Over the past three days, I have been experiencing life with my friend, Owen Kiskaddon. Sort of. You see, I read about good ol’ Owen in the pages of Jeff Wheeler’s Kingfountain fantasy trilogy.
I acquired the third book, The King’s Traitor as an e-arc provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. (click here to see the goodreads page of The King’s Traitor.)
Against all odds, Owen Kiskaddon grew from frightened boy to confident youth to trusted officer in the court of Kingfountain—and watched its regent, Severn Argentine, grow ever more ruthless and power-mad. Robbed of his beloved protector, his noble mentor, and his true love, Owen has anticipated the day when the king he fears and reviles, yet loyally serves, will be toppled. Now, as Severn plots a campaign of conquest, the time has come to take action…and Owen’s destiny demands that he lead the strike.
Ordered to incite war with a neighboring kingdom, Owen discovers its beautiful, reclusive ruler, whose powerful magic might even exceed his own. Together they mount a daring plot to overthrow the corrupt monarch, crown the rightful heir, and defeat the prophesied curse threatening Kingfountain with wintry death. But Severn’s evil is as bottomless as the fabled Deep Fathoms. To keep his ill-gotten throne, he’ll gladly spill the blood of enemies and innocents alike
(summary provided by Goodreads)
This is third third and final book to the Kingfountain fantasy series, and boy was this an amazing ending!
I rate this 4/5 mushrooms
This story takes place seven years after The Thief’s Daughter, so therefore Owen is around 24 years old. You can tell that Owen’s character had changed over the course of the trilogy, starting out from a nervous scared young boy in the first book, a confident and slightly pompous young man in love in the second book, and lastly an angry, bitter, and basically darker version of Owen in the final installment.
Owen became dark! Angsty teenage dreams fulfilled! Thank you to the author!
“‘I’m a bone-weary soldier,‘ Owen said, brushing of the compliment. ‘And I grow wearier by the day. […] ”
He had had his heart broken by King Severn when Evie was sent to marry Iugo, and Owen has spent the past seven years unhappy and brooding, acquiring a sharp, thorny tongue and a fierce temper. Lord Kiskaddon can see himself changing, becoming more and more like the infamous King Severn, who has become every bit as ruthless and cruel as the tales once said.
So many dark characters and so I must give five points to Gryffindor for some awesome character development xD. However, Owen’s character doesn’t stay that way for long, as he develops a relationship with Sinia, the mysterious duchess of another kingdom.
Owen once again narrated, with his strong, present voice and sharp wit. Although his heart is broken at the beginning of the story, I love how Mr. Wheeler did not make Owen create page-long odes in favor of Evie. There are moments in which Owen feels “a sharp pain in his lower abdomen” whenever he visits Evie or sees her with her husband, but they do not take over the plot of the story.
Instead, Owen develops a relationship with Sinia, a mysterious duchess with a shit load of magical power who in fact reminds Owen of Ankarette.
“Ankarette had always known his heart. Which of the two women were more like her? The answer came to him unbidden: Sinia”
The romance seems a bit rushed, (kinda insta-lovey?) but because the romance was put on the backburner, it did not seem to be a huge bothersome point for me, and the love in this story should not turn anyone away from reading this book or the series in general.
In fact, the whole story seemed kind of rushed. No, scratch that, the whole series. Fast paced books are the joy of my life, but this book was like so speedy it was… crazy. Supposedly action packed scenes only took a couple of pages, a chapter or two at most. The plot was moving a double time speed! Of course, in my opinion fast paced is soo much better than slow moving books, but I feel like Jeff Wheeler could have slowed the pace down a bit and added more detail. I know I would have loved to get to know more about the world itself, and the crucial parts of the plot (such as the magic, the game of Wizr, and more about the old stories.)
can we talk about the fact that Owen is NOT the chosen one? Yes, my long anticipated fantasy fans. We finally have a story in which if this was in a history book or a tale to be told at night by the campfire, Owen would be the… side character. The fact though does not make the story any less exciting and amazing, and this is a highly recommended read.
I hope you all will pick up this book series as your next fantasy read, and The King’s Traitor will be released on September 6th 2016 by the publisher 47 North.
Have a wonderful day!