Kings of Paradise eBook ✓ Kings of PDF or

Kings of Paradise 4.5 5 Oh man where do I even begin Okay let me just start by stating the obvious this is a fantastic debut novel If you don t know this is indie you will never be able to tell It is also a crazy mix of plotlines and themes Some places are deeply poignant and lyrical others are pure badassery In fact, there is so much going on and plot twists so sharply all the time that, like me, you may be feeling that you are reading an anthology Except all parts are joined up by the braided 4.5 5 Oh man where do I even begin Okay let me just start by stating the obvious this is a fantastic debut novel If you don t know this is indie you will never be able to tell It is also a crazy mix of plotlines and themes Some places are deeply poignant and lyrical others are pure badassery In fact, there is so much going on and plot twists so sharply all the time that, like me, you may be feeling that you are reading an anthology Except all parts are joined up by the braided paths of the three main protagonists Ruka my absolute favourite , Dala I did not like her very much sorry and Kale I liked him well enough, but Ruka steals the show.The synopsis of the book compares it to A Game of Thrones I don t think this is a fair comparison Or it is similar only insofar as grimdarkness goesso it islike A Feast for Crows.I think a better benchmark would be The Emperor s Blades or even Blood Song for Kale chapters Ruka s and Dala s parts are pure creative insanity Every time I started thinking ah i see, this is like the plot was twisting savagely as if on purpose to nullify my hypothesis But Beyond Redemption comes as close as it gets Less supernatural stuff though.This book is hard to review without spoilers, so I all would say in conclusion you are looking at 2018 SFPBO winner This book is incredible providing you don t mind some excessive brutality e.g cannibalism etc So read it And hide it from your children A welcome brand new voice in a modern fantasy arena A well crafted coming of age story set in the unusual setting inspired by the South East Asian culture The story follows two parallel storylines or two main protagonists and allows to appreciate the worldbuilding from multiple points of view Somewhat reminiscent of Anthony Ryan s Blood Song and Brian Staveley s Emperor s Blades I was particularly pleasantly surprised by Richard Nell s storytelling ability and clarity of his writing I will definitely be on a lookout for his new releases and recommend others to discover his writing.You can find Kings of Paradise on Kindle Unlimited First, I would like to thank Richard Nell for reaching out to me, and offering a free digital copy of Kings of Paradise for an honest review.Well, where do I begin The world building, the characters, the unique feel to the story It doesn t matter really It is all top notch and very well done So well done in fact that I am adding book 2 to my most highly anticipated releases of 2018 I know we only have 4 months left in the year, but what the hell I will be reading it as soon as it is releas First, I would like to thank Richard Nell for reaching out to me, and offering a free digital copy of Kings of Paradise for an honest review.Well, where do I begin The world building, the characters, the unique feel to the story It doesn t matter really It is all top notch and very well done So well done in fact that I am adding book 2 to my most highly anticipated releases of 2018 I know we only have 4 months left in the year, but what the hell I will be reading it as soon as it is released, so I may as well add it now On to the review The world building Nell has demonstrated in Kings of Paradise is detailed in such a way that it really brings the characters and cultures to life The harsh tribe like peoples of The Ascom and the merchant society of the Pyu Islands felt like real places while I was reading the book I know this is the intent of all authors, but not many have captured me in a fictional world the way Nell did with this book The people, places, and overall atmosphere had me hooked from the beginning.I have read my fair share of coming of ages stories, but I have yet to read one like Kings of Paradise Instead of one character that dominates the story, Nell has given the reader two characters that share page time This does seem a bit unconventional, but believe me it works brilliantly Ruka and Kale could not bedifferent and I believe that is what helps this book work so well The cruel and grimdark style that Nell demonstrates in Ruka s storyline contrasts with Kale sconventional coming of age storyline Both characters grew and changed so much from beginning to end They both endured a journey of hardships and unfair treatment, but came out changed in a completely different way in the end I enjoyed both Ruka and Kale s chapters, but if I had to pick a favorite it would be Ruka by a slight margin Mainly due to my preference for grimdark and Ruka s story did keep me a littleon the edge of my seatYou must take that good boy, and hide him here She put her fingers to his chest Put him so deep, my son, that only you and I can find him, in a special place Hide him there until it s safe to return She swallowed and took his lumpy chin and held it hard enough to hurt Then you take this world by the throat and you throttle itThe unique