Can’t-Wait Wednesday: The Bird King by G. Willow Wilson

Can’t-Wait Wednesday, aka Waiting on Wednesday, is a weekly meme originating from Jill at Breaking the Spine and now hosted by Wishful Endings. If you’re interested in participating, stop by Wishful Endings to link up your posts.

First of all, just look at that gorgeous cover.


G. Willow Wilson’s debut novel Alif the Unseen was an NPR and Washington Post Best Book of the Year, and it established her as a vital American Muslim literary voice. Now she delivers The Bird King, a stunning new novel that tells the story of Fatima, a concubine in the royal court of Granada, the last emirate of Muslim Spain, 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 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.

I still haven’t read Alif the Unseen although it’s been in my TBR pile for a while, but man, the description of this, along with that gorgeous cover, really caught my attention. I have read some of G. Willow Wilson’s writing from Ms. Marvel, and I was impressed. This is definitely a book I’m looking forward to.

The Bird King is set to be released on March 22nd, 2019 from Grove Press.

16 thoughts on “Can’t-Wait Wednesday: The Bird King by G. Willow Wilson

  1. Para says:

    I have gotten an ARC of this a couple months ago on netgalley (though I’m going to wait with posting the full review) and I have to say it’s an excellent book. Gorgeous writing.

  2. Realms of My Mind says:

    I’m willing to give this a shot just based on Ms. Marvel alone. Obviously this is a different genre, but I really loved the way she got into Western meets Eastern culture just in that comic run alone. Excited to see what she does in a novel!

  3. foreverlostinlit says:

    I’ve been starting to see this one around and I just think it sounds incredible. I wasn’t a huge fan of Alif the Unseen, but I’m loving the concept of this one and really looking forward to. Plus, that cover!

  4. @lynnsbooks says:

    I love the sound of this one. The setting in particular appeals to me. We spent a month in Granada and it was one of the best cities we’ve ever visited. I wonder if this will take place in the Alhambra – anyway, regardless, this sounds great. I want.
    Lynn πŸ˜€

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