Thursday, September 13, 2018

Review: Exile of the Seas by Jeffe Kennedy (@jeffekennedy, @KensingtonBooks)

Exile of the Seas
Release Date: September 4, 2018
Publisher: Kensington Books
Genre: Fantasy
Review Copy Source: NetGalley

Around the shifting borders of the Twelve Kingdoms, trade and conflict, danger and adventure put every traveler on guard . . . but some have everything to lose.

Once she was known as Jenna, Imperial Princess of Dasnaria, schooled in graceful dance and comely submission. Until the man her parents married her off to almost killed her with his brutality.

Now, all she knows is that the ship she’s boarded is bound away from her vicious homeland. The warrior woman aboard says Jenna’s skill in dancing might translate into a more lethal ability. Danu’s fighter priestesses will take her in, disguise her as one of their own—and allow her to keep her silence.

But it’s only a matter of time until Jenna’s monster of a husband hunts her down. Her best chance to stay hidden is to hire out as bodyguard to a caravan traveling to a far-off land, home to beasts and people so unfamiliar they seem like part of a fairy tale. But her supposed prowess in combat is a fraud. And sooner or later, Jenna’s flight will end in battle—or betrayal . . .

The Chronicles of Dasnaria series continues to be character driven with EXILE OF THE SEAS.

I loved the addition of a few new big characters in EXILE OF THE SEAS. Kaja was a big part of the story although she wasn't really present for a majority of it. Her influence and belief in Jenna set Jenna on a course that not only changed her future, but made her so much stronger than she was before and allowed her to really expand as a character. Ochieng kinda snuck up on my heart. I didn't think much of him when we met him, but he ended up having so much depth and character as a person that by the end of the story, I couldn't imagine the story without him in it. We also get a little bit of romance. It snuck up in the background, but it was still a nice addition to the story.

A lot of big things happens in book two, but surprisingly, the most powerful part of EXILE OF THE SEAS for me was when Ivariel met Violet the elephant. What a beautiful moment all around. Violet isn't the only elephant that steals hearts though. Their addition to the story was beautifully done.

I think the author could have ended the story with EXILE OF THE SEAS, but I admit I'm interested to see what will happen next for Ivariel and her new friends.   

I gave it 4/5 stars

* This book was provided free of charge from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.