feel this story had can be attributed to any number of things The world building, characters, cultures, and varying storylines I have already mentioned Some of these things did remind me a little of other authors, but as a whole they created a distinctive world that can rival a lot of mainstream writers out there in the fantasy genre I used to be pretty ignorant on the subject of Indie authors, and that wasn t too long ago But I am here to tell you these authors put just as much hard work into their books as all the others, and Richard Nell s Kings Of Paradise is a testament to that It seems I need to stray off of the beaten path a littleoften Suffice to say I will be reading manyIndie books in my future..very near future.like right now King s of Paradise is one of those reads that will stay with you for a long time You get to go on not one, but two incredible journey s filled with revenge, love, discovery, heartache, and many other emotions There are plenty of shocking and cringeworthy moments And all of this builds up to an ending that has me itching to read the second book right away Keep an eye out for the name Richard Nell in the fantasy genre I have a feeling he is just beginning to make his impactI will destroy this land of ash, and make my followers kings in paradise4.5 stars Thanks to SPFBO, indie books got on my radar and even though I haven t read many of them, it was a positive experience so far Based on that experience and some positive blog buzz, I decided to add Kings of Paradise on my ever growing to read pile And you know how it goes, you add a book and then it just sits there waiting and collecting virtual dust while you read other books and lie to yourself you ll start it as soon as you finish your current read Well, I stopped lying to myself Hear ye, Thanks to SPFBO, indie books got on my radar and even though I haven t read many of them, it was a positive experience so far Based on that experience and some positive blog buzz, I decided to add Kings of Paradise on my ever growing to read pile And you know how it goes, you add a book and then it just sits there waiting and collecting virtual dust while you read other books and lie to yourself you ll start it as soon as you finish your current read Well, I stopped lying to myself Hear ye, hear ye Kings of Paradise is the best indie book and one of the most impressive fantasy debuts I have ever read.Before I start rambling why you should read this book, let me point out its biggest flaw, the sequel isn t out yet The moment I was done I wantedand I can t wait to continue Kings of Ash has now become one of my most anticipated books this year and I sincerely hope it will continue to impress because this series has a big potential KoP recently won The Indie Reader Discovery Award for fantasy , and it also entered SPFBO 4 which will for sure help spread the word in the fantasy community Don t be surprised if you see it among the best books of the contest I wouldn t be surprised if it wins.So, what is so great about this book The short answer would be the perfect balance I have read many good books and most of them lacked a certain thing to be considered great For instance, a book can have a great story with a well executed world building but if the characters aren t compelling, it s hard to fully enjoy it Some books had it the other way around but you catch my drift With an elegant writing style, Nell delivers a gripping story which revolves around two central characters Ruka and Kale To beprecise, they have separate storylines Ruka s story is about revenge and Kale s is a coming of age story Forinfo about them, you can read the blurb, or better yet, read the book There is also a story about survival which brings us to another important character, Dala, but I can t really sayabout her without potential spoilers so there is another reason for you to read the book Whenever I read a book with multiple POVs, I usually can t wait to get back to my favorite one This wasn t the case here Not because I didn t have a favorite but because Nell succeeded in making each POV so compelling that reading about one makes you forget about the others Andimportant, he made me care about each one We don t just blindly follow their actions, we follow their train of thought We can see how the changes in the world and in their immediate surroundings are affecting their state of mind and how they change and progress accordingly That goes for the side characters as well Characters emotions are the driving force behind this story, making the charactersdown to earth and relatable.These multiple plotlines don t have a big convergence in this book but the way it ended, suggests that is bound to happen in the following books World building is very subtle and skillfully interwoven with the story creating a vibrant and fascinating world inspired by Nordic and Asian culture and folklore The setting, culture, religion and magic system are vividly depicted and all play an equally important part in creating the atmosphere and setting the tone.The overall tone is dark There are plenty of brutal and graphic scenes but they are not just present for shock value, they serve the narrative, further the story and represent an element of indirect characterization.With its compelling characters, skillfully told story, elegant prose, excellent world building and