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Reviewed by Rabia Tanveer for Readers' Favorite
Distant Lands: Of Sand & the Men Who Died There by A.E. Fletcher is the story of a man who didn’t want to do much in life than just be himself, but when danger calls, he knows that he has to do something or he won’t last long. For Ridley, the life he currently has is the best. He gets up when he wants, he eats what he wants, and basically does whatever he pleases. Add a night or two with beautiful Carly, some good drinks, and he is in heaven. When he settled in Morocco, he had no idea that his life would be taking a fast u-turn that he was never prepared for. After the death of a dear friend, Ridley finds something intriguing and finds himself in the middle of it all. It started with an old war veteran and it will either end with the city of Zerzura (that may be lost) or with Ridley’s death. What will he do?
In a charming and very entertaining story, the author did a wonderful job by creating vivid pictures of exotic locations, a treasure hunt and the will to live. At first, I did not like Ridley; he was too lazy for me, a true vagabond who never wanted to have any roots. However, after Nick’s death, he sort of changed; he grew and started to look for things to give him purpose. He was a true creature of habit, but losing a friend was enough for him to get back on his feet and chase a legend that might be true. I liked the dynamic between Carly and Ridley; Carly was my favorite of the two because she is dynamite. I enjoyed how she brought a change in Ridley; how he decided that he would absolutely fight and not give up. The pace of the story started off slowly but it got faster as the story continued and reached its end. I loved the dialogues and how the author allowed the reader to explore different places and cultures with the characters. I thoroughly enjoyed this brilliant book!