The Bird King PDF ´ The Bird Kindle - Hardcover

10 thoughts on “The Bird King

  1. says:

    The real struggle on this earth is not between those who want peace and those who want war It s between those who want peace and those who want justice If justice is what you want, then you may often be right, but you will rarely be happy 3 stars I have lots of positive things to say about The Bird King, but I am going to get what will surely be the main problem for many people out of the way first this book is SO SLOW I honestly considered not finishing it, which I hate to do for arcs In the end, I was glad I persevered, but I think a lot of people won t make it through.This is the first novel I ve read by G Willow Wilson and her writing is gorgeous I made so many highlights of beautiful passages and witty remarks The history and mythology is wonderful, too It is set in the 15th century, during the reign of the last sultanate in Iberia, and just before the Emirate of Granada was conquered during the Granada war This was a time of superstition and holy wars the Spanish Inquisition was in full force, spreading Catholicism around Europe with the threat of torture and death.Into this comes Fatima, a Circassian concubine to the sultan When the Inquisition declares her beloved friend Hassan a sorcerer , the two go on the run Hassan is, in fact, a gay cartographer with a unique gift for shaping reality with the maps he draws.I ve just loosely described the plot of the first 100 pages What follows is a very long journey across the countryside with lots of close calls and near captures Lots of walking around, navigating, and cartography discussions, plus the occasional gutting and eating of a rabbit It quickly grew tiresome and dull The story picked up in places, usually when Luz appeared She is a fantastic villain, and the dynamic of hatred and respect between her and Fatima makes for some of the book s strongest moments Likewise the friendship and platonic love between Fatima and Hassan is a highlight These treaties are made for polities, not people Lives are ground up beneath the wheels of peace Behind this though it does get buried in the slog at times is the pursuit of an island often found in mythology An island of Mount Qaf and the King of Birds, Simorgh, from Attar s mystic poem The Conference of the Birds Of course, it s all just fiction, though, right But if anyone can bring this island into being, Hassan can The interesting thing about this island as is noted in the text is that it appears in some form in many different kinds of mythologies It is Qaf in Middle Eastern mythology, Antillia to the Christians of Iberia, Avalon in Arthurian mythology, Shambhala to Hindus and Buddhists, and Atlantis to Ancient Greeks You can read any number of things into this, but I saw it as a comment on the religious conflict in the novel how so many people are fighting and killing one another over details and semantics when really it is all rooted in the same belief Is the island Qaf or Antillia This is a pointless question they are ultimately the same thing Nothing is so frightening or evil that it doesn t come from the same thing that made the stars A thought provoking read for those who appreciate a very slow burn literary fantasy.CW Torture slavery attempted rape.Blog Facebook Twitter Instagram Youtube

  2. says:

    Set in 1491 Grenada, most of this novel reads like a devoted historical novel where the Muslim world is mixed with the Christian at a time when the Spanish Inquisition is running strong and the last Emirate is about to fall.Fatima, the last concubine, and her friend Hassan, a mapmaker with the ability to open up doors to the Other, transforms this novel from a strict historical to an outright fantasy But it happens slowly The historicity of the world is rich and lush and it introduces the world of the Jinn and magic in pure magical realism style, later becoming an outright adventure to find the Bird King.The old world has died The only course now is survival Perhaps happiness But mostly, it s just finding a place to survive, and if it is with the help of the Jinn and all the creatures under Allah, so be it Allah made all I liked the message at the end of the book.I also happened to like G Willow Wilson s Alif the Unseen a lot But that being said, there s a lot to love right here.

  3. says:

