Kings or Pawns by J.J. Sherwood Book Review and GIveaway

Over the past few years, I have developed an extreme interest in fantasy and science fiction novels. When I was offered the opportunity to read and review the first novel in J.J. Sherwood's, The Kings, series--I was very interested in exploring the author's fantasy world. What was my review of Kings or Pawns?

I received a complimentary copy of this book for use in my review as part of an iRead Book Tour. All opinions are my own.  

Quick Summary of Kings or Pawns. J.J. Sherwood’s debut novel KINGS OR PAWNS: THE KINGS, BOOK 1 is the first in a high fantasy epic series sure to please fans of both the science fiction and fantasy genres.

The year is 8994 P.E., and the city of Elvorium is corrupted—rotted to the core by the machinations of depraved politicians. With his father dead and the country facing a rebellion, Price Hairem becomes the king of the elven world of Sevrigel in one of its most turbulent points in history.

Young and daring, Hairem is determined to eradicate the corruption festering in Elvorium’s self-serving and all-powerful council, which thwarts his best intentions at every turn. But Hairem’s problems are far more sinister¬—and deadly—than merely political. The loyal members of the council are being savagely murdered by an assassin loosed within the city—an assassin whose brutality knows no bounds. Outside of the city, the Lord Saebellus wages a vicious rebellion against the capital. He has been thwarted thus far by the brilliant General Jikun, and Hairem is certain that the general can crush Saebellus.

But instead of continuing the campaign against the warlord, the council orders Jikun’s army to be split, sending him on a mission that furthers only their own wealth and power. Jikun knows that the council’s demands will leave Elvorium vulnerable to an attack from the formidable warlord. Although Saebellus has been recently defeated, he is far from vanquished. As corruption and death threaten to tear the city apart from within, the rebel Saebellus seizes the opportunity to lay siege to Sevrigel’s eastern capital and unleash his most powerful weapon yet: a demonic beast that neither weapon nor magic can kill. With the elven world crumbling around him, Hairem is grasping for his own power to fight against the forces that threaten Sevrigel.

Will Hairem overcome the council’s scheming and duplicity? Can General Jikun defeat the warlord Saebellus? Will this be the war that finally brings Sevrigel to its knees? KINGS OR PAWNS offers action, intrigue, mystery, and suspense—a thrilling story that will leave readers hungry for the sequel, Heroes or Thieves, to be published in February 2016.

Readers encounter an incredible world with well-developed characters in Kings or Pawns. When I first opened the book to a glossary with character name pronunciations--I was a little concerned that the depth of the book would exceed my busy-mom attention span. It did take a chapter or two for Sherwood to pull me into her characters' lives and their world--but, once she caught me--I was hooked through to the end of the book. She offers so much detail to her settings and scenes--and creates such believable characters--that it is impossible for readers to feel like "outsiders". I became quite comfortable in the fantasy world--and found myself very immersed in the characters lives and their plights.

Kings or Pawns is exciting from cover to cover. Even while Sherwood sets the stage for this series throughout this first book; she keeps the reader engaged with action packed pages, flowing scenes, and a very organized plot. There were many times when I thought I was reading toward a resolution--only to have a few plot twists and turns take my mind in a different direction. Readers will be left with some questions at the end of the story--but, will also become quite invested in the characters' journeys.

Would I recommend Kings or Pawns by J.J. Sherwood? This is a very well developed, well written fantasy novel. Sherwood writes with amazing detail and guides readers seemlessly toward the book's end. Readers will not find resolution in this book--but, will likely be more than ready to dive into the next book of the series. I know that I enjoyed this book and will certainly look for future books from the author.

Buy the book:  Amazon   Barnes & Noble

Author's Bio:

J.J. Sherwood lives in Ohio with her husband and four near-identical cats. KINGS OR PAWNS is J.J.’s widely anticipated debut novel, and is the first book of The Kings quartet. The series is set in the high fantasy world of Aersadore, home to hundreds of characters who all clamor for J.J.’s attention. To learn more about the trials and tribulations of General Jikun and King Hairem, visit J.J. Sherwood will be at the tenth Fandom Fest Comic Con in Louisville, Kentucky this coming August 7th-9th.

Connect with the author:  Website   Twitter   Facebook

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