the time and he makes some f***ed up choices, but his heart is in the right place. He is young but so self-aware; he has his own set of values and belief that he doesn’t waver from. I love how devout and religious he is and I love how he fights for what he believes. My favorite character in this book. – The characters STRUGGLE. I was so stressed throughout this whole book. I can’t even explain how much pain that last few chapters subjected me to. Nahri struggles with learning magic and even makes mistakes that lead to injuring some of her healing patients. Ali struggles with having to choose between his family and his morals and dealing with the consequences of his actions. Dara struggles with his prejudices and his past that seems to be sneaking up closer to him by the minute. All this made The City of Brass an eerily realistic experience, making it easy to be incredibly attached to the characters and get hopelessly wrapped up in the story.
ShesGoingBookCrazy More than 1 year ago
A book with this much stuff in it is difficult to review, no matter which way it's tackled. Unfortunately, my review won't be as in-depth as I would like; I listened to the audiobook version, and feel like I missed out on a lot of detail doing so. Reading a physical book definitely has it's perks, especially when there are multiple titles and names to keep track of. And this book has a lot. If you haven't read this book, if you love fantasy, if you love fantasy set in different cultures, if you love diverse characters (in many aspects), then you might enjoy this book! Set in Cairo, Egypt (at least in the beginning) The City of Brass brings a unique perspective, background, and story to the reader. Nahri is a con-artist, used to swindle people out of their money in order to make ends meet. While her motive isn't necessarily bad, seeing how she wants to one day get an education to become a real and reputable healer, she rarely reflects on the methods she takes in order to do so. Little does Nahri know that she is closer to becoming a healer than she realized, but in a way that she completely doesn't expect. Through a mishap with one of her exploits, Nahri accidentally summons a djinn warrior, (a spirit capable of doing good or evil in Islamic mythology). Before his appearance, Nahri never believed in the supernatural, or that the magical world exists. Yet, she discovers from this ancient warrior that her fate is tied to the mythical city of brass; Daevabad. While this is a Young Adult fantasy, it teeters on the fence and falls into an adult tale. Nahri is in her twenties. Considering some of its content, it's clearly geared towards a mature reader. It is told from the perspective of two main characters, Nahri and Ali. Ali's is a djinn prince living in Daevabad. He comes from a very different, yet, not-so-different background than Nahri. Being raised away from his royal family and learning to protect his older brother's (the future king) life no matter the cost, Ali is exposed to the hardships the "undesirable" djinn tribes have. When he is returned to the palace and appointed to take the place at the head of the royal guard, his position is flipped. He now punishes those he grew up with by order of his father. Ali struggles greatly with the justice in his new position and gets himself into compromising situations when he takes matters into his own hands. Ali's character brings to light just how much injustice and oppression goes on between the djinn tribes in Daevabad. While certain groups are favored, others are seen as having impure blood, and second-class citizens. On the journey to Daevabad, Nahri learns all about the djinn history and cultures. Learning that she is not entirely human, (view spoiler) make these issues all the more relevant to her situation. The problem with a book being this long is that the beginning and end feel like two different stories. I think the disconnect comes from the varying speeds in the plot, along with the appearance and the disappearance of some characters. While this long story takes its sweet time in revealing all the pieces (okay, not really all), I felt like there were unnecessary scenes added just to distract the reader and prolonge the inevitable. Another issue I had with this read was keeping track of all of the names. There are so many terms that I never became familiar with, and felt could have used a little more explanation or fewer variations of terms used. My Rating: 3.5 stars
taramichelle More than 1 year ago
Rating: 4.5 stars The City of Brass is a stunning debut novel that has magic and political intrigue galore. Chakraborty did an exquisite job of bringing this world and these characters to life. Even though this book is over 500 pages, I felt as if it was too short. I would happily have read another 500 pages set in this world (so good thing it’s a trilogy!) Nahri, the main character and a con artist, is a wonderfully morally gray and sassy character. Even if I didn’t like the story and the writing so much, I would continue reading solely for her. In general, the character development was A+ in The City of Brass. I felt as if both Ali, the second viewpoint character, and Nahri grew significantly over the course of the book. The dual viewpoints worked perfectly to expand the scope of the story and to present a fuller view of the world. The world-building was very well done in general. I did occasionally get confused over terminology though. Since a majority of the book was very orientated around the political and religious conflicts in Daevabad, I felt lost sometimes and struggled to keep everything straight. However, despite my confusion, I really enjoyed the intricately woven plot, particularly when it became clear what everything was building toward. I was constantly changing my opinions about which characters were good and which were evil. Everything was beautifully nuanced, Chakraborty did an amazing job of portraying that which side is the “right” one depends entirely on your viewpoint. I would absolutely recommend The City of Brass to any YA or adult fantasy fan. This book was a beautifully written story that stays with you long after you turn the final page. I’m going to be desperately awaiting book two. I can’t wait to immerse myself in this captivating world again (particularly after that ending!!!) *Disclaimer: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I hope there’s a sequel soon!
RozetteKR More than 1 year ago
Absolutely adored this novel! This story gripped my attention from the first and held it all the way through. The world, the mythology, the culture, everything about this book is wonderfully vibrant. And the characters! Words cannot describe how well developed, how real, how wonderful they are for the fact that they are not perfect. Can't wait for the other books in the series! Wonderful novel and even better story.