    Plot 3 5 Characters 4 5 Writing 5 5The Bird King was a historical fantasy book set in 1491 in Granada, the last emirate of Muslim Spain There were many things I liked about it, however, there were also many things I disliked that s why I gave it three stars.It was about Fatima, a Circassian concubine who fled from the palace of Granada with her childhood friend, Hassan, who could make magical maps that altered the layout of places in real life They were escaping from the Spanish Inquisition who wanted Hassan dead as they claimed he was a sorcerer They went on a sprawling journey through Spain with the help of the jinn and people they met along the way to seek refuge in Mount Qaf, a mythical place which they had read about in a poem called The Conference of the Birds that was supposedly ruled by The Bird King.I liked the way Fatima pursued the hope of a better life and took her life into her own hands She definitely came a long way in the book as she went from a sheltered girl to a fierce woman who knew her own worth However, she was a bit annoying at times and the entire book was from her perspective so that did frustrate me slightly.The plot of the book was very, very slow paced and although the writing was simply gorgeous there were lots of things that happened that just felt a bit unnecessary and could have easily been missed out without affecting the understanding of the story and characters Also, many parts of the book were really confusing and even when I reread the same bit again and again I still had no idea what was going on The magic was barely explained and the ending happened so quickly I barely understood what was happening.I loved the message of the book though It was a message of tolerance Whether you re searching for Mount Qaf or Avalon or Antillia, it s all the same, we all just want to have peaceful, safe lives no matter which name you give it The book showed people from all corners of the world who were completely different living in peace without any hate and that s the kind of world we have to try to create We re all humans no matter what we believe or look like and that s what matters most.Thank you to Grove Press and G Willow Wilson for providing me with an e arc of this book via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review All opinions expressed are entirely my own BLOG

  4. says:

    Set in 1491 during the reign of the last sultanate in the Iberian peninsula, this novel tells the story of Fatima, the concubine to the sultan, and her friend Hassan, the palace mapmaker With the enemy at the gate, Fa and Hassan attempt an escape with the help of a jinn.Wilson blends fantasy and magic with history, morphing into an epic adventure, and I love that the story is told through two characters who have never been free until now Thanks to the publisher for providing a copy through Edelweiss It came out March 12.

  5. says:

    I was a huge fan of Wilson s 2012 debut novel Alif the Unseen I loved her heady concoction of Middle Eastern fantasy and modern hacker culture woven into a truly unique and spell binding tale I have been waiting for seven years for her second novel, and here it is at last It started out in a promising fashion Set in Granada in 1491, Fatima is a concubine in the court of the sultan She is a possession, and has little freedom, but manages to befriend the royal mapmaker Hassan has an unusual gift he is able to alter reality with the detailed maps he draws Hassan and Fatima become good friends and find comfort in each other s company but word of Hassan s gift travels to the court of King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain The emissaries of the Spanish Inquisition are sent to Granada to learn about this Muslim sorcerer who could be a threat to Christian rule Fearing for Hassan s life, Fatima urges him to flee with her and flee they do, along with a few unusual characters to guide their way One of the characters is a recycled protagonist from Alif Here s the thing I love Wilson s imagination, but the storyline became increasingly random and unmoored It felt very much like she was making it all up on the fly, and had no idea herself where she was going with her story The longer it went on, the muddier and convoluted the plot became.A 3 for me a ton of potential, interesting characters and some good world building, but an ultimately aimless and strangely un affecting epic journey I liked it, but didn t love it Here s hoping her next book is back to Alif level storytelling Thanks to NetGalley and Grove Atlantic for an ARC of this novel My review, however, is based on the hardcover edition.

  6. says:

    I really enjoyed the early chapters of this fantasy historical novel which is set in the Alhambra during the dying days of the Sultan of Granada s rule In 1491, Granada was under siege with no supplies getting in and it s people slowly starving as Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain close in in their quest to force Granada to capitulate Representatives have arrived at the palace to negotiate terms when Fatima, the Sultan s favourite concubine discovers that amongst their number is an Inquisitor who wants to arrest her best friend, Hassan, the palace mapmaker Hassan has a very special skill, which is the ability to draw maps of places he hasn t seen and to draw paths and doors that weren t there before In the eyes of the Inquisition, this makes him a sorcerer so Fatima knows she must help Hassan escape if she is to save his life Once they escape the palace, with the help if a jinn, they have a long journey to the coast where they must once again escape the soldiers and Inquisitor hot on their tails Eventually they get there and using his special skill Hassan is able to evade their pursuers and take them to a mythical island, home of the legendary Bird King, but also one that is common in mythology in many cultures and religions Although well written with beautiful descriptions, I found this fantasy based section of the book quite slow and not nearly as interesting as the historical section at the beginning However, I note that many other reviewers enjoyed the philosophical nature of this section and recommend that readers make up their own minds 3.5 With thanks to Netgalley and Grove Atlantic Grove for a digital arc to read

  7. says:

    I received a free e copy of The Bird King by G Willow Wilson from NetGalley for my honest review.Thank you G Willow Wilson for this beautiful and enchanting novel, written with rich history The writing is absolutely magical and rich with emotion The kind of writing that makes you go back and re read parts of it just for the sheer joy Fatima is the last sultan s concubine in a kingdom falling down to the Spanish Inquisition Her friend, Hassan, is in danger for his crafting ability of drawing maps Hassan s maps can open secret passages for places he has never even seen Fatima runs away with him and a Jinn A story of love, friendship and culture.

