Readers' Favorite

June 26, 2019

Kingdom of Exiles by Maxym M. Martineau ~ a Review

by MK French

Leena Edenfrell was exiled from the land of Beast Charmers, and the only way to make a living afterward was to sell off beasts. This carried a punishment of its own, so her days were numbered, especially after a contract with the hired assassins of the Cruror was placed by an unknown charmer. These contracts are carried out or else the assassin's life is forfeit; the most Leena could do was barter for an extension on her life by trading four beasts to the team of Cruror assassins. This brought them on a journey throughout the lands, and the mystery of who placed the contract unfolds.

Amazon affiliate links are used on this site. A free book was provided for an honest review.

Kingdom of Exiles
June 2019; Sourcebooks Casablanca; 978-1492689386
ebook, print (448 pages); fantasy, romance
Kingdom of Exiles unfolds with a lot of action beats as well as characterization ones. I was drawn to Leena right away, an outcast with a swagger in her step and no attachments to anyone but the beasts she already has charmed that protect her. Noc, as leader of the Cruror, has his own secrets and back story, and his own reasons for wanting his top people to have beasts that they control. Anyone Noc truly cares about starts to fall ill due to a curse that had been placed on him in his former life, so former lovers and even soldiers he commanded had fallen ill. Of course, he and Leena are drawn to each other, and this adds to the tension between them. Leena's able to make friends with one of the four assassins that accompany them. One is an incorrigible flirt that seems to serve as a means of making Noc jealous, and Kost loves Noc himself.

As the first in a trilogy of novels, this carries a lot of history and back story for all of the characters, as well as the history of the land. It's woven into the story seamlessly, because the Beast Charmers tend to stay isolated in their own lands and little is known about their magic or the dimension that the beasts live in, and the Cruror are feared by all and operate in secrecy. The traveling forces them to learn about each other and their respective cultures, as well as their views on the history of the land. Some of the conflicts aren't given a lot of explanation, but are merely hinted at; it's likely that this will be dealt with in future books of the trilogy. The story is wrapped up neatly and in a satisfying way, with some dangling threads that likely will be picked up in the next book.

I was just as fascinated with the beasts featured in the novel as I was with the people in it. They're characters in their own right, with feelings and motivations of their own, particularly the ones that are capable of communicating with the humans. Their descriptions are fascinating, and they are a magic all their own. There aren't flashy spells or wands, just a more practical day to day kind of magic that feels real. I look forward to the other two books of this trilogy, which will be available next year.

Buy Kingdom of Exiles at Amazon

Born and raised in New York City, M.K. French started writing stories when very young, dreaming of different worlds and places to visit. She always had an interest in folklore, fairy tales, and the macabre, which has definitely influenced her work. She currently lives in the Midwest with her husband, three young children, and golden retriever.

Get even more book news in your inbox, sign up today! Girl Who Reads is an Amazon advertising affiliate; a small commission is earned when purchases are made at Amazon using any Amazon links on this site. Thank you for supporting Girl Who Reads.


Post a Comment