King Severn Argentine's fearsome reputation precedes him: usurper of the throne, killer of rightful heirs, ruthless punisher of traitors. Attempting to depose him, the Duke of Kiskaddon gambles...and loses. Now the duke must atone by handing over his young son, Owen, as the king's hostage. And should his loyalty falter again, the boy will pay with his life.
Seeking allies and eluding Severn's spies, Owen learns to survive in the court of Kingfountain. But when new evidence of his father's betrayal threatens to seal his fate, Owen must win the vengeful king's favor by proving his worth - through extraordinary means. And only one person can aid his desperate cause: a mysterious woman, dwelling in secrecy, who truly wields power over life, death, and destiny.
©2016 Jeff Wheeler (P)2016 Brilliance Audio, all rights reserved.
"Good story, fun premise, only one major complaint."
I haven't read the print version, so I can't comment on this.
I can't think of any other titles off-hand to compare it to. I liked the setting in a castle, intrigue between nations, family conflicts, magical twists and turns. A protagonist who doesn't understand his powers... it's similar to other books, but with a unique view of magic through a "fountain" and the whole concept of being "fountain-blessed" was interesting.
She did a really good job on interpreting various characters. I especially liked her interpretation of the protagonist's best friend, who was a chatty girl with a wonderful personality. My only complaint is that the voice she used for the main character was a bit whiny, which didn't seem to fit how I would have imagined him to sound if I were just reading it. Also, the way she did the voice of the Queen's Poisoner was a little overdone when she was being "sweet" to the little boy. I did like how she showed that the woman was ill through her voice. Overall, well done.
My one thing that constantly drove me crazy was how all of the adults around the young protagonist tell him about things way beyond the level that you would normally explain to an 8-year-old. They give so many details of intrigue, facts about the history of the realm, and personality conflicts, that it was hard for even me, as an adult, to follow along and keep up with everything. It would have been way above the head of a young child. I realize that this is a "special" child, but still, would you talk to any child about members of the royal family killing and poisoning each other, women being "forced", and abstract concepts that are not even physically processed by young minds until adolescence? It was just a bit too much. I feel that if the protagonist had been at least 10 or 11, it would have been more believable. T
I liked this book quite well, it was interesting and compelling enough to keep me listening. The premise with fountain-blessed magic is unique, and I enjoyed the various characters and their diverse personalities. hat said, ignoring the age issue, I was able to really enjoy the story line. I am looking forward to reading the next installment, to see what happens next in the lives of these characters. :)
"Great audio book."
This story was very interesting and different from the run of the mill books set in the medieval world. The focus of the fantasy is the eight year old son of a defiant duke who is taken as a hostage into the King's household. The boy is very special and has an undiscovered power that he must come to acknowledge, understand, and master. The intrigues of the court are realistically portrayed as well as medieval justice. This was a very enjoyable book.
As for the Kate Rudd she was superb. There are so many different voices, including men women and children, and she switches from one to another seamlessly. Can't wait to listen to the next book in the series />I would very highly recommend this book/audiobook.
I really enjoyed this story. The narration was spot on and she did a wonderful job of brining each character alive. I finished this in just two days, unable to put it down. Having the main character being just a little 8 year old boy, kept me in worried suspense for him. I couldn't stop wondering what was going to happen to him. The story was very fast paced and I think anyone that likes fantasy will enjoy this. Well worth the credit and I look forward to the next book in this series.
The Queen’s poisoner Five stars all around!
Wheeler, this is your best book yet! I love how you have evolved as an author.
Jeff Wheeler proves you do not need the crutches of sex and violence to get the readers’ attention and keep them coming back. The book stands on its own merits.
His hard work and skill as a writer displays in the Queen’s Poisoner. Wheeler has developed of a boiling plot, with believable and loveable characters. I loved the intrigue, and suspense, which led to many twists and turns. The conclusive ending left me satisfied, but the world he created left me wanting to know more.
Keep this narrator! Not quite Jim Dale, but she did a great job.
I can’t wait for the next.
Thoroughly enjoyed this book. Jeff Wheeler definitely knows how grab a reader's attention and keep it throughout the book. This book has it all - intrigue, spies, kings, queens, evil versus good ... simply everything to reel the reader in on page one and keep their attention until the last page is done and then make you simply want to read more. Excellent. This series is going to be best of his series so far. Great read.
"Drew me in almost instantly"
This author is very good at foreshadowing and giving small clues to keep you listening. It was enjoyable and thoroughly interesting.
I listened to it on my commutes to and from work for a week or so, and sometimes did not want to turn it off when I got home, so I sat in my driveway for a few minutes to finish a chapter.
"Political Intrigue and Magic"
I thought the narration was excellent; it really added to the world of the book by making characters so distinct.
The world itself is also fun; the culture has an emphasis on water, and everything related back to a belief in the fountain (where the series gets it's name).
Owen is the central figure. A young boy that is sent to the king as a hostage, but has a strongly sympathetic effect on much of the household, he slowly learns subtle skills to help him survive. The central question is whether all the help and knowledge he obtains will be enough.
My only reservation was how one character is called fat/unhealthy repeatedly as an insult. The character isn't evil and is more than just that representation, so it was something I could get past, but it was there.
I'm very excited to hear book two!
I didn't read the print version, only listened to Audio, so I can't really compare them.
I think I might listen to the book again, just to hear her smooth, calming voice. She did an excellent job voicing the different characters believably and I really enjoyed her performance.
This is a wonderful story that illustrates the power of friendship, loyalty, and love. I can't wait to read book two!
"A Cleverly woven tapestry"
I loved how human the characters in this story were and yet also special. The three loved characters in this story each had such unique traits and were all equally loveable and special!
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