  8. says:

    Lies are for those who are afraid or ashamed of what they are, and I am neither The Bird King tells us the story of Fatima, a royal concubine and Hassan a cartographer in the Muslim palace in Granada, Spain.It is a setting filled with vivid detail where we learn about a time when Catholics take back the territory that Muslims conquered in the Iberian Peninsula, specifically, the regions of Spain and Portugal It tells us about the Spanish Inquisition, the radical persecution that they made to those they considered heretics I confess I usually avoid books with religious themes because I m always afraid that in a clash of beliefs, one religion will be portrayed as evil and another as good However, the author knew how to balance it and I was glad This is a story that s read almost like a fairytale It presents historical elements and blends with magical realism This is the kind of novel you might have a hard time understanding, as it uses a lot of metaphors and symbolism and open interpretations You will be thoroughly confused in some passages trying to decipher the meaning behind and failing or you can just go with the wind and let yourself be swayed by beautiful, lyrical prose as I did The author delivers a rich description of the world she created, creating a unique atmosphere, and beautiful imagery that s almost poetic I absolutely loved it.As for the characters, we have two main Fatima and Hassan, although I think Fatima gets protagonism Even though Fatima seems at first, a bratty girl, you feel for her This is a story that supposedly does not have romance, but it has love Her loyalty, her love for her best friend Hassan got my sympathy.Fatima s undying love for Hassan is unrequited because Hassan absolutely loves her but not in a romantic way he is gay Both Fatima and Hassan are overprotective with each other and if needed would die for one another.Hassan, persecuted because of his sexual orientation and ability to create magical maps that bend reality struggles to find someone willing to love him Fatima struggles to let Hassan go.They embark on a journey to save their lives and to find freedom They decide that only a mythical Island, where a mythical king lives, aka, the King of Birds is the only place they will be safe from Inquisition, so the book becomes a VERY slow journey to reach the island where Fatima and Hassan go through many obstacles and learn many things In my opinion, the journey took too long, it dragged through most part of the book and it made me lose interest several times However, through the book, I got attached to the characters and it made me go on Besides Fatima and Hassan, we have three other characters that are relevant Luz, a Spanish Lady in Waiting Diplomat envoy from the Spanish Queen is the villain that commands armies against them Her relationship with Fatima is something very complicated and complex Vikram is a Djinn that is fond of Fatima and he has the best quotes As a Djinn, he was supposed to be a fickle, trickster creature driven by impulses and desires and yet he becomes the voice of reason and honesty many times and never fails to be loyal to Fatima I wouldn t mind reading a spin off of his past, because he s that great And finally, we have Gwennec, a Breton monk that is not yet a priest but dreams to become one He becomes someone crucial in the lives of Hassan and Fatima and I absolutely loved him I would have liked to see so much of him and his complicated feelings for a certain character The end was rushed and a bit confusing I confess I was slightly disappointed It was bittersweet and it left some questions lingering Nevertheless, in the end, I felt a pang of nostalgia in a way that a book did not make feel for a long, long time I was so sad with the death of a certain character and it was hard to say goodbye to characters that I saw growing and maturing through the story and I felt so proud of them In conclusion, this book might not be for everyone and some might perhaps find it boring because this book requires patience and there are parts where you might get lost not in a good way BUT if you enjoy Historical, Magical Realism and Fantasy genres with beautiful prose, slow narrative, and interesting characters, you will most likely enjoy this I certainly did TW attempted rape ARC provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review Thank you.

