Alif the Unseen - G. Willow Wilson I don't know a lot about the Quran, I'm sorry to say. I'm sure that knowledge of it would add to one's enjoyment of this particular book, but despite this, I enjoyed it a great deal.

I was not initially sure I liked the main character. In fact, I'm sure I frequently disliked him in the first half of the story. He was arrogant, and in many ways behaved in a creepy, obsessive, flat-out stalkerish manner. He handled rejection in a way that I found repulsive and a little bit frightening. Yet reading the story from his own point of view, he didn't seem to understand how his actions could come across that way. His treatment of Dina was dismissive and rude, as well.

Dina was an interesting character. When she first was introduced, I wasn't sure I'd like her, either. I admit, I don't really relate to wanting to cover one's face. I also was bothered by her condemnation of fantasy novels as pagan and dangerous. I enjoy pagan concepts. But it became clear as I read that Dina was a lot more thoughtful, and honestly a good deal smarter than the main character. I liked her a great deal despite my initial misgivings.

I wasn't so thrilled with Intisar. Of everyone, she was the most two-dimensional and just flat. The spoiled princess, the femme fatale. She just didn't have much else to her, and I feel this was a shortcoming.

"The Convert" was interesting, but I really would have preferred her to be given a name. I felt it dehumanized and othered her, not allowing her a name. Names were important in this book, though. One's real name gives others power over you. I liked Vikram the Vampire a great deal, and might've also been happy reading a book revolving entirely around his interaction and relationship with The Convert.

As far as Alif's real name, I guessed it correctly right from the beginning of the book. It was said to be a meaningful name by others, but he felt it was too common. That made it incredibly obvious to me as to what it was.

I enjoyed the story overall. It was a thoughtful story, with some cinematic, classic adventure moments, but the characters' examinations of their own beliefs gave it a bit more depth than your standard action-adventure.