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The King's Bastard (King Rolen's Kin, Book One) Mass Market Paperback – June 29, 2010

3.3 out of 5 stars 34 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Rowena Corey Daniels is the renowned writer behind the The Last T’en trilogy. She lives in Brisbane with her husband and six children. King Rolen’s Kin - The Bastard Son marks the begining of a major new fantasy trilogy.
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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 640 pages
  • Publisher: Solaris (June 29, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1907519017
  • ISBN-13: 978-1907519017
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1.4 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,057,834 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
The book sounded great by the back cover, but now that I've read it I sort of regret the experience.

SPOILERS AHEAD:

The first (and most irritating) plot point that sticks out is one of the characters is disinherited for his allegiance with a warrior sect that was led by a now-villainized hero, a sect that was involved with warfare between kings and lords. Sounds pretty epic, right? However, the author chooses to focus on the fact he was gay and his followers are also, and then makes that the central reason why he gets disowned. Ok, if it's really just homophobia, why do the setup for the warrior sect at all? And if you're going to make one character a tragically gay hero, how about you focus on his feelings for the main character, or other conflicts this brings? She mentions it sort of in passing a few times (literally, two or three sentences and then on to next topic) and then just leaves it alone. I'd forgive this if she tried to handle anything else in a believable fashion. In this world magic is outlawed on pain of death, and all magic-users must belong to some weird (and poorly defined) god and goddess cult. Okay, that's great. Now explain to me why the princess apparently is reasonably well-versed in elementary magic, and despite being On the Cusp of Marriage (another point beaten to death) and can't wrap her little feathered head around the idea that, I dunno, MAYBE YOU SHOULD BE SUBTLE ABOUT IT. The sister's an idiot, a female caricature of ditzy teenage emotions. She injects wreck and ruin into everything she does, but instead of using her as an unstable, destructive force, the author just reminds us that SHE'S ON THE CUSP OF MARRIAGE, and doesn't really deal with her fundamental character flaws.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
The King's Bastard offers a lot of what I adore about epic fantasy: magical creatures, magic wielders and royal intrigue, as well as compelling characters, but it falls somewhat short of my expectations. Or maybe I've been spoiled by reading George RR Martin and others in this particular genre.

That being said, I'll still go ahead and read the rest in this series because one thing Rowena Cory Daniells does is write characters I've fallen for ... hard, in a gooey fantasy fan kind of way. And the only thing that truly bothers me about the story is the feeling that, at times, the plot offers little twitches and hiccoughs when events happen a little *too* conveniently or people behave in particular ways without giving (what I feel to be) sufficient motivation to warrant their actions.

And what's not to love about Byren? He's not only good-looking, but he's a consummate warrior and hunter, and he truly is well-meaning (though a bit too naïve at times). In that regard he makes me think a little of Ned Stark, and much like the latter, his continuous attempts to do the right thing backfire... horribly.

Problem is Byren's twin brother and heir to the throne, Lence, is convinced that Byren's aiming to steal the throne from under his butt - a vicious rumour propagated by the lord Cobalt, their relative.

Then we have younger siblings Piro and Fyn. Both have what's known as the Affinity - the ability to wield magic. Thing is, in Rolencia, all of those who have Affinity must align themselves with a religious order as all renegade power workers are considered to be evil. This is a problem for Piro, as she's been hiding her Affinity for years.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
This book is the reason why I love fantasy. It swept me away, it had me biting my nails and when I tried to do other things I couldn't stop thinking about it. Yes, it has been all I have been thinking about for the last few days.

Byren is the main character, a young prince who loves his family and country. But his brother doesn't care for his company any more, and is listening to bad advice. And when Byren is seen as a hero after killing a beast the anger grows in Lence. The other main characters are Piro, the youngest member of the family and she is hiding her magic so she will not be sent away since all those with affinity becomes nuns or monks, or are killed. Then there is Fyn, with little affinity he has served long, and no when it's time to become a monk for real he is not sure which path to take.

There is political intrigues and treachery around. Illien, the son of the late king's bastard has come to court and has soon charmed the king and Lence. He is spreading lies, and what his agenda is, I can only imagine. Oh how I loathe him from the start with his slick ways.

With Illien at court trouble start. There is also the subject of Lence not wanting to marry a foreign princess, a country that might just attack, trying to keep the peace along the warlords.

This is a book filled with adventure. Things seems to get worse and worse, and they have many personal battles in front of them. And beasts to killed. I was pulled into the story at once, Byren is a young hero that you just have to like. Piro is a little spitfire, Lence and Illien I disliked, and Fyn, well I am still unsure about him. He is nice, but I feel so sorry for him for having to become a monk just cos he is born in Rolencia.
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