- Hardcover: 288 pages
- Publisher: Viking (July 25, 2017)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0735224277
- ISBN-13: 978-0735224278
- Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1 x 9.3 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 13 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,734 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Fierce Kingdom: A Novel Hardcover – July 25, 2017
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Praise for Fierce Kingdom
“Expertly made thriller . . . clever and irresistible.”
—The New York Times
“Heart-stopping . . . A haunting story that will keep readers frantically turning pages until the very end, Fierce Kingdom is a stunning novel you'll be talking about all summer long.”
“Gin Phillips’s heartpounding novel will have readers questioning what lengths a mother would go to in order to save her child . . . or someone else’s.”
“This is the sort of book that . . . is impossible to put down until its resolution. . . . It is also—and this was unexpected, in such a page-turning, adrenaline-soaked read—an eloquent and meditative insight into motherhood and what it means, its many small trials and joys and wonders.”
“Fierce Kingdom unfolds at a rapid-fire pace with each chapter upping the tension and danger.”
“It tore at every maternal fiber in my body. I couldn’t put it down.”
—Fiona Barton, New York Times bestselling author of The Widow
“Fierce Kingdom is a bold exploration of the ferocity of a mother’s love—riveting and beautiful, and all too real. You’ll find yourself asking, what would I do? It’s brilliant.”
—Shari Lapena, New York Times bestselling author of The Couple Next Door
“I devoured it in one breathless sitting. Outstanding.”
—Clare Mackintosh, New York Times bestselling author of I Let You Go
“This is an elegant, taut, and tense survival story that explores the boundaries of parental love. By pitting love against fear, Gin Phillips questions the opposing forces of family bonds and shows how fierce one mother’s love can be.”
—Claire Cameron, author of The Last Neanderthal and The Bear
“I loved this book not only as a mother, but as a woman—and a feminist—living in a world teeming with pressing domestic details along with unpredictable, casual violence.”
—Susanna Daniel, award-winning author of Sea Creatures
“Phillips’ characters are exquisitely rendered, her prose is artful and evocative . . . Poignant and profound, this adrenaline-fueled thriller will shatter readers like a bullet through bone.”
—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“A searing exploration of motherhood at its most basic.”
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Phillips manages to combine beautiful imagery with heart-pounding, nerve-fraying intensity. . . . Fans of literary page-turners, like Sunil Yapa’s Your Heart Is a Muscle the Size of a Fist, won’t want to miss this.”
—Booklist (starred review)
About the Author
Gin Phillips is the award-winning author of The Well and the Mine and Come In and Cover Me. She lives in Birmingham, Alabama, with her family.
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Top customer reviews
You definitely want to read this one.
Very briefly so as not to give too much of the plot away, Joan and her son Lincoln are packing up to leave the zoo close to closing time. Lincoln doesn't want the zoo trip to finish and Joan is having a tussle getting him to put a spurt on before the zoo gates are locked for the night. As they get close to the gates, it becomes clear to Joan that the cracking noises she's been hearing are gun shots and around the exit path are bodies laid dead. Thinking quickly, Joan back tracks with Lincoln to try to hide from the gunman/men. I will say no more of the story, you really need to read this for yourself.
Every moment with Joan and Lincoln is tense and gripping. Imagine trying to keep a four year old quiet and occupied for goodness knows how long the siege will last. Joan doesn't want to frighten Lincoln with the reality of what's happening, that could lead to noise and tears, but she needs to instill in him the seriousness of their situation to make him obey her instructions.
The chapters are set into time frames starting at 4.55pm when Joan is coaxing Lincoln to get ready to leave the zoo which closes at 5.30pm, through to the nail-biting concluding climax at 8.05pm. There are some lovely moments of tender conversation between mother and son and also times of great frustration with such a young child needing the toilet, food and non-stop chatter.
This really is one of the most intensely riveting books I've ever read. I found it difficult to put down for a meal and at bedtime, and my thoughts stayed with the siege at the zoo for days afterwards. It's certainly a book to be recommended and an author to watch out for.
As a mother myself, I couldn't imagine the horror of trying to protect my children from gunmen trapped in a zoo and it was this frightening thought that kept the storyline going for me as I needed to see how the ordeal ended. Once more characters were introduced the story started to take more shape - I did find Joan a little frustrating at times, but who knows how you'd cope in a terrifying situation like the one she and her son found themselves in.
I found the first half of the book a little too slow for my liking, although it did pick up in the second half and by the end I had enjoyed reading it. It's definitely a book in my opinion more about the protective bond between a mother and son rather than a fast paced thriller so I imagine unless you actually have a child I'm not sure you'd be drawn to this book as much.
It wasn't a book that would keep me past my bedtime though still worth a read, it's well written, very descriptive and I imagine will do well. If you like your thrillers to be slow burning, tense with an unusual setting and premise then "Fierce Kingdom" by Gin Phillips is the book for you.
Most recent customer reviews
Its all visceral, feelings and fear, and things that go bump in the night in the jungle, as the tale injects you into your seat into one day in a...Read more
Wow, I literally held my breath pretty much through most of this book. A story of a mother, Joan, and her 4 year old son, Lincoln, who are on a normal trip...Read more