“Your Majesty, I take life. I am not certain that my skills actually extend to preserving it.” There are always those who are willing to pay for someone else’s death.
Publisher: A.B Endacott
Publication Date: November 15th 2017
RRP: $20.90 AUD
Personal Rating: 4.5/5
Queendom of Seven Lakes is a high fantasy novel set in a matriarchy world. The story follows Elan-ai an assassin who is part of a clan of assassins called the Family. Elan-ai found herself getting in a contract with the Queen of the kingdom. But this particular contract is not like the others she had where she was assigned to dispose of someone. Elan-ai soon finds herself becoming a bodyguard of sorts to Gidyon, the future and first male heir of the throne. The Queen fears for her son’s life and how people will react to the announcement of a male heir in a matriarchy society. So obviously the only logical thing to do is to hire an assassin after an attempt on the Queen’s and Gidyon’s life. Elan-ai and Gidyon travel together across the kingdom to receive the blessing of the high society families.
This high fantasy novel was not filled with high stakes action, but political intrigue. It is easy to forget the importance of politics in a fantasy setting. Unlike other stories with a heavy emphasis in politics (which quickly becomes tedious), this one follows more of a murder mystery vibe (minus the murder) as Gidyon and Elan-ai try to figure out who wanted to kill the Queen and the heir. This allowed the reader to be able to join the political game without being too heavily invested in politics.
The whole novel is told through Elan-ai’s point of view, a very neutral spectator due to her ties to the Family. However, through the novel, we watch her friendship with Gidyon grow to the point she would kill people who hurt him without a second thought. But don’t confuse this with love, which I loved! There have been way too many novels where the main female and male character have a great friend dynamic and suddenly KISSING. I was so thrilled that what Gidyon and Elan-ai have for each other is genuine respect and friendship with one another. We need more novels like this.
My biggest complaint about the story is the world-building. It’s not bad, I just wanted more. There were hints to magic and hatred/tensions toward individual families, and I wish it was explored a bit more? However, since the novel was in Elan-ai’s perspective, it also made sense that she wouldn’t have all that information even as a member of the Family (who always gather information and knowledge). I wanted to know why some families were wealthier than others, why they were the essential families and so force. Not knowing didn’t hurt the story at all, I was just very intrigued by everyone and the world around them.
Overall, it was a fun read. If you’re looking for a fantasy world that isn’t heavy on the battle, not patriarchy, full of intrigue and mystery and a quick read (less than 300 pages), I highly recommend that you pick up Queendom of Seven Lakes. It has cool lead characters, people full of secrets and a murder-mystery like political storyline. I can’t wait to pick up its sequel!
I received an ecopy of Queendom of Seven Lakes Duology from A.B Endacott in exchange of an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.