  9. says:

    Note I received a copy curtesy of Netgalley and Grove Atlantic Grove Press in exchange for an honest review.A Circassian concubine in Alhambra, at the time of the last sultan, learnes of a threat to her gay friend and decides that they must run away in order to save him.The writing is beautiful and lyrical, and the story is a mix between historical fiction, fantasy and magical realism The first part, taking place in Alhambra and the desert, I found very good and greatly enjoyed it, but the second part I didn t like that much, maybe because it felt rushed and possibly also because of too much magical realism.3 3.5 I ll finish with some quotes I liked She could not envision a God who demanded such particularity of belief, whose mercy and forgiveness were confined to such a precise segment of humankind Nor, if it came to that, could she fathom hell, which seemed a somewhat contradictory place you could be sent there for behaving in the right way but believing in the wrong God, or for believing in the right God but behaving in the wrong way And that, in turn, threw heaven into disarray, since those who both believed and behaved rightly were invited to indulge in the very pleasures for which those who behaved wrongly had been sent to hell The real struggle on this earth is not between those who want peace and those who want war It s between those who want peace and those who want justice If justice is what you want, then you may often be right, but you will rarely be happy If I were a man, you d call me a hero Instead, you want to argue with me because I ve reversed the order in which honor demands we must die And my favourite Once a story leaves the hands of its author, it belongs to the reader And the reader may see any number of things, conflicting things, contradictory things The author goes silent If what he intended mattered so very much, there would be no need for inquisitions and schisms and wars But he is silent, silent The author of the poem is silent, the author of the world is silent We are left with no intentions but our own

  10. says:

    This book gripped me A rich blend of historical fiction, magical realism, and religious philosophy, it is both gorgeous and profound The characters are all flawed and endearing in a way that is relatable and beautifully true to life I think my favorites among these are Vikram the jinn and Gwennec the monk The Bird King , set in the last days of the last emirate of Muslim Spain, follows two unconventional best friends Fatima, who is concubine to the sultan of said emirate, and Hassan, a mapmaker with an extraordinary gift When a group representing the newly formed monarchy of Christian Spain arrives at the palace to negotiate terms of the emirate s surrender, they stumble upon Hassan s abilities They demand that Hassan be turned over to the Spanish Inquisition on charges of sorcery Desperate to save her beloved friend from the torture of the Inquisition, Fatima hurries to warn him, and together they make a dangerous escape This is the story of their search for safety, their search for a fabled isle where they will not be hunted by those who claim to speak on behalf of God, yet hate them simply for being as God made them.The book s underlying themes of love without motive, of accepting others as and where they are, were needed both at the point in history in which the story takes place and today Discussions of whether Hassan s gift is of the devil or of God, of how cultural stories can be shared in common with enemies, and of what it means to have faith are poignant This isn t a quick read, it s a book a reader should take their time with Reading this felt like wading for pleasure, moving slowly through water while watching ripples spread around you I highlighted many passages and have gone back several times to re read those sections I can say with confidence that this is a book I will choose to read again.Thank you to Grove Atlantic and NetGalley for an advance copy of this book in exchange for an honest review

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The Bird King [PDF / EPUB] The Bird King New from the award winning author of Alif the Unseen and writer of the Ms Marvel series, G Willow WilsonSet in 1491 during the reign of the last sultanate in the Iberian peninsula, The Bird King is th New from the award winning author of Alif the Unseen and writer of the Ms Marvel series, G Willow WilsonSet in during the reign of the last sultanate in the Iberian peninsula, The Bird King is the story of Fatima, the only remaining Circassian concubine to the sultan, and her dearest friend Hassan, the palace mapmaker Hassan has a secret he can draw maps of places he s never seen and bend the shape of reality When representatives of the newly formed Spanish monarchy arrive to negotiate the sultan s surrender, Fatima befriends The Bird Kindle - one of the women, not realizing that she will see Hassan s gift as sorcery and a threat to Christian Spanish rule With their freedoms at stake, what will Fatima risk to save Hassan and escape the palace walls As Fatima and Hassan traverse Spain with the help of a clever jinn to find safety, The Bird King asks us to consider what love is and the price of freedom at a time when the West and the Muslim world were not yet separate.

    EPUB is an ebook file format the help of a clever jinn to find safety, The Bird King asks us to consider what love is and the price of freedom at a time when the West and the Muslim world were not yet separate."/>
  • Hardcover
  • 403 pages
  • The Bird King
  • G. Willow Wilson
  • English
  • 23 May 2019
  • 9780802129031

About the Author: G. Willow Wilson

Award winning writer of comics and novels including MS MARVEL and THE BIRD KING.