ARC Review: Thief of Cahraman – Lucy Tempest

Thief of Cahraman

The Selection meets Aladdin


You have been summoned to Sunstone Palace to compete in our search for the future Queen of Cahraman.

After years on the run, Adelaide thinks her lonely and dangerous life as a thief is finally over. But her world is upended when a witch steals her away to a faraway kingdom, to perform an impossible heist. If Adelaide fails, her newfound family would be sacrificed to a beast.

To complete her mission, she’s forced to assume the role of a noblewoman and enter a royal competition. The prize is the hand of the elusive Crown Prince. Elimination means certain death.

As the witch’s literal deadline approaches, Adelaide has one last gamble to save the day, and to escape to a new life with Cyrus, the handsome and mysterious fellow thief who stole her heart.

But everything falls apart when the prince finally reveals himself…

Fairytales of Folkshore is a series of interconnected fairytale retellings that starts with the Cahraman Trilogy. Ada’s story continues in PRINCE OF CAHRAMAN.I adore fairly

I requested Thief of Cahraman from Netgalley as I adored the cover. I want that dress! It’s so gorgeous. I also requested it as it is a retelling of Aladdin, where Aladdin has been recast as a woman.

I adore retellings. I just adore them. So, obviously I had to read this book. This series combines several different retellings in the same universe, and the different characters have their own series. This book focusses on Adelaide (this universe’s Aladdin), while introducing us to a few other characters who are from other fairytales (I spotted Cinderella, and Beauty and the Beast).

Some of this was hard to read. It was infuriating when Adelaide considered herself to not be worthy of the attention of men, as she did not think she was beautiful. However, I understand where she was coming from, as she looked very different to everyone else growing up, and thus did not fit the general beauty standard. It was still harsh and upsetting to read at times, as I have a similar skin colour to her and also similar hair. I do wish she hadn’t considered her hair to be more beautiful when it curled, but I get it.

I enjoyed the book a lot even though I just spent a paragraph describing what upset me. It was written very well, and discussed the issues with what beauty is without putting the issue in the foreground. The book also discussed how the upper class and working class view different issues, and I thought this was done really well.

Having the story set in a competition-style was a fun idea! The tasks that Adelaide and her competitors went through were interesting, and made for a good character study of each competitor. I would have liked to have known more about what was thought of the choice of gold, silver, and lead.

There is one part where Adelaide says she thinks that the character who is an albino only makes him more interesting and almost magical, which felt a little off to me.

Thief of Cahraman was a wonderful introduction to a vibrant retelling universe, and I’m hoping to get some of the other books from this universe in the next months. I definitely want to know who will end up winning the contest!

Trigger warnings: near-death.

5 stars

Have you read Thief of Cahraman? Do you like retellings?

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