intriguing magic system, all coexisting in the perfect balance, Kings of Paradise is a brilliant start of a potentially great series KINGS OF PARADISE is equally divided between two separate lands with two separate storyline POVs Ruka was born with a deformity which resulted in him being seen as a demon by the local priestesses of the frigid wasteland of Ascom A barbarian living along the outskirts of the city, the only reason why he hasn t been killed already by the superstitious and very influential matriarchy is because his mother Beyla is a child of the gods who still carries with her an impressive reputation of her own KINGS OF PARADISE is equally divided between two separate lands with two separate storyline POVs Ruka was born with a deformity which resulted in him being seen as a demon by the local priestesses of the frigid wasteland of Ascom A barbarian living along the outskirts of the city, the only reason why he hasn t been killed already by the superstitious and very influential matriarchy is because his mother Beyla is a child of the gods who still carries with her an impressive reputation of her own So much so that the priestesses are hesitant to act against her and her tainted son However, when Beyla succumbs to a mysterious illness that Ruka suspects may have been brought about by one of the priestesses, all bets are off and Ruka is now unprotected and left to fend for himself as he is hunted across the frozen tundra Ruka soon embarks on a journey far away from his homeland to try to evolve into the man he is supposed to become and maybe in the process uncover some small part of his past as well This shy unassuming boy must learn to be a hardened man and warrior if he hopes to wreak vengeance on those who have taken everything from him The only question is can he learn fast enough before he is captured by his pursuers Kale on the other hand, could not bedifferent from the aforementioned Ruka Around the same age as Ruka, Kale is born into a royal family of privilege The problem is that he is a huge disappointment to his father the King of the sandy paradise island empire of Pyu The reason for this disappointment resides in the fact that Kale is a bit of a slacker who doesn t really fancy his role as the fourth prince in the inheritance line He and his father are like oil and water and they never seem to agree on anything This lands him a place in the lowest regiment in the Pyu Navy, an open slap in the face to his youngest son and a public shaming above all else Kale has had everything in his life come easy to him until now and his current situation leaves him both defiant and also bewildered If he fails to prove himself in this rugged marine corps, he may eventually be cast aside and disowned by his father This is a real problem since Kale is in love with a young woman who he can never even hope to marry if he remains a lowly military grunt It s at this point that Kale needs to make a decision about what is really important to him and who he is as a maturing man of means Will he accept the challenge or wallow in his misery to the point where he just gives up What a glorious experience this book was to read At first it took me some time to get acclimated to the settings and both characters individual conflicts But as the story unfolded I found myself reading in larger and larger chunks I actually read the last 250 pages in one sitting, which is unheard of for me because of the distractions that having two small children and a busy schedule bring That is a true testament to how great this story is though and I did not want to put it down for fear of having to wait to find out how it all wrapped up The first thing I will say is that the world building is flat out second to none The two settings of Ascom and the Pyu Islands couldn t bedifferent in climate and economy Yet each was brilliantly rendered to the point that you could feel the sand between your toes and the frostbite stinging your fingers Just as the settings were disparate, so were the main characters Each born from different backgrounds and upbringings, but each with their own trials and tribulations to attempt to overcome Ruka is one of my favorite characters of any fantasy book as his unwavering determination propels him forward at all times even when everything seems to be standing in his way His emotional allegiance to his mother is also unflinching and gives him a courage that makes him almost superhuman at times Kale is one of those characters in the mold of a Jaime Lannister You want to punch him in the mouth most of the time he is speaking, but there s also this subtle and underlying charm that makes you almost root for him against your better judgment That s a really difficult trick to pull off and Richard Nell should be praised for the depth that he brings to both Kale and Ruka I really enjoyed every minute of this book even when it got very dark, brutal, and violent And believe me, it does go there and Nell doesn t sugarcoat anything in this regard But the writing is just so absolutely beautiful that you can t help but continue to follow along on each characters separate journeys of discovery and coming of age If you want to read one of the very best fantasy books of the new millennium, then pick up KINGS OF PARADISE immediately and enjoy the amazing ride you will undertake It will be well worth