Friday, August 23, 2019

Audiobook Review: Kingdom of Exiles by Maxym M. Martineau

Series:Beast Charmer #1
Pub. Date:June 25, 2019
Publisher:Sourcebooks Casa
Recorded Books
Narrators:Brian Pallino
Jennifer O'Donnell
Length:438 pgs
12 hrs 43 min
Source:NetGalley / RBDigitial

Kingdom of Exiles is a creative debut from one Sourcebook's newest authors, Maxym M. Martineau. I got to meet Maxym at Book Lovers Con this year, and she was lovely. I am stoked she has decided to write in my favorite genre - fantasy romance - as it seems the books in this genre are fewer and far between these days. I can definitely say that this author has been added to my auto-buy list, and can't wait to see where she takes this series in the future.

Our heroine, Leena Edenfrell, is a fallen and exiled Beast Charmer. She has been forced from her home and sanctuary, and must now barter in her beloved beasts to survive. At least until the day when she can go back before the Council and attempt to clear her name. Yet Leena encounters an obstacle to her grand plans when a bounty is placed on her head with a group of skilled assassins. I was impressed by Leena's fortitude and the way she adapted to survive following her exile. Her vulnerability helped establish an emotional connection to her character, and her trusting nature made me want to protect her from the dangers that surrounded her. But I wasn't the only one won over by our heroine, it didn't take long for her to begin working her way into the hearts of our deadly assassins. 

Speaking of assassins, our hero, Noc, is the dark and dangerous guildmaster of Crewar, undead assassins for hire. Crewar assassins are bound to their assignments via magical oath, a fact which becomes very complicated should the assassin start to care for his mark. Noc was one of my favorite kinds of heroes. His dangerous air and blood powers were intriguing, but his self-sacrificing nature and honor made him a likeable hero. Noc's past created vulnerabilities in his life and nature as well, which also assisted in the formation of that reader-character bond. I also enjoyed the bond he shared with this brotherhood and the rest of his family of assassins. Maxym did a good job giving each of th secondary characters a distinct personality that drew you in and made you want to know more.

Kingdom of Exiles is an amalgamation of ideas and concepts - Fantastic Beasts meets Pokemon Go, if you will. I loved the concept of beast charmers, the hunt for the cuddly and sometimes dangerous creatures, and the finesse and skill required to charm each one. I would have liked to spend more time with the various beasts to learn their personalities and characteristics, and perhaps visit them more often in the Beast Realm. But perhaps we will get some of that in future installments of the series.

I got behind on my ARC reading with all my work travel, so I was happy to see this released as an audiobook, which I seem to fit into my schedule better these days. I enjoyed the dual narration, and felt that they did a good job bringing Maxym's characters to life.

Purchase Links

No comments:

Post a Comment