Kingdom of Exiles by Maxym M. Martineau

The Beast Charmer, Book 1

Synopsis: Exiled beast charmer Leena Edenfrell is in deep trouble. Empty pockets forced her to sell her beloved magical beasts on the black market—an offense punishable by death—and now there’s a price on her head. With the realm’s most talented murderer-for-hire nipping at her heels, Leena makes him an offer he can’t refuse: powerful mythical creatures in exchange for her life.

If only it were that simple. Unbeknownst to Leena, the undying ones are bound by magic to complete their contracts, and Noc cannot risk his brotherhood of assassins…not even to save the woman he can no longer live without.

Review: I heard about this novel when it came out and was thrilled when someone gave it to me. So I gladly jumped in. But I discovered something very surprising: the author wrote this novel which is an adult fantasy before republishing it by changing the age of the characters so that it becomes a young adult one. After that, the series continued to be published in YA. At this time, there are no plans for the author to write the sequel in adult.

Leena is on the run, but she hopes to make her council see that she is innocent of what she is accused of. But when a guild is sent after her to kill her, she has no option but to make a deal with them to stay alive.

I really liked the world that the author offers in this novel with Charmers holding all sorts of creatures that they are bound to. It’s quite touching to see their relationship. The connections between the guild characters are also great, but I was a little disappointed with the romance, which I think is a bit of a miss. Everything is way too easy, even though the characters are supposed to be enemies.

That aside, it was a fun novel. And I wonder what the sequel has in store.


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