your time and effort, I promise Book two, Kings of Ash was just released a couple of months ago and I definitely plan on reading that one as well I can t wait to see where this story goes from the terrific finish of this first book Richard Nell has most certainly brought us a phenomenal new series to savor, we should all rejoice and embrace it Very highly recommended by yours truly Updated to include audiobook links I thought I d make myself useful and mention a few things 1 This book is always on Kindle Unlimited.2 Now available as an audiobook US link UK link3 If you d like to check out something smaller I ve written, you can get a 100ish page flintlock fantasy novella for free by subscribing to my mailing list free books are awesome 4.If you d like to know the meaning of life, please just message me Have your credit card ready Twitter Facebook Updated to include audiobook links I thought I d make myself useful and mention a few things 1 This book is always on Kindle Unlimited.2 Now available as an audiobook US link UK link3 If you d like to check out something smaller I ve written, you can get a 100ish page flintlock fantasy novella for free by subscribing to my mailing list free books are awesome 4.If you d like to know the meaning of life, please just message me Have your credit card ready Twitter Facebook Vast in scope and intimate in its telling, Kings of Paradise is an impressive novel from a brilliant mind.The story unfolds naturally and starts with humble beginnings Ruka, an only child raised by a single mother, and Kale, fourth son of an island king, and not very skilled at anything.In the land of Ash, Ruka is an exile who longs to expose the corruption of the religious order and claim some personal justice for crimes against his mother These are tribal people whose governing system is cen Vast in scope and intimate in its telling, Kings of Paradise is an impressive novel from a brilliant mind.The story unfolds naturally and starts with humble beginnings Ruka, an only child raised by a single mother, and Kale, fourth son of an island king, and not very skilled at anything.In the land of Ash, Ruka is an exile who longs to expose the corruption of the religious order and claim some personal justice for crimes against his mother These are tribal people whose governing system is centered around women and their hierarchy of priestesses They are isolated from other cultures and have an ancient lineage of gods and legends Ruka is unique for his knowledge of runes, which his mother taught him though most of his people no longer understand, especially not men.In a distant but no less unique culture, we follow the life of Kale, a young prince who goes through many different types of studies and training trying to find his purpose, where he can best serve and what his contribution to the world should be He learns some rare and powerful metaphysical skills that earn him a few followers and a few enemies The most impressive aspect of the book is how the complexity of the cultures, politics and religions become increasingly revealed as the characters mature and are themselves gainingperspective The world building is so intricate and so expertly shown, only as details pertain to the story at hand There are many point of view characters whose lives contribute to the story in different ways, sometimes only for a chapter or two.My only critique is that the distribution of point of view changes is somewhat irregular, at times spending several chapters with one character before switching to another It only mildly affected my reading pleasure as I sometimes took a few pages to remember who the next character was and what he or she had going on, at least in the early stages of the story.This book is so engaging It was incredibly hard to put down The characters have much at stake, and their personalities are inspiring and demanding.I highly recommend Kings of Paradise for readers of epic fantasy who are looking for something impressive, unique, authentic and complex I was sent this book from the author in exchange for an honest review I must admit, I picked this up largely because of Esme s recommendation as she just made it sound so good I love epic fantasy stories, particularly those which have a lot of characters I like to follow, and this story is quite a mixture of old favourites and new ideas I audiobook ed this one, and I recommend the audio as I think it was done well and I personally enjoy the characters being brought to life as it helps disti I was sent this book from the author in exchange for an honest review I must admit, I picked this up largely because of Esme s recommendation as she just made it sound so good I love epic fantasy stories, particularly those which have a lot of characters I like to follow, and this story is quite a mixture of old favourites and new ideas I audiobook ed this one, and I recommend the audio as I think it was done well and I personally enjoy the characters being brought to life as it helps distinguish them We follow two main characters, Ruka and Kale, and there are also quite a few side characters who get a look in too Dala is probably the next most important character, but Linnea sp also gets a chance to shine a little later in the story.Ruka is a very young boy with a disfigurement when we start the story and he and his mother live alone after she became an outcast in order to raise him away from society They live in the middle of a harsh land away from most of the other characters in the story, and as Ruka grows he learns a lot from his mother and the Book.Kale is a prince who lives a fairly glamorous life except that he is sent away by his father to the army to train there Whilst there he develops some strong ties to friends and he bonds with the men who are forced through the ordeal with him It helps him to learn a lot which he will need as time goes on Finally we have Dala, a young girl who s left with her younger siblings to die when her father s farm is starving and he wants to rid himself of extra mouths She is abandoned in the world and she ends up trying to become a Priestess in training, but her low status means she is an outcast among the girls What I liked most about this is that there is magic throughout and it feels like a good old classic epic story There s heroes who are clear to see, like Kale, but then there are also morally grey characters like Ruka who have been through a lot and come through changed Ruka and Dala are bothgrey in their ambitions and their intent, but I think this makes them interesting to read about whilst Kale is inspiring Sometimes it s hard for a character to really feel fun to read if they re always being good but Kale defies the odds and remains a great character throughout I believe he and Ruka were definitely my favourites.The magic of this world is varied and comes in a few forms We have the inspiration of people fighting back and inspiring change as we do in many stories, but we also have the magical enhancements that some of these people possess We see Kale develop some powers as the story goes on and he is tested further, and Ruka seems to possess something peculiar and wonderful from the start when he can learn ultra fast and he has his own world inside his head where he can train etc and then really hone his skills The magic had some familiar traits, but some of it was original too and the blend worked well Overall I think the start of the book was slower than the end and I enjoyed the build up but I loved the second half and ending where everything was crazy I found this to be an excellent way to end the book, and it left me super excited for the sequel which luckily is due out in just a few days I cannot wait to pick it up and see what comes next 4.5 s Winner of theIRDA for fantasyBest Seller in Canadian Dark Fantasy % liked it Goodreads A deformed genius plots vengeance while struggling to survive A wastrel prince comes of age, finding a power he never imagined Two worlds are destined to collide Only one can be king An intriguing low magic world packed with interesting cultures to be further delved Nell shows considerable skill in displaying his world distinctly through the eyes of his different characters Fantasy Book Review The novel s brilliant world works on so many levels it has a rich political landscape, moral complexity, and immense environmental challenges, all told in beautiful, thoughtful prose Indiereader A must for lovers of fantasy, especially those who enjoy losing themselves in a epic tale Reader s Favourite Ruka, called a demon at birth, is a genius Born malformed and ugly into the snow covered wasteland of the Ascom, he was spared from death by his mother s love Now he is an outcast, consumed with hate for those who ve wronged him But to take his vengeance, he must first survive Across a vast sea in the white sand island paradise of Sri Kon, Kale is fourth and youngest son of the Sorcerer King And at sixteen, Kale is a disappointment As the first prince ever forced to serve with low born marines, Kale must prove himself and become a man, or else lose all chance of a worthy future, and any hope to win the love of his life Though they do not know it, both boys are on the cusp of discovery Their worlds and lives are destined for greatness, or ruin But in a changing world where ash meets paradise, only one man can be king The first installment of an epic, low fantasy trilogy Kings of Paradise is a dark, bloody, coming of age story shaped by culture, politics, and magic The world that Mr Nell has created is pretty incredible But the thing that really made me love this story was the characters he filled that world with Goodreads If Kale changes, Ruka grows and festers like a storm Without a doubt, the darker of the two characters, I feel Richard Nell has created a compelling and classic character here Goodreads This dark fantasy epic will be held up against George RR Martin s masterwork, A Song of Ice and Fire Read this book now so you can act pompous around your friends when HBO turns it into a television series Goodreads Kings of Paradise presents a brutal world of complex yet simple politics, reminiscent of Game of Thrones Goodreads I recently learned that Richard Nell will be submitting Kings of Paradise, the first book in the Ash and Sand trilogy, into next year s SPFBO Self Published Fantasy Blog Off competition In my mind, there s no question of whether it will be a finalist or not In fact, I will be shocked if it doesn t outright win the whole contest.This book is that good.Clocking in at over 200,000 words, Kings of Paradise is a methodically paced and richly detailed story that primarily focuses on two teenage bo I recently learned that Richard Nell will be submitting Kings of Paradise, the first book in the Ash and Sand trilogy, into next year s SPFBO Self Published Fantasy Blog Off competition In my mind, there s no question of whether it will be a finalist or not In fact, I will be shocked if it doesn t outright win the whole contest.This book is that good.Clocking in at over 200,000 words, Kings of Paradise is a methodically paced and richly detailed story that primarily focuses on two teenage boys coming of age in vastly different circumstances in distant areas of the world Ruka is a genius with eidetic memory he remembers every detail of every book he s ever read, details of every conversation he s had, and learns new information at a phenomenal rate He even recalls experiencing his own birth However, he was born with a malformed face, and the surrounding communities label him as an outcast, a demon child He lives in the frozen woods of the South with his mother Beyla, an influential yet shunned child of the gods, who loves Ruka unconditionally Beyla raises and reveres Ruka, teaching him how to survive among society s fringes living off the land while having minimal interactions with surrounding clans Beyla believes that Ruka s genius and deformity marks him as a child of destiny, though it is unclear which path Ruka is destined to pursue.The narrative shifts from this frozen land of ash to a much warmer climate in the North, a land of sand and sun and prosperous islanders who live and trade in a time of peace Kale is the fourth son of the king of Pyu, an island empire with a strong navy and delicate political ties to an ever increasing empire to the West Kale s older brothers are loyal servants to the king and court, and are motivated to fulfill their princely duties to secure and strengthen their father s empire But Kale views his princedom as a burden he has a troubled relationship with his father due to his immaturity and rebellious nature, so he is placed in Navy boot camp where we first join Kale on his journey.It isn t immediately apparent where these storylines will go, and this holds true for the majority of the novel In other stories I might take issue with this narrative choice, but in Kings of Paradise it is a welcome advantage Nell is a talented writer of beautiful, elegant prose, and a knack for deep characterization that brings this cast to life We spend a lot of time inside the characters heads, and I was surprised at how quickly and how deeply I ve come to care about their fates As the cast begins to expand and we start rotating through new points of view, Nell wisely dedicates ample pages to allow for each of the new characters to breathe and connect with the reader Every time I spent a few chapters following one character, I was disappointed when having to switch POVs, but when it was time to switch back, I did not want to leave the current story The characters are strong willed, sympathetic, and surprising There are many bleak moments scattered throughout the novel, but small victories along the way had me cheering, fearful, or shocked World building is another high point of this novel The settings are detailed and rich, and often reflect the mood of its characters The political landscapes, environmental hazards, village hierarchies, familial values, religious sects, morally questionable law keepers, and military forces all play varying roles in the story, with many having unique takes of their effect on surrounding societies Some naturally play bigger roles than others, but the world feels like it is a living, breathing entity that continues on whether the characters live or die, instead of hinging on the fate and decisions of our characters But that might be changing in the novels ahead The final 15% of the book accelerates the storylines at a blistering pace, and the stakes are raised surprisingly high given themethodical pace of the earlier sections of the book It was a bit jarring in comparison, but this minor quibble might be attributed to the fact that I didn t want the story to end so soon I realize that I have spent most of this review talking about the characters and setting, so I want to make clear that this book has plenty of action, and much of it is grim The violence is sudden and visceral There are graphic and detailed sex scenes There s even a scene that involves cannibalism and children, and, oh yes, that s on page 1 There s even a bit of magic, and though it doesn t show up until the end of the story, it feels earned a natural progression that opens exciting possibilities in the books ahead Kings of Paradise is a brilliant book, and I expect it catch fire in the fantasy community as word of mouth spreads It is a self published novel, though I think that is a temporary label other than very few grammatical or spelling gaffes, this book feelspolished and professional than many, or most, of the traditionally published fantasy books I ve read over the past several years This is a diamond of a novel, and one that I can recommend to any fan of speculative fiction Read this book, buy copies to gift to your family and friends I have no doubt that this will be a fixture in the annals of truly great fantasy literature for years to come.5 5 stars Making me read a large, weighty book that countsthan six hundred pages is almost impossible Even bribery doesn t work And yet I reached for Kings of Paradise and couldn t put it down It s brilliant It s, undoubtedly, one of the best books I read this year The hype is real and high scores are well deserved Kings of Paradise is a dark and gritty coming of age story that follows multiple characters Some of them are secondary and their chapters, while making the narrativecolourful Making me read a large, weighty book that countsthan six hundred pages is almost impossible Even bribery doesn t work And yet I reached for Kings of Paradise and couldn t put it down It s brilliant It s, undoubtedly, one of the best books I read this year The hype is real and high scores are well deserved Kings of Paradise is a dark and gritty coming of age story that follows multiple characters Some of them are secondary and their chapters, while making the narrativecolourful, serve mainly to show three main characters through the eyes of others Ruka is a beast He s a deformed, twisted genius with an eidetic memory and bright, golden eyes of a wolf He s a ruthless killer who won t hesitate to maim others or eat them when the food is in short supply All of us experienced existential isolation before The feeling that no other human being can comprehend who you truly are, no matter how close you become Sure, it s depressing, but it s an experience that binds us all Ruka, though, is alone in a way no other fantasy protagonist is Born in the frozen, snow covered wasteland of the Ascom the land of ash Ruka was spared from death at birth by his mother s love His childhood was cruel, he s lost everything he loved, and all he has left is a desire for vengeance He struggles with psychological demons, and at times he behaves as a borderline schizo And yet, he s one of the most complex and interesting characters I ve ever met In fact, he wants a better world, and he s ready to burn and break our wicked world to change the things I want a world where love is not a crime, where children are not doomed to misery because they are different I want only laws with mercy, and justice, and wisdom I had goosebumps while reading the scene in which he said these words Kale is a fourth son of the king Farahi He s a good, innocent and likeable protagonist He has a high drive to be something, or do something, but he doesn t know what He believes in people, looks for what s best for them and tries to make the world a better place Unfortunately, his father, King Farahi is a cunning paranoid and Kale s life will soon become very dangerous and complicated On the other hand, Kale may have some supernatural skills that come handy when he s in danger I don t want to spoil it for you, but I loved Kale s Monastery trials and their unexpected consequences Suffice to say, that he plays with the powers that can alter the very fabric of the world I was literally glued to my Kindle when these powers were demonstrated Then, there s Dala She s an intriguing heroine who goes through hell in her youth When she joins a religious order, she hopes to make the world a better place She isn t prepared for the godless, power hungry people and their cold politics But she learns fast, and to make a change, she s ready to stir a revolution and drown the streets in blood I m definitely interested inof her story, and I believe my curiosity will be satisfied in sequels Secondary characters were all done exceptionally well They all have distinct traits and voices Every single one of them It takes some serious skills to make a reader feel this kind of visceral connection and, sometimes, dislike towards fictional characters, and Nell does it flawlessly Damn impressive.I find king Farahi fascinating while he s not a caring parent role model, his cold and cunning mind is impressive Asna Fetlan Isha Fetnal is a killer, but his inner monologues, carefree attitude, and sarcastic remarks were humorous and made me crack a bit in the end The scene was far from funny mind you, but Asna s voice was hilarious.My favourite thing about Kings of Paradise was the amount of development the characters get and evolving relationships between them and their entourage It s a surprisingly deep and layered story that pulls no punches Despite things getting messy and gory, I never felt the violence served to shock the reader Actually, it s the opposite even the grittiest scenes helped the plot or character evolution There s no single villain in the story the conflict is centred around protagonists beliefs and dreams colliding with the corrupted world and petty, power hungry leaders playing politics It was especially evident in religious orders pictured in Dala and Kale s storylines in which scholars, priests, and priestesses were sullying the sacred teachings with very mortal aims.It won t be a surprise to anyone, but I loved the hell out of Kings of Paradise It s not a joyous book at times it s tragic and sad, and Ruka s story alone can make you reach for Prozac It is, however, intelligently written and powerful book with stellar world building and a fantastic cast of characters The ending of Kings of Paradise can lead to numerous explosive developments Which would mean little if I read, say, five mediocre books This is not the case, though So far I ve read 102 books, and many of them were excellent A side effect of my lifelong love for comic books and Marvel heroes


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