King's Blood ... what's left of the five nations have set sail for a new world, since their continent was destroyed. Will they find one or die at sea? And just because the five nations are at sea doesn't mean they have ceased to exist as nations or have learned how to get along. The three princes of Armania still vie for the throne, Charlon still hopes to give birth to a "deliverer," and pirates have begun invading many of the ships in the fleet.
One thing I can say is that King's Blood is just as complex as King's Folly - and it's longer, the publisher's longest book, in fact. There are close to twenty POV characters to complement the plots and subplots. And the storyworld with it's magic, different races, and monsters was fascinatingly well-done. If anything can be classified as High Fantasy, King's Blood can.
Amidst the slough of characters, I found myself drawn into the lives of nearly every one of them. Wilek, Trevn, Kal, Zeroah, Mielle, Hinck ... I loved them and always wanted the best for them. I felt sorry for them sometimes, too. I even developed an attachment to some of the villains. Charlon comes to mind. I don't exactly want her to succeed. I just feel sorry for her and wish that she would go to Arman (God) for her sorrows rather than trying to succeed on her own, ruining everyone else's lives in the process. Yikes, right?
Racism played a part in the story. It existed among all the nations and between them and the people's they discover in the other parts of the world. It seems as though people's natures are to reject anything different than themselves, unfortunately. The racism went both ways, too. Perhaps it could have been treated better, but for a group of fantasy characters with no concept of real-life, modern ideals rejecting racism, the characters did all right.
One thing I would make mention of is the magic. There was magic given directly from Arman, which was good and had few to no negative consequences. But the other form of magic was from the shadir, aka demons. And not the fantasy re-imagining of demons, where they aren't actually "evil." I mean the evil, manipulative, would-destroy-humanity-but-it's-more-fun-to-use-them kind of demons. In order to use magic, the human characters have to take a hallucinogenic drug that allows them to see the demons and partner with them (sell their soul) in order to gain their power and avoid dying form the drug. Sounds cheery, right? So, yes, dark magic is a thing in this book. It was not written for children. Keep all that in mind if you like reading really clean books or are looking for your kids.
Finally, there was a bit of biblical allegory. It's sort of a cross between Exodus, because of the "sailing to a promised land," and the Judgement and Exile, because they were being forced out of their land because they turned their back against God. Very well-done in my opinion.
I really enjoyed this book. Not just anyone could pull off that level of complexity so well. It was fantastic, and I highly recommend it ... but not to the faint of heart.
I received a complementary copy of this book from the author. I did not receive compensation, and all opinions expressed are entirely my own.
Wow! Great book! Now eagerly waiting the next one!! Lots of things going on here. So much new. And what an ending! (I did have a suspicion of what might happen when I got closer to the end because of parallels to the Old Testament...). And Kal, oh how I want him to escape!!
Still loving the characters. Very interesting story. Keeps your attention! If you've read King's Folly, you must read this book!
A Vivid Fantasy World To Renew Your Thirst For God
March 16, 2017
King's Blood is the second book in The Kinsman Chronicles by Jill Williamson, and contains parts 4-6 (Kingdom at Sea, Maelstrom, and Voices of Blood), which were originally released as e-books.
This book begins aboard the Seffynaw, one of the many ships to flee in search of a new land after the destruction of The Five Realms. Here we find three princes, each preparing in his own way for the imminent death of the ailingKing of Armania. Soon we meet the rulers of other nations, each intent on becoming the sole proprietorof the remnants of The Five Realms.
Having not read the first book in The Kinsman Chronicles, King's Folly, I found myself utterly confused for the first several chapters of King's Blood, while Jill wastes no time on explaining backstory and presumes the reader is already familiar with the storyline. Although frustrating at first, I quickly found myself enthralled by the world that she had created -full of magic, false Gods, and champions seeking peace in a time of chaos. While I would highly suggest reading King's Folly first, if you have a little patience then King's Blood is a worthwhile read regardless.
While this book is very long (being that it collects three e-books into one volume), Jill does an excellent job at keeping the story flowing and full of vivid imagery and, at times, intense dialogue. This fantasy novel would be an excellent read for anyone intrigued by stories of magic and other-worlds, while wanting to be left feeling invigorated with a thirst for the one True God. 5/5 stars.
*Disclaimer: I received a free print copy of this book from Bethany House for the purpose of this honest review. All opinions are my own.*
The Five Realms have been destroyed. The remnants of the population who escaped now find themselves confined only to several hundred ships adrift at sea. Guided by hope, rumor, and a promise, they sail north into the unkown, desperate to find land that might become their new home.
As the king's illness worsens, Sr Wilek takes authority over the expedition and struggles to rule the disjointed people, while assassination attempts, vicious serpents, dangerous storms, and dark magic endanger his life and the survival of his people.
One prophecy has come to pass, but another looms dauntingly in the future. Who is this promised Deliverer? And if the Magonians have him, what might that mean for the realm of Armania?
First things first... I love the covers Jill/Bethany House picked for this series. Like seriously, step back and look at them for a second. See how amazing they look? I can't wait to see what the third book looks like.
Second... it was like the first book. I started off excited to read it because of what I remembered of the first book, grew slightly annoyed with it in the middle, and then was thoroughly intrigued and by the end. Sr Trevn was great, as always. Always off into mischief and excitement. It was slightly sad that... oops. No spoilers. Poor Sr Wilek. So many difficulties he faced. And Kal. Dear, dear Kal.
This story is complicated. I will not deny that. There are so many different points of view, so many different perspectives, and so many nations all competing to control the new world. The shadirs (demons) are fighting hard against Arman (the one, true God). The book is also long. 598 pages long, to be exact. It will take some time to get through it, however, if you like fantasy/Old Testament parallels, this will definitely be worth the reading.
I thought it was awesomeness when I was reading through King's Blood and recognized the plots of several Old Testament stories in it, with Old Testament prophets and battles and stuff. It actually made me smile. Really big. Although I was actually surprised at the ending of the book (which was one of the Old Testament story parallels). It really... yeah, I kinda thought it might-maybe-but-probably-not... but it did. Kudos there, Jill. Way to keep me off balance. (Anybody else like books like that or do you like knowing what happens? Let me know in the comments!)
Parents, you should definitely check out this book before letting your kids read it. It does have some mature subjects--violence, darkness that comes from those who follow the shadirs (demons), dark magic (also part of the shadirs. Arman strictly forbids such magic), and then there's Charlon... I'm not sure what to think about her... besides that... um... well... I hope she finds Arman... and... healing... and... stuff... And I hope Harton is... um... punished for what he did to her.
If you see this in your library or get the chance, definitely pick it up! It's a good read that will last you a good long while. I hope that you enjoy it as much (if not more) than I did!
*I received a copy of this book in exchange for my opinion. All views expressed here are my own.*
King's Blood is the second installment of the Kinsman Chronicles. Jill Williamson, the author is so talented, she leaves you sitting on the edge of your seat waiting for each part of the series. I will let you know that it is a good idea to read the first book, The King's Folly first to really connect with the characters.
Wilek and Trevn, brothers, as well as their people are trying to survive on the seas, looking for a place to land. As they are doing this they are being attacked by those that are against the royal members.
This thick book is a book to get lost in. There is adventure, fantasy, romance, fighting. A little something for every adult. I would recommend that only adults read this. There are parts of it that, even though well-written, are for the more mature audience.
Overall, I fell like I can give this book all the starts there are. I loved it.
I was given this book by Bethany House Publishing in exchange